Thursday, January 10, 2008

Florida Atlantic-Memphis

the New Orleans Bowl
Friday, December 21st, 8:00pm
New Orleans, Louisiana
Florida Atlantic
(7-5)_____Sun Belt____42.86
(7-5)_____Conf USA____21.53
WeekOpponentoPtsRes, ScoreWeekOpponentoPtsRes, Score
14@ Troy134.45W, 38-3211@ Southern Mississippi53.31W, 29-26
11Arkansas State-63.38W, 34-319@ Tulane-144.98W, 28-27
1Middle Tennessee State-67.64W, 27-145Marshall-158.83W, 24-21
3Minnesota-195.44W, 42-398@ Rice-221.20W, 38-35
8@ Louisiana-Lafayette-210.36W, 39-3212Alabama-Birmingham-232.53W, 25-9
4@ North Texas-309.82W, 30-2013Southern Methodist-292.91W, 55-52
13@ Florida International-322.15W, 55-233Jacksonville State-W, 35-14
12@ Florida377.83L, 20-594@ Central Florida266.42L, 20-56
6South Florida316.42L, 23-3510East Carolina89.72L, 40-56
5@ Kentucky208.61L, 17-451Mississippi-39.22L, 21-23
2@ Oklahoma State112.55L, 6-425@ Arkansas State-63.38L, 31-35
9Louisiana-Monroe-29.37L, 30-337Middle Tennessee State-67.64L, 7-21

These are the two weakest teams in the bowls, both of them barely finishing in positive territory. They've had rather similar seasons too - same record, one good win for each, a bad loss or two, up and down the whole year, etc. Looking a bit closer though, 4 of Florida Atlantic's 5 losses were to BCS conference teams, while Memphis had a non-conf slate of mainly cream-puffs. So an edge goes to the Owls for having played in tougher matches.

Memphis, after going downhill the first half of the season, is playing well and has won 5 of 6. Streak edge to the Tigers.

Intangibles: This is Florida Atlantic's first bowl ever, and having to adjust to playing in a bowl might help or hurt the team. Memphis has had a rough season, dealing with the tragic death of teammate Taylor Bradford since the beginning of October.

The Line: Memphis +3

The Story: This is a tough call, partly because the teams are so similar. Gut, what do you have to say?

The Call: Florida Atlantic by 7

The Result: Florida Atlantic 44-27 = Another exciting game. Well done by both teams. Good job to you too, gut.

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