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2023 Bowl Season Watch Guide, Part III

College football waves goodbye to 2023 with some damn good bowl games.

Rutgers v Iowa Photo by Matthew Holst/Getty Images

We’ve made it to the best part of bowl season; that wonderful time of year where we not only have games on nearly every day, but we now have them on one after another each day. More and more games are featuring ranked teams in the build up to the New Year’s Six lineup, and with extra time off for the holidays we can enjoy each game without having to do so clandestinely on our phones before our bosses find out.

We’re only days away from the Iowa Hawkeyes appearance in the Cheez-It Citrus Bowl and recent days have been filled with news that affect both the game and the Hawks themselves. First came news that Nick Jackson’s waiver for a sixth year of eligibility would be granted by the NCAA, leading to speculation that he could spend that year in Iowa City. If that wasn’t enough linebacker news for you, we didn’t need to wait long to get even more, and this time it was more definitive, as breakout star Jay Higgins announced he’d be returning for another year instead of declaring for the NFL Draft.

Here’s hoping Higgins’ return will encourage Jackson to do the same rather than enter the transfer portal. Iowa’s defense rounded into one of the most dominant in the country and hanging onto their two starting linebackers would go a long way in maintaining consistency into next season.

Getting back to the Cheez-It Bowl, we learned early Wednesday morning that Tennessee’s star quarterback Joe Milton III would be opting out of the game to prepare for the draft.

Milton was expected to be one of the keys to a Volunteer victory, and his loss no doubt changes the complexion of the game, and is a boost to Iowa’s chances. Tennessee will be starting true freshman Nico Iamaleava, On3’s #1 recruit in the class of 2023. Having a former #1 recruit to fall back on is a luxury few teams have, but it is quite the unenviable situation to be going up against a Phil Parker-coached defense for his first start.

We’ll find out what Iamaleava can do against the Iowa defense in only a few short days. Until then, we have the final entry in the Bowl Season Watch Guide, with plenty to keep us occupied until New Years Day.

#24 SMU @ Boston College - Wasabi Fenway Bowl

Thursday, December 28 - 10:00 AM - ESPN

Rutgers @ Miami - Bad Boy Mowers Pinstripe Bowl

Thursday, December 28 - 1:15 PM - ESPN

#18 NC State @ #25 Kansas State - Pop Tarts Bowl

Thursday, December 28 - 4:45 PM - ESPN

#14 Arizona @ #12 Oklahoma - Valero Alamo Bowl

Thursday, December 28 - 8:15 PM - ESPN

#22 Clemson @ Kentucky - TaxSlayer Gator Bowl

Friday, December 29 - 11:00 AM - ESPN

#19 Oregon State @ #16 Notre Dame - Tony the Tiger Sun Bowl

Friday, December 29 - 1:00 PM - CBS

Memphis @ Iowa State - AutoZone Liberty Bowl

Friday, December 29 - 2:30 PM - ESPN

#9 Missouri @ #7 Ohio State - Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic

Friday, December 29 - 7:00 PM - ESPN

#11 Ole Miss @ #10 Penn State - Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl

Saturday, December 30 - 11:00 AM - ESPN

Auburn @ Maryland - TransPerfect Music City Bowl

Saturday, December 30 - 1:00 PM - ABC

#6 Georgia @ #5 Florida State - Capital One Orange Bowl

Saturday, December 30 - 3:00 PM - ESPN

Toledo @ Wyoming - Barstool Sports Arizona Bowl

Saturday, December 30 - 3:30 PM - CW

Wisconsin @ #13 LSU - ReliaQuest Bowl

Monday, January 1 - 11:00 AM - ESPN 2

#23 Liberty @ #8 Oregon - VRBO Fiesta Bowl

Monday, January 1 - 12:00 PM - ESPN

#17 Iowa @ #21 Tennessee - Cheez-It Citrus Bowl

Monday, January 1 - 12:00 PM - ABC

#4 Alabama @ #1 Michigan - Rose Bowl Game presented by Prudential, CFP Semifinal

Monday, January 1 - 4:00 PM - ESPN

#3 Texas @ #2 Washington - Allstate Sugar Bowl, CFP Semifinal

Monday, January 1 - 7:45 PM - ESPN

On Iowa, go Hawks, and Happy New Year!