The Sweep's All-American Blog Team

In his final collegiate game, Pat White hopes to improve his bowl record to 4-0. :: AP

West Virginia (8-4) vs. North Carolina (8-4)
Dec. 27, 1 p.m. ET, ESPN

Reason To Watch: To see Pat White's final collegiate game. White's one of the most dyanmic quarterbacks college football has ever seen. He's the NCAA's all-time leader in career rushing among quarterbacks with 4,425 yards, including four 200-yard games. He ran for 919 yards with eight touchdowns in 11 games this season in leading West Virginia to its seventh straight bowl game, the previous five of which took place on New Year's Day. While the Mountaineers struggled at times this season, White, who passed for 1,510 yards and 18 touchdowns with only six interceptions this season, is looking to finish his career with a perfect 4-0 record in bowl games after quarterbacking West Virginia to wins in the Sugar, Gator and Fiesta Bowls the past three years.

Keep An Eye On: West Virginia running back Noel Devine has done an admirable job taking over for Steve Slaton, who left for the NFL last year. Devine, a sophomore, may follow in Slaton's footsteps when he's eligible next year after rushing for 1,228 yards this season, third best in the Big East. He and White will be flying out of the back field for most of the game, as the Mountaineers run the ball 17 more times than they throw per game and White and Devine controll over 75 percent of the carries. Even if they do pass, White will still likely look to get the ball in Devine's hands, as the tailback is second on the team with 34 receptions.

Did You Know?: That both West Virginia and North Carolina lost their only other appearances in the Meineke Bowl? West Virginia lost 48-22 to Virginia in the inaugural game (known then as the Continental Tire Bowl) in 2002, and North Carolina lost 37-24 to Boston College in 2004.

Final Analysis: Don't let the records or the bowl game name fool you; this is a match-up of two talented teams that could have easily met in the Orange Bowl before faltering late in the season (both teams lost two of their last four games). While West Virginia will be hard-pressed to have many more 11-win seasons without Rich Rodriguez at the helm (or White under center), Butch Davis looks like he's building a contender in Chapel Hill. The Tar Heels blew out two Big East bowl-bound teams in Connecticut and Rutgers this season and could easily beat a third to finish the season.

The Pick: North Carolina 21, West Virginia 20. UNC will spoil White's final college game in what will amount to a home game for the upstart Tar Heels, playing in only their second bowl game since 2001 and first since 2004, while the Mountaineers will fail to find enough motivation to get up for a game that is certainly a step down from what they've been accustomed to in recent years.


Remember to keep your posts clean. Profanity will get filtered, and offensive comments will be removed.

Truth & Rumors


  1. 1
    D'Antoni's newest 'blunder'
  2. 2
    Irving: Fans don't deserve the Cavs
  3. 3
    Baseball's top 2015 free agent
  4. 4
    Red Sox dodged two injury scares
  5. 5
    The NHL's model franchise?

SI Photos