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Friday, December 18, 2015

Tuffy Teaser: Bowl Game Edition

Tuffy plans to sip the bubbly after these picks.
Nothing gets Tuffy more excited than the college bowl season.  Unlike the regular season, there is plenty of time to consider all the choices and make wise wagering decisions.  Therefore, Tuffy fully expects to bounce back from his late-season struggles and ring in the new year with a little extra coin jingling in his pockets.

For the uninitiated, the Tuffy Teaser is a three-team teaser bet.  It is based on a $5 wager with a 6-point tease.  The lines come from  What makes this teaser special is that all the teams must have cat mascots.  Overall, the Tuffy Teaser is 6-4 with a net gain of $28 on the year.

Fourteen teams with cat mascots got invited to bowls this year.  Two of those teams are playing each other, so that means that Tuffy had 13 games to pick from for this column.

Without further ado, here are the picks.

Hawaii Bowl.  Thursday, December 24, 2015 at 8:00 p.m. EST.

Cincinnati Bearcats                           + 4.5
San Diego State University Aztecs     + 7.5

When both teams are getting points in a tease, the game becomes basically a pick-em.  Cincinnati is the proper pick.  Giving up 65 points to South Florida is an ugly mark on their record, but besides that, the Bearcats have given good teams a tough struggle and have beaten the bad teams on their schedule.  They have also beaten Miami in a non-conference matchup.  SDSU is the champion of the Mountain West Conference.  But, this is not a banner year for the league, and SDSU has a home loss to South Alabama on their record.  If any of you are doubting if Bearcats should qualify for this column, relax.  The word "cat" is in their name.  That's good enough for Tuffy.  It should be good enough for you.

Chick-Fil-A Peach Bowl.  Thursday, Dec. 31, 2015 at 12:00 p.m. EST.

Houston Cougars             +13
Florida State Seminoles     - 1

The Houston Cougars have put together one of the most impressive seasons in all of college football. They have wins over Louisville, Memphis, Navy and Temple.  The only blemish on their record came in a game where their quarterback was injured.  Coming out of the AAC, Houston will be inspired to play in a New Years Six bowl game.  For FSU, there is a significant risk of apathy and disinterest.  A noon kick on New Years Eve is not what the Seminoles had in mind at the start of the season.  I expect Houston to win this game outright.  I certainly expect the Cougars to be able to stay within two touchdowns.

Outback Bowl.  Friday, January 1, 2016 at 12:00 p.m. EST.

Tennessee Volunteers           - 2
Northwestern Wildcats     + 14

Northwestern comes into this game with a very solid 10-2 record that includes a convincing victory over Stanford.  Tennessee is a program heading in the right direction, but they have four losses and no signature wins this season.  The line on this game is a perfect example of how point spreads are not predictions.  They are designed to make the betting balanced.  The public perception of the SEC in the eyes of casual gamblers is the only explanation for making Northwestern an underdog in this game.  Take the points and enjoy.

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