The History: Formerly known as the Birmingham Bowl and the PapaJohns.com Bowl, the BBVA Compass Bowl takes place in Birmingham, Alabama. BBVA took over sponsorship of this game in 2010. The game usually puts a team from the SEC against one from the Big East, and this year is no exception with the Ole Miss Rebels taking on the Pitt Panthers.
Ole Miss Scouting Report: Ole Miss plays in the gauntlet that is the SEC. The Rebels lost six games this year, five of which came to teams which finished in the top 25 at the end of the regular season. Sophomore quarterback Bo Wallace leads the Rebels’ offense as he threw for 2,843 yards and 19 touchdowns on the season. He also tallied eight rushing touchdowns on the year. 10 of Wallace’s touchdown passes were caught by big-play wide receiver Donte Mocrief, who averages nearly 16 yards per catch.
Pittsburgh Scouting Report: Pitt is no stranger to the BBVA Compass Bowl as this will be the third consecutive trip for the Panthers. Pittsburgh had to win its final two games (against Rutgers and South Florida) in order to become bowl eligible and the Panthers did that in dominating fashion. Pitt is led by quarterback Tino Sunseri who threw for 3,103 yards and 19 touchdowns on the season. The Panthers also have a solid ground game behind running back Ray Graham and his 1,042 yards and 11 touchdowns.
tBBC “Expert Selections:
My Selection: Pitt finished the season strong, but ultimately I have more faith in a team from the SEC than one from the Big East, even after the meltdown by Florida in the Sugar Bowl. Ole Miss wins a close game, 31-24.