Meineke Car Care Bowl Picks: Texas A&M vs. Northwestern 12/31/11

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If you’re a fan of playing big time dogs with some motivation against favored teams that probably aren’t going to have a heck of a lot to give to the game, you’ve reached the right NCAA football bowl betting bash. The Northwestern Wildcats will take on the Texas A&M Aggies in the Meineke Car Care Bowl of Texas, and we are set to make our bowl picks and predictions for the first game on December 31st

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Meineke Car Care Bowl Matchup: Texas A&M Aggies vs. Northwestern Wildcats
Meineke Car Care Bowl Date/Time: Saturday, December 31st, 12:00 ET
Meineke Car Care Bowl Location: Reliant Stadium, Houston, TX
Meineke Car Care Bowl Odds: Texas A&M -10
Meineke Car Care Bowl Total: 67
Meineke Car Care Bowl TV Coverage: ESPN, ESPN3.com

Without looking at these two teams all that closely, it is apparently why Texas A&M is the favored side in this game. Being a team in the middle of the pack in the Big XII is generally a heck of a lot better than being in the middle of the pack in a mediocre Big Ten, and that definitely plays into the Aggies’ hands. They are going to have home field advantage, and at least on paper, they have the more balanced team on both sides of the ball. However, the Wildcats were already able to pull off one upset this year when they beat the Nebraska Cornhuskers in Lincoln, and they have a tremendous chance to do some big time damage in this game as well.

QB Dan Persa really does a nice job taking care of the football for the Cats, as he almost always completes at least 70 percent of his passes every time out there. This year, QB Kain Kolter is also used quite a bit, and he is used in a number of ways. He is lined up at receiver and is third on the team in most receiving categories, he is the leading rusher, the leading touchdown scorer, and can throw the rock as well out of either the Wildcat or traditional sets. Sound familiar? It almost sounds like what the Aggies were doing with QB Ryan Tannehill before he took over as the starting quarterback halfway through last season…

Now that Tannehill had a full year under his belt, defenses started to figure him out. Sure, A&M still scores almost 40 points on the average game, but the best ‘D’s were able to at least contain him, especially from the point that RB Christine Michael got hurt. The ground game is now left to just RB Cyrus Gray, who is a great athlete, but he isn’t really that between the tackles type of back that would really make this team complete.

In the end, we really prefer Northwestern in this one. The Aggies really took advantage of the weak parts of their schedule, but they were never able to finish off the good teams. Northwestern won four in a row to become bowl eligible before losing in the finale to the Michigan State Spartans, but that won’t put a damper on anything that it is doing. The Wildcats were happy to go on the road this year to Chestnut Hill, where they took down the Boston College Eagles to start the year, just as they were pumped to beat the Huskers in Lincoln. They are going to come into this de facto road game with the same sort of mentality for sure, and it is a mentality that we think is going to end up leading to an upset to close out 2011.

Free Meineke Car Care Bowl Pick: Northwestern +10

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Lou Palumbo is the founder and part owner of the Cappersinfo.com Sports Handicapping Community. He's been writing and posting free picks and sports handicapping strategies on the Cappersinfo forums and website for 15 years now. He enjoys handicapping just as much as he did from the very first day he built the original Cappersinfo website.

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