#11 LSU (10-2) vs.
#17 TEXAS A&M (9-3)
Jan. 7 -- 6:00 pm MT -- FOX
Our predictions, with the confidence points from our ESPN.com Bowl Mania entries included. A confidence rating of 35 is highest, 1 is lowest.
I loved watching the Cotton Bowl on New Years Day growing up. I guess the administrators of the bowl are set on differentiating the bowl and desire a place in the BCS lineup. While many are upset about the timing, no one can complain about the match-up. Many would think that Texas A&M might have a decided advantage in the stands seeing that the game is being played in Dallas. LSU travels as well as anyone in the country and will be out and the Bayou will be out in full force. I simply don't see the aTm offense being able to sustain enough drives against the Tiger defense to win the ball game. This one will be close and the Tigers will make one more play. A&M fans should hope for a clock management opportunity at the end of the game. Hell, ALL mankind hopes for those scenarios when Les Miles is involved.
WINNER: LSU -- CONFIDENCE: 27
This game really should be on New Year's Day. Wish it was still in the Cotton Bowl, but you can't blame Jerry Jones for filling his new stadium with big events. I had a hard time picking against A&M because they have really put things together down the stretch. I think this will be an ugly, knock-down, drag-out, low-scoring affair. If that is the case, then somehow, some way LSU will win. Isn't that inevitable?
WINNER: LSU -- CONFIDENCE: 8
I hate everything about LSU ... except their stadium, fans, and unis. I just wanted to make that clear. The Mad Hatter is not "The Most Interesting Man in the World," but he is "The Luckiest Man in the World." Expect some stupid and crazy things to happen this game, but LSU will win in some lucky way. A&M has quietly "succeeded" this year, but its season ends with a loss.
WINNER: LSU -- CONFIDENCE: 20
TEXAS A&M 53%