The series is tied, 1-1.
Wake Forest: 2 Game Win Streak
Connecticut: Loss to West Virginia
Wake Forest Advantages:
Has beaten bowl teams such as Navy, Florida State, and Maryland.
Their strong (#16 ranked) running game should no problem tearing up the ho-hum rush defense of Connecticut.
They beat UConn early last year. It might not matter though, because many UConn fans would not like me to compare this years team to last years 4-8 effort.
They are tied for best in the nation in interceptions returned for touchdowns.
They are playing in their own playground.
Their kick returner has a very good average.
Wake Forest Disadvantages:
Connecticuts 15th-ranked pass defense could be trouble for their developing QB, Riley Skinner. He has the 2nd best completion rate in the nation, but has 11 TDs and 12 INTs.
They won all of the games they were supposed to, but they flailed every time they had the opportunity to come up with a big win.
Probobly one of the most underrated teams in college football, simply because of name. Excellent wins over Rutgers and South Florida, and a not-to-sneeze-at 9-3 record good for 1st in the Big East.
Their QB has shown ability to handle the ball, getting only 5 picks this season compared to 13 touchdowns.
Their fans are extremely excited to be at the bowl, and so are the players. Wake Forest, meanwhile, is a bit down from their previous season, so energy may not run as high.
Their kicker gets a lot of attempts, and he does a solid job of nailing them.
The QB may spend some time running, but there's no doubt he can bang in a few against the 78th ranked pass defense.
It's no secret that once you get past the Rutgers and South Florida wins, their wins are really powderpuff.
Their offensive line has been atrocious this season, allowing for 28 sacks. I won't be surprised to see him on his back a few times, but don't think it'll be a Jimmy Clausen type performance.
Their defense leaves a lot to be desired.
Jason Frost: Ketchup on Spaghetti is Mmmm-mmmm-licious!
OKLuschen: Wake Forest. Probably the best matchup of the season between two historic powers...O, wait, this ain't hardwood. UConn sucks, so that means Wake Forest wins...somehow.
Zorgon: Connecticut. I like to point to the schedule strength a lot, but I won't this time. Wake Forest may be in their backyard, but it's not like getting to Charlotte from Connecticut is a $1,000 trip. I'm sure there's a lot of old and young Huskie fans psyched to finally go to a bowl and cheer on their team, and the players are psyched, too. If UConn can stop the run, then I'm sure their potent offense could give Wake a run for their money. Protect the ball, make easy, short passes, the game is theirs. I could see a Wake win if they pressure UConns QB and get the run going. I'll take the underdog in a close one.
Bottom Line: Wake Forest 1, Connecticut 1, Ketchupless Spaghetti 1