Champs Sports Bowl, December 28, 6:30 p.m. ET, ESPN
What it is: The secondary bowl in Orlando, brought to you by a secondary sporting goods chain. In honor of that, this post is also brought to you by a secondary ride at Orlando's secondary theme park, JAWS.
The Teams: West Virginia and NC State
How West Virginia got here: The preseason hype surrounding this Mountaineers team largely revolved around its offensive players Noel Devine, Geno Smith, and Jock Sanders. The substance of the team though largely came on defense, where long-time DC Jeff Casteel once again showed that RichRod left a very important part of his success behind in Morgantown. West Virginia finished in the top five nationally in total and scoring defense, and its only three losses came by no more than six points. "You know what's coming and you still scream," note Kent and Paige T. from Southlake, Texas.
How NC State got here: I know this is a difficult thing to come to terms with, but the Tom O'Brien-coached Wolfpack was actually the second-highest scoring team in its conference. Just remind yourself: it's the ACC. NC State was on the verge of a breakthrough season with a berth in the ACC Championship Game, but it gagged away its final contest at Maryland to open that door for FSU. Motivation could be an issue here as a result, but failing that, Russell Wilson provides the offense in a classic offense-defense matchup. "You didn't know when or where he'd pop out. It was very thrilling," rave Melissa L. and Charlene and Michael K. from West Allis, WI.
College football fans care because: It should be fun to watch Wilson go up against WVU's defense, it's your last chance to see Noel Devine, and because the shark moves through the water at realistic speeds of 20-feet-per second.
SEC fans care because: We see these two play SEC teams every now and then so there's some familiarity there, and because it's a Universal Express Plus participating attraction.
Watch this game if...: You want to see the only matchup of at least eight-win teams until the December 31's Chick-fil-A Bowl (no, really), you don't want to miss any of the now-limited supply of Bill Stewart-coached games, and you're not sure it's safe to go back into the water.
The result: West Virginia 23, NC State 21, and the Shark: CARNAGE