Oklahoma and Connecticut Set to Entertain in the Fiesta Bowl
Connecticut Huskies (8-4)
How They Got Here: After finishing in a three-way tie for first place in the Big East conference, the Connecticut Huskies were the beneficiaries of the tiebreaker with both West Virginia and Pittsburgh after beating both teams during the regular season. As the winner of the tiebreaker the Huskies were awarded the Big East’s automatic BCS bowl bid.
Connecticut’s 2010 Season: Expectations were high for the Huskies entering the 2010 season, but after starting the season 1-2 against non-conference opposition, people began to rethink their opinion of Connecticut. Then when the Huskies dropped their first two Big East games, there were even doubts about UConn’s bowl eligibility hopes.
But after rolling off four straight victories against Big East conference opponents, the Huskies were in position to win the Big East conference’s BCS bowl bid by virtue of a tiebreaker.
Then on the final day of the 2010 regular season, the Huskies pulled out a last-second victory over South Florida on the strength of a Dave Teggart’s 52-yard field goal with 17 seconds to play — clinching the three-way tie atop the Big East at 5-2 and a BCS bowl bid.
Oklahoma Sooners (11-2)
How They Got Here: Champions of the Big 12 South division on the strength of their finish in the seventh BCS standings of the season, the Oklahoma Sooners clinched another BCS bowl bid with their 23-20 victory over Nebraska in the Big 12 Championship Game in the final week of the season.
Oklahoma’s 2010 Season: The Sooners were among a select group of teams that pundits believed had a chance at a national title in 2010, and the Sooners looked the part, climbing as high as No. 1 in the BCS early in the 2010 season.
However, losses to Missouri and Texas A&M dashed the Sooner’s hopes at another shot at a BCS national title, and instead the Sooners are headed to yet another BCS bowl as champions of the Big 12 in the conference’s final season as a 12-team league.
Matchup to Watch: The nation as a whole has been well-versed in Bob Stoops offense and defense as the Sooners are seemingly a yearly feature in the Big 12 and BCS races. The real question here is how UConn’s offense and truly the entire team will be able to respond to the spotlight of their first BCS bowl in school history.
UConn running back Johnathan Todman is among the best in the country, and at just 5-foot-9 will be a difficult task for the Oklahoma front seven to locate and tackle. Can Todman and quarterback Zach Fazer overcome the perceived mismatch and hand Oklahoma yet another loss in a BCS bowl?
BCS Know How Prediction: Yes, Oklahoma has made a habit of dropping the ball in the biggest situations — namely BCS bowls — but this matchup seems to be more in the Sooners’ favor than ever before. UConn is a better team than their record or rank show, but they’ll be hard pressed to hang with Oklahoma.
Oklahoma 42 vs. Connecticut 17
←Big Ten and Mountain West Powers Clash as Wisconsin and TCU Square Off in the Rose Bowl