Utah State and Northern Illinois are taking part in one of the best non-BCS bowl games in San Diego for the Poinsettia Bowl. The game features Heisman finalist quarterback in Northern Illinois' Jordan Lynch who is possibly the best dual threat quarterback in the country.
However, Lynch was slowed down some by Bowling Green in the MAC title game, and Utah State's defense is arguably better than Bowling Green's. Utah State's defense is their strength in their linebackers unit of Zach Vigil, Kyler Frackell and Jake Doughty.
The way the linebackers can slow down Lynch is to attack him from different areas of the field by mixing up their coverage. With those different looks that could be enough to force Lynch to make some mistakes.
The Utah State offense is nothing special and they definitely will need running back Joey DeMartino and quarterback Darrell Garretson to have an above average game to win, especially if the defense does struggle to slow down Lynch. This Aggies offense is not good enough to keep pace with Northern Illinois if this game gets into a shootout.
Where: Qualcomm Stadium; San Diego
Date/Time: Thursday, Dec. 26, 9:30 p.m. ET
Radio: National: ESPN radio, Utah State: 610 KVNU, Northern Illinois Sports radio network
Weather: Mid 50s.
Series History: Utah State won the only matchup 42-7 back in 1995.