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December 30, 2010

College Football Bowl Picks - Holiday Bowl:

Bridgepoint Education Holiday Bowl

#18 Nebraska (10-3) vs. Washington (6-6)


10 PM, ESPN, Thur. Dec. 30, San Diego, CA

Why Watch: The Rematch: The Holiday Bowl is the lone bowl game which features a rematch of regular season play. In the first meeting, Nebraska nearly burned down Husky Stadium, leaving with a 56-21 win in the third game of the season. It’s also a matchup of high profile quarterbacks in Washington’s Jake Locker and Nebraska’s Taylor Martinez. Locker was awful in the first matchup, while Martinez shined.

Who to Watch: As many stars as both of these teams have on the offensive side of the ball, it’s the defenses that bring more bang to the game. For Nebraska, watch linebacker Lavonte David. David led the black-shirt defense with 145 tackles on the year, adding six sacks to his resume. For Washington, it’s linebacker Mason Foster. An All-American this season, Foster finished second in the nation with 151 stops, 11 behind the line.

How it’s Going Down: The advantage has to go to the Huskers after their early season pounding against the Huskies. Don’t count Washington out, though. Martinez is still nursing a high ankle sprain, which forced him to miss two games at the end of the regular season. Although Locker passed for a 20 percent completion percentage in the first matchup, I’d expect a better performance out of him in his last college game. The Nebraska defense should be the difference, though. A number of future high draft picks still make up the black-shirt defense. Pick: Nebraska 37 – Washington 20

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All writing and views subject to © Drew P. Kochanny, All Rights Reserved. Photo's credited to rights owner.