Post Christmas Bowl Picks…presented by Dell

So far so good for my bowl picks. Seven games and seven correct picks. Are my picks destined for greatness or will the post-Christmas games lead me to some sort of weird doom. Who really knows, all I do know is there is a bunch of games coming up so I may keep some of these shorter. 

Bowl Games to date: 7

Correct Games Picked to date: 7

Motor City Bowl – Middle Tennessee State vs. Central Michigan – I know, I am already yawning at the subject of this bowl. I do know very little about each team. I know MTSU gave Louisville a decent quarter of a game and that Central Michigan isn't too shabby of a team since I believe they won the MAC. Not to mention CMU is almost the home team in this game (game is played in Detroit for those who don't know where the Motor City is…and Detroit is in Michigan…)

Winner: Central Michigan

Emerald Bowl – Florida State vs. UCLA – FSU has stunk up the place all season, while UCLA showed glimers of hope against Notre Dame before upsetting USC. I like UCLA in this mainly since they have to travel a couple hours and FSU only has to travel the country to get there. Not to mention FSU could practically care less about playing in this game. Their pride is on the line because you know they don't want a losing season (they are currently 6-6) but I am not one to say they will be able to win. UCLA has been playing well as of late and look to wrap up their season in a good manner.

Winner: UCLA

PetroSun Independence Bowl – Oklahoma State vs. Alabama – Now I will save any Alabama/Rich Rod stuff for another day. The fact of the matter is Bama is still in need of a coach and are about to play in a bowl. That doesn't work well my friends. OK State isn't the best of teams but they will show up and play well I believe. I just don't like Bama's chances in this game unless they had hired a coach by now. That peice to the puzzle just doesn't work for me.

Winner: Oklahoma State

Pacific Life Holiday Bowl – #19 California vs. #21 Texas A&M – This is probably one of the better bowl games that is before New Years. Okay…I am lying, it is probably the best bowl game before New Years. Why this bowl game isn't before New Year's is beyond me but still it matches up two up and promising teams. It is a tough one to pick. I am basically taking out a pennie and flipping for it. Believe me it should be a fun one to watch.

Winner: California

Texas Bowl – #17 Rutgers vs. Kansas State –  How bad does it suck to be Rutgers. Okay, that is a mean and harsh joke of the past but still it has shown it's ugly head again. One win away from a BCS game and you lose and your prize is a trip to Houston for the Texas Bowl, which at one point (before deals were worked out) couldn't be seen on your local TV (game is on the NFL Network). I like Rutgers to get their first ever bowl win against KSU. Don't get me wrong the Wildcats are a solid team but have no right to be able to beat Rutgers. The only way they will win is if they catch Rutgers crying about being in Houston. After seeing Rutgers play in person this season, that won't happen.

Winner: Rutgers

Gaylord Hotel Music City Bowl – Clemson vs. Kentucky – My heard and almost my head were telling me to pick UK in this one. I know Clemson is good but they have stumbled into this game and I really don't like the looks of them these days. But, they should be able to run all over a bad UK defense. This one has been tough to pick because I believe UK can pull this one out and win but I just believe deep down Clemson will show up again for the first time in two months.

Winner: Clemson

Brut Sun Bowl – #25 Oregon State vs. Missouri – I am very thankful that the Gator Bowl picked WVU and didn't pick a Big 12 team this year. Playing a Pac-10 team would have been interesting but not this year. Anyways, for some reason I am going with Mizzu. Something deep down is making me pick this game and I am running with it. 

Winner: Missouri

Alamo Liberty Bowl – Houston vs. South Carolina – Another tough one. For one I am confused at the name of the Bowl. At first I am thinking oh, the Alamo Bowl…then I see Liberty behind it. Nonetheless, it is the Liberty Bowl. Anyways, the ol' ball coach will coach up the Gamecocks but honestly I like Houston. Their offense is exciting to watch. USC should have won a few games and I just don't see them winning this one. It will be close, but I like Houston.

Winner: Houston

Insight Bowl – Texas Tech vs. Minnesota – I forgot about Minnesota this year. So judging by that statement I am not picking them.

Winner: Texas Tech

Champs Sports Bowl – Purdue vs. Maryland – Wow. I am honestly bored with this game. Please, Maryland just pull it out and help WVU look decent.

Winner: Maryland

Meineke Car Care Bowl – Navy vs. #23 Boston College – If you can't tell I am getting tried of all these games. I wonder if George Foreman shows up to this game since he is a spokesman for Meineke. Navy took a Big East bid, probably away from Rutgers from going to a better game and also from Pitt from going to a game at all. And then BC left the Big East for "greener pastures" in the ACC. BC just got a new coach and I want to jump on that bandwagon for a game. 

Winner: BC

Alamo Bowl – #16 Texas vs. Iowa – Texas should blow Iowa out the water. SHOULD. But, they may not. Iowa can and probably will keep it interesting but I am taking the home side. The Alamo Bowl is just down the road from Austin. I like my chances with a "home" team.

Winner: Texas

Chick-fil-a Bowl – Georgia vs. #14 Virginia Tech – I always feel weird picking VT in any game. But I just don't trust Georgia, even in their "home" dome. We blew them out there last year and I think VT will too. This is and should be a spring board game for VT for next year. I wonder if the winner gets a bunch of chicken in the bowl (it used to be a bunch of peaches but they dropped the peach from the bowl name). 

Winner: Virginia Tech

MPC Computers Bowl – Miami vs. Nevada – This one makes me laugh. Mainly because Miami has to go to Boise, Idaho for their bowl game on New Year's Eve. Oh, that just makes me laugh real hard. I like Nevada too in this one. Like FSU, Miami could honestly care less about this game and playing in a cold place like Boise won't be the cure to their answers.

Winner: Nevada 

Alright, I am done until New Years. 

Adu sent to Mormon Country

 Something I never really expected to see yesterday. "17-year old Freddy Adu traded to Real Salt Lake." The headline baffled me for a second because it caught me completly off guard. The time Adu has spent with a team he said he wouldn't leave unless it was to Europe, was never the greenest of pastures however when I thought about it more. In 87 games for the young phenom he tallied just 11 goals and 17 assists. Great, but not the Tiger Wood type of showing many experts thought we'd see by now.

You'd think winning the MLS Cup in your first year, and the League's Supporter's Shield this past season were a solid thing to have on a resume. It is but when there was constant trouble and disagreement between head coach Peter Nowak and young Adu over playing time and performance, you knew things weren't always right. What got me was the end of the season, in a playoff match were youth and speed was needed against New England, a team that was slowing down towards the latter stages of the game. Nowak pulled Adu from the game and gave no clear reason for it. You may play to win the game but at times like that it seemed like Nowak was just continuing what many feel as "keeping Freddy's full potential from showing".

I too believe Nowak is mostly to blame in this whole situation. Not D.C. or even the USSF for that matter. Freddy may be young but there is loads of star potential there. Nowak had his reasons the first season I can agree with. But the last two seasons, more importantly this past season, should have been a coming out party for the youngster. It was tough though to gain solid playing time or even play a desired position when the league's MVP,  Christain Gomez, is running the center of the midfield. That I can understand, but what I don't get is the lack of playing time as a whole with Freddy. Sure he was a dangerous sub to begin his career, I loved that coaching style from Nowak but that wasn't enough to gain full exposure to the kid's talent.

The trade has been set and I got to say for the two sides it was pretty fair. Adu gets to play with a coach that will play him, start him and use him in the best of ways. RSL's head coach has coached Freddy before in the youth national team systems. That's how the whole deal broke down, Freddy really wanted out of DC and away from Nowak and he was willing to go to a place that no one expected him to go, Salt Lake.

The deal for Real is a risky one but it also could pay out very nicely. Sure Adu may jump ship to Europe in the summer's transfer window like he has said many times that he would. But, I could see him sticking around since he will be playing for a coach that he knows and enjoys playing for. If that happens, RSL will prove to be the real winners in this deal. Also, with Adu comes attraction to the team. More fans in the stands, better chance to finalize that stadium deal and possibly a better chance of getting on TV more.

The Freddy in Mormon Country is at least a six month experiment, that much we do know. I just hope that for now in that time frame we truly see what all the hype around this kid was really about.  

Pre-Christmas Bowl Predictions presented by the West Virginia Team Shop

There are seven wonderful bowl games before Santa comes to town. Okay, they aren't really wonderful at all really. They all have funny names though (I will get to that in a second) which is the best part of the early bowl season I think. I believe this is how I will be predicting the bowl season as well…in short stages. The pre-Christmas stage, the Pre-New years stage and the Post-New Years stage…three in all, which should nicely break up the 32 games. 

Now to the picking…

San Diego County Credit Union Poinesttia Bowl – # 24 TCU vs. Northern Illinois – I must say this is one of my favorite bowl names. Take the town its located in, add a weird sponsor, and then some random flower. Next thing you know you have a weird and wacky bowl title. Six titles in all before the word 'bowl' in this one. Ah but to the game. I must say the bowl season kicks off with a nice matchup. Garrett Wolfe is one of the best running backs in the country but his team is from a weak conference (MAC) and then you have TCU who has a strong 10 – 2 record on the season but they too come from a weaker conference (Mountain West). TCU lost both games in the state of Utah while UNI struggled in the state of Ohio. I don't know what that means for either team in this game but I like the Horned Frogs. 

Winner: TCU

Pioneer Pure Vision Las Vegas Bowl – #20 BYU vs. Oregon – Does anyone find it funny that a Mormon school is going to Vegas? I don't know, maybe that is just me. Anyways, BYU hasn't lost since mid-September and Oregon seems like they haven't won since then. I am taking BYU…but don't be surprised to see the Pac-10 play well in the bowl games. Something tells me they will this year.

Winner: BYU

R&L Carriers New Orleans Bowl – Rice vs. Troy – Yawn. A game that I know no one will tune into unless you go to these two schools. This, like many bowl games are reasons why people complain about the amount of bowl games. Both teams are 7 – 5 on the year and both got beat by Florida State. Though Troy did make that game interesting. So based on that I will go with Troy.

Winner: Troy

Papajohns.com Bowl – South Florida vs. Eastern Carolina – This game excites me. Two teams that I saw this season against WVU, one beat us and one played us really tight. USF has the potential to be really good for the next couple years and really so does ECU. This is one of the better bowl games that won't get a lot of press since it is a pre-Christmas Bowl game. For South Florida this is a prize for beating WVU at the end of the season. If USF wins this game, I would be shocked if they weren't ranked going into next season. Loads of potential with this team. 

Winner: USF

New Mexico Bowl – New Mexico vs. San Jose State – A home game for New Mexico, obviously. But I am not sold at all with this 6-6 team. I like San Jose State just a little more even though they are only 8-4. The Lobos may be home but I just cannot pick them. Expect good defense in this game though, two good defensive coordinators at both schools. And another side note, this is SJS first bowl game in 16 years.

Winner: San Jose State

Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl – Tulsa vs. Utah – This may be the best bowl name of all time. What was once the Fort Worth Bowl (since the game is played in Fort Worth, TX) is now some Helicopter Bowl. So I will call it the Helicopter Bowl. Other than the name, I really don't care about the game itself. Two teams that really don't excite me at all. I may be going out on a limb but I will go with the Utes.

Winner: Utah

Sheraton Hawaii Bowl- Hawaii vs. Arizona State – Nothing like going to Hawaii on Christmas Eve for the Sun Devils. How nice is that? You had a sub-par season, yet your reward is a trip to Hawaii. Must be nice. You'd think they would put the Hawaii Bowl as a big time desination for bowl games with bigger teams and all. Instead it is a worthless bowl that just gives one west-coast team a chance to party up their sorry excuse for a season. In the game I will take the home team, Hawaii. A heck of an  offense there and I know ASU just doesn't have the firepower to keep up with the Rainbow Warriors. 

Winner: Hawaii

There you all have it, my Pre-Christmas Bowl picks. I don't have a weird sponsor but it wouldn't hurt since all of these bowl games have bad sponsors. So how about the Epp6.com Pre-Christmas Bowl Picks presented by The West Virginia Team Shop. Eh? Sounds good to me for now. haha 

Rod-gate…some people get what they want while leaving others to point the blame

For the past couple weeks the mood in town has been a weird
one to say the very least. Reports for the last couple weeks have been that
head football coach here at WVU; Rich Rodriquez would be offered and at some
points would become the next coach at the University
of Alabama.

 Bama basically didn't get their first choice, or the second…and
some would say even their third before turning to Coach Rod. Now, they have to
turn to someone else yet again.

I have been on both sides of the fence with this situation
over the last couple weeks. At times I thought and felt that Coach was staying
put just because of certain things like how good of a team he has here compared
to the team in Bama and the fact that he would have a greater chance of winning
here than he would ever down there. Not to mention I never felt comfortable
saying that he would leave because of all the problems that Bama has had in
recent years with coaches.

The glove just didn't seem to fit correctly for him I thought.
And now more than ever it appears he doesn't even need to try it on.

And then I felt at times that he was good as gone. Not so
because of all the reports flying around the internet and on the news but more
so because of his actual words and expressions in news conferences and interviews.
His mood just didn't strike me as one of a coach who really wanted to stay and
was seriously looking at another team. I wasn't thinking this because he had a
terrible season. No, it was more so because he refused to answer the now two
million dollar question. Are you staying or are you going?

It was a simple question that just turned this whole
situation over on its back.

Now he is staying because for the lack of a better term, he
was a better poker player than most people will begin to give him credit for. He
never had a serious offers before and once he finally did it made him think
long and hard about his own situation here at WVU. A good situation but a
situation that many in the country felt he was underpaid. A situation that
others also believe needed to get a little better in terms of facilities.

Rod did what many good poker players do, put on a good face
and tried to up the ante as much as he possibly could to get what he wanted. And
he did just that with probably just a 3 of spades and an 8 of hearts. Nothing special,
but enough to get what he wanted. In a weeks time money poured in to get the
facilities he wanted and to get a contract with a little more dough.

Can you seriously blame him? No, but there is some patch
work to be done now. A lot of credibility and respect has been lost with fans
around the Mountain State.
And a lot of credibility and respect has been lost with the media around the
entire country. You can blame Rod for getting what he wanted and looking like a
total jerk in the process but at the end of all this you have to point blame
the media for everything in this situation. Not even a high percentage of the
reports were even remotely accurate during this whole situation.

Reports were correct about the offer of the contract and the
meeting between the sides and the fact that the two sides were interested in
one another. But the rest was erroneous. Dozens of newspapers and news
organizations reported last night that Rod had accepted the job while others
said he was going to be on his way to Alabama
to do so in person today. And other reports were said that he wouldn't even
coach in the team's New Year's Day bowl game with Georgia Tech.

The media showing was mostly pathetic with a story changing
every five minutes because someone got something wrong with initially. Even
ESPN can to be at blame because they too had false reports from some of their columnists
and reporters.

At the end, WVU gets to keep a good coach, not a great coach…a
good coach. WVU is shown to not be a stepping stone while Alabama
is shown to be a bargaining chip. Alabama
is now left feeling empty since they seemingly went all in with Rod.

Who will they turn to? Someone else or will they keep
trying? Who knows, but for now we do know what is certain. Coach Rod is
staying.

MLS looking ahead instead of behind

In all fairness the 2006 campaign for the MLS was more of a rollercoaster than anything else. The highs and lows seemed to be one of the hardest things this young league has ever had to deal with.

Going into the season, there was much anticipation starting with the move of the Earthquakes from San Jose to Houston and Red Bull buying the Metrostars from AEG. The hype machine was in full force for teams like Chivas USA and crazed hope was there for the Columbus Crew. An announcement of the league expanding to Canada made things clear that the following season would be an interesting one.

2006 still will forever be known as the year the US failed to do anything bright in the World Cup. The year that Landon Donovan and the Galaxy failed to make the play-offs for the first time. One that saw the league’s two best teams failed to even make the Conference finals in the playoffs. And it was a year that the league’s superstars failed to shine.

I am not writing off the year as a complete disaster. There was plenty to look at and be happy with. The league had to feel good about getting new stadiums opened and new ones being close to finished…and the groundbreaking of other ones. I too am happy with one of the best deals made by the league…the creation of a player development system that should mirror those in Europe and around the world. I was also happy to see players like Richard Mulrooney and Alecko Eskandarian make their way back onto the field and show that they still had some play in their boots.

2006 saw a new champion but an old champion really. Houston in my mind will always be San Jose until there is another San Jose in the league. In my mind this is not the club’s first MLS title, but it’s third. I won’t down play the importance of that club winning the league because it is huge for that market and for the league’s sake of moving the club to that market this time last year.

2006 also saw an interesting winner in the MLS All-Star game. I have written many times for the league to get rid of the game due to its worthlessness but beating a juggernaut from England (Chelsea) always looks good in the record books. The win did nothing more than erased the feeling that the league had felt a year before when they were blown out on the road, in the middle part of the season to Real Madrid. To me, its all a level playing field when it comes to an All-Star squad from the MLS taking on a European team. Deep down I know that if the league is to maintain any sort of respect, they need to either do away with the game against a foreign club or go back to the good ol’ days of East versus West. That my friend is how you do an All-Star game.

A year is done but another one is on the horizon. 2007 will be one to be seen, that I can assure you. Add a new team (Toronto) and shake up some things and I think the MLS is on the right path. We all know the league will be a 16 team league by the end of the decade, it’s been said over and over that it will. The question remains where and when.

The time has come to move on. I figure now is the time that I highlight some things and just wrap up the year as best as I can.

Five best moments:

  • Announcement of a player development system – for the league to be a success and move away from its world status as a retirement league…this system will keep the MLS going for years…but only if it is done correctly…just mirror the bigger European clubs and the league should be fine…they have the money (whether or not they would want you to believe they do or not)
  • Enhancement of derby games – I loved the Rocky Cup this year, the Lone Star showdowns, the Atlantic Cups…that is how the league will continue to grow…derby games are nothing without passion and this year we had just that between some of these clubs…I really wish now more than ever that Tampa and Miami were still in the league…the MLS needs more derbies.
  • Houston winning the MLSI may not be a Dynamo supporter but it was huge for this team to pull this off in their first season in Houston…it will help keep fans in the seats and could lead to better things (their own stadium)
  • New Stadiums – got to love the Toyota Parks and the Pizza Hut Parks that are opening up everywhere in this league. Getting every team in their own place is huge for the league…its all about dollars and cents and teams having their own place and not some jumbo NFL stadium is big…just wait and see what it will do for New York when they finish theirs…big things are ahead there
  • Chivas Turnaround – I loved what Bob Bradley did with this club…sure they didn’t make it past Houston in the playoffs but they surely made things interesting in the West…more offense and at times better defense made this team fun to watch…I saw them twice this year in person and they were a handful to contend with

Five biggest disappointments:

  • D.C. United – Sure they won the Supporter’s Shield in like mid-July…that means nothing until playoff time in this league…at least the league is making next year’s playoff push more meaningful unlike this year and those in the past…hopefully it will save us from this and…
  • FC Dallas – now everyone knows I am a huge follower of this club but nothing is more disappointing as a fan of the club and as a fan of the sport to see a club with this much promise fall in the playoffs…Colorado didn’t have this teams number…it has nothing to do with that…poor coaching and poor play had everything to do with it…and not to mention an unbalanced schedule
  • LA Galaxy – if I were ranking these this would be number 1…a bad start plus the absence of key players during the World Cup…don’t translate into success my friends…this team was tough to watch…no heart and no hustle…they really should have repeated going into the year…the talent was there and it should have happened but they fell short of the playoffs for the first time…in club history!
  • Youri Djorkaeff – from getting caught at the World Cup when he said he had to be in France to just the poor play from this Frenchman…probably the biggest reason why New York drew so many games to begin the year because Youri was no where to be seen on the field
  • The playoff format – everyone knows I believe the MLS should do away with its current and even next year’s format…I still hate seeing 8 teams out of 12 making the playoffs each season…the MLS drops the ball each year by not changing it

Good and Bad moves:

  • (Bad) Eddie Johnson – this was definitely a bad move for KC…Johnson hardly showed this season (2g 1a)
  • (Good) Eddie Johnson – this move worked out perfectly for Dallas…they got rid of a kid with high potential but a poor attitude…Johnson should be in Europe making the big bucks but with a poor attitude and pathetic showing on and off the field he will never make it anywhere but in the MLS
  • (Good) Kenny Cooper – Dallas struck gold with Cooper…this kid was everything that they had hoped for coming from Man United. Cooper was a breath of fresh air scoring in his first game as a member of the Hoops and ended up as one of the teams MVPs on the season
  • (Bad) Clint Mathis for Jeff Cunningham – why Colorado ever made this deal is beyond me…you trade a great goal scorer for an overpriced player who has done nothing with himself or for any team since 2001. Cunningham was an MVP candidate for RSL and almost got them into the playoffs for the first time
  • (Good) Ezra Hendrickson – Columbus’s lone bright spot of the year was picking up this guy…Ezra helped bring defense back to Columbus…sadly it was too little too late

Way to early projections for 2007:

  • New England will win the East – I see the Revs turning things around from a decent season this past year and actually showing up…Taylor Twellman won’t have a World Cup to think about and they may not have Clint Dempsey…but that shouldn’t matter
  • Chivas will win the West – yes…it could be a stretch but I think the Goats will pull through more and get some more players and really be dangerous…early on favorite will be Houston or Dallas but expect Chivas to continue to make strides with Bob Bradley (unless he gets the US National Team coaching job)…not to mention picking up Amado Guevara from New York earlier this week was huge…if Bradley, Razov, and Gurvara can get on the same page this will be an exciting team to watch
  • Toronto won’t be that bad – I see some good things in FC Toronto. I like Mo Johnson as their coach and the moves they have already done are good ones…getting Ronnie O’Brian was huge for this team…
  • The playoff field will include – New England and Chivas winning their conferences…those are automatic bids now…after that expect Houston, New York, DC, Dallas, Colorado, and LA making the playoffs. Colorado and Dallas may benefit from the new format or maybe someone like Kansas City will…
  • Houston will repeat as champions – I would love to pick someone else but right now…this very minute I believe Houston is the team to win it all next year…keeping De Rosiario away from going home to Canada may be tough but I think another season of him and Ching will be too much for everyone…plus Dominic Kinner is a very underrated coach
  • A big star will be signed – sometime between now and next August a big international star will sign with the league…the new Beckham rule will open up a lot of doors for people signing into the league…

Updated Bowl Projections

With some teams (like WVU and Texas) losing this past weekend, the whole bowl landscape changed. Not in an overly dramatic way but in a more stuttle way. We have a new number two in the land (USC) and one team (Michigan) is still hoping for a rematch.

Without further adu, I will present my second round of bowl projections here. I hope I don’t project one team to two bowls again like I did with Ohio. Some bowls changed, while others remained the same.

Again, teams in bold have accepted the bid.
San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia
(Mountain West vs. At-large) : Utah vs. Northern Illinois
Pioneer PureVision Las Vegas
(Pac-10 No. 4 vs. Mountain West) : Oregon vs. BYU

R&L Carriers New Orleans
(Sun Belt vs. C-USA) : Troy vs. East Carolina

Papajohns.com
(C-USA vs. Big East) : Southern Miss vs. South Florida
New Mexico
(WAC vs. Mountain West) : Nevada vs. New Mexcio

Bell Helicopter Armed Forces
(Mountain West vs. C-USA) : Rice vs. TCU

Sheraton Hawaii
(WAC vs. Pac-10) : Hawaii vs. UCLA

Motor City
(Big Ten No. 7 vs. MAC) : Middle Tennessee vs. Central Michigan
Emerald Bowl
(Pac-10 No. 5 vs. ACC No. 7) : Arizona vs. Florida State

PetroSun Independence
(SEC No. 8 vs. Big 12 No. 7): Alabama vs. Texas Tech
Pacific Life Holiday
(Pac-10 No. 2 vs. Big 12 No. 3): Cal vs. Texas A&M

Texas
(Big East vs. Big 12): Rutgers vs. Oklahoma State
Gaylords Hotels Music City
(ACC No. 5 vs. SEC): Boston College vs. Kentucky

Brut Sun
(Pac-10 No. 3 vs. Big 12 or Big East): Oregon State vs. Nebraska

AutoZone Liberty
(C-USA No. 1 vs. SEC No. 6): Houston vs. South Carolina

Insight
(Big 12 No. 6 vs. Big Ten No. 6): Missouri vs. Minnesota

Champs Sports
(ACC No. 4 vs. Big Ten No. 4/5): Maryland vs. Purdue

Meineke Car Care
(Big East or Navy vs. ACC): Navy vs. Clemson

Alamo
(Big Ten No. 4/5 vs. Big 12 No. 4) Iowa vs. Kansas State
Chick-fil-A
(ACC No. 2 vs. SEC): Virginia Tech vs. Georgia

MPC Computers
(WAC vs. ACC): San Jose State vs. Miami

AT&T Cotton
(Big 12 No. 2 vs. SEC): Texas vs. Auburn

Outback
(Big Ten No. 3 vs. SEC): Penn State vs. Tennessee

Toyota Gator
(ACC No. 3 vs. Big 12 or Big East) Wake Forest vs. West Virginia
Capital One
(Big Ten No. 2 vs. SEC No. 2): Wisconsin vs. Arkansas

International
(MAC vs. Big East No. 4 or 5): Western Michigan vs. Cincinnati

GMAC
(C-USA No. 2 vs. MAC): Tulsa vs. Ohio

Rose
(BCS vs. BCS): Michigan vs. LSU

Tostitos Fiesta
(BCS vs. BCS): Oklahoma vs. Boise State

FedEx Orange
(BCS vs. BCS): Georgia Tech vs. Louisville

Allstate Sugar
(BCS vs. BCS): Florida vs. Notre Dame

BCS Championship Game
(BCS No. 1 vs. BCS No. 2): Ohio State vs. USC

Again, I hope I didn’t use a team twice but with 32 bowl games and lots of differnet directional colleges in Michigan, Ohio and everywhere else inbetween, it can be tough to put one in twice or leave someone out. But that’s the way I am reading into things right now. One more week of football and we will have a greater understanding of where things will offically stand.

Early Bowl Projections..

Again, I am a little bored today so why not…plus it is always fun to speculate things…

I will start with the bowls that don’t mean anything and end up with the BCS games along with the national title game (teams in bold have already accepted the bids):Stevie is fast...I mean really fast...ask Pitt

San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia
(Mountain West vs. At-large) : Utah vs. Arizona State

Pioneer PureVision Las Vegas
(Pac-10 No. 4 vs. Mountain West) : Oregon vs. BYU

R&L Carriers New Orleans
(Sun Belt vs. C-USA) : Middle Tennessee State vs. East Carolina

Papajohns.com
(C-USA vs. Big East) : Southern Miss vs. Cincinnati

New Mexico
(WAC vs. Mountain West) : Nevada vs. New Mexcio

Bell Helicopter Armed Forces
(Mountain West vs. C-USA) : Rice vs. TCU

Sheraton Hawaii
(WAC vs. Pac-10) : Hawaii vs. UCLA

Motor City
(Big Ten No. 7 vs. MAC) : Kentucky (Big 10 may not have 7 teams, so at-large it should go) vs. Ohio

Emerald Bowl
(Pac-10 No. 5 vs. ACC No. 7) : Arizona vs. Florida State

PetroSun Independence
(SEC No. 8 vs. Big 12 No. 7): Alabama vs. Kansas State

Pacific Life Holiday
(Pac-10 No. 2 vs. Big 12 No. 3): Cal vs. Texas A&M

Texas
(Big East vs. Big 12): South Florida vs. Texas Tech

Gaylords Hotels Music City
(ACC No. 5 vs. SEC): Wake Forest vs. Tennessee

Brut Sun
(Pac-10 No. 3 vs. Big 12 or Big East): Oregon State vs. Rutgers

AutoZone Liberty
(C-USA No. 1 vs. SEC No. 6): Houston vs. South Carolina

Insight
(Big 12 No. 6 vs. Big Ten No. 6): Oklahoma State vs. Minnesota

Champs Sports
(ACC No. 4 vs. Big Ten No. 4/5): Maryland vs. Purdue

Meineke Car Care
(Big East or Navy vs. ACC): Navy vs. Clemson

Alamo
(Big Ten No. 4/5 vs. Big 12 No. 4) Iowa vs. Missouri

Chick-fil-A
(ACC No. 2 vs. SEC): Virginia Tech vs. Georgia

MPC Computers
(WAC vs. ACC): San Jose State vs. Washington State (another At-large bid here)

AT&T Cotton
(Big 12 No. 2 vs. SEC): Nebraska vs. Auburn

Outback
(Big Ten No. 3 vs. SEC): Penn State vs. LSU

Toyota Gator
(ACC No. 3 vs. Big 12 or Big East) Boston College vs. Oklahoma

Capital One
(Big Ten No. 2 vs. SEC No. 2): Wisconsin vs. Arkansas

International
(MAC vs. Big East No. 4 or 5): Western Michigan vs. Pittsburgh

GMAC
(C-USA No. 2 vs. MAC): Tulsa vs. Ohio

Rose
(BCS vs. BCS): Michigan vs. Notre Dame
Tostitos Fiesta
(BCS vs. BCS): Texas vs. Boise State

FedEx Orange
(BCS vs. BCS): Georgia Tech vs. West Virginia
Allstate Sugar
(BCS vs. BCS): Florida vs. Louisville
BCS Championship Game
(BCS No. 1 vs. BCS No. 2): Ohio State vs. USC

Yeah, I am a homer and I put WVU in a BCS game but I honestly believe it can still happen as long as certain things happen. Well, that killed a little bit of time, enjoy reading and yelling at my picks.

Game today…

A basketball…yes it is basketball season already folks…a basketball game today for the WVU women’s team will be at 6 or 6:30. Its a double header with the men so the time isn’t totally for certain. I will be doing color commentary for it for U92. A totally differnet site to listen to the games than for the soccer games. Its ten times easier and there are no logins to remember or deal with. Just click the U92 link on the side of this page here and then click the listen live link on the web page. Its real simple, if you can’t figure it out then I honestly don’t know what to tell you.

Sorry for no updates throughout the week, got a little busy and fell behind on some things but I will probably be posting more this week since it is Thanksgiving break for me.

Quick Picks and other junk

Seeing how today is the final for the MLS with the MLS Cup pitting New England and Houston. I thought I would throw my two cents out there and predict a Houston win. Both teams have come on strong as of late so it is a tough game to pick but New England hasn’t had the luck that they want in the MLS Cup in their history. Houston has won titles (they won as the San Jose Earthquakes) so it is not all new to them on how to win one of these things.

I have finally gotten most of my stuff back online, the photo pages are working again and I am slowly getting everything back to the way it was this time last week. I believe the web site is working better than ever now too as epp6.com is entering its four year on the world wide web.  Crazy to think that its been online that long now but it has!

My main email address is back up and running as well for those who do email me on a normal basis.

In other news….

The men’s soccer game is THIS Wednesday at 7 pm (6 CT) as the Mountaineers will face off against UNC-Greensboro. Not a big surprise to me that they got UNC-G instead of VT for that game. Its a game WVU should be able to win since they are the host seed. If you are in the Morgantown area be sure to check the game out. These guys deserve a rowdy crowd like they had for the Notre Dame game back in the season.

Looking at the men’s backet (I can do this more now that the women’s team stunk up the place against UVA this past week). Plenty of solid matchups, but I do see most of the seeds winning their games. Shouldn’t be too many  real upsets in the second round. The Big East had a tough time of things in the first round with 4 of the 5 teams losing their games. Only St. John’s was able to advance into the second round. UConn, Providence, Rutgers, and Cincinnati all dropped games in the first round.

The set up is still very favorable for the men’s team to make a good run in the tournament. I still think they have every chance to make it to St. Louis for the Final Four. If they beat UNC-G they will get the winner of the St. Louis/Northwestern. They should be able to beat either of those teams as that game will also be played in Morgantown.

Lastly…

There are only four more weeks of school for this semester, five if you want to throw in Thanksgiving break. Plenty of work ahead for me though, but thankfully there is a holiday break coming up next week. And yes, I have already broke out some Christmas movies in my spare time. Last night Becca and I watched Elf. I am sure once Thanksgiving passes we will watch more Christmas movies. I know XM likes to provide 5 or 6 Christmas music channels. So I am excited for that.

Busy week ahead as well, but I will try to provide as many updates as I can about games and what not.

What is coming up…

Alrighty, incase you missed it yesterday. The draw came out for both the men and women’s soccer tournaments. The men definitely got a good draw and have a solid chance to make it to the Final Four. The women, well…not so much but all is not lost even though they have to go on the road to Wake Forest this weekend. I will be traveling with the team to Winston Salem, NC to cover the events. Hopefully they can manage to beat two ACC teams as they play Virginia on Friday night and should end up playing Wake Forest on Sunday.

Hey it is possible.

In other news, epp6.com has been renewed for another year! YAY! Hard to believe this site is about four years old now. It is still growing but I am also currently shopping for a new host for it. I found one but the process is taking longer than I expected. Some things have changed with transfering hosts over the years. It wasn’t this complicated before. I am mainly waiting on my current host to give me some authorization key to be able to transfer my stuff to them. So hopefully soon it will take place.

What does that mean for everyone else? Nothing much really, hopefully there won’t be any downtime for this site. Any more I have the most trouble getting this site to load up with my current host so that is the big reason why I am changing. Not to mention I found a new host that has all the bells and wistles that I want for half the price. Can’t beat that. Not to mention the random discounts they throw on there for certain things. I like discounts, so naturally I listen when I see a good deal.

Again, hopefully there won’t be any downtime as far as changing host and what not. Hopefully it will happen and no one but myself will even see it.