The 2012 Rose Bowl gives us one of the best matchups of the college football bowl season, as the lightning quick Oregon Ducks face the high-powered offense of the Wisconsin Badgers on Monday in Pasadena. When trying to forecast the possible game MVP, there are four obvious candidates that stand out: Russell Wilson and Montee Ball of Wisconsin, and LaMichael James and Darron Thomas of Oregon.
The quarterback / tailback combos have fueled a pair of offenses that have combined to average over 90 points and 982 yards of offense per game. Looking at the prop bets from ScoresandOdds.com, here is a peek at how these four are expected to perform in the Rose Bowl.
Badgers quarterback Wilson has an over/under of 238.5 passing yards and 29.5 rushing yards, and averaged 246 yards of total offense per game during the season.
His backfield mate Ball averages a tick under 140 yards of total offense per game and has an over/under of 130.5 yards in Monday's game. Ball has scored 38 touchdowns so far this season, one shy of Barry Sanders' NCAA record set in 1988 while at Oklahoma State. Ball is a -180 favorite to score a touchdown in each half in the Rose Bowl.
James is the nation's leading rusher and the first running back in Pac-12 history to have three separate seasons with 1,500 or more rushing yards. James averaged just a tick under 150 rushing yards per game, and has an over/under of 141.5 yards in the Rose Bowl. James has seven games of 200 rushing yards or more, including four such games this season.
Thomas is the most unheralded of these four players, but at the controls of the powerful Oregon offense he has a chance to put up MVP numbers in the game. The over/under for Thomas in the Rose Bowl is 17 completions and 224.5 yards, after a second straight season with 30 touchdown passes, this year against only six interceptions.
All signs point to a high-scoring affair in Pasadena on Monday. If you are into forecasting the Rose Bowl MVP, stick to this quartet and you won't go wrong.
The 2012 Rose Bowl Game will be played on Monday, January 2, 2012 in Pasadena. Kickoff is scheduled for 2:10 p.m. PST. The game will be televised by ESPN, with Brent Musberger, Kirk Herbstreit, and Erin Andrews on the call.