Fiesta Bowl 2013: Bold Predictions for Ducks vs. Wildcats Showcase Clash

Richard Langford@@noontide34Correspondent IJanuary 3, 2013

PASADENA, CA - JANUARY 02:  Head coach Chip Kelly of the Oregon Ducks looks on while taking on the Wisconsin Badgers at the 98th Rose Bowl Game on January 2, 2012 in Pasadena, California.  (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)
Jeff Gross/Getty Images

If you like offense, the Fiesta Bowl is going to be a blast. Both Kansas State and Oregon are content to get into a shootout, and both are great at it. 

The Ducks are second in the nation in points per game while the Wildcats are seventh. This game has a legitimate chance break the 100-point barrier. I'm not confident enough that will happen to make it an official prediction, but I wouldn't be shocked if it happened. 

However, these next three things are predictions. 


De'Anthony Thomas Will Launch 2013 Heisman Campaign

De'Anthony Thomas is one of the most explosive players to step onto a college football field. The Ducks used him sparingly this year as he had just 90 carries on the season, but those carries produced 686 yards, which is good for a sexy average of 7.6 yards per carry.

Of course, that average has nothing on the 77.5 yards per carry on two carries in last year's Rose Bowl. The Ducks like to get creative with the plays they run for Thomas, and they've had plenty of time to game plan for this one.

Also, Thomas proved he can handle a bigger load by going for 17 carries and 122 yards in Oregon's regular-season finale against Oregon State. 

Thomas will be given the ball in a chance to succeed, and he will produce in a big way, which will give him a jump start for his 2013 Heisman campaign. 

Optimus Klein Will End College Career on High Note

It was not all that long ago when Collin Klein was the favorite to capture this year's Heisman. Then he fell off his prodigious pace as the season rolled to an end. 

With plenty of time to get his body healthy, Klein will go back to producing at the level that made him a Heisman favorite. 

Klein can beat teams with his arm or his feet, and he will contribute in both areas in this game. 

Oregon has a solid and opportunistic defense, but they certainly aren't impenetrable. Klein will get plenty of possessions and chances to produce in this game, and he will do just that. 


Ducks Win! 

This game is going to be close until the late going. This is not unusual for Oregon. The Ducks' hyper-paced offense can wear down an opposition, which leaves the Ducks to run off big plays late and run away with the game. 

This is what will happen in this one. Kansas State's defense does not have the speed to keep up with the Ducks. 

In the Wildcats' second-to-last game of the season, they surrendered 52 points to Baylor, and the Bears run a similar offensive attack to Oregon, only the Ducks bring even a faster pace and faster players. 

Oregon's offensive pace will force the Wildcats to try and keep up, which will have them throwing the ball more, and that means the Ducks, who have 23 interceptions on the season, will be in a position to do what they do best: force turnovers. 

Ducks win, 55-42.