Bowl season is on the horizon. We’ve got 40 games on deck featuring college football’s best teams.
Not all bowl games are created equal. Obviously, the College Football Playoff rightfully earns most of the headlines, followed by the rest of the New Year’s Six.
However, this year’s bowl slate features several intriguing matchups, both within and outside the New Year’s Six. We didn’t rank the appeal of every game, but rather decided to give you the five games we’re most looking forward to.
Let’s get started:
5. Las Vegas Bowl: Washington vs. Boise State, Dec. 21
After an incredibly successful six-year run at Washington, Chris Petersen is stepping down after the bowl and turning the reins over to defensive coordinator Jimmy Lake. Petersen’s finale will come against his old program, Boise State.
From 2006-13, Petersen compiled a 92-12 overall record with the Broncos, including a pair of Fiesta Bowl wins. Next weekend, he’ll try and end his UW tenure on a high note, with NFL quarterback prospect Jacob Eason leading the way.
4. Cheez-It Bowl: Air Force vs. Washington State, Dec. 27
Last year’s Cheez-It Bowl was a comedy of errors. This year’s version is an exciting offensive matchup, at least on paper.
You’ll get Air Force’s option against Wazzu’s Air Raid, a delightful contrast. Mike Leach will also be involved, which always means wackiness might ensue.
3. Citrus Bowl: Alabama vs. Michigan, Jan. 1
Harbaugh. Saban. That alone makes this one worth watching. Despite missing a BCS/New Year’s Six Bowl for the first time in nine years, Alabama will be rather heavily-favored over the Wolverines.
There is no love lost between Saban and Michigan dating back to his days at Michigan State. If the Wolverines really want to show they’ve turned a corner as a program, a win over the Tide would send a message.
2. Rose Bowl: Oregon vs. Wisconsin, Jan. 1
“The Granddaddy of Them All” is always appointment television. Assuming Oregon quarterback Justin Herbert and Wisconsin running back Jonathan Taylor don’t sit this one out, you’ll get to see two of college football’s major offensive stars on the field.
Wisconsin gave Ohio State all it could handle in the Big Ten Championship Game, while Oregon easily could have been a playoff team if not for a pair of frustrating close losses. This matchup is a fantastic one, but not as juicy as…
1. Fiesta Bowl: Ohio State-Clemson, Dec. 28
It is rare that you get a semifinal pairing that could easily be a national title game. We have that this year with the 13-0 Buckeyes against the 13-0 Tigers.
The last time these two teams played was in the playoff three years ago, and Clemson won 31-0. Ohio State will want revenge, especially with many pundits picking the third-seeded Tigers to win even though Ohio State is ranked one spot higher.
You can view the full 2019-20 bowl schedule here.