A word from our sponsor: According to their website www.maaco.com, No one does more auto body repair and auto paint jobs than Maaco. According to pissed consumer.com they don't do such a great job at it. Of course Maaco is the title sponsor but it wouldn't be the Las Vegas bowl without plenty of casino sponsors like the Venetian and Fremont Street.
On the field:BYU really really likes the Las Vegas bowl, so much so that they decided to make this their fifth consecutive trip. Those Mormons like them some gambling don't they? There are some side stories to this game, BYU coach Bronco Mendenhall played for Oregon State a team that has won five straight bowls. On paper this should be a very compelling game. You have the 16th and 13th best passing attacks and 23rd and 13th highest scoring offenses. This game also has a family theme to it. Oregon State is led by the Rodgers brothers, leading rusher Jacquizz (1377 yards, 20TD's) and leading receiver James (1004 yards, 9TD's). BYU is led by QB Max Hall whose favorite target is Mackey Award finalist tight end Dennis Pitta who happens to be Hall's brother-in-law. BYU's leading rusher is Harvey Unga who ran for 1,031 yards and 10 touchdowns this year. The Cougars' all-time leading rusher with 3,384 yards, he is the cousin of Oregon State freshman players Devin and Kevin Unga. Both QB's Max Hall and Sean Canfield can light the scoreboard up. Both are completing around 70% of their passes, both have thrown for more than 3,000 yards and the two have combined for 51 TD's. The over/under sits at 59, that might be too low.
+1 2 strong offenses
+1 Mormons in Vegas
+1 shootout possibility
+1 two evenly matched teams
MCR 4 (Viper/Shelby Cobra)
SAN DIEGO COUNTY CU POINSETTIA BOWL
Utah (9-3) vs. California (8-4)
Dec. 23, 8:00 PM - ESPN
A word from our sponsor: San Diego County Credit Union is a member owned financial institution focused on serving the financial needs of San Diego, Riverside and Orange County residents. For a credit union to have the kind of money to title sponsor a bowl, there must be a lot of rich people in Orange County and Riverside. Keep in mind the World Wide Leader and AT&T are corporate sponsors as well which means they forked over $25,000 plus, remember that next time you get your AT&T phone bill.
On the field: Utah is trying to extend the nation's longest postseason winning streak to nine games and just like our beloved Nittany Lions, trying to prove they can beat a decent team. Utah played three ranked teams and lost to all of them. Cal had high hopes coming into the season but blowout losses to Oregon and USC, and a horrible lost to Washington in the season finale dashed any BCS notions. Cal will also be without star running back Jahvid Best who is still recovering from a concussion. Utah led the Mountain West with 15 interceptions and held opponents to an average of 172.8 passing yards. That doesn't bode well for Cal quarterback Kevin Riley who has only managed to complete just over 54% of his passes. The Utes have a decent running back threat in Eddie Wide, who led the conference with 1,032 rushing yards while averaging 5.7 yards per carry.
+1 two evenly matched teams
+1 two decent defenses
-1 two pathetic offenses
MCR 1(Woman's Heart)
SHERATON HAWAII BOWL
Nevada (8-4) vs. SMU (7-5)
Dec. 24, 8:00 PM - ESPN
A word from our sponsor: Sheraton Hotels & Resorts, Outback Steakhouse, and Heineken beer. That sounds like the trifecta of sponsors to me. Get a good steak, get drunk and pass out on the beach.
On the field: SMU will be playing in a postseason bowl for the first time since getting the NCAA death penalty 25 years ago. Coach June Jones has turned his inaugural 1-11 season into a 7-5 campaign the biggest turnaround in the FBS. For their efforts they get the team with three (?!?!) 1000 yard rushers. Nevada lost three consecutive games to start the season and then reeled off eight straight to challenge Boise State for the WAC title but lost to the broncos 44-33.
Nevada leads all FBS teams with 362.3 rushing yards per game, and scores 40.6 points per game. They are also 2nd in total yards averaging a whopping 521.6 yards per game. Junior quarterback Colin Kaepernick was the Wolf Pack's go to guy throwing for 1875 yards and rushing for 1160 and scoring 35 touchdowns combined. Luke Lippincott and Vai Taua were the other two running backs to break the 1,000 yard mark for the season. SMU is not without weapons though, despite the pass-happy run-and-shoot that Jones likes, the Mustangs were more balanced thanks to Shawnbrey McNeal who ran for 1,125 yards and 9 touchdowns.
+1 kick-ass offense
+1 3-1,000 yard rushers
+1 pistol vs. run-and-shoot
+1 high probability of offensive explosion
-1 potential blowout
MCR 3 (Jessica Simpson Sex Tape)
*by wrapping gifts I mean putting the gift cards in their envelopes