The first slate of bowl games are in the book, and several teams made history in the process.
In the Cure Bowl, Coastal Carolina won its first ever bowl game in program history. Meanwhile, the Boca Raton Bowl saw Western Kentucky quarterback Bailey Zappe set the NCAA single-season Division I records for both passing yards and touchdowns. UAB pulled off one of its biggest wins in program history in the Independence bowl, knocking off No. 13 BYU 31-28 while Fresno State won 10 games for the first time since 2018.
BENDER: Picks, predictions for all bowl games in 2021-22
That was all just In one weekend. As bowl season progresses, more records may fall and more coaches could be on the move. Bowl season also means great uniform matchups, and unique celebrations that involve dumping things other than Gatorade on coaches.
The College Football Playoff won’t be contested until the end of December and early January; in the meantime, you can get your college football fix with dozens of other bowls, including during Christmas season, when the bowl slate is a bit lighter, but still may provide some interesting matchups.
College football schedule: What games are on today?
The full schedule for this weekend’s college football bowl games, plus final scores and how to watch every game live.
Friday, Dec. 24
Memphis vs. Hawaii
After finishing 8-3 last season, Memphis regressed this season and finished 6-6 in its second full season under Ryan Silverfield. The Tigers, who already struggled on defense (96th in total defense), lost DC Mike MacIntyre to FIU, where he was named the head coach. Offensively, Memphis is lead by Calvin Austin III, who’s been a 1,000-plus yard receiver each of the last two seasons. Hawai’i meanwhile, finished 6-7, but news broke several weeks ago that coach Todd Graham has allegedly mistreated his players while there. As a result, the Rainbow Warriors’ starting QB, Chevan Cordeiro, entered the transfer portal, as did the team’s leading rusher, Dae Dae Hunter.
Saturday, Dec. 25
Georgia State vs. Ball State
Georgia State is bowl eligible for the third straight season, but needed a late push to get there. The Panthers finished the season winning five of their last six games, including a massive upset over perennial power Coastal Carolina. Shawn Elliott’s squad has one of the best ground games in the country, ranking No. 8 in rushing offense. Georgia State is going up a Ball State squad that won the MAC conference title last year. The Cardinals finished 6-6 this season, with their best win coming against Army, and currently rank top-10 in turnover margin nationally.
Monday, Dec. 27
Western Michigan vs. Nevada
Western Michigan finished last in the hyper-competitive MAC West at 4-4. The Broncos’ best win of the season was against current No. 12 Pitt, who they beat 44-41 in Pittsburgh. There are two things Tim Lester’s squad does exceptionally well — gets teams off the field on third down (fourth nationally in third down defense) and keeps them off the field (third nationally in time of possession). Nevada, meanwhile, leads the nation in turnover margin and is sixth in sacks, coming off an 8-4 season. Most notably, though, the Wolf Pack ranked fourth in the country in passing offense thanks to Carson Strong, who’s led the Mountain West in passing yards, touchdowns and completions each of the last two seasons.
Boston College vs. East Carolina
Boston College has consistently been a .500 team since 2013, but are heading to their second straight bowl game under Jeff Hafley. The Eagles got dealt a major blow when star quarterback Phil Jurkovec hurt his wrist against UMass, but he eventually returned late in the season. BC has the fourth-best pass defense in the country, which as been a big key to their success. East Carolina is bowl eligible for the first time since 2014 after finishing the year 7-5. The rank top-15 in third down defense and have a top-25 pasing attack, pitting their strength against Boston College’s.
How to watch, live stream college football games
The first slate of bowl games will be broadcast live on national TV, with games appearing on ESPN, ESPN2 and ABC. Live streaming options include WatchESPN or Sling TV.
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