South Alabama Jaguars (-3, 53 o/u) vs. Bowling Green Falcons
This year’s Raycom Media Camellia Bowl will have the South Alabama Jaguars (6-6, 5-3 Sun Belt) clashing with the Bowling Green Falcons (7-6, 5-3 MAC) on Saturday, December 20, at the Cramton Bowl in Montgomery, Alabama (9:15 p.m. Eastern).
The Jaguars barely made it to the post-season, finishing the season at .500 and losing four of the last five games. They don’t do anything particularly well, boasting the 100th-ranked passing offense and the 48th-ranked rushing game. On average, South Alabama allows more points than it scores (22.1 to 25.8).
The Falcons have a 7-6 record on the season and got off to a good start, winning seven of their first ten. However, like South Alabama, Bowling Green struggled late, losing its last three games. The strong start was enough to earn Bowling Green a spot in the MAC title game, but they laid an egg against Northern Illinois, losing 51-17 and failing to cover the seven-point spread.
Like the Jaguars, the Falcons also give up more points than they score (29.8 versus 33.9), and don’t rank in the top-40 in either passing or running.
These two non-traditional football schools will be coming to the game without much information on the other.
“Obviously we don’t know that much about them — we’ll be looking at film here real soon — but I know traditionally they’ve been a real good program and we have a lot of respect for Bowling Green,” South Alabama head coach Joey Jones said of Bowling Green.
“They’ve got a lot of tradition; they sure do. I’m excited. I think that’s a good matchup. It’s a good opponent. … Most of our coaches are out recruiting this week, but we’ll start taking a look at them soon. It’s a little more exciting when you know who you’re going to play.”
Bowling Green is 4-6 in bowl games all-time, but have lost the last three in a row. This is the first-ever bowl appearance for South Alabama; the Jaguars, however, are three-point favorites at the moment, largely due to the fact that the game is in Alabama.
(Photo credit: Daniel Lewis (flickr) [https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/legalcode].)