College Football's 4 Biggest Bowl Hype Teams For 2016

By Ty Duffy

Recency bias can be a killer. Bowl results come in fluky one-off exhibitions. Strong results leave a lasting impression and have a disproportionate effect on offseason hype. With that in mind, deploy caution with these four teams. 

Michigan: The Wolverines embarrassed Florida in authoritative fashion 41-7. Still, during the regular season they lost to the three best teams they played. The Ohio State defeat came by four touchdowns at home. Michigan escaped, barely, on the road against Indiana and Minnesota last year and go to Michigan State, to Iowa, and to Ohio State in 2016. The Wolverines have to replace a starting quarterback. Michigan may be plugging linebacker gaps with true freshmen. Jim Harbaugh is Jim Harbaugh. But, maybe hold off a bit on the playoff projections.

Tennessee: The Volunteers assaulted Northwestern 45-6 in the Outback Bowl. They came close against four very good teams. Those were the four good teams Tennessee played. Their best regular season win: Georgia. Their others: Bowling Green, Western Carolina, Kentucky, South Carolina (3 pts), North Texas, Missouri, Vanderbilt. This staff proved nothing, beyond failing every moment where in-game coaching counted. The Vols look loaded on paper. They looked loaded on paper heading into 2015 too.

LSU: The Tigers earned a perfunctory win against a crap Texas A&M team. They exploited perhaps the worst FBS run defense against Texas Tech. A strong recruiting class is coming in. A lot of talent comes back. All is well! Viva Les Miles! Hold up. LSU is 14-10 in the SEC the past three years. They are 5-7 against the SEC West the last two seasons, with five losses by two touchdowns or more. They are on a five-game losing streak to Alabama. To beat good teams, LSU will have to pass. Same coaching as last year. Same quarterback.

Houston: The Cougars took care of business against Florida State in the Peach Bowl. The Seminoles had an injured quarterback and spotted them five turnovers. Tom Herman has a grill. Greg Ward is coming back. A 13-1 record is awesome. Still, Houston played the 90th ranked schedule in FBS and won games by a field goal or less against Louisville, Cincinnati, and Memphis. The Cougars lost to UConn. We’ll find out how good Houston is real fast against Oklahoma in Week 1.