Things I realized when I once again ventured into the bowl preview this year:
1. The last post on this blog was last year’s bowl preview. Apparently I’ve lost touch with my inner weather enthusiast. That, or having a child and a new job tends to squeeze the old free time.
2. You know you’ve been doing this entirely too long when you have to double check the roman numerals you’re using in the title to ensure it represents the number you think it should represent.
3. About the only time I visit espn.com is when I’m making this bowl preview. They actually have a very concise bowl schedule that’s easy to reference when creating the bolded info part of each game. I recommend printing it out as an easy guide this bowl season.
4. There are a number of new bowl sponsors/games this year, so this preview should basically write itself.
As always, any predictions are for entertainment purposes only, but don’t let me stop you from using them to gamble your life away. After all, gambling on amateur* athletics is about as American as it gets. Well, perhaps it’s just below fully-grown adults obsessing over the college choice of an 18 year-old, but it’s close.
(All times EST.)
Amos Alonzo Stagg Bowl
(You know the teams)
7:00 PM, December 19, Salem, VA
For the 9th time in the last 10 years Wisconsin-Whitewater (14-0) will face off against Mount Union (14-0) in the Division III National Championship game. At this point, I’m not sure why they even have Division III football. It’s the same two teams almost every year. This is how Olympic events get squashed – a lack of parity/competition.
Mount Union’s road to here has been relatively smooth. Rival John Carroll is the only team to hold Mount Union under 58 points in a game this year. (Yes, you read that correctly.) Carroll lost both games by a single score, which is a heck of an accomplishment when you consider the scores of every other Mount Union game this year. The other three games Mount has played in the playoffs? 63-3, 67-0, 70-21. So, yeah, lack of competition applies.
All that said, Whitewater has won the last four Stagg Bowl games they’ve appeared in, defeating Mount every time. Whitewater won their last two playoff games by a combined 10 points, which would seem to favor Mount if you assume the bracket is evenly stacked (I’m not watching DIII film to scout these teams), but Whitewater has certainly had their number in this game as of late.
One sneaky factor: the Whitewater coach is leaving for an FBS school (Buffalo) after this game. Could be a difference maker. Speaking of FBS schools…