Table of Contents
By Alex Lauzon from the “Course of Life” podcast
BOWL SEASON HEATS UP
Hold on this moment – it’s the meaty portion of Bowl Season where we’ve lost track of what day it is but it doesn’t matter – there’s a bowl on today. The seemingly endless buffet line of college football postseason play around this time of the year is audacious, amazing, and awesome. As if it doesn’t get any better, there are another 20+ games on the slate in the week that follows, ain’t no stoppin’ us now! The first week of games taught us that motivation is the #1 factor in picking, and scoring, on the whole, is down this bowl season.
As we crusade into week two of bowling and fly through the Christmas holiday, I had a bumpy start followed by a MUCH needed 5-1 Saturday ATS. The key to last week’s winners was not overthinking it, taking the extra few minutes to decipher motivation levels in each game for both teams, and the early scoring theme seems to be that the UNDER plays are hitting more than casual fans would like – I guess there are some bowl season nerves on display to be accounted for. On that note, let’s dive into the Holiday week bowl-a-palooza that’s the real gift under the tree.
BOWL SZN is here! Check out our Bowl Pick’em Pools and let’s go bowling!
TUESDAY, DECEMBER 20th
Famous Idaho Potato Bowl – San Jose State (-4) vs Eastern Michigan – 3:30 pm ET
A Tuesday matinee on a blue field in freezing cold Idaho – quintessential bowl season action for the diehards and degens. The Spartans are led by Hawaii transfer QB Chevan Cordeiro, while EMU was somewhat of an enigma in MAC play this season but came in winning 6 of their last 8 games.
Alex’s Play: Under 53.5 points
RoofClaim.com Boca Raton Bowl – Toledo (-5) vs Liberty – 7:30 pm ET
An intriguing matchup of programs very unfamiliar with one another. If you’re playing this game on motivation and excitement levels here, you have to like Toledo. They come off a MAC Championship win that was done primarily on defense and should be eager to back up the W, while Liberty comes off of 3 straight losses and are in the middle of a coaching change.
Alex’s Play: Toledo -5
WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 21st
R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl – South Alabama (-4.5) vs Western Kentucky – 9 pm ET
The only action on Wednesday night should be worth the single billing. In come two offenses in USA and WKU both known to spray it around the yard, playing on a turf field in the New Orleans Superdome. This has all the makings of a late-night bowl shootout to tantalize any casual fan.
Alex’s Play: Over 55.5 Points
THURSDAY, DECEMBER 22nd
Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl – Baylor (-5.5) vs Air Force – 7:30 pm ET
The temptation here is to bet Air Force in the Armed Forces Bowl – it’s unavoidable and has to be addressed. The question is Baylor’s motivation level. Their 6-6 season cascaded downhill with three losses, and despite it being a local Texas bowl game for Bears fans, I’m not sure anything gets Baylor up for this one against a red-hot opponent. What I’m saying is – you can pull the trigger on the bet for the forces here.
Alex’s Play: Air Force +5.5
FRIDAY, DECEMBER 23rd
Radiance Technologies Independence Bowl – Houston (-7) vs Louisiana – 3 pm ET
A notable location and matchup setting here – This game in Shreveport is just a day trip drive away for both Cougars and Ragin Cajun fans. Clayton Tune and the Houston offense figure to overpower in this matchup, but the Ragin Cajuns are not shy on offense either so this could stay within a score.
Alex’s Play: Louisiana +7.5 (teased)
Union Home Mortgage Gasparilla Bowl – Wake Forest (-1) vs Missouri – 6:30 pm ET
Wake Forest was one of those teams who beat everyone they should have and lost to all their strong opponents – they are what they are. Missouri was competitive this season and put points up, but against real challenges on D they shrank. I think this game is quieter than forecasted.
Alex’s Play: Under 60.5 points
SATURDAY, DECEMBER 24th
EasyPost Hawai’i Bowl – San Diego State (-7) vs Middle Tennessee State – 8 pm ET
Ah, the Hawaii Bowl. By this time of the night your loved ones are three sheets to the wind, your cousin is suddenly asleep on the couch and Santa starts moving down chimneys. That is when we take control of the remote. The Christmas Eve night treat of the Hawaii Bowl arrives during the most sacred holiday hours of the year. This game has a knack for being thrilling and I expect nothing less this year.
Alex’s Play: Over 49.5 points
MONDAY, DECEMBER 26th
Quick Lane Bowl – Bowling Green (-3.5) vs New Mexico State – 2:30 pm ET
No offense to Las Cruces and the “other Aggies” of NMSU, but they did some funny business and scheduled an extra game at the end of the year vs Valparaiso just to get to win #6 and get into this game. While it’s a moral victory for the program, I don’t like their chances against BGSU in Detroit.
Alex’s Play: Bowling Green -3.5
BOWL SEASON WEEK 1 RECAP
We checked into Bowl Season with a BANG and boy did I need it. Day 1 was rocky but we thrived after that and are not looking back. With 9 games in the books and roughly a zillion more to go, things are indeed looking up and we got the start you needed to win the bowl season.
Bowl Season: 7-2 ATS, Season Overall: 42-42 ATS
Each week you can look forward to “This Week in Bowling” pieces where I’ll have plays and a breakdown for EVERY. SINGLE. BOWL. GAME. No exceptions! Plus here’s your reminder that our Bowl Pick’em Pools are LIVE, so Get on it!
Tune-In Game of the Week: Obviously it’s the Hawaii Bowl – what unites a family more on Christmas than hitting the over?
Funniest Bowl Game Sponsor: Roofclaim.com sponsoring a bowl game in South Florida – too soon? I know business is business but yeesh.
Weirdest Line: Baylor -5.5 after the run of losses they’ve been given? Won’t’ be surprised if they pack it in for the season.