Friday, January 1, 2010
South Carolina-UConn Prediction: Papa Johns.com Bowl Preview
South Carolina and UConn will play for a good ending in Birmingham to up and down seasons for both.
The plight of the Huskies has been especially turbulent this season with the loss of teammate Jasper Howard to a campus stabbing and losing all five games by four points or less.
The Gamecocks are coming off a huge win over rival Clemson, but I have to wonder if they wanted and thought they were going to get a better bowl game?
If UConn wants to pull of the upset they have to be able to run the ball and must stick with it. I remember watching the UConn-Notre Dame game that the Huskies almost gave away wondering why they even bothered to pass since the run was working well?
The Huskies leading rusher is Jordan Todman, but the engine that makes them go is Andre Dixon who leads the team with 14 touchdowns on the season.
The Gamecocks defense is allowing 137 yards per game on the ground good for 48th nationally.
South Carolina's offense has moved the ball this year but has bogged down in the red zone ranking just 64th in scoring.
I think Steve Spurrier is one of the best game planners in the nation when given ample time, but surprisingly the Ol' Ball Coach is just 7-8 in bowl games.
I go back to all the close losses that UConn had this season and how they seemed to turn the tide in that regard late in the season.
I think the UConn ground game controls the clock in the second half and gives the Huskies the win in the fourth quarter.
UConn 24 South Carolina 23
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