Champs Sports Bowl, West Virginia Vs. NC State Pick: Brandon Hogan Injury Will Hurt Eers

The line: The West Virginia Mountaineers opened as -2 Champs Sports Bowl favorites over the N.C. State Wolfpack, though the public has extended that margin as high as -3, depending on where you look.

Notable West Virginia units: The entire defense. Top ten in total, scoring, passing, and rushing defense, the Mountaineer D gave up fewer points this year than any defense besides TCU's. Their weakness, as it were, is their passing defense, as they ranked a relatively squishy tenth in the nation. Minus ace cornerback Brandon Hogan, who's out with a torn ACL, much will depend on whether the rest of the WVU secondary can carry the load.

Notable N.C. State units: Quarterback isn't really a unit, as it's kind of just one guy, but let's say quarterback and middle linebacker. Russell Wilson might be the ACC's second-best offensive player behind Virginia Tech QB Tyrod Taylor, finished 11th in the nation in total offense -- and only two yards per game behind Cam Newton. And LB Nate Irving is a disruptive force, racking up seven sacks and 85 tackles in only 11 games.

The pick: West Virginia's defense has yet to get lit up all year. While even Wilson isn't enough to pull that off, I still think he'll be able to make enough plays to get it done against a Mountaineer defense missing one of its best players.

The 2010 Champs Sports Bowl kicks off at 6:30 p.m. EST, Tuesday, December 28. The game will be televised on ESPN. For a complete list of bowls, browse our 2010 college football postseason schedule.

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