Originally posted on Football Nation  |  Last updated 1/1/13
The Big Ten versus the SEC in the Outback Bowl!  If that alone does not get your college football excitement going there may not be much that does.  Both Michigan and South Carolina came into the season with very high hopes.  A combination of injuries and inconsistent play killed the Wolverines BCS hopes early in the season.  South Carolina also suffered the same misfortune along with playing in the very tough SEC.  These two teams are nearly mirror images of each other with the way their seasons went.  The team that walks out of Raymond James Stadium victorious will have high hopes and momentum headed into the 2013 season.  However, the losing team will cap an end to a long season with many questions headed into next fall.1. Denard Robinson's play making abilityWhile Denard Robinson came into the season with dreams of a heisman trophy his continued struggles as a passer took some playing time away from this phenomenal athlete.  Not to mention a nerve injury to his throwing arm really cost Denard alot of playing time the final few weeks of the regular season.  Those issues aside, Denard Robinson is always a threat no matter where he lines up on the field.  Defenses always have to be aware of where Denard is on the field as he can rip off a big play at any time.  One of the fastest players in the country Denard Robinson will be looking to put on a show in the final game of what has been an amazing career at the University of Michigan.2. Jadeveon Clowney's Defensive playSouth Carolina had one of the countries best defenses ranking an amazing 12th overall in points allowed.  Leading this tremendous defense was lead by first team All American defensive end Jadeveon Clowney.  Clowney was an absolute terror for opposing offenses with 13 sacks and 21 1/2 tackles for a loss.  Michigan's offensive line will have its hands full with Clowney.  Clowney will be looking to further cement his legacy as a menacing force on defense despite the fact that he is only a sophomore.  If Clowney has a big day he could be going into next season being considered the top defensive player in the country.3. Michigan's Pass DefenseMichigan may have taken a step back with their front seven in 2013, but the back half of that defense is incredible. Much of the season the Wolverines had allowed the fewest yards passing in the country.  When you consider that their are 120 teams in division one college football that number is outstanding.  Combine that with the fact that the Gamecocks have had trouble solidifying their quarterback position could lead to a big game for the wolverines defensive backs. 4. South Carolina RB Kenny MilesWhen star running back went out with a gruesome leg injury back in October most thought that South Carolina would have trouble running the ball without their Heisman candidate.  In stepped Kenny Miles and ran the ball very well.  For the season Miles carried the ball 99 times for 358 yards and 2 touchdowns.  If Miles can get going like that versus the Wolverines questionable front seven, he could put on quite the show on New Years Day.5. Its the Big Ten versus the SECHere you have traditionally two of college football's powerhouse conferences colliding.  Over the years there have been many great match ups between these two conferences that people still talk about.  Looking at this match up expect much of the same.  You have two very strong defenses squaring off against solid offenses,  This is also a battle of 2 very well respected head coaches.  South Carolina head coach Steve Spurrier is one of the most respected head coaches in college football today.  Michigan head coach Brady Hoke has gained tremendous respect in two years at Michigan turning them from a middle of the road team under the previous regime to a team you have to watch out for. 
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