Previewing Friday's college football bowl games (other than Valero Alamo Bowl):
•Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl
Houston (7-5) vs. Pittsburgh (6-6)
Time: 9 a.m. PST. Location: Fort Worth. TV: ESPN.
The buzz: These teams are in transition, with new head coaches in the midst of taking over the programs and interim leaders mentoring the teams. Much was expected of Houston sophomore quarterback John O'Korn, but he was replaced by dual-threat quarterback Greg Ward Jr. Ward passed for 1,736 yards and nine touchdowns. Pittsburgh lost six of seven games from Sept. 20 through Nov. 15 but they closed by winning two games to qualify for a bowl game. The Panthers leaned on running back James Conner (1,675 yards, 24 touchdowns).
Time: 12:15 p.m. PST. Location: Jacksonville, Fla. TV: ESPN.
The buzz: The Hawkeyes cooled off after a 5-1 start and limped to the finish, losing three of their last four. The slump included a two-point loss to Wisconsin and three-point overtime defeat to Nebraska. More was expected out of Iowa City this season with a favorable schedule and one of the best left tackles in the country in Brandon Scherff. Tennessee sophomore quarterback Joshua Dobbs will be making his fifth career start after helping the Volunteers win three of their final four regular-season games. Pig Howard is the team's top receiver, catching 52 passes for 589 yards. Tennessee is in a bowl for the first time since 2010 and a win would give Tennessee its first winning season since 2009.
•TicketCity Cactus Bowl
Time: 7:15 p.m. PST. Location: Tempe, Ariz. TV: ESPN.
The buzz: Washington won five of its first six games, then suffered a series of losses in the heart of its Pac-12 schedule. Cyler Miles is growing more confident and helped steer the team to wins over Oregon State and Washington State to close the regular season. Miles has passed for 2,129 yards and 16 touchdowns. Oklahoma State stumbled through a brutal stretch from mid-October through late November, dropping five consecutive games to the top Big 12 Conference teams. The Cowboys had to rally for a 38-35 overtime upset of rival Oklahoma in the regular-season finale to earn their spot in the bowl. The typically prolific Oklahoma State offense was slowed by injuries to quarterbacks J.W. Walsh and Daxx Garman. Freshman Mason Rudolph (554 yards passing, four touchdowns) thrived during the win over Oklahoma and will lead the Cowboys against Washington.