There are 19 bowl games in a 5 day stretch from December 28th to New Year's Day. That's pretty cool. Here are the previews for all the games to be played tomorrow.
12:00 PM - ESPN
Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl - Dallas, TX
Army Black Knights vs. SMU Mustangs
This game will be played on SMU's campus, which is kind of messed up if you asked me. Thankfully, there are a lot of Army personnel stationed throughout Texas, and hopefully they'll show up to support their team. While $MU are hardly a powerhouse, they were 4-2 at home (losses against TCU and Houston), and Army's 6-6 record includes wins against North Texas and VMI. Nevertheless, i'm a sentimental fool, and I'm picking the Black Knights.
3:20 PM - ESPN
New Era Pinstripe Bowl - New York, NY
Kansas State Wildcats vs. Syracuse Orange
K-State lost to every decent team on its schedule. Meanwhile, Syracuse surprised people and finished with the 13th best defense in the country. But how much of that was a product of playing in the Big Least? And adding the likes of Colgate and Maine to the schedule? SU was 99th in points per game, and I think KSU will grind out a win in the Bronx.
6:40 PM - ESPN
Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl - Nashville, TN
UNC Tar Heels vs. Tennessee Volunteers
There needs to be a cap on the number of bowl games, and the number of letters used to name a bowl game. Despite loads of controversy, UNC won 7 games. Look for lots of passing in this game, along with few points scored, and a North Carolina win.
10:00 PM - ESPN
Bridgepoint Education Holiday Bowl - San Diego, CA
#18 Nebraska Cornhuskers vs. Washington Huskies
Jake Locker finally made a bowl game. And he should enjoy it before it's played, because it probably won't go well. Washington were well balanced, with the 93rd ranked defense, and 93rd ranked offense in the country. Nebraska can run the ball well, and should hold Washington's offense to negative points. I saw one spread for this game to be 14 points. Nebraska should win by at least double that.
We'll have the previews for the New Year's Eve and New Year's Day games tomorrow.
Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Three Patriots were named starters for the AFC team, and three more were named as backups. Tom Brady, Logan Mankins, and Vince Wilfork were selected as starters. This will be Brady's 6th Pro Bowl (seems low, doesn't it?), Wilfork's 3rd, and Mankins' 3rd. I have to admit that I'm really happy the Patriots finally came around and signed Mankins, as he's been very helpful in the running game.
Devin McCourty, Jerod Mayo, and Brandon Meriweather were all named as back-ups. This is McCourty's first selection, Mayo's first, and Meriweather's 2nd. I'm not too sure if Meriweather belongs there, but whatever.
Remember the first day of the NFL Draft, when fans up here were pissing and moaning about the Patriots taking a cornerback in the 1st round? Where are those people now?
A notable snub would be Rob Gronkowski. I feel like he deserves to be there more than Marcedes Lewis, and perhaps more than Antonio Gates. But it is an All-Star game, and reputation sometimes supersedes results. And until his 3 TD explosion in Pittsburgh, he was relatively unknown around the League.
Some might be upset that Danny Woodhead didn't get any recognition. But MJ Drew, Arian Foster, and Jamaal Charles are all having ridiculous seasons. Woodhead is about 800 yards behind all of these guys.
Hopefully, not a single Patriot will play in the Pro Bowl. I don't mean they'll all be involved in 6 separate calamities, like Mr. Burns' softball team on The Simpsons. But hopefully all 6 will be in Dallas engaged in other business.
During the 3rd period, I was thinking of criticizing Mark Recchi. I was going to call him slow, past his prime, and even call him the Fred Taylor of the Bruins. I should consider badmouthing Recchi more often, because every time I think about doing it, he scores a big goal.
This was an impressive victory. The Bruins went down to play the #2 team in the East, on the road. That team was very hot, by the way. And were highly motivated (because of how badly the Bruins beat them previously).
It was a North-South, back and forth kind of game. Which isn't really the Bruins' forte. Thankfully, they capitalized on their power play opportunities. And the defensemen got involved. Kampfer had his first career goal, and Seidenberg had 2 assists.
I'm a big fan of Steve Kampfer, although he still needs to develop. Against the Panthers, his turnover directly led to a goal. And last night, some miscommunication with Thomas nearly led to another. If he works these kinks out down in Providence, he could return in 2010-11 as a very good defenseman. And one that can also contribute on offense.
Speaking of young players, Brad "Rudy" Marchand scored his 5th goal of the season, and his career. That 4th line has scored 15 goals this year. That's a nice bonus from that trio.
Thomas had one of his more forgettable nights in goal. He was a bit overly aggressive, and wasn't his fastest moving from post to post. He'll probably get the next game off, at least I think he should.
The Bruins are in Atlanta Thursday night, which might be interesting after that pre-Christmas line-brawl. So far, this road trip has gone very well. And the B's have maintained that focus and determination they showed last week against Atlanta.