20 Days of Football: Cougar Hunting in Vegas
The bowls are back after a one-day hiatus and with it comes one of the best matchups of the bowl season. Indeed, it is one of my five under-the-radar bowls to watch. BYU meets Oregon State in the MAACO Las Vegas Bowl tonight. Both teams are ranked, have high-powered offenses and were one win away from playing in a bigger bowl.
Last year Oregon State snuck past Pittsburgh in the Sun Bowl 3-0. You can bet this year's game will be much more exciting. Oregon State is led by Jacquizz Rodgers, a Maurice Jones-Drew-type running back that is small, quick and powerful and can catch passes out of the backfield. Rodgers will be a Heisman contender next year. The Beavers also have two stellar wide receivers in James Rodgers (brother of Jacquizz) and Damola Adeniji. Quarterback Sean Canfield is highly accurate and has weapons at his disposal. This could also be a coming out game for Oregon State. With 18 starters due back the rest of the Pac 10 will take notice.
BYU is more veteran, led by senior quarterback Max Hall and fellow senior tight end Dennis Pitta. The Cougars can match Rodgers with physical running backs Harvey Unga and Manasae Tonga. Hall is the trigger man on the offense. In losses to Florida State and TCU Hall was off his game. Oregon State doesn't have nearly the defensive might they had last year so expect a high scoring affair tonight.