College Football Motel 6 Cactus Bowl Preview: Boise State Vs Baylor

Posted by Peter Boysen on December 26, 2016 in

The Boise State Broncos (10-2) take on the Baylor Bears (6-6) in the Motel 6 Cactus Bowl. This game takes place at Chase Field, the home of MLB’s Arizona Diamondbacks. While Boise State cruised through a strong season, the Bears still are working through the firing of head coach Art Briles and a campus sexual assault scandal that has attracted the attention of the national media, alumni and the players themselves — everyone, it seems, except the NCAA. Take a look at our research on this game as well as our college football betting odds on the rest of the bowl games this year.

College Football Motel 6 Cactus Bowl Preview: Broncos Vs Bears

When: Tuesday, December 27, 2016, 10:15pm ET
Where: Chase Field, Phoenix, AZ
Radio: Boise State Bronco Sports Network / Baylor IMG Sports Network
Live Stream: Watch ESPN
NCAAF Odds: Boise State (-7.5), O/U 67


Why should you bet on the Broncos?

Boise State has not made their way onto the national stage as much in recent years — in their four years in the Mountain West Conference, they have only made the conference title game once, in 2014. When they fell, 30-28, at Wyoming and then lost to the Air Force Academy in the regular season finale, they showed a great deal of vulnerability. However, they come in to face a Baylor team that started 6-0 and sat in the top 10, as they lost their last six and finished near the basement of the Big 12 standings. Baylor will also be without tailback Shock Linwood, who is opting out of the bowl game so that he won’t suffer an injury that will hurt his draft status.

Why should you put your money on the Bears?

This is a difficult argument to make. Baylor has played the season under interim coach Jim Grobe, and while they have Matt Rhule coming from Temple next year, they bring their interim season to a close. This has been an ugly second half of the season for the Bears, and it is hard to see them getting motivated to play in a lower-tier bowl when they started the season on such a high note. The disheartening factor of seeing one of the team’s few remaining stars sitting out the bowl game has to play a role as well.

Expert Pick and Final Score Prediction

This is not the same Boise State team that stunned Oklahoma a decade ago in the Fiesta Bowl with that bizarre Statue of Liberty play. Even so, they have the offense — and the motivation — to take the game to Baylor.

I predict a final score of Boise State 27, Baylor 16.