Taking a quick-hit look at the Dec. 22 bowl menu, which is a little thin volume-wise for the fourth consecutive day but, again, it’s college football in mid-December, right? Right???
WHO: Idaho (8-4) vs. Colorado State (7-5)
WHAT: The 20th Famous Idaho Potato Bowl
WHERE: Albertsons Stadium, Boise, Idaho
WHEN: 7 p.m. ET on ESPN
THE SKINNY: Since winning a combined 14 games in 2009-10 and playing in its last bowl game the former season, Idaho went bowl-less and won a total of nine games the next five years. Very quietly, Paul Petrino led one of the more impressive turnarounds of the 2016 season as the Vandals won eight games, the team’s most since hitting the same mark in 2009 and just the second time they’ve done it in nearly two decades. A win would keep Idaho perfect in bowls — they’ve won both they’ve played in, with both of those coming in this game — and also get them to nine wins for just the second time in the program’s history at the major college level. Colorado State, meanwhile, will be looking to end a two-game bowl losing streak and give Mike Bobo his first postseason win as a head coach. The Rams will come in having won four of their last five games — all four of those wins were by at least 18 points, with the lone loss coming by three at Air Force — while the Vandals have won four in a row and six of its last seven. In that five-game stretch to close out the regular season, CSU’s offense averaged more than 500 yards and nearly 50 points per game. During their current four-game winning streak, Idaho gave up an average of just 17.5 points per game. The Rams are heavily favored, but could the Vandals really lose a game that has its home state as the primary sponsor? Yeah, probably — but it’s going to be a helluva lot closer than what some of the wagering establishments are suggesting.
THE LINE: Idaho, +13½
THE PREDICTION: Colorado State 34, Idaho 27