Phil Steele Posts His 2013-14 Bowl Projections

By Vico on July 1, 2013 at 12:28p

BCS Trophy

The topic of Phil Steele's daily blog turned toward a bowl projection for the 2013-14 season of college football. He joins a host of other college football pundits who, at the onset of the 2013 season, expect Urban Meyer's Ohio State Buckeyes to lock horns with Nick Saban's defending national champion Crimson Tide for the BCS national championship. Here are a few other projections that merit a sentence or two.

Phil Steele projects Southern California v. Texas in Fiesta Bowl. Given the trajectory of both teams over the past few years, and especially considering USC losing, again, ten more players from the roster because of NCAA sanctions, no part of that makes sense, prima facie.

An Oregon-Nebraska Rose Bowl game could be fun to watch, if, perhaps, not the best contest for the "The Granddaddy of Them All". Oregon may take a measurable step back with Chip Kelly gone and a new head coach in charge. Further, Bo Pelini's Huskers can be entertaining, if not very good.

Notre Dame and Georgia are projected for the Sugar Bowl because, heck, nostalgia. The 1981 Sugar Bowl was one of the more signature games in the bowl's illustrious history.

The three other B1G-SEC matchups in the yearly bowl series include Michigan v. Mississippi (Gator) (speaking of which), Wisconsin v. Louisiana State (Capital One), Michigan State v. Florida (Outback). Michigan v. Mississippi sounds like it could be interesting and the Wolverines should match up well with the Rebels. The Capital One and Outback bowls do not look like fair contests on paper, even if Louisiana State is undergoing quite the roster transition.

Steele doesn't seem very bullish on Northwestern. He projects them into the BWW Bowl (v. Baylor) as the Big Ten's #4 (really: #6) team. Northwestern could at least make the Outback Bowl this year. The Wildcats certainly look like a better squad entering this season than Michigan State.

Future B1G teams Maryland and Rutgers are projected into the Military Bowl (v. Southern Mississippi) and Pinstripe Bowl (v. Texas Tech), respectively.

Iowa is projected by Phil Steele to go bowling again, against Tulsa in the Heart of Dallas Bowl. Indiana also makes an appearance in Phil Steele's bowl projections, playing against Kansas State in the Texas Bowl.

Minnesota appears to be the "last Big Ten team in". It gets taken to Detroit, per Steele's projections, against Bowling Green in the Little Caesar's Bowl.


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cajunbuckeye's picture


An angry fan...rooting for an angry team...led by angry coaches

cajunbuckeye's picture


An angry fan...rooting for an angry team...led by angry coaches

Dougger's picture

I got a good chuckle out of this. Thank you

I like football

One Bad Buckeye's picture

I really hope we get a chance to square off against Bama.....they've kind of been the pride of the SEC and it would be great to finally take them down their best versus the B1G's best.  I'd hate to have it be someone like Kentucky who somehow sneaks into the NCG (I know).  Winning this matchup would take our recruiting would go into a whole new level....if you can imagine.  
Even if we lose, at least we'll know where we stand as far as becoming THE team to beat. But I actually give us a pretty fair shot at winning that match up....assuming we don't screw up along the way and miss out altogether.  
One game at a time!

"I'm One Bad Buckeye, and I approve this message."

mh277907's picture

Kentucky will never sneak into a NCG in football. Ever. But I get your point. If we are going to play someone in the NCG it might as well be the best, most dominant team of the past few years. Though, I think beating any SEC team in the NCG would do just fine.


jccavanaugh's picture

It doesn't matter if we beat Bama this year, next year, or for the next five years in the NCG.  It doesn't matter if every B1G team wins their bowl game and every SEC team loses theirs. It won't be enough to convince SEC fanboys that the SEC isn't obviously the better conference, because obviously.

FROMTHE18's picture

UK has no elite QB like Cam Newton or Johnny Football that could possibly have them beat teams like Bama, Florida, LSU, Georgia, etc... UK wont go bowling this year.

Seth4Bucks's picture

While I agree to your point in theory about UK not winning or even sniffing a NC this year. I just have to ask who really knew about Johnny Alcohol before last season or Newton before they won a NC? Barker's a good QB and they have several other young QBs who were pretty decently ranked coming out of high school as well. I can see UK easily winning 5-6 games and then there are several other games that could go either way. I think they make a bowl this year.

Buckeyevstheworld's picture

An Oregon-Nebraska Rose Bowl game could be fun to watch, 

Watching Nebraska get 70 dropped on them again isn't my idea of fun.

"YOLO" = I'm about to do something extremely ignorant/stupid & I need an excuse to do it.

dubjayfootball90's picture

Haha, yes, that was rough. I actually like Nebraska, and when I say 'like', I mean that I do not minfd them. To see them get demolished is not fun for me.

You can feed a bobcat all the chili it wants. That don't mean it's going to crap out diamonds.

nickma71's picture

It is when you live in Denver. 36-62 Loss? Hell vote them higher than the team that beat them and send them to the MNC game.

303 Buckeye's picture

Bobby Purify and Chris Brown looked like those 99 overall players you create in NCAA 13 that afternoon.  But you are absolutely correct when you say that Nebraska had no place in the NC game after that debacle and the Buffs REALLY got the short end of the stick.  It seems so long ago when CU had even a faint pulse in CFB.

mh277907's picture

I am very excited about the Buckeyes this year but to go undefeated again is going to be extremely challenging. I am still concerned about our defense as I remember them giving up big play after big play last year (though they did improve throughout the year). Also, I know that Alabama has assembled the best football team ever for the 3rd consecutive year and will challenge the Steelers and Browns for 3rd place in the AFC North, but I have a feeling that they could lose a couple games and not make it to the NC based on what they lost this year to the draft.


brandonbauer87's picture

Am I the only one that has to pause for a second when I see Louisiana State?  It's kind of like seeing University of Nevada Las Vegas. The acronym just works better. 

Unky Buck's picture

I'm the same way. For some reason, I immediately think Louisiana Tech and have to reread it before realizing it's LSU and how Tech just sounds stupid in that scenario.

Rock over London; Rock on Chicago. Timex: It takes a lickin' but keeps on tickin'

Hovenaut's picture

Love reading the projections, and its hard not to think our beloved Buckeyes won't get there.

There are high, yet attainable team goals targeted, but Im just trying to think one game at a time.

When I look back at 2002, there were no expectations as far as BCS championships were concerned. Each game seemed like a dogfight, especially once conference play opened. I can't remember looking past anyone that year.

I know what finishing 12-0 the year before does for expectations, and this coaching staff has elevated the recruiting efforts to new heights, but once the season starts I think you have to take it one game at a time.

I think we could be in for a special year.

osubuck57's picture

Here's hoping this projection becomes reality!!! GO BUCS!!


Evannati's picture

I have mixed emotions.  One one hand, it would be great to see the Bucks back in the NCG.  On the other, if the opponent is Alabama, the Bucks will be playing a team with an opportunity to be the first and only school to win three consecutive BCS titles.  The Tide will not be playing for the title, but for immortality.  With Saban, do you think they would be motivated some??  If the Tide gets through the regular season and the SEC title game, though, how good will they be??
And, even if the Bucks run the table, I still think they are a year away from being great.  As much as I love the Bucks and believe that Urban will eventually get us to the next level, I am not sure we will have the necessary big game experience by next January. Michigan at Michigan and the Big Ten title game are big, but no where as Big as a national championship against the two-time defending champs. 
No other opponent scares me like the Tide.  LSU, A&M, Florida? Bring them on.  The Tide?  Let's give Braxton and company one more year of seasoning.  (I do think Braxton comes back as a senior.)

trigg03's picture

In all due fairness ~ there is no one outside of the SEC who could ever have that sort of big game experience you are speaking of.  Bama can only play 12 games so there will be 12 teams who have achieved that experience plus the SEC championship game.  That will not be a factor in the outcome anyway.  This coaching staff knows how to prepare their kids for the next game as well as anyone else in the country & that is exactly what will determine the final score.  Saban will come out with the typical power run / play-action pass style which tOSU's D has to stop it or not and I dont think there will be any chance for any Defense in the country to shut down what this offense should be bringing - as long as Miller has made that progression in his passing technique that is being expected.  To have the ability to power run / power sweep / option-run along with down-field passing attack forces the opposing defense to play man to man and that opens up a whole lot of holes to attack.  It is not all that more difficult for tOSU to run the table again this year either ~ the fact that they did it last year only proves that it can be done but will not have any bearing on what they do this year.  If they can handle the pressures that will build from week to week then they will finish undefeated BUT pressure is a difficult thing to master and can ultimately be what does in the run for the NC.  Don't discount THE GAME as just another game either...that is as big as it gets.  Rest assured ttun will bring everything they got on every play. There wont be any let down from them and IMO they are the only team on this schedule who could ruin this years unblemished record.  

pjtobin's picture

I like his predictions. I just hope the team we love takes it one game at a time. Studies their opponents wisely. Give respect to each team. Don't take anyone for granted. And finally play like their hair is on fire. If our young men can do all of this, without mistakes, we have the best chances to win out this year. Because of strength of schedule. And a coach who knows how to win. With a little luck, and a ton of discipline , I can see us beating Alabama. IMHO. 

Bury me in my away jersey, with my buckeye blanket. A diehard who died young. Rip dad. 

Brutus Forever's picture

scUM to the gator bowl

"I learned to dislike Michigan at a very young age.” – Urban F. Meyer

CentralFloridaBuckeye's picture

I'm not even sure if Alabama will get there.  Yes, they are a good team, but let's be honest, that ND team was not the best team going into the game.  They struggled to beat Purdue, TTUN, Stanford, Pitt and USC.  ND had some great luck last year to go undefeated.  Alabama beat a team that was a little lucky to be there. 
Bama barely beat LSU, lost to Texas A&M and just about lost to Georgia.  They open with VA Tech, which they should win, but then go to College Station to play A&M.  THey have LSU and the SEC Championship (Georgia, SC or Florida most likely).  Can they do it again?  Maybe?  But I think that someone else will break through.  I see Bama losing to Georgia in the SEC title game. 
The Bucks beat the Dawgs to win it all!
Go Bucks!!

Buckeyevstheworld's picture

They have two weeks to prepare for A&M. I might be wrong, but I think Bama will beat A&M by at least two TDs.

"YOLO" = I'm about to do something extremely ignorant/stupid & I need an excuse to do it.

avail31678's picture

I am with you.  Nick Saban is a master preparer, and he like NEVER loses to the same team twice in a row.  Like almost never.
My prediction: not pretty for TAMU. 

WiliestBuckeye's picture

Honestly, I am rooting for a Wisconsin-Arkansas bowl matchup, with Wisconsin destroying Arkansas and showing no mercy in the process. I hate Bret Bielema.

"Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment."

KBonay's picture

I would like to see Wisconsin continue their streak of Rose Bowls representing the B1G even though they would not be the league's best team...again.

Urban Nation Army's picture

I would take any BCS bowl victory over a NC game loss, especially to an SEC team

Bet you can't say "Bert Bielma is a bumbling buffoon" five times fast.

Evannati's picture

I think you expressed how I feel in a lot fewer words.  I would hate to see the momentum that is building in C-Bus derailed by a NC blowout loss to an SEC team.  I think we will be able to play with just about anybody next year ... except Alabama in the NCG.  I think we would have beaten Notre Dame last year.  But I don't think we would have beaten them 42-14.  We beat Michigan last year, but we didn't beat them  41-14.  I am not sure our improvement will be greater than the Tide's decline?  But I agree with the comment earlier that it is extremely possible that Alabama does not make the NCG.  In that case, I would take the Bucks' chances against anyone else.  BUT, if Alabama does make it to the NCG, that mean they won the SEC West and the they won the SEC Championship game.  Their seniors and juniors will have played in three NCGs.  Sorry, I don't like that match-up.  

DannyBeane's picture

I don't think we would have beaten Alabama either but to be honest the OSU at the start of the season and the OSU at the end of the season were two completely different teams. 

Dougger's picture

I have to ask why I was directed to a TTUN YouTube bowl victory? Caught me off guard and I was a little flustered to be honest haha. 
Three words - just win, baby. 

I like football

ShowThemOhiosHere's picture

Some of these predictions are good, but a couple leave me scratching my head.  For example, USC and Texas in the Fiesta Bowl?  Huh?  A few years ago, this would make tons of sense, but these two programs haven't really been BCS caliber in the past 2 or 3 years.  I also think TSUN will do better than the Gator Bowl, for goodness sakes.  Rose Bowl, or Capital One if the BCS decides that the Big Ten sucks so bad that they only get one BCS bid.

Class of 2010.

Doc's picture

To me it is MNCG or bust.  Not literally, but darn close.  Secondly, I wouldn't be afraid of playing ANYONE if we get there.  Those other teams, even Bama put there pants on one leg at a time just like we do.  If you want to be the best, you have to beat the best.  No diluted Championship by missing Saban.  WE ARE OHIO STATE!  WE ARE NOT AFRAID OF ANYONE!

CJDPHoS Member

The Official DDS of 11W

dr green's picture

Trademark that now, Brewsters. I smell a T shirt.

Ahh Saturday's picture

I actually don't think Alabama is that bad of a match up for us. As always, the key battles will be in the trenches. 
OSU O-line v Alabama D-line:
We bring back four starters from the best O-line in the B1G last year and replace our one departing starter with a guy who nearly won the job in training camp last year.  Bama loses three guys off their D-line, NG Williams, DEs Square and Dial.  Sure, they will replace them with talent, but I'll take talent + experience over plain talent any time.  Advantage OSU.
OSU D-line v Alabama O-line:
Both teams lose a ton of talent off of these units.  Of course, both squads will be bringing in top talent to replace the departed starters, but I think the loss hits Bama harder because their O-line last year was the main engine that powered them over teams like UM and ND.  There's really no telling which unit will look better by the time Bowl season rolls around, so I'll call this one a wash.
Coaching and skill positions will be excellent for both squads.  The wild card will be what kind of impact freshmen like Dontre Wilson and Jalin Marshall can have for the Buckeyes, and how much improvement the squad will make in their second season under Urban.  With Bama, you sort of know what you're going to get, and it's going to be real good, but the Buckeyes have room for growth, and I think we'll be the most dangerous offense in CFB next year.