Six Big 12 teams are bowling this year

Big 12 Roundup: Oklahoma playoff bound highlights Big 12's postseason

Here is a look at the Big 12 bowl slate.

Sooners playoff bound again

Oklahoma is back in the College Football Playoff. What an amazing coaching job by Lincoln Riley to take a third straight quarterback to the playoff. Incredible job by him on the offense.

The defense though, is where the Sooners are different from previous teams. They have had enough more than a few times to be carried by the defense. They face something better than all their toughest opponents combined though.

Joe Burrow and the LSU Tigers will be tough to slow down and surprisingly tough to score on for the Sooners. It won't be easy for Oklahoma to earn the Big 12's first playoff win.

Peach Bowl Prediction: LSU 34 Oklahoma 24

Sweet ending for the Baylor Bears?

The Baylor Bears still haven plenty to play for and they find themselves in the same spot as Texas a year ago. The Georgia Bulldogs should own similar motivation to last year while Baylor will try to end their season on the highest note in years.

Matt Rhule is the key here. If he is getting ready for NFL job interviews, or is already gone, that could throw things out of whack for the Bears. If he is truly committed to Baylor, they will be chomping at the bit to prove only Oklahoma is better than them this season.

Sugar Bowl Prediction: Baylor 23 Georgia 21

Orange and maroon battle again, but not THAT orange

Despite the perfect opportunity, the Aggies and Longhorns miss each other again. If Texas A&M was playing burnt orange and not the Cowboys' orange the Texas Bowl would be the must-see non-playoff game.

I don't know who to blame but this is a nice consolation. Chuba Hubbard is one of the most impressive players in football. Texas A&M played the toughest schedule in the nation and they slugged it out with some of the best teams in the nation. This isn't the toughest test for the Aggies. It could be a worthwhile opportunity for Jimbo Fisher's crew to get one last look at what they may have in 2020 at quarterback and a few other key positions.

Texas Bowl Prediction: Texas A&M 24 Oklahoma State 17

2019's last stand

I'm not sure how many stud players will be playing in this game, but if they do, this could be a very entertaining affair. The Longhorns got their mojo back with a blowout win against Texas Tech. Utah has to be disappointed their best team in years isn't playing in the playoff.

It will be interesting to see what Tom Herman can do with a couple of his coaches being shown the door. Utah could be without Zach Moss if he decides to start getting ready for the draft early. If he plays, Utah might be a tough out for Texas. As for the Horns, they will have a solid defense to try to score on and an efficient offense to slow down. Texas should be healthy, but might not be talented enough.

Alamo Bowl Prediction: Utah 35 Texas 17

Lucky draw for Iowa State

The head coach is coming back and the quarterback is coming back next season for Iowa State. They had losses of 1, 2, 7, 1, and 10 this season. There is plenty of motivation for Iowa State. Not to mention, they have a fantastic fan base that will love spending time in Orlando.

I say all this to say I believe Iowa State will get after Notre Dame. The Irish had a really good season losing to just Michigan and Georgia on the road. It won't be easy for Iowa State but I like their chances.

Camping World Bowl Prediction: Iowa State 31 Notre Dame 27

Well coached teams square off in Memphis

The Kansas State Wildcats impressed me a ton this season. I figured they were barely a bowl team but the premier coaching of Chris Klieman soon proved me wrong. This could be the start of soemthing impressive in the Little Apple. Meanwhile Navy was the best service academy this year. They are always a tough out but they bounced back nicely from a slump in recent years. This should be a well-coached showdown between two disciplined teams.

Liberty Bowl Prediction: Kansas State 24 Navy 23

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Houston now trails in the fall classic

Astros fall in World Series Game 1 as Braves come out swinging

Framber Valdez had a forgettable start in World Series Game 1 as the Braves tagged him with five runs. Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

After a dominant end to win the ALCS and American League pennant, the Houston Astros welcomed in the National League champion Atlanta Braves for World Series Game 1 at Minute Maid Park on Tuesday. With Houston favored to win not just this game but the entire series, the Braves shook up those expectations by finding early success at the plate to build a lead they would hold to take a 1-0 series lead.

Final Score: Braves 6, Astros 2

World Series (Best of Seven): Atlanta leads 1-0

Winning Pitcher: A.J. Minter

Losing Pitcher: Framber Valdez

Valdez unable to replicate ALCS Game 5 success as Braves mount early lead

For the optimist, not having home-field advantage in an MLB postseason series affords you a benefit: you can score first and take captive momentum first in the series. The Braves did that against Framber Valdez, as Jorge Soler became the first player in league history to hit a homer in the first plate appearance of a World Series, putting Atlanta out to an immediate 1-0 lead. They would get another in the first frame, getting a one-out infield single by Ozzie Albies, who would steal second to get in position for an RBI double by Austin Riley.

Houston had the chance to respond in their first inning against former teammate Charlie Morton, getting a single and two walks to load the bases with no outs. They'd strand all three runners, though, as Morton made it through unscathed but having used 26 pitches. Atlanta kept putting stress on Valdez, extending their lead to three runs with back-to-back singles to start the second before later getting an RBI groundout.

Valdez gave up two more in the top of the third, once again allowing a leadoff single, this one setting up a two-run homer to make it a 5-0 Braves lead and forcing Houston's starter out of the game early. Yimi Garcia entered and was able to retire the three batters he faced to end the frame.

Braves lose Morton to injury as both bullpens begin long night

After stranding the bases loaded in the bottom of the first to keep the Astros off the board, Morton followed it up with a 1-2-3 second. He started the bottom of the third by retiring his fifth batter in a row, getting a strikeout of Jose Altuve. He would immediately call trainers to get him out of the game, though, as he would later be diagnosed with a fractured fibula, presumably from a ball that ricocheted off his leg in the prior inning, ending his season in a disappointing turn of events for the Braves.

That set up a long night for both bullpens, and next up for Houston was Jake Odorizzi. He started with a scoreless fourth, working around a two-out error to keep it a five-run game. The Astros began a rally in the bottom of the fourth, getting runners on the corners with one out on a Kyle Tucker double and Yuli Gurriel single. Chas McCormick brought in the first run of the board for Houston, but that's all they would get as Atlanta's lead remained four runs.

Astros drop Game 1

Odorizzi kept going on the mound, tossing a 1-2-3 fifth, then getting one out before a one-out single in the top of the sixth would prompt Dusty Baker to move on to Phil Maton, who finished the inning. Maton returned in the top of the seventh, getting a strikeout before a double and a walk would result in the call to bring in Ryne Stanek.

A double play against his first batter allowed Stanek to finish the seventh, and then he returned in the eighth. He faced three batters that frame, getting one out before a walk and a single would put runners on the corners as Houston moved on to Brooks Raley. A sac fly by Freddie Freeman off of Raley made it a five-run lead again, but a leadoff triple by Yordan Alvarez in the bottom of the inning would set up Carlos Correa for an RBI, a groundout to make it 6-2.

Atlanta's bullpen continued to do well, though, limiting the damage to that one run in the eighth, then returning to hold on to the four-run lead in the bottom of the ninth to give the Braves the upset win to start the series. The loss extends their home losing streak in the World Series to five games (having lost all four at home in the 2019 World Series against the Nationals) and puts them down 0-1 and in need of a win in Game 2 to try and reset the series into a best-of-five.

Up Next: World Series Game 2 will be another 7:09 PM Central scheduled start time on Wednesday from Minute Maid Park. The expected pitching matchup is Max Fried, who is 1-1 with a 3.78 ERA in three postseason starts, for the Braves, and Jose Urquidy, who went just 1.2 innings while allowing six runs (five earned) in his start in the ALCS.

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