The Poinsettia Bowl
At Qualcomm Stadium, San Diego.
Utah (8-4, 5-3 Mountain West) vs. Navy (8-4, independent).
Utah by 71/2.
Both teams are in a bowl game for the fifth consecutive season, but Navy enters this one with a new coach. Paul Johnson left to become the new coach at Georgia Tech, and the Midshipmen quickly promoted assistant Ken Niumatalolo because of his familiarity with the option offense.
Navy has led the nation in rushing in each of the last three seasons. The Midshipmen are riding a four-game winning streak that started with a 46-44 win over Notre Dame on Nov. 3.
Utah has won its last six bowl games, the second-longest streak in the nation. The Utes can win nine games in a season for the first time since former coach Urban Meyer's team went undefeated in 2004. Utah has the nation's third-ranked defense in points allowed and is 2-0 in bowls under Kyle Whittingham.
- Orlando Sentinel