Today's Games

January 01, 2008|By ORLANDO SENTINEL

Today

Outback Bowl

No. 18 Wisconsin (9-3) vs. No. 16 Tennessee (9-4)

Site -- Tampa, Fla.

Time, TV -- 11 a.m., ESPN.

Line -- Tennessee by 1 1/2 .

Outlook -- Wisconsin will look to win its third consecutive bowl game, but star running back P.J. Hill is still nursing a leg injury. Tennessee had its own distractions, losing two assist ant coaches to other jobs and its star wide receiver Lucas Taylor to aca demic ineligibility. The Volunteers still have five receivers averaging double figures in yards per catch: Austin Rogers (11.0), LaMarcus Coker (19.0), Denarius Moore (12.6), Brad Cottam (23.5) and Kenny O'Neal (29.5). Junior running back Arian Foster leads the team with 12 touch downs and 1,162 rushing yards.

Cotton Bowl

No. 7 Missouri (11-2) vs. No. 25 Arkansas (8-4)

Site -- Dallas

Time, TV -- 11:30 a.m., chs. 45, 5.

Line -- Missouri by 3.

Outlook -- Heisman Trophy run ner-up Darren McFadden has been cleared to play in the game, a relief to Razorbacks fans. He averages 143.8 rushing yards per game and is the heart and soul of the offense. Look for Missouri, the Big 12 runner-up, to come out firing with Heisman final ist Chase Daniel (4,170 passing yards, 33 touchdown passes) after its Bowl Championship Series snub. Bobby Petrino, hired as Arkansas' coach Dec. 11, said he expects defensive co ordinator Reggie Herring to coach the bowl game.

Capital One Bowl

Michigan (8-4) vs. No. 9 Florida (9-3)

Site -- Orlando, Fla.

Time, TV -- 1 p.m., chs. 2, 7.

Line -- Florida by 10 1/2

Outlook -- Led by Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow, the Gators and their No. 4-ranked scoring of fense will try to get the program its fifth straight win and third straight bowl victory. A win could serve as a springboard to next season, when the team should contend for a na tional title. Michigan, which started and ended the regular season with two-game losing streaks, will try to send coach Lloyd Carr off into retire ment with a victory.

Gator Bowl

No. 21 Virginia (9-3) vs. Texas Tech (8-4)

Site -- Jacksonville, Fla.

Time, TV -- 1 p.m., chs. 13, 9.

Line -- Texas Tech by 6.

Outlook -- Virginia defensive end Chris Long is a consensus All-Ameri can whose jersey was retired by Vir ginia this season. He and the Cava liers' defense will have a tough as signment containing the nation's second-ranked offense. The Red Raid ers average 537 yards per game and 41.8 points. Tech quarterback Gra ham Harrell passed for almost 5,300 yards, and his favorite weapon is Mi chael Crabtree, the first freshman to win the Biletnikoff Award as the na tion's top receiver. Virginia, which ranked 103rd of 119 teams in total of fense, will try to take advantage of its knack for finding ways to win: The Cavaliers won six of seven games de cided by five points or fewer.

Rose Bowl

No. 13 Illinois (9-3) vs. No. 6 Southern California (10-2)

Site -- Pasadena, Calif.

Time, TV -- 5 p.m., chs. 2, 7.

Line -- USC by 13 1/2 .

Outlook -- Under third-year coach Ron Zook, the Fighting Illini are in the Rose Bowl for the first time since 1984 and in their first bowl since the 2002 Sugar Bowl. They are led by dual-threat sophomore quarterback Isiah "Juice" Williams (1,498 passing yards, 13 touch down passes) and junior Rashard Mendenhall (1,526 rushing yards, 16 rushing touchdowns). The Pacific-10 champion Trojans are playing in the Rose Bowl for the fourth time in the past five seasons. Winners of their last four regular-season games, the Trojans are led on offense by senior John David Booty (2,106 passing yards, 20 touch down passes) and on defense by senior linebacker Keith Rivers (73 tackles).

Sugar Bowl

No. 10 Hawaii (12-0) vs. No. 4 Georgia (10-2)

Site -- New Orleans

Time, TV -- 7:30 p.m., chs. 45, 5.

Line -- Georgia by 7 1/2 .

Outlook -- Hawaii is this year's Cinderella, crashing the BCS party thanks to its high-powered, pass-hap py offense aptly piloted by Heisman finalist Colt Brennan. Georgia needs to control the ball to keep Hawaii from racking up points, giving star freshman running back Knowshon Moreno a chance to carry the Bull dogs to a win. Both defenses are suspect.

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