Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Emerald Bowl Preview

The two plus week sabbatical is over just in time for bowl season to begin. Florida State and UCLA will tangle today in the Emerald Bowl. Both teams were hoping for better than this when the season began, but this should be an interesting game considering all the talent on the field.

Emerald Bowl

Florida State (6-6) vs UCLA (7-5) San Francisco, CA 8:00 ESPN
UCLA -155ML, -3, 39

Florida State6-6-05-7-04-42-225.119.27-5-0
UCLA 7-5-08-4-06-11-422.717.92-10-0

Why UCLA will win & cover
The Bruins are coming off a masterful performance on Dec 2 where they knocked their arch rivals out of the BCS National Championship Game. Their defense has been steady all year and if Patrick Cowan can play similar to the way he did against the Trojans, this team is very tough to beat. Karl Dorrell's club will be able to drop deep against the pass considering the Seminoles anemic rush offense this season. Plus, neither starter Drew Weatherford or Xavier Lee have shown they can thread the needle against a good defense.

Why FSU will win & cover
The Seminoles have not dropped off in talent on the defensive side of the ball. If they can create some turnovers from a young QB and turn those into quick points, their fast and aggressive defense can pin their ears back against the Bruins pass offense. Also, this FSU crew does not want to go out on a losing record (they are 6-6). Throw in that ESPN labeled the Tallahassee school the 'Most Disappointing Team' this year for a little fire. Will UCLA be excited to play a .500 team on a baseball field after defeating USC in their last game?

I like the Under here as the strongest play. Both teams have young, and sometimes inept offenses while both defenses can play lights out at times. Throw in playing on a baseball field (make sure to wear the right cleats) with high winds and possible wet turf and you could see a lot of turnovers. I think the momentum from Dec 2 carries over to today.

UCLA Wins, Covers, Under
If I were to rate ML, ATS, Total on a 5 star confidence scale (1-low, 5-high)
ML-2 star, Cover - 2 star, Total - 3.5 star

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