The 2011 Insight Bowl will be held in Tempe, AZ on December 30 and features two teams that were both in Arizona for bowl games last year. The Iowa Hawkeyes return to the scene of their thrilling upset win over Missouri in last year's game. The Oklahoma Sooners, however, might see this as a downgrade after appearing in the Fiesta Bowl in 2011 where they defeated UConn. This is their second appearance at the Insight Bowl.
Odds have not been posted yet for this game but we would imagine Oklahoma (9-3, 6-3) will be heavily favored over Iowa (7-5, 4-4). Both teams are close in points allowed with Iowa giving up 23.3 per game and Oklahoma 22.8. The offensive stats, however, heavily favor the Sooners who are lead by QB Landry Jones. They put up 40.3 points per game versus only 28.7 for Iowa.
The Hawkeyes are no slouch, however, and as we saw last year with their win over the ranked Missouri Tigers, they get up for the big game. Their signature win this season came over Michigan (15) in early November. They feature running back Marcus Coker and wide receiver Marvin McNutt, Jr.
Both schools traveled well last year which certainly factored into the selection decision. It will be interesting, however, to see if the Sooners fans come in big numbers like they did last year given the "down grade" from Fiesta to Insight Bowl.