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|College football fans have a lot of action ahead of them, with big games in golf-rich locations. (Courtesy photo)|
While gone are the days when Jan. 1 was a mind-numbing 18-hour college-football-bowl-watching marathon, the Bowl Championship Series gives college football fans some tasty offerings over the first week of 2007.
With the vast majority of bowl games being played in areas that have golf-rich winters, college football and golf go together like football predictions and golf course recommendations. So here's a look at who we think will win the Bowl Championship Series games that will decide the best college football team in the land, as well as some places WorldGolf.com readers and writers think you should play nearby the big games.
Ohio State (12-0) vs. Florida (12-1)
January 7, 2007
Prediction: Last year, something seemed right about Texas, and they pulled the upset. Can Florida be the team that produces an upset in 2007? In a word, no. Just not feeling it this year. Ohio State is packed, and I just can't envision a world that has images of Chris Leak hoisting a national title trophy.
Score: Ohio State 31, Florida 17.
Reader's Golf Choice: North at Talking Stick Golf Course in Scottsdale.
What They're Saying: "I have played the course several times and it is challenging although at times it can be deceiving. Many of the holes require some strategy and playing on the edge of the desert is enjoyable. To play a course that has the same architects as the Sand Hills is rewarding!," wrote reader David Weiner.
USC (10-2) vs. Michigan (11-1)
January 1, 2007
Prediction: The Granddaddy of them all is featuring two teams that would rather be elsewhere. Michigan has as good a case as any team for being deserving ofa bid in the title game against nemesis Ohio State after narrowly losing to the Buckeyes. As evenly matched as teams could be, this is a game that comes down to who actually wants it more. It'll be the Wolverines.
Score: Michigan 20, USC 17.
Writer's Golf Choice: Moorpark Country Club in Moorpark.
What They're Saying: "A 27-hole course with each nine returning to the swanky clubhouse and five sets of tees, Moorpark will keep you interested and challenged with its Peter Jacobsen design," wrote Kristen Williams.
Boise State (12-0) vs. Oklahoma (10-2)
January 1, 2007
Prediction: Will Boise State be able to topple the Sooners and complete an improbable and delightful undefeated season? Will the Sooners overlook the Broncos, or ride returning Adrian Peterson to the victory? Sadly for upset fans, the Broncos dream season will end on a sad note.
Score: Oklahoma 45, Boise State 28.
Reader's Golf Choice: We-Ko-Pa Golf Club in Scottsdale.
What They're Saying: The course is beautiful and can be enjoyed by players of all skill levels. One cool thing is that when you make the turn they have a grill seemingly out in the middle of nowhere, so you don't have to go to the clubhouse to grab food and drink," wrote reader Chase King.
Louisville (11-1) vs. Wake Forest (11-2)
January 2, 2007
Prediction: NCAA basketball fans would generally be drooling at the thought of an important game between these two schools, but the Cardinals and Demon Deacons promise to light things up in Miami. In the end, Wake Forest won't be able to deal with Brian Brohm and Louisville's high-powered offense.
Score: Louisville 35, Wake Forest 13.
Reader's Golf Choice: Hillcrest Golf Club, Hollywood.
What They're Saying: "You forgot to mention Hillcrest Golf Club in Hollywood. It is truly the best value in South Florida. Great course with no distractions. Great staff, friendly and the best greens day in and day out," wrote reader David Cage.
Notre Dame (10-2) vs. LSU (10-2)
New Orleans, La.
January 3, 2007
Prediction: You could practically hear the prayers of BCS officials early in the season when many still believed Notre Dame was a viable contender for national titlists. Getting wiped out in its two biggest games ended that talk for the Fighting Irish, and now they'll be faced with a motivated Louisiana State squad. Brady Quinn put up gaudy numbers unless faced with a tough opponent. Look for the Tigers' Jamarcus Russel to be the best QB on the field as LSU wins one for the home fans.
Score: LSU 28, Notre Dame 17.
Reader's Golf Choice: Carter Plantation Golf Club, Springfield
What They're Saying: "If you're visiting Carter Plantation. There isn't much to Springfield or the surrounding area. Fortunately, Carter Plantation isn't just a golf community. It's almost a full-service golf resort, with classy accommodations and a wonderful restaurant," wrote Jason Scott.
December 29, 2006
William K. Wolfrum keeps one eye on the PGA Tour and another watching golf vacation hotspots and letting travelers in on the best place to vacation. You can follow him on Twitter @Wolfrum.
A "best of" list about golf in Ireland without Ballybunion and Lahinch is hard to imagine. But the truth is, gorgeous courses are a dime a dozen on the Emerald Isle. It took real supermodels to make Jason Scott Deegan's list of the 12 prettiest golf courses in Ireland.
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