35 Bowls in 24 Days: Alamo Bowl

The Valero Alamo Bowl takes place Thursday night in San Antonio, following Orlando’s Champs Sports Bowl. Both games should be thrillers featuring exciting football teams, so be sure to stay up late for this one since I won’t be able to watch it (a guy’s gotta get some sleep, you know)!

More: See the other bowl games

Washington Huskies (7-5, 5-4 Pac-12) vs. No. 12 Baylor Bears (9-3, 6-3 Big 12), Thursday, Dec. 29, 2011, 9:00 p.m. [ESPN]

Baylor has had a magical season thanks to junior quarterback Robert Griffin III. It’s rare that someone from a three-loss team that isn’t a top-tier program wins the Heisman, but Griffin was that good. His 3,998 passing yards and 36 touchdowns only begin to tell the story.

Griffin is electric. You have to watch this game, because his play is intoxicating. He’s a great football player, and his high level of intelligence is exactly what the pro scouts will be looking for.

“If you’re not working, you’re getting passed up,” Griffin said. Thus, he said he has been working out hard between banquets and appearances to stay conditioned for the Alamo Bowl, an attempt to buck the trend of Heisman winners coming out rusty in the bowl game.

A win in this game would give the Bears their first 10-win season since 1980, a huge accomplishment after years of irrelevance. But they have to go through a tough Washington team to get there.

For fans of the Huskies, here’s a stat that would make you want to cancel your flight and sell your Alamo Bowl ticket — Washington ranks 116th (out of 120 teams) in pass defense, allowing 283.8 yards per game through the air. If that continues on Thursday night, Griffin might throw for 1,000 yards.

Believe it or not, Baylor ranks 114th in overall defense, so you’re going to see points scored by the truckload in this game. Washington allowed Stanford to score 65 earlier in the season, and it may take 60 points or more to win this game.

Baylor is favored by 10 points, and that sounds about right, because I don’t see any way Washington wins the Alamo Bowl.

My prediction: Baylor 61, Washington 50

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