The good news is that I'm no longer dreading this.
After years of making horrendous bowl predictions for the college football world to mock, I'm starting to figure things out. I followed a 23-17 mark in 2018 with a 32-9 ledger last season. While there were some huge misses, such as Utah over Texas (Texas won 38-10), I hit on some tricky matchups and came close with several scores. I now have an extremely small but loyal group of followers who are awaiting these predictions after making some money off them in 2019. Talk about the holiday spirit.
I'm not getting cocky about my instant bowl forecasting skills, especially entering a slate filled with more unknowns than normal. The bowl season was supposed to start Saturday, but after the cancellation of the Frisco Bowl, it kicks off Monday with the Myrtle Beach Bowl. Usually there are two weeks between my predictions and the games. This year, rosters and coaching staffs are fluid, opt-outs will continue, and COVID-19 can impact every roster every day before the game.
There are also fewer bowls, culminating Jan. 11 with the College Football Playoff National Championship presented by AT&T. That's the backdrop for this set of bowl predictions -- straight up, not against the spread.
Ready, set, bowl!