The 2012-2013 NCAA Bowl season continues today with the traditional climax of the year on New Year's Day. Ignore the fact that the season continues for another week, or that games like the GoDaddy.com Bowl and the BBVA Compass Bowl are still to be played. At least we have reached the start of the BCS Bowls today.
There are six bowl games to be played today, ending with the two BCS Bowls. First up, we have the Gator Bowl, which started at noon Eastern Time (ESPN2). The game features Mississippi State and Northwestern. Players like cornerback Johnthan Banks, wide receiver Chad Bumphis, cornerback Darius Slay, running back LaDarius Perkins, and guard Gabe Jackson, all from Mississippi State, should be players to watch and prospects for April's Draft.
Also starting at noon, is the Heart of Dallas Bowl (ESPNU), with Oklahoma State traveling down to Dallas to decimate Purdue. There aren't a lot of prospects for this game, with Purdue defensive tackle Kawann Short probably being the number one guy. There's also Purdue cornerback Josh Johnson and Oklahoma State running back Joseph Randle. And, just in case the Jacksonville Jaguars need to figure out who to take with their third round pick, Oklahoma State's punter, Quinn Sharp, will attend the game - we'll see if he is needed at all.
Games three and four today give us better match ups. At 1pm ET, the Capital One Bowl (ABC) will kickoff, with Georgia facing Nebraska. If you want to find a player to fill a hole on the Miami Dolphins' defense this April, Georgia may be the place to look. They have eight players playing today who should be taken during the draft, and a ninth if you include suspended tackle John Kenkins. Nebraska's defense will provide linebacker Will Compton and safety Daimion Stafford to the NFL as well.
Also at 1pm ET, the Outback Bowl (ESPN) will begin with South Carolina and Michigan. One interesting draft prospect from this game is Michigan tackle Taylor Lewan. While I don't think the Dolphins will actually look to go offensive lineman in the first round, which they would have to do to land Lewan, the irony of replacing Jake Long, who may be allowed to leave this offseason due to the size of his contract, with another tackle from Michigan would just be funny. The game will also feature South Carolina cornerback D.J. Swearinger, linebacker Devonte Holloman, and defensive end Devin Taylor, all of who could be in the NFL next year. Then, there's Michigan quarterback Denard Robinson, who could find himself in the NFL next year playing quarterback, wide receiver, or cornerback.
After those games, the Rose Bowl will start at 5pm ET (ESPN) and the Orange Bowl 8:30pm ET (ESPN). We will post a separate live thread for those games, featuring Wisconsin and Stanford out in California and Northern Illinois against Florida State in Sun Life Stadium.