Liberty vs. Oregon prediction: Fiesta Bowl odds, pick, best bets
What better way to ring in the new year than to sit back, relax and cheer for a bunch of points in the Fiesta Bowl.
Liberty vs. Oregon certainly looks like a mismatch, and while I wouldnt be shocked if the Ducks blow out the Flames, Im not ready to lay 16.5 points not in a bowl game.
Instead, lets target Bo Nix and the Ducks offense to go over their team total.
If you didnt get your fill of fireworks on New Years Eve, be sure to tune into the Fiesta Bowl to see Nix and Bucky Irving provide a few more.
Yes, Nix and Irving are playing in this game, which is why Im so confident in Oregons ability to rack up points.
The Ducks averaged 44.2 points and 527 yards per game this season, both of which ranked second in the country.
Nix threw multiple touchdown passes in all 13 games and Irving ran for more than 1,000 yards, while averaging 6.2 yards per carry.
Star receiver Troy Franklin has opted out, but Nix will still be able to target Tez Johnson, who caught 75 passes for 1,010 yards and nine touchdowns.
Oregon running back Bucky Irving. USA TODAY Sports via Reuters ConAll signs point toward Oregon being motivated to play as the Ducks have a chance to be just the sixth 12-win team in the programs history.
If Oregon truly wants to end the season on a high note, itll blow out Liberty, which gained its No. 18 national ranking on the back of the weakest schedule in the country.
Liberty was overmatched in this game as soon as Nix announced he was going to play.
The Flames will be without starting corner Preston Hodge, as well as a few other defensive depth pieces who have also opted out.
Opt-outs are always a reality in bowl season, but Liberty was going to need its full cast of defensive players if it was going to have any chance of slowing down the Ducks.
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Its important to note that Oregon has only gone over 41.5 points in six games this season and Liberty hasnt given up 40 points to any opponent. However, this is a big step up in class for the Flames and the Ducks have played several opponents power-rated above Liberty.
Im just focused on the Ducks because Im not sure how much offensive success the Flames are going to have.
Brandon Dorlus, the Ducks defensive leader, told reporters earlier this week that theres no other opion except to play in this game. Dorlus easily could have opted out, but if his motivation is reflective of his defensive teammates then Im not sure Liberty will do its part to get us over 67.5 points.
Of course, five of the past six Fiesta Bowls have gone over 60 points as this bowl tends to be high-scoring. So, if this total drops to the key number of 65, a full-game over could also be worth a play.
For now, Im backing Nix to end his collegiate career with a dominant performance.
Pick:Oregon over 41.5 points (-145, DraftKings)
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