Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Bowl Season Predictions, Part 5

The Little Caesar’s Pizza Bowl in Detroit Wednesday night at 7:30 on ESPN has Central Michigan Chippewas (6-6) against Western Kentucky Hilltoppers (7-5). 

It wasn’t many years ago that the Hilltoppers were near or at the bottom of all the FBS schools. Here they are in their first bowl game ever. They started the year 6-2 and struggled in November going just 1-3. The Hilltoppers strength lies in their defense. Ranked 25th overall, they yield 139.5 ypg on the ground (32nd in the nation) and 206.2 ypg through the air (29th in the nation).  Offensively, they are not nearly as good ranking just 68th in the nation. They are 40th in rushing (186.2 ypg) and 89th in passing offense (205.7 ypg).

The Chippewas are, like their record, pretty mediocre on both sides of the ball. They rank 65th in the nation in offense. Their 151.0 ypg rushing is 74th among FBS schools and their 243.1 ypg passing is 52nd. On defense, they are worse. They rank 94th in the nation overall with 198.3 ypg yielded on the ground (95th in the land) and 244.2 ypg given up through the air (70th). Central Michigan began the year 3-6 but a 3-1 November made them bowl eligible. But…. Those last three wins came against teams with losing records. (E. Michigan (2-10), Miami of Ohio (4-8), and Massachusetts (1-11)) another of their victories came against Akron (1-11).

My pick: Western Kentucky

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