Today's bowl games

December 28, 2006|By Orlando Sentinel

Independence

Matchup -- Alabama (6-6) vs. Oklahoma State (6-6)

Site -- Independence Stadium, Shreveport, La.

Time, TV -- 4:30 p.m., ESPN

Line -- Oklahoma State by 2

The game -- Oklahoma State QB Bobby Reid is a dual threat, the Cowboys have three effective running backs and WR Adarius Bowman (57 catches, 11 TDs) had a great season. The flip side? The Cowboys are brutal on defense (371.4 ypg). Alabama QB John Parker Wilson had a solid season (2,539 yards, 16 TDs) but didn't get much help from his running game. The Tide's defense has been solid, but it has just 12 sacks.

Texas

Matchup -- Kansas State (7-5) vs. No. 16 Rutgers (10-2)

Site -- Reliant Stadium, Houston

Time, TV -- 8 p.m., NFL Network

Line -- Rutgers by 7 1/2

The game -- Rutgers RB Ray Rice (135.3 ypg, 19 TDs) and FB Brian Leonard form an excellent backfield, but QB Mike Teel and the passing attack (156.3 ypg) are nothing special. Rutgers plays aggressively on defense, one reason it has 38 sacks. Kansas State surpassed all expectations under first-year coach Ron Prince, but the Wildcats beat just one Division I-A team with a winning record - an upset of Texas.

Holiday

Matchup -- No. 20 California (9-3) vs. No. 21 Texas A&M (9-3)

Site -- Qualcomm Stadium, San Diego

Time, TV -- 8 p.m., ESPN

Line -- California by 4

The game -- RB Marshawn Lynch and RB Justin Forsett combined for 1,747 yards and 12 TDs, but California's running game has been inconsistent. The Bears' run defense has been OK, but the secondary has been torched often. Texas A&M QB Stephen McGee has been excellent (2,401 passing yards, 870 rushing yards), and RB Mike Goodson and RB Jovorskie Lane are a nice combination (1,474 yards, 23 TDs).

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