Welcome to part 3 of our 11-part bowl prediction series. You can find parts 1 and 2 here and here. We're now into the meat of the bowl schedule, but, unfortunately, these games are the the overcooked flank steak in the middle of the holiday buffet. We'll still dig in.
Little Caesar's Bowl (Thursday Dec. 26)
Pittsburgh v. Bowling Green (-6)
I'm just going to go ahead and say what everyone is thinking: Little Caesar's pizza is mad gross. I get that it's cheap, but for the same price you could get a much better pizza from the freezer at your local grocery store. Anyway, Pitt and BG both have relatively stout defenses. The Panthers' Outland Trophy winner Aaron Donald tackles everyone who gets near him, and the Falcons gave up just 17 points total in their last four games. But Bowling Green has a decent offense to complement its defense. They're 27th nationally in scoring offense. Pitt's 85th. The Falcons cover.
Poinsettia Bowl (Thursday Dec. 26)
Utah State v. Northern Illinois (-1.5)
Northern Illinois QB Jordan Lynch is the headliner in this Boxing Day match-up. But the Heisman finalist will have his work cut out for him against a Utah State defense that finished the year by holding Fresno State's high-powered offense to its season scoring low. I guess it's kind of appropriate that we're taking the Aggies in a game named after a poisonous plant.
Military Bowl (Friday Dec. 27)
Marshall (-2.5) v. Maryland
"Coach Randy Edsall said many of his players are grateful to be participating in the Military Bowl in Annapolis, in large part because they’ll be able to spend Christmas at home with family and friends before playing just a short drive from campus." (emphasis added) That sounds like a recipe for a team to show up a little too fat, happy, and hungover from the break. I like Marshall to cover.