BOWL AT A GLANCE
LSU vs. Iowa, Capital One Bowl, Orlando, Jan. 1 -- Iowa is last in the nation in rushing, and LSU's defense isn't likely to bend much. The Tigers should be the more balanced team, but will need a sometimes-elusive consistent effort from their quarterbacks.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
QBs Marcus Randall and JaMarcus Russell -- They've shared the job all season and will most likely continue to do so in the bowl game. Still, Randall ended up seeing the most important minutes of the season and will probably do so in the bowl as well.
CBs Corey Webster and Travis Daniels -- Most of Iowa's offensive success this season has come through the passing game, and LSU's cornerbacks will be tested by the Hawkeyes' ability.
DE Marcus Spears -- A definite pro prospect who plays with speed and balance and moves well to the ball, but he doesn't have the quickest burst. He helped himself by returning for his senior season, but must learn to use his hands better and develop more moves and techniques to help with his lack of initial quickness.
CB Travis Daniels -- Good size, good technique and good feel for the game, but not an elite athlete at a position where that is a must. He could end up at safety, a position he's played in the past.
CB Corey Webster -- Entered the 2004 season as one of the top cornerback prospects, and while he remains a top prospect, his stock may have slipped a bit. He's the opposite of Daniels in many ways, in that he is an outstanding athlete with the physical gifts to play the position, but he has a lot to learn about the game, the position and the techniques he will need at the next level.
OT Andrew Whitworth -- He has size (6-7, 325 pounds), strength, experience and a solid resume of playing his best football against the best opponents. Still, he's not a great athlete and is not especially agile, so he'll most likely move from left tackle to right tackle in the NFL.
C Ben Wilkerson -- He was generally considered one of the top three draft prospects among centers at this time last year, but he chose to stay for his senior season and did nothing but improve his stock until he suffered a season-ending knee injury on the final play of the eighth game. He won't be able to do much by the time the NFL Combine arrives, so he will depend on film and interviews to get a chance. Some team will take a chance and be patient enough to get him ready to play.
The only players expected to miss the bowl game are the players already out for the season, including C Ben Wilkerson, WR Steve Mares and LB Dorsett Buckles. ... DB Daniel Francis will be limited during bowl practice by a sprained ankle. ... CB Mario Stephenson has been sidelined since early in the season but be available to play in dime situations in the bowl game. ... Despite missing the last three games of the season with a knee injury LSU senior center Ben Wilkerson still earned first-team All-America honors from the American Football Coaches Association and The Sporting News and first-team All-SEC honors from both The Associated Press and coaches. The news got even better when he learned that he shared (with Michigan's David Baas) college football's top award for centers, the Dave Rimington Trophy. "Right after I got hurt I stopped thinking about the individual things," Wilkerson said. "But to know somebody out there still loves me and still has me in their hearts as far as recognizing how I played this year and throughout my career really made me feel good."
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