Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl – Michigan Wolverines vs Kansas State Wildcats
Date and Time: Saturday 12/28/13 at 10:15pm on ESPN
Game Line: Kansas State -5.5 (from JustBet)
Saturday’s Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl NCAA Football Analysis: It’s been more than a decade under coach Bill Snyder since Kansas State won it’s last bowl game, a drough that the coach and team who have been largely successful otherwise find concerning. The Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl might finally give the Wildcats some post season success. After winning five of their last six games to become bowl eligible, Kansas State feels confident heading to Tempe, Arizona for their matchup against a Michigan team that struggled to end the season and will be without their starting quarterback. Bill Snyder took over Kansas State for his second stint with the team in 2009 and has gone to BCS Bowls the last two years after winning the Big 12. However, going outside of the Big 12 for the holidays has been a problem for this team. They’ve lost all five Bowl games they’ve been in since 2002. They didn’t seem like they were going to any bowl game after a 2-4 start including a loss to FCS North Dakota State but instead they turned it around and finished strong. They forced 18 turnovers in their 5-1 stretch run losing only to the Sooners late in November. A bowl victory, though, is what the team really wants. Michigan on the other hand started 5-0 with near losses to Akron and Connecticut and has fallen apart late in the Big Ten season. They were picked for the Buffalo Wild Wings bowl ahead of Nebraska who had two fewer losses simply because they are a name that travels well. Michigan heads into this game off its most impressive effort of the season but the start of the 42-41 loss to Ohio State won’t be there to face the wildcats. Devin Gardner will miss the bowl game with turf toe and freshman Shane Morris, his predecessor will get a chance to play. Morris got some playing time in three games this season, attempting nine passes. The left handed quarterback with a strong arm sat out much of his senior season with mononucleosis so he hasn’t played an entire football game in almost two full years. They will have a very hard time generating offense, while Kansas State will force turnovers and this game will be over by half time.
Michigan vs Kansas State NCAA Football Picks: Kansas State -5.5 and under 54.5
Michigan vs Kansas State Game Prediction: 31-17 Washington
What to expect in the 2013 Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl: Michigan has one of the worst running games in the country without Devin Gardner at quarterback. Their core of running backs, and many have gotten a chance this seaosn, have all been lackluster. This will leave the game in the hands of a freshman who hasn’t gotten much playing time and should have some rust and nervers. Meanwhile, Kansas State couldn’t be more hungry and motivated to win this game and they have the offense to score some points against a very mediocre Michigan defense. Combine all of this with Michigan’s turnover issues and Kansas State’s ability to force them and this could be a long night for the Wolverines.