Bowl season gives us a unique opportunity to embrace our college football ignorance by picking winners of games we know little about. For instance, do you have a hot read on Western Kentucky vs. Central Michigan? No one does, and that's the beauty of Bowl Pick 'Em. You're not supposed to know what you're doing; you're just supposed to take credit when your picks miraculously - through no wisdom of yours - come true.
OBNUG Bowl Pick 'Em is now accepting your wild guesses, and winner gets a free pair of shades (fancy ones, I promise) and a smug feeling of being a success in life.
I am not going to be the winner. Regardless, here are my Bowl Pick 'Em picks and strategies. May they inspire you, motivate you, or - as is my recommendation - give you a blueprint for picking opposite.
* - the following tables compare my picks with the Vegas favorite, the ESPN Bowl Mania favorite, and the team with the most wins
** - also, all games are listed in order of confidence points
|Boise State v. Washington||BSU||BSU||BSU||BSU|
The easiest part of Bowl Pick 'Em is picking Boise State to win and giving them the most confidence points I have. This was kind of hard that Hawaii Bowl year.
|Wisconsin v. Stanford||Stan||Stan||Stan||Stan|
|Fresno v. SMU||Fres||Fres||Fres||Fres|
|Oregon v. Kansas State||Ore||Ore||Ore||Push|
|San Jose State v. Bowling Green||SJSU||SJSU||SJSU||SJSU|
|Nevada v. Arizona||Ari||Ari||Ari||Push|
|Notre Dame v. Alabama||Ala||Ala||Ala||Push|
|Toledo v. Utah State||USU||USU||USU||USU|
|Northern Illinois v. Florida State||FSU||FSU||FSU||NIU|
|Purdue vs. Oklahoma State||OkSt||OkSt||OkSt||OkSt|
|Texas A&M v. Oklahoma||A&M||A&M||A&M||Push|
|Louisville v. Florida||Fla||Fla||Fla||Fla|
|USC v. Georgia Tech||USC||USC||USC||USC|
|South Carolina v. Michigan||SCar||SCar||SCar||SCar|
|Georgia v. Nebraska||Ga||Ga||Ga||Ga|
|Navy v. Arizona State||ASU||n/a||ASU||Navy|
After Boise State, I like to identify some matchups I am almost certain will be blowouts. Wisconsin-Stanford? Yes. SMU-anyone? Yes, especially now that Fresno is Pat Hill-free.
You'll also notice a trend where I tend to put too much weight into teams I am loosely familiar with. Hence, San Jose State and Utah State are in my "blowout" category - in a good way (my, how the WAC has changed).
|Miss. State vs. Northwestern||NW||MissSt||NW||NW|
|Pitt v. Ole Miss||Miss||Miss||Miss||Push|
|Iowa State v. Tulsa||Tulsa||n/a||Tulsa||Tulsa|
|NC State v. Vanderbilt||NCSt||Vandy||Vandy||Vandy|
|TCU v. Michigan State||TCU||TCU||TCU||TCU|
This batch of games I think will be very competitive because I don't know enough about any of the schools to think otherwise. My gut told me who to pick. My gut is about 50/50.
|LSU v. Clemson||LSU||LSU||LSU||Push|
|Texas v. Oregon State||OreSt||OreSt||OreSt||OreSt|
|BYU v. San Diego St.||BYU||BYU||SDSU||SDSU|
|Baylor v. UCLA||UCLA||n/a||UCLA||UCLA|
|West Virginia v. Syracuse||WVU||WVU||WVU||Push|
Here's another batch of close games, except with these I am just plain guessing. No help from my gut.
|Rice v. Air Force||AF||AF||AF||Push|
|Minnesota v. Texas Tech||TT||TT||TT||TT|
|Rutgers v. Virginia Tech||Rutg||VaTech||Rutg||Rutg|
|Ohio v. Louisiana Monroe||Ohio||ULM||ULM||Push|
|Cincinnati v. Duke||Cincy||Cincy||Cincy||Cincy|
|Western Kentucky v. Central Michigan||WKU||WKU||WKU||WKU|
|East Carolina v. Louisiana-Lafayette||UL-L||UL-L||UL-L||Push|
|UCF v. Ball State||Ball||UCF||UCF||Push|
|Kent State v. Arkansas St.||ArkSt||ArkSt||Kent||Kent|
And finally, the bottom section of games are matchups that I don't have any idea about whatsoever. At least in the above sections I recognized the teams or had seen them on TV once or twice. This group may as well be FCS teams given how little I know about them. Naturally, I will go 9-0 here and 0-26 everywhere else. Such is the nature of Bowl Pick 'Em.