Tuesday, December 29, 2009

College Football Pick'em: Sugar Bowl Predictions

We've talked a lot of football over the past few days, and there have been some great bowl games to watch (by great we mean horrible blowouts) but now its time for the big boys. That's right the BCS Bowl games are here. First up for us here at Walker Sports, the All State Sugar Bowl with the Florida Gators and the Cincinnati Bearcats.

The Cincinnati Bearcats were one of the most exciting teams to watch this season. Tony Pike was in the front running for the Heisman before his wrist injury, and the Bearcats had weapons to burn on offense. Pittsburgh found that out the hard way when they squandered a 21 point lead to Cincinnati in what was effectively the Big East Championship game. Since that game not much has gone well for the Cincinnati Bearcats.

Notre Dame came a calling, and Brian Kelly found himself packing up and heading north. Then came the coaching search that left coordinator Jeff Quinn to coach the Bearcats, but after being spurned for the head coaching job, Quinn has found greener pastures and Cincinnati has three lame duck coaches. Butch Jones is the new head man, but he is not in town just yet.

In a nutshell the Cincinnati Bearcats have gone from college football elite to disaster. The players are angry and feel betrayed. While they want to prove they are capable of playing without Kelly, the Bearcats have no one to help them guide or channel all that frustration. Perhaps now more than ever the leadership of Tony Pike is needed.

Another problem the Bearcats are facing is one of the worst defenses in the country. Cincinnati gives up points in bunches. That may work against the low scoring teams in the Big East, but when you're facing Florida, spotting them 30 points could be a very bad idea.

Tim Tebow was ready to ride off into the sunset as one of the all time greats in college football history. While Tebow will still go down as one of the all time greats, he will not get a shot at a third national title. The Gators were destroyed when they faced a revenge filled Alabama team. We have all seen what Florida is capable off when coming off a lost. The time time they lost a game, the Gators went on a 8 game win streak and won a national title. However, what was most impressive was the way they destroyed teams on their way to the national title. Tim Tebow put on one of the all time great examples of leadership.

The Gators have all their focus on New Orleans and Cincinnati. Urban Meyer's put a an end to all Notre Dame rumors very early and focused all their energy to winning the Sugar Bowl. Urban Meyer and Tim Tebow see this as a legacy game. Both men want to put an emphatic stamp on the past four years.

The spread is sitting at -12 and favoring Florida. While this is a lot of points for two top 10 teams, the turmoil surrounding Cincinnati cannot be ignored, or overcome. Adding fuel to the fire is the recent announcement that Florida head coach Urban Meyer will retire after the game. That means Meyer and Tebow are leaving U-of-F at the same time, no way they close out on a down note.

Winner: Florida comes through with a big win and covers the spread.


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