The BBC continues its look at bowl season, this time with some appropriate theme music. I feel fine – don’t you?

UCF (9-4, 7-1 CUSA) vs Ball State (9-3, 6-2 MAC)
December 21st, 2012 7:30 PM ET ESPN

 

The History: Well, this may be the last football game ever played, so you’d better enjoy it while it lasts. This is one of those crazy, new, young-whipper-snapper bowl games that formed in 2008, originally as the magicJack St. Petersburg Bowl. Beef O’Brady’s took over sponsorship the very next season, bringing us to the bowl game we know today. It’s traditionally played between the Big East and Conference USA, but this year the MAC got the nod over the Big East. This is Central Florida’s second visit to St. Petersburg, having lost to Rutgers in 2009 (45-24), giving them the most Beef O’Brady Bowl appearances in history.

Central Florida Scouting Report: Overall, the Knights had a wildly successful season. They ended at 9-4, claiming an East Division title in CUSA, and a spot in the conference championship game. That game turned out to be a rematch against one of the only three teams to beat them this year, Tulsa, who picked up the victory again in an overtime scuffle. The Knights possess both a 2700 yard, 22 touchdown quarterback in Blake Bortles, and a 1000 yard back in Latavius Murray.

Buckeye Connection: Ohio State and Central Florida have only ever played once, and unless you were living under a rock for the last year, you know that game pretty well. The Buckeyes met the Knights in Columbus, defeating them by a score of 31-16. In case you’ve forgotten so quickly, that game was less than pretty from a defensive perspective.

Ball State Scouting Report: Ball State is currently enjoying a 6 game winning streak, extending back to a pair of early conference losses to Kent State and Northern Illinois. You may recall those two teams this year, considering they were the participants in the MAC Championship game and all. The Cardinals did pick up a nice, but close, win over Indiana in Bloomington during the time when everyone was trying to figure out how far the Big Ten could possibly fall. Quarterback Keith Wenning (2800 yards, 22 touchdowns) and running back Jahwan Edwards (1321 yards, 14 touchdowns) matchup favorably with their UCF counterparts.

Buckeye Connection: The Buckeyes and Cardinals have never matched wits on the gridiron in the history of College Football.

Predictions:

  • Eric – UCF
  • Gary – BSU
  • Janelle – UCF
  • Jason – BSU
  • Mali – UCF
  • Tim – UCF
  • WVa – UCF

 

Both teams have played in some tough games this season, and have finished with very good records. This could be a much better match-up than anyone has anticipated, and may come down to defensive execution as the deciding factor. Hard to think UCF won’t be craving this one a little more with how closely they missed their conference championship.

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