Friday, January 4, 2013

Pac-12 Bowl Recap

OK, all Pac-12 teams have played in their bowls. For the most part, I got my predictions wrong and the league just didn't perform against their post-season foes. Interestingly enough, I think my final score predictions were pretty good...just the opposite teams won/lost than I thought.

The league finished with a 4-4 bowl record. Not great. But, it's interesting to note that the "top" of the league (Oregon, Stanford) performed well and won while the rest of the league underachieved or unimpressively beat opponents they obviously should have.

Anyway, lets review...

Oregon vs. Kansas State in the Fiesta Bowl. The Oregon speed machine was "out the gate" on the very first touch of the game as DAT took the opening kickoff back for a TD. The Ducks never looked back...or, more accurately, never were really in jeopardy of losing to out manned and relatively slow K-State. With the 35-17 win, UO ends at 12-1 for the season and is headed for no worse than a #3 finish in national rankings - perhaps even #2 depending on how the National Championship Game goes. Also to note, this is the fourth BCS bowl in a row for the Ducks and the second BCS Bowl win in a row.

Stanford vs. Wisconsin in the Rose Bowl. I thought Wisconsin would rise up and win this one...their third Rose Bowl appearance in a row. However, Stanford busted out to a 14 - 0 lead in the first quarter,  added a field goal at the end of the first half, tacked on another in the fourth quarter..and hung on all the while to win 20-14. Kinda a boring game. But you gotta give Stanford its due. They are a legit Top 5/Top 10 team.

Oregon State vs. Texas in the Alamo Bowl. It looked in the first half like OSU would win this thing as they got out to a 10 point lead and seemed to be holding it. But, then Texas decided to show up. They shut down the Beavs in the second half and ended up winning the game.

UCLA vs. Baylor in the Holiday Bowl. I did not see this game, nor highlights from it. I do know that UCLA lost by a score of 49-26. Not much of a showing and it makes one wonder if the "resurgence" of the Bruins is a bit premature.

USC vs. Georgia Tech in the Sun Bowl. USC was by far the biggest disappointment among the Pac-12 bowl teams. Clearly they did not want to be in this game and it showed in their play. Getting beat by a 6-7 GT team was embarrassing for a team once thought to be a national title contender. One wonders how good (or bad) they will be next season.

UW vs. Boise State in the Las Vegas Bowl. The Dawgs lost this one for the same reasons they lost five regular season games - poor QB play, turnovers and failing to capitalize on opportunities. UW finishes 7-6.

Arizona State vs. Navy in the Fight Hunger Bowl. ASU blasts Navy. File this one under, "no duh."

Arizona vs. Nevada in the New Mexico Bowl. This one had one of the most unexpected and thrilling endings to any of the bowl games. Arizona slept walked through much of the game, trailing by a couple scores late (late!) into the fourth quarter. Then, all of a sudden, they scored two TDs in, like, less than a minute to win.

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