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Big 12 Bowl Season Predictions: Week 12

There is just a few weeks left in the season, so the bowl projections are tightening up as we look at those who can become bowl eligible.

Welcome back to bowl season predictions. As we near the end of the season, bowl projections are getting easier to make, but as always, predictions are dynamic. They will almost certainly change week to week based on performance on the field. This is not an “if the season ended today” kind of article, so if a team is currently at the top of the conference standings that I don’t think is all that good, the expectation that they will eventually lose will be reflected in the picks. Let’s get picking.

LOCKHEED MARTIN ARMED FORCES BOWL

Date: Dec 23
Matchup: Big 12 vs Navy/AAC
Network: ESPN
Projection: Texas (5-5) vs. Navy (7-2)

I expect Texas to split their final two games, pushing them out of a Liberty Bowl appearance and into a date with a triple option offense. Navy is bowl eligible but won’t be in an NY6 bowl, so they’ll end up here

CACTUS BOWL

Date: Dec 27
Matchup: Big 12 vs Pac-12
Network: ESPN
Projection: Kansas State (5-4) vs Arizona State (5-5)

Kansas State can play their way out of this game, but Arizona State will have to play their way into it. Only 6 PAC 12 teams are currently bowl eligible, so their slot could head to the MWC if no PAC 12 team can fill that spot.

AUTOZONE LIBERTY BOWL

Date: Dec 30
Matchup: Big 12 vs SEC
Network: ESPN
Projection: Baylor (6-3) vs. Ole Miss (5-5)

Baylor continues to fall down the bowl ladder with each with, and if they keep losing they could end up in the Armed Forces bowl, but I see at least one more win for them, putting the Bears in the Liberty Bowl, against a really weird Ole Miss team.

ADVOCARE V100 TEXAS BOWL

Date: Dec 28
Matchup: Big 12 vs SEC
Network: ESPN2016
Projection: TCU (5-4) vs Texas A&M (7-3)

A Texas Bowl with two Texas teams in it! A&M keeps losing, and TCU keeps winning, it almost seems like destiny.

RUSSELL ATHLETIC BOWL

Date: Dec 28
Matchup: Big 12 vs ACC/Notre Dame
Network: ESPN
Projection: Oklahoma State (8-2) vs Virginia Tech (7-3)

Even with their loss, Virginia Tech stays put because their division is horrible. Oklahoma drops a spot, but a West Virginia loss on Saturday would reverse the swap, as long as Oklahoma State handles TCU.

VALERO ALAMO BOWL

Date: Dec 29
Matchup: Big 12 vs Pac-12
Network: ESPN
Projection: West Virginia (8-1) vs. Colorado (8-2)

What a time to be alive, Colorado has a chance to make an appearance in the PAC 12 championship. West Virginia has to win out to make the Sugar Bowl and win the conference, which I don’t think they’ll do.

ALLSTATE SUGAR BOWL

Date: Jan 2
Matchup: Big 12 vs SEC
Network: ESPN
Projection: Oklahoma (8-2) vs Florida (7-2)

Florida is pretty much the only team with a chance of winning the SEC East, and Oklahoma is the best team in the Big 12, putting them in a rematch of the 2009 national title.

BONUS PLAYOFF PICKS

PEACH BOWL

Date: December 31
Matchup: 1 vs 4
Network: ESPN
Projection: Alabama (10-0) vs. Clemson (9-1)

Finally, chaos! Clemson, Michigan, and Washington all lost, but I see Clemson still getting in with an ACC championship win.

FIESTA BOWL

Date: December 31
Matchup: 2 vs 3
Network: ESPN
Projection: Ohio State (9-1) vs. Louisville (9-1)

Two teams that I expect to get in despite not playing in their conference championship. The committee chooses the best teams at the end of the year, and ESPN wants teams that get viewers, hence Ohio State and Louisville getting in over teams like Penn State, Wisconsin, West Virginia, Oklahoma, or Washington.

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