Christmas Eve night brings us the 2013 Sheraton Hawaii Bowl, a match up between the 8-4 Boise State Broncos of the Mountain West Conference and the 6-6 Oregon State Beavers of the Pac-12 Conference.
Boise State comes into this one reeling. They recently lost their long-time head coach, Chris Petersen, to the Washington Huskies to replace Steve Sarkisian. Plus, this past Friday night, they sent home their starting quarterback, Joe Southwick, for violating team ruled for allegedly urinating off of the hotel balcony, a claim he disputes.
Nonetheless, the Broncos will go into this one with backup Grant Hedrick at the helm, who has played some significant time this season while Southwick was recovering from injury. In replacing Southwick, Hedrick tossed for 1,443 yards and 15 touchdowns, so he can definitely get the job done.
Oregon State shows up to the Hawaii Bowl not really expecting to be in this spot a few months ago. After losing their opener to Eastern Washington of the FCS, the Beavers went on a roll behind their dynamic passing attack–led by QB Sean Mannion and Biletnikoff winner Brandin Cooks–rattling off six wins in a row.
Unfortunately though, they finished the year on a five-game losing streak, including a heartbreaking loss to rival Oregon in the final game of the season, 36-35.
If anything, the Beavers are just looking for a pick-me-up heading into next season with a win in this one.
Date: Dec. 24
Start Time: 8 PM ET
Location: Honolulu, HI
Stadium: Aloha Stadium
TV Info: ESPN
Live Stream: WatchESPN app
Odds: Oregon State -3
Prediction: This game definitely has the potential to be a shootout. Oregon State has given up 32.1 points per game, and the Boise offense isn’t really losing much rhythm with Hedrick at QB with the experienced he gained this year. The real question here is what is the mental state of the Beavers with that five-game losing streak weighing heavily on their minds?
My guess: Mike Riley and company will prove a point against the Broncos that they’re just fine, still.
Oregon State 38, Boise State 28