Las Vegas Bowl Preview

Las Vegas, NV
December 20, 2008

BYU (10-2) vs Arizona (7-5)
(Saturday, 7 pm, ESPN)

The dynamic is interesting here between two western teams. One has plenty of recent bowl experience while the other is finally ending a decade-long bowl drought. The rub is that the team from a BCS conference is the one with no post-season experience.

BYU quarterback Max Hall isn't quite as good as his hype, but he is a solid player that can get on hot streaks. He has a trio of weapons at his disposal that will give Arizona's defense fits - running back Harvey Unga (1,061 rushing yards, 10 tds), wide receiver Austin Collie (95 receptions for 1,419 yards, 15 tds) and tight end Dennis Pitta (78 receptions for 1,025 yards, 6 tds). Arizona cornerbacks Devin Ross and Trevin Wade (combined 7 interceptions) will have their hands full with that group.

The key in this game is going to be coaching. In what should be a tight contest, I give a slight edge to BYU in the coaching department. I also think BYU has played more high profile games this season, which will give them an edge in terms of handling the pressure in the second half.

J.Pike's Pick: BYU 30, Arizona 20

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