Alamo Bowl Preview: Texas Longhorns-Washington Huskies
The Alamo Bowl is a match-up of second-choice teams from the Pac-12 conference and the Big-12 conference. This year, that features the Washington Huskies and the Texas Longhorns. Both teams had very respectable seasons in difficult Power 5 conferences. Both teams have respectable victories against top-tier teams but stumbled in awkward spots throughout the season.
The 2023 Alamo Bowl has a total of 66 points. The Texas Longhorns are favored by 3.5 points. Let’s take a closer look at the teams in this potentially high-scoring college football bowl game.
Texas Longhorns: Waiting On Arch
The Texas Longhorns are coming into the Alamo Bowl with a record of 8-4. Their notable games from the year include their 49-0 trouncing of rival Oklahoma, their close call loss to Alabama & Nick Saban in Austin, and their road win against a ranked Kansas State. The Longhorns did end their season on an up note, winning 3 of their last 4 games.
The focus is all on the future in Austin these days. The Longhorns have the number four-ranked recruiting class in the country coming in next year. The class is headlined by Arch Manning, nephew of Eli & Peyton Manning. Arch is enrolling in Texas early in January 2023, and plans to lift Texas as they join the Southeastern Conference.
For the Alamo Bowl, the Longhorns’ game plan will involve using their running game to set up their passing offense. The Longhorns have struggled to throw the ball this year, finishing in the middle of Division 1 in terms of the passing offense. Washington’s strength on defense is against the run, so they’ll need to use play action thoughtfully to get big plays and hang in this game.
Washington Huskies: A Strong Husky Season
The Washington Huskies are coming into the Alamo Bowl, ranked number twelve in the nation. They had a very successful Pac-12 campaign, including a road win over Oregon 37-34 in Autzen Stadium. Their two road losses vs UCLA and Arizona State prevented them from being in the conversation for the CFP.
The Washington Huskies are led by Indiana transfer Michael Penix Jr. Penix has thrown for the most yards as a quarterback in Division 1 this year. He’ll be looking to take advantage of a struggling Texas pass defense.
The Huskies’ game plan will be to use their strengths on the defensive line to stop the Texas run and force them to throw the ball. The Huskies’ pass defense is middle of the road in Division 1, but they’ll be relying on their top-ranked passing offense to keep the offensive pressure on Texas.
Alamo Bowl Pick
I’ve got a feeling about this one – it’s going to be a fun football game to watch. I’m taking the Huskies and the over in this one – we’ll see gassed defenses early from the pace of play, and it’ll be a game of “whomever scores last, wins”. If you’ve got a free evening in that time between Christmas and New Year’s, turn on the Alamo Bowl and enjoy a fun night of college football.