College Football Bowl Schedule Preview

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College football’s bowl season is nearly upon us, and already is offering action on all the games. Here’s a quick look at the coming bowl schedule, and the numbers that go with it.

First of all, while it isn’t a bowl game, it might as well be – it’s Army-Navy, Saturday afternoon in Philadelphia (2:30 pm CBS). With a win, 5-6 Army goes to its first bowl game in over a decade. And the Knights are trying to break a miserable seven-game losing streak to Navy. The 8-4 Middies, meanwhile, have already clinched a seventh straight bowl berth; they’ll play Missouri in the Texas Bowl on New Year’s Eve day.

Navy has beaten the Cadets the last two seasons by a combined score of 72-3.

As of Wednesday morning, is listing the Mids at -14 over Army, with a total of 41.

The bowl season opens next Saturday, Dec. 19 when 8-4 Fresno State and 6-6 Wyoming play in the New Mexico Bowl (4:30 pm ET, ESPN), and 8-4 Central Florida and 8-4 Rutgers go at it in the St. Petersburg Bowl (8 pm ET, ESPN). As of Wednesday morning, is listing the Bulldogs at -10.5 over the Cowboys, and the Scarlet Knights at -2.5 over UCF’s Golden Knights.

The bowl slate is full of what should be good, competitive games.

Oregon State, 8-4 and coming off that tough loss to rival Oregon, is listed at -1.5 over 10-2 BYU in the Las Vegas Bowl (Tuesday, Dec. 22, 8 pm ET, ESPN); 8-4 Nevada is –14 over 7-5 SMU, with a total of 73, in the Hawaii Bowl (Christmas Eve, 8:30 pm ET, ESPN); 8-4 USC is –8 over 8-4 Boston College in the Emerald Bowl (Saturday, Dec. 26, 8 pm ET, ESPN); 9-3 Miami is –3 over 9-3 Wisconsin in the Champs Sports Bowl (Tuesday, Dec. 29, 8 pm ET, ESPN); 7-5 Oklahoma is –9.5 over 8-4 Stanford in the Sun Bowl (New Year’s Eve day, 2 pm ET, CBS); and 9-3 Virginia Tech is –4.5 over 7-5 Tennessee in the Chick-fil-A Bowl (New Year’s Eve, 7:30 pm ET, ESPN).

Then comes New Year’s Day. Auburn, at 7-5, and 8-4 Northwestern kick things off in the Outback Bowl (11 am ET, ESPN), where the Tigers are favored by 7.5 points over the Wildcats at Then 9-3 West Virginia is –2 over 6-6 Florida State in the Bowden, err, the Gator Bowl (1 pm ET, CBS), and 10-2 Penn State is –3 over 9-3 LSU in the Capital One Bowl (1 pm ET, ABC). Then, in the Granddaddy of ’em all, 10-2 Pac-10 champion Oregon is –3.5 over 10-2 Big Ten champ Ohio State in the Rose Bowl (4:30 pm ET, ABC). And 12-1 Florida is -10 over 12-0 Cincinnati in the Sugar Bowl (8:30 pm ET, Fox).

Among the five games the following day, 8-4 Ol’ Miss is -3 over 9-3 Oklahoma State in the Cotton Bowl (2 pm ET, Fox), and 8-4 Texas Tech is –7.5 over 6-6 Michigan State in the Alamo Bowl (9 pm ET, ESPN).

Then the good stuff really begins. TCU, at 12-0, is listed at –7 over 13-0 Boise State in the raw-deal championship game, otherwise known as the Fiesta Bowl (Monday, Jan. 4, 8 pm ET, Fox). And 11-2 ACC champion Georgia Tech is –3.5 over 10-2 Iowa in the Orange Bowl (Tuesday, Jan. 5, 8 pm ET, Fox).

And in the Big One, 13-0 SEC champion Alabama is –6 over 13-0 Big 12 champion Texas, with a total of 44.5, in the BCS national championship game, at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena (Thursday, Jan. 7, 8 pm ET, ABC).

Bettors should also check back at for updated odds on this weekend’s FCS national semifinal playoff games, and Saturday’s Division 2 championship game.

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