SBNation predicts where every SEC team will go bowling in 2016
It’s still the preseason for college football, but that’s not stopping SBNation’s Jason Kirk from making postseason picks. While many analysts are high on the Crimson Tide for 2016, Kirk sees another SEC West team playing for a national championship.
Kirk revealed his picks for all the bowl games, including the three College Football Playoff matchups on Tuesday. He has 12 SEC teams playing in the postseason, with LSU playing in the final game of the season:
- College Football Playoff championship game: LSU vs. Clemson
- Peach Bowl (CFP semifinal): LSU vs. TCU
- Sugar Bowl (New Year’s Six): Alabama vs. Oklahoma
- Cotton Bowl (New Year’s Six): Tennessee vs. Houston
- Outback Bowl: Florida vs. Nebraska
- Citrus Bowl: Ole Miss vs. Penn State
- TaxSlayer Bowl: Georgia vs. Miami
- Music City Bowl: South Carolina vs. Iowa
- Liberty Bowl: Missouri vs. Texas Tech
- Belk Bowl: Auburn vs. Virginia Tech
- Birmingham Bowl: Texas A&M vs. Cincinnati
- Texas Bowl: Arkansas vs. Oklahoma State
- Independence Bowl: Mississippi State vs. Northwestern
Kirk humorously explains his LSU pick with the following:
LSU returns a whole t o n, could play 12 bowl teams in 13 games, upgraded at defensive coordinator, and gets Bama and Ole Miss at home. But the quarterback, they shout. Brandon Harris was middlin’ in the SEC as a true sophomore, has a horde of weapons, and doesn’t exactly need to throw for 5,000 yards here. To bet on a Zombie Les Miles team is to cannonball into a volcano, so I am wearing moisture-wicking garments.
While many Alabama fans will object to the LSU pick, most of the predictions above fall in line with preseason commentary surrounding the SEC. Tennessee is thought by many to be the SEC East favorite and could certainly be in line for an at-large New Year’s Six bid if the Volunteers win their division. The Sugar Bowl will never say no to Alabama if the Crimson Tide is available after the final four is filled out. And that Mark Richt vs. Georgia matchup would certainly be big ratings get for the TaxSlayer Bowl.
ESPN analyst Phil Steele similarly picked LSU to make the playoff, but Kirk does not agree with Steele’s prediction that two SEC teams will make it in the final four:
Lastly, I think the Pac-12 will devour itself, Notre Dame’s schedule has a bump too many, and it’ll be a long time before a conference gets two teams in.
What do you think? Will Les Miles go from almost being fired to coaching for a national championship? Will either of the snubbed SEC East teams make a surprise run?