The second half of Thursday's bowl games features a few programs who were once national powers. The Music City Bowl pits the Tennessee Volunteers against the North Carolina Tar Heels. The Volunteers had a rather mediocre season going 6-6 and 3-5 within the SEC. Tennessee had difficulty running the ball this season, ranking 100th in the FBS in rushing yards. The Volunteers were in the middle of the road on both sides of the ball as well, ranking 61st in the FBS in points per game and 55th in points allowed per game.
North Carolina wasn't terribly awesome this year either, finishing 7-5 and 4-4 within the ACC. The Tar Heels ranked 25th in the FBS in passing as senior quarterback T.J. Yates threw for nearly 3,200 yards. North Carolina, however, ranked only 79th in scoring while ranking 43rd in points allowed.
I'll take North Carolina to defeat Tennessee in the Music City Bowl - Tennessee just doesn't move the ball well enough for me to think they'll beat the Tar Heels.
Holiday Bowl prediction after the jump.
The Holiday Bowl pits the Nebraska Cornhuskers, who had aspirations of a BCS game not long ago, against Tim Lincecum's alma mater, the Washington Huskies. The seventeenth-ranked Cornhuskers already defeated the Huskies this year back on September 18th - in Washington - by a score of 56-21.
The Cornhuskers were dominant on the ground this year, ranking ninth in the FBS in rushing. Freshman quarterback Taylor Martinez passed for under 1,600 yards but rushed for 942 while picking up 12 touchdowns on the ground.
The Huskies, meanwhile, didn't do much of anything this year. Washington went 6-6 and 5-4 in the PAC 10. They're led by quarterback Jake Locker - who was once the top NFL quarterback prospect. Some still believe he could be a top 10 pick, so he's worth watching in this game - despite his shoddy season.
Nebraska crunched Washington and I see no reason why they won't do the same tonight in the Holiday Bowl. I'll take the Cornhuskers to win their final game as a member of the Big 12.