Bowl Confidence Points: ESPN Picks USC Comfortably in Holiday Bowl


On Sunday night, ESPN aired their annual Bowl Mania Special. The two and a half hour show covered all of the bowl games and the College Football Playoff, including a ranking of each game by confidence points. The most confident pick is worth 38 points, the second most by 37 and so on and so forth.

USC came in with 31 confidence points, making them ESPN’s eighth most confident team in the bowl season going into the Holiday Bowl against 9-3 Nebraska.

Here’s the full list of ESPN’s picks, with Stanford over Maryland as the most confident pick in the bowl season, and Houston over Pittsburgh as the least (click to enlarge):

That’s plenty of confidence in a USC team that has struggled with consistency and is so evenly ranked with Nebraska. Both teams sport a similar ranking in the human polls and near identical scoring averages on offense and defense.

However, the Trojans come into the Holiday Bowl fresh off a dismantling of arch rival Notre Dame, while the Huskers are reeling after the firing of Bo Pelini.

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That said, if anyone should be cautious of a team in a coaching transition expected to sleep walk through a bowl game, it’s USC.

Going into last year’s Las Vegas Bowl, the Trojans were angry and hurt over the departure of Ed Orgeron and were playing with their third head coach of the season.

They were seemingly left for dead, and yet ran 11-1 Fresno State off the field by playing for each other with a massive chip on their shoulder.

Nebraska could do the same and surprise many not having much confidence in the Huskers.

The Holiday Bowl kicks off on Saturday, December 27th at 5:00 p.m. on ESPN. But what say you? How confident are you in the Trojans?

How confident are you in USC's chances vs. Nebraska?

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