01/03/2012 04:34 PM
Hokies And Wolverines Set For Allstate Sugar Bowl
Who knew that a school's ability to fill hotel rooms was part of the calculations that go into the BCS Standings? Why, it's enough to make you wonder what the spread might be between Comic-Con and the Consumer Electronics Show if they ever met on a gridiron.
Relax. I'm not here to pour it on the Virginia Tech Hokies and Michigan Wolverines. It's not their fault that Sugar Bowl officials chose them over more deserving candidates such as Boise State and Kansas State. However, with the ACC and Big Ten each getting a second BCS payday, you can't blame the Big 12 and Mountain West conferences for getting their feathers a bit ruffled.
All of the controversy surrounding the selection of the Hokies and Wolverines aside, their Tuesday, Jan. 3 battle at the Superdome in New Orleans has the potential to be a very evenly matched contest. Oddsmakers opened Michigan as a slim 1-point favorite, with early green backing the Maize & Blue pushing that number up to -2½. The total has been stuck on 51 at most sports books, and kickoff is scheduled for a tad past 8:30 p.m. (ET) with ESPN on hand to deliver the broadcast.
Seeing Virginia Tech (11-2 straight up, 4-9 against the spread) in a BCS bowl is no surprise, and it's certainly not surprising to see the Hokies in the Sugar Bowl with this being their fifth appearance there under Frank Beamer. Heck, if not for those pesky Clemson Tigers, Beamer's bunch would have pushed Alabama out of the BCS Championship Game.
Michigan making it to one of the top-tier bowls is a bit of a shock, with the Wolverines coming off a lackluster 7-6 campaign a year ago to go 10-2 this season (8-4 ATS) under first-year head coach Brady Hoke.
The statistical similarities the two teams share start on the defensive side of the ball where each squad surrendered just 17.2 points per game, knotting them for seventh-fewest in the country. Va Tech's unit ranked 14th in the land giving up just over 313 yards per game, while Michigan isn't far behind in 17th (317.6 YPG). Both stop units fared well against the run – Hokies 16th allowing 108 rushing yards per contest, Wolverines 36th at 129 YPG – and that is where this game should get interesting given both schools sport offenses with solid ground games.
With Denard Robinson a dual threat under center for Michigan, the Wolverines ran up the nation's 12th-rated rushing attack that averaged nearly 236 yards each outing. The junior tallied about 97 of those yards himself, running for 1,163 yards in total, second most among all FBS quarterbacks.
Robinson was just one of two 1,000-yard rushers in the Wolverines backfield where Fitzgerald Toussaint scooted for 1,011 on the season, finishing up with three successive 100-yard games in wins over Illinois, Nebraska and Ohio State.
The passing game saw Robinson throw for more than 2,000 yards with a decent 142.2 QB rating. However, his 18:14 TD:INT ratio leaves a little to be desired.
On the Virginia Tech side, junior tailback David Wilson paced a Hokies ground attack that is 30th in the land averaging almost 189 yards per game. Wilson had the bulk of that number, rumbling for over 125 per game and finishing fifth in the country with 1,627 yards.
The Hokies have a bit of a dual threat at QB themselves, though Logan Thomas is never going to be confused for Denard Robinson. Thomas ran for over 400 yards and scored 10 TDs using his feet, while passing for nearly 2,800 yards with 19 more scores (9 INT).
With both teams possessing strong defenses and their offenses relying more on running the ball, bettors might turn to historical trends between the two teams to help make their minds up. Alas, there is no gridiron history between the two schools with this the first-ever matchup. Recent bowl records for the two teams finds Va Tech 6-6, a span that starts with losing the 2000 National Championship to Florida State at this site, while Michigan is 4-6 in its last 10 postseason trips that started with an Orange Bowl win over Alabama in 2000.
The two teams did trend strongly to the 'under' this season, combining for a 16-8 mark below the total, though that should be tempered with the Wolverines going above the number in both of their final two games.
And this ladies and gentlemen is your BOWL GAME OF THE YEAR:
Tuesday, January 3
Game Score Status Pick Amount
Michigan - 8:30 PM ET ( Michigan -2.5 500 BGOY )
Virginia Tech - Under 51 500
Now should this game cover i'll have another BGOY 2
GOOD LUCK !!
Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs: