Bowl season rolls on this weekend with its busiest day on the calendar as six games kick off across the country. One of the more intriguing games on the docket is the FBC Mortgage Cure Bowl between Liberty and Georgia Southern.
While it may not stand out on paper as the most compelling matchup of the day, it has some low-key potential to fly off the rails in a good way. First, this is a game of two different, but entertaining offenses. Georgia Southern's triple option vs. Liberty's passing attack led by quarterback Stephen "Buckshot" Calvert. Add in the Hugh Freeze factor for the Flames and this one could get wild.
Let's take a closer look at this showdown from Orlando and make some expert picks both straight up and against the spread.
Liberty: Freeze had a solid debut for the Flames, even if he had to coach for the first couple of games from a literal hospital bed. The knock is that Liberty has done really well against far lesser competition and failed to show up against Power Five/better competition. But, such is life as a FBS Independent where the schedule is all kinds of wonky. This offense can be fun with Calvert having thrown for at least four touchdowns in three games this season. The more pressing question is whether Liberty's defense is up to the challenge against the Eagles. Syracuse, Louisiana, Virginia and Rutgers (!!!) all had big days on the ground against the Flames.
Georgia Southern: Like Liberty, Georgia Southern has had a roller coaster of a year. But the Eagles have had some big-time moments, including their win over App State. The trio of quarterback Shai Werts and running backs Wesley Kennedy III and J.D. King have made this offense far more formidable in the second half of the season when the group was at full strength. If the Eagles assert themselves early, Liberty's defense might be in for a long day.
Event: FBC Mortgage Cure Bowl
Date: Saturday, Dec. 21 | Time: 2:30 p.m. ET
Location: Orlando City Stadium -- Orlando, Florida
TV: CBS Sports Network | Live stream: CBSSports.com, CBS Sports App (with authentication)
Cure Bowl prediction, picks
Unlike most teams that faced the Eagles this season, Liberty has more time to prepare for this option offense. Still, we'll probably find out in the first quarter or so how the Flames' defense is going to be able to handle it. Either Georgia Southern is going to make this a long day or Liberty is going to stop it early. Overall, this is a Georgia Southern team that beat Appalachian State and gave Minnesota a run for its money. I'll lay the points and think strongly about banging the over. Pick: Georgia Southern (-5.5)
So who wins Georgia Southern vs. Liberty in the Cure Bowl? And which side of the spread can you bank on in nearly 60 percent of simulations? Visit SportsLine now to see which side of the spread to jump on, all from the advanced model that is up nearly $4,000 on its top-rated picks, and find out.