football-fbs flag | December 28, 2018

College football bowl schedule: Thursday's games previewed and how to watch

5 underrated bowl games to watch this season

This is the complete college football bowl schedule, times and previews of each game for Thursday, Dec. 27. There are three games today (and three more tomorrow!) ahead of the College Football Playoff semifinal contests on Saturday.

College football bowl schedule for Thursday, Dec. 27:

RELATED: FBS Scoreboard


Duke 56, Temple 27

1:30 p.m. ET, ESPN at Independence Stadium Shreveport, La.

Series record: First meeting.

What's at stake: Duke is trying to end its season with a positive after struggling during the last half of the year. The Blue Devils have lost four of six, including lopsided losses to Clemson and Wake Forest in the final two weeks. Temple is trying to end its impressive season with a win despite losing head coach Geoff Collins to Georgia Tech. Ed Foley will be the interim coach for the Owls.

Key matchup: Temple's defense vs. Duke's offense. The Owls' defense is hoping to have a big day against Duke's offense, which scored a combined 13 points in losses to Clemson and Wake Forest at the end of the season. Temple's defense finished the regular season among the nation's top 10 in several categories, including yards allowed per play (4.49) and passing yards allowed per game (166.3).

Players to watch:

Temple: DT Michael Dogbe will play in his 54th game for the Owls and has had an outstanding career. He's had a team-high 12½ tackles for a loss, including seven sacks this season.

Duke: QB Daniel Jones has had an up-and-down season, but has been very productive in some games. He's thrown for 2,251 yards, 17 touchdowns and seven interceptions this season.

Did you know? Temple is playing its fourth bowl game in four years, which is quite a feat for a program that has just eight bowl appearances in program history. ... Temple has scored a non-offensive touchdown in nine of 12 games this season. The Owls' total of 13 non-offensive touchdowns ranks first in the nation. ... Duke coach David Cutcliffe is already enshrined in the Independence Bowl Hall of Fame. As a head coach, he led Ole Miss to victories at the Independence Bowl in 1998, 1999 and 2002. ... Duke is playing in its sixth bowl game in the past seven seasons.


Wisconsin 35, Miami 3

5:15 p.m. ET, ESPN at Yankee Stadium New York

Series Record: Wisconsin, 3-2.

What's at stake: The Badgers and Hurricanes are each trying to salvage seasons that have been two of the biggest disappointments in college football this year. The game is a rematch of last season's Orange Bowl, a 34-24 victory by the Badgers. Wisconsin was ranked No. 6 in that game, Miami was No. 11 and both teams were ranked in the top 10 of this season's preseason poll. Each team fell out of the poll long ago, with the Hurricanes even losing four straight games.

Key matchup: Miami's QB vs. Wisconsin defense. This seems more problematic than obvious because the Hurricanes haven't named a quarterback for the bowl yet and there's a lot of uncertainty about which QB will play, and for how long. N'Kosi Perry could be benched for the game and the snaps may be split between Malik Rosier and Jarren Williams.


Baylor 45, Vanderbilt 38

9 p.m. ET, ESPN at NRG Stadium Houston

Series Record: Baylor leads 2-0.

What's at stake: Baylor looks for its seventh win a year after winning just one game and the Commodores need a victory to reach seven wins for the first time since going 9-4 in 2013.

Key Matchup: Vanderbilt RB Ke'Shawn Vaughn vs. Baylor's run defense. Vaughn has a career-high 1,001 yards rushing after sitting out last year following a transfer from Illinois and Baylor is allowing 174.8 yards rushing a game which ranks 80th in the nation. Vaughn, the SEC newcomer of the year, injured his arm in Vanderbilt's last game but coach Derek Mason said Wednesday that Vaughn had recovered and would be ready to go.

Players to watch

Baylor: QB Charlie Brewer. The dual-threat player has thrown for 2,635 yards and 17 touchdowns and ran for 266 yards and a team-leading six more scores.

Vanderbilt: QB Kyle Shurmur. The senior has thrown for 2,844 yards and 23 touchdowns this season to give him a school-record 63 touchdown passes in his career. He needs just 119 yards passing to move ahead of Jay Cutler (8,697) for most career passing yards in school history.

Did you know? The only previous meetings between these teams came in 1953-54. ... The Bears are in a bowl for the 24th time and eighth time in nine seasons. ... Vanderbilt is in a bowl for the ninth time and sixth in the last decade. ... Baylor is 3-4 in bowl games against Southeastern Conference teams. ... Vanderbilt's last bowl win came in the 2013 BBVA Compass Bowl. ... Baylor's last bowl win came in the Cactus bowl in 2016. ... The Bears have averaged 208.5 yards rushing in their six wins this season. ... The Commodores have won nine of their last 10 nonconference games. ... This is Baylor's second trip to the Texas Bowl. The Bears lost to Illinois 38-14 in 2010.


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