Why Duke will upset Cincinnati

Making bold predictions for the non-BCS bowl games

Updated: December 12, 2012, 11:19 AM ET
By Phil Steele | Special to ESPN Insider
Sean Renfree Bob Donnan/US PresswireLook for Sean Renfree and Duke to pull the upset against Cincinnati.

After a regular season that saw many of my bold predictions come true (thank you, Florida Gators), and a few others go down in flames (thanks for nothing, ACC), I'm making four bold predictions on the non-BCS bowls.

1. The Duke Blue Devils will shock the Cincinnati Bearcats in the Belk Bowl
Earlier this year, I wrote in an article that Duke would drop off in the second half of the season after getting off to a hot start, and that is precisely what happened. After clinching their first bowl since 1994 with a win over arch-rival North Carolina, the Blue Devils would drop four straight games to close the season at 6-6. However, bowl season provides new life for them and they will be playing in front of a lot of home state fans (Duke's basketball team is off for the week) in Charlotte against favored Big East co-champ Cincinnati (9-3 this season).

Phil Steele

ESPN Insider