Husker Mike: It's New Year's Day, and now in this day and age when we have hundreds of cable channels and are used to flipping between five or six games simultaneously, we get five games the entire damn day? What the heck is up with this?
Paul: Yeah, but in previous years have there been more than 3 or 4 games worth watching? This year's New Years Day slate is outstanding.
Jon: A little late... too much partying apparently! HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYBODY!
Baylor (-2.5) vs. Michigan State
Mike: Great defense vs. wide open offense. A team who thinks they should be in New Orleans vs. a team who's looking to send their defensive coordinator off in style. This is probably one of those "who's motivated" games, and I think it's Sparty. Sparty 41, Bearsh 27
Ranchbabe: I'm not as convinced as Mike that Sparty's D can keep up. I think it will stay close for a while--maybe 3 quarters, but Baylor will blow it open at some point. Bears 45 Spartans 28
Paul: This is must see TV. We forget that Sparty has a pretty good offense too. I think it's a high scoring affair with Sparty coming out on top 45-38.
Jon: I'm going with Sparty because of the homer factor more than anything else. Michigan State has played two similar teams, though, in Oregon and Ohio State and lost to both of them. Ohio State has a better defense than Baylor, especially up front, and against Michigan State, Sparty went conservative after getting a lead. I'm betting that because of Baylor's explosive offense they don't do that again. They can plod against Baylor, and they can get explosive plays. High scoring. Michigan State 42, Baylor 35
Missouri (-5) vs. Minnesota
Mike: Last time Mizzou tried to take on the B1G, it ended in Mizery. Are the Gophers ready to make a New Years Day splash? I'm skeptical. Tiggers 38, Goofers 27
Ranchbabe: The Gophers might have two advantages in this one: coaching and motivation. I think they are more excited to be in that bowl game than Mizzery. I don't think that will be enough and Minny dismissed one of its better wide receivers (however, wideouts are almost as useful in the Gopher game plan as tight ends are in Nebraska). I expect a low-scoring slugfest. Mizzery 20 Minny 17
Paul: Mizzou has better talent, but the Gophers are a better team. I think Kill and Co. pull this one out 24-20 and Mizzou will forever live with the ignominy of losing to Indiana and Minnesota in the same season.
Jon: Minnesota finds creative ways to lose games like this, it's a trademark they've had for years. If Jerry Kill is going to take the next step, they need to win a bowl game like this. The SEC East isn't that good, but beating a SEC team regardless of who they are will be a step up for the Gophers. Minnesota will have to be creative; Missouri's front four is pretty good. Can David Cobb find room in the middle? Homer B1G pick. Minnesota 24, Missouri 23
Oregon (-9) vs. Florida State
Mike: Heisman winners traditionally struggle in their bowl game, and Florida State seems rejuvenated. Not only that, but the ‘Noles are that team that just doesn't lose, no matter how hard you want them to or think they are going to. They just keep winning. Florida State 38, OryGone 35
Ranchbabe: I keep predicting an FSU loss. And I will keep on. It will happen eventually. Oregon 45 FSU 24
Paul: I'm with Ranchbabe on this one. FSU is playing on borrowed time, and Oregon is so much more than they've had to deal with this season. Oregon wins big 47-28.
Jon: Florida State just keeps coming back, despite everyone but them wanting them to lose. I wouldn't be surprised to see them win another national title. They have athletes everywhere. Winston may seem like the dumbest player in college football, but maybe that helps him not lose his cool when they're behind or when they're playing poorly. FSU 45, Oregon 42
Alabama (-9) vs. Ohio State
Mike: I haven't been impressed with Alabama as the national media has been, and Ohio State has been catching my eye for most of the last three months. Even with J. T. Barrett on the bench. So yeah, I'm going with another upset straight up: Tide gets Rolled. Bucknuts 42, ‘Bama 27
Ranchbabe: I feel bad that I haven't picked any B1G teams to win yet. This is the wrong game to make that adjustment, but I'm too lazy to scroll up and change my other predictions. Ohio State 35 Tide 31. Jim Harbaugh marches out onto the field at the end and punches Urban to announce his presence in the Big Ten.
Paul: Must see TV #2 right here. As much as I'm pulling for the conference, and that includes THE Ohio State I suppose, Alabama is really, really good. Bama 45 tOSU 35.
Jon: Alabama isn't the juggernaut they've been in the past. Their secondary can be had, and their offensive line isn't nearly as powerful as it's been in previous years. Ohio State is the type of team that gives ‘Bama fits - they can run the ball, and they have great wideouts. It'll all come down to whether a third-string quarterback can limit mistakes on the biggest stage in the history of college football. Ohio State 42, Alabama 31