Bowl Game Reaction: Boca Raton, Celebration, New Mexico, Independence

Quick reactions to the college football games: Boca Raton, Celebration, New Mexico, Independence Bowls

Bowl Game Reaction to the Boca Raton, Celebration, New Mexico, and Independence Bowls


Bowl Game Reaction: Boca Raton, Celebration, New Mexico, Independence

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CFN Predictions | 2021-2022 Bowl Schedule

Bowl Game Reactions  
– Boca Raton: WKU 59, App St 38
– Celebration, New Mexico, Independence to come

Boca Raton Bowl Reaction: WKU 59, Appalachian State 38

– Now THAT’S a bowl game. It started early, started fast, and it kept on rolling until Appalachian State punched itself out in the second half. 1,246 yards of total offense, 97 points, big play after big play. This was why we all do bowl season.

– Bailey Zappe was incredible. He threw for 422 yards and six scores with no picks, but he had a whole lot of help. Zappe was the signature star coming in from Houston Baptist – and he set the single season passing record and broke Joe Burrow’s touchdown pass record – but battery mate Jerreth Sterns had a whole lot to do with it, too. The star WR caught 13 passes for 184 yards and three scores.

– Appalachian State could never get control. For good and for mostly bad, it kept scoring too quickly. It needed to slow things down to a stop, but it got caught up in a firefight and couldn’t keep up. The running game did what it was supposed to do – 251 yards – but the team only had the ball for just over 31 minutes. The time of possession battle needed to be lopsided.

– No, WKU’s defense didn’t do a whole lot – it couldn’t tackle, it gave up over 600 yards, and it struggled – but the four turnovers made a difference. The pace of the game made Appalachian State press, and the mistakes followed.

COMING: Celebration Bowl, New Mexico Bowl, Independence Bowl

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CFN Predictions | 2021-2022 Bowl Schedule

5 Best College Football Bowl Predictions Against The Spread: December 17-18

5 best predictions against the spread for college football’s early bowl games – December 17th and 18th. Which games appear to be the best bets against the spread?

5 best predictions for college football bowl games – Friday, December 17 and Saturday, December 18. What games appear to be the best bets and the best picks?


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Bowl Game Predictions, Previews 
CFN Experts Picks: Bowls Dec 17-27
CFN Experts Picks: NFL 
Bowl Schedule, Game Previews
How Good Is Your Bowl? Ranking all 43

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Results So Far ATS: 84-63-2

Even in the best of times trying to bet on bowl games is tricky – teams get out of their respective regular season grooves. In 2020 it was impossible, and in 2021 it’s forget-about-it tough.

But they’re bowl games. You’re going to bet on them.

Trying to navigate through the opt-outs, coaching changes, and relative interest among the various teams, here are five of the best-looking investment opportunities for the first batch on Friday, December 17th and Saturday, December 18th.

Good luck and godspeed.

Click on each game for the preview

5. Coastal Carolina vs Northern Illinois: Tailgreeter Cure Bowl

LINE Coastal Carolina -11
ATS PICK Northern Illinois

How much do you believe that the regular season could carry over into the bowls? If you think that’s possible, then Northern Illinois shouldn’t have a problem covering this.

Those are a whole lot of points to be giving away to the champion of the MAC. Some might be freaked out by the late-season blowout loss to Western Michigan – NIU already had a spot in the MAC Championship wrapped up.

Northern Illinois is a badly flawed team in a whole lot of ways, and there’s reason to be concerned against an ultra-efficient, high-powered Coastal Carolina squad.

The Huskies don’t do much to pressure the backfield, they give up a whole lot of yards, and they don’t come up with enough takeaways or third down stops.

However, they’re great at dominating the time of possession, and they should be able to counteract what Coastal Carolina does by grinding and grinding some more.

The Chanticleers are more fun, more explosive, and more splashy on both sides of the ball, but they also struggled against mediocre team after mediocre team over the back half of the season.

The best win of the year was against … Kansas? Troy? You have as many wins over 2021 bowl teams as Coastal Carolina does.

That doesn’t mean the Sun Belt star can’t and won’t win this, and there’s a historical reason to think there could be a problem for Northern Illinois. The Huskies haven’t just lost their last six bowl games going back to the 2011 GoDaddy.com against Arkansas State; they’ve been annihilated in most of them.

This Northern Illinois is good at making teams play at its pace.

Now, if Toledo has problems in the Bahamas Bowl early on Friday and if Northern Illinois gets bombed on in this, avoid the MAC fast. But until that happens …

11 is a big number to be giving away here.

CFN Experts Picks: Bowls Dec 17-27

NEXT: College Football Pick Against The Spread No. 4 Oregon State vs Utah State: Jimmy Kimmel Bowl presented by Stifel

Fresno State vs UTEP: PUBG Mobile New Mexico Bowl Prediction, Game Preview

Fresno State vs UTEP: PUBG Mobile New Mexico Bowl prediction, game preview, how to watch, lines, and why each team might or might not win.

Fresno State vs UTEP: PUBG Mobile New Mexico Bowl prediction, game preview, how to watch 


Fresno State vs UTEP: PUBG Mobile New Mexico Bowl How To Watch

Date: Saturday, December 18
Game Time: 2:15 pm ET
Venue: Dreamstyle Stadium, Albuquerque, NM
Network: ESPN, Live stream on ESPN+
Records: Fresno State (9-3), UTEP (7-5)

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Fresno State vs UTEP PUBG Mobile New Mexico Bowl Preview

You want a bowl game with a team that’s going to care? UTEP hasn’t been to a bowl since 2014, and this is just its second winning season since 2005.

It’s been a wonderful breakthrough year for the program that’s used to being the free-space on everyone’s schedule. It didn’t exactly play a killer slate, but it managed to get through with a solid defense that was great at getting off the field – the Miners finished second in Conference USA in total D – and an offense that hit its deep shots down the field whenever it had the chance.

Fresno State just missed out on playing for the Mountain West title, it was good enough to beat UCLA and San Diego State, and it’s now going through a transition with head coach Kalen DeBoer off coaching the Washington Huskies and with Jeff Tedford coming aboard for next season. Running backs coach Lee Marks will take over the head coaching duties in this.

Fresno State QB Jake Haener was off with DeBoer to Washington, changed his mind, and now he’s back. The talent is there defensively – the Bulldog run defense allowed just 127 yards per game – it’s got a great offensive line and a strong running game, and the attack that led the conference in total yards is going to be dangerous.

Why Fresno State, UTEP Will Win
Prediction, What’s Going To Happen, History
PUBG Mobile New Mexico Bowl Top Players To Know

NEXT: Why Fresno State Will Win, Why UTEP Will Win, PUBG Mobile New Mexico Bowl Prediction

UTEP vs UAB Prediction, Game Preview

UTEP vs UAB prediction, game preview, how to watch, lines, and why each team might – or might not – win this Friday.

UTEP vs UAB prediction, game preview, how to watch: Friday, November 26


UTEP vs UAB How To Watch

Date: Friday, November 26
Game Time: 2:00 ET
Venue: Protective Stadium, Birmingham, AL
How To Watch: ESPN+
Record: UTEP (7-4), UAB (7-4)
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UTEP vs UAB Game Preview


Why UTEP Will Win

UTEP got its groove back after a three-game losing stretch with Gavin Hardison and the passing game going off in the win over Rice.

The Miner offense hits a whole slew of big plays down the field, but it’s also able to control the clock thanks to a defense that’s great at getting off the field. This isn’t normal for the program.

One of the best stories of the year, UTEP is going bowling, it’s interesting, and it’s got a good enough team in place to win a game like this against a strong UAB team.

The Blazer pass defense will give up big plays here and there, there are a TON of penalties, and there’s a little too much inconsistency for a team this good, but …

College Football Expert Picks, CFN Week 13

Why UAB Will Win

The Blazer running game should be able to pound a bit.

UTEP has been great on the defensive front throughout the season, but that’s partly because it hasn’t played a whole slew of teams with nasty ground attacks.

UAB ran for 200 yards or more in three of the last five games, was well balanced in the 34-31 loss to UTSA last week, and it should all click at home.

As good as the UTEP offense has been at times, and even with the good passing game that can explode, the offense doesn’t score a ton for all the positives. It only managed 13 on Boise State and 23 against UTSA in the blowout loss – it’s done a lot of scoring against bad teams.

UAB’s defense is nasty against the run and leads Conference USA in total yards allowed, so …

NFL Expert Picks, CFN Week 12

What’s Going To Happen

UAB might not win the Conference USA championship, but now it’s about jockeying for a good bowl position.

At home in the regular season finale – and on Senior Day – the Blazers will bounce back from the loss to UTSA and match UTEP big pass play for big pass play to go along with a terrific day on the ground.

UAB will be in control throughout.

College Football Schedule: Week 13 Predictions, Lines

UTEP vs UAB Prediction, Lines

UAB 34, UTEP 20
Line: UAB -13.5, o/u: 50
ATS Confidence out of 5: 3

Must See Rating: 3

5: The Times and Life of Shawn Carter: Official Video of JAY-Z’s 2021 Rock Hall Induction
1: “Why don’t we have Thanksgiving food the rest of the year?”

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Week 13 Schedule | CFN Expert Picks
Rankings AP | Coaches | CFN 1-130 Rankings
8 Teams In Playoff Chase | CFP Top 25 Prediction
Bowl Projections |  Bowl Bubble

Rice vs UTEP Prediction, Game Preview

Rice vs UTEP prediction, game preview, how to watch, lines, and why each team might – or might not – win this Saturday.

Rice vs UTEP prediction, game preview, how to watch: Saturday, November 20


Rice vs UTEP How To Watch

Date: Saturday, November 20
Game Time: 4:00 ET
Venue: Sun Bowl, El Paso, TX
How To Watch: ESPN+
Record: Rice (3-7), UTEP (6-4)
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Rice vs UTEP Game Preview


Why Rice Will Win

The Rice offense is working.

It was supposed to be a running team as the year went on, but the receivers were there from the start. Okay early on, now the passing attack has kicked it in with 200 yards or more in each of the last four games with a season-high 380 yards against WKU.

The Owls might be throwing well, but they’re about controlling the clock. UTEP lives on time of possession, and the Rice offense should be able to offset that. However …

College Football Expert Picks, CFN Week 12

Why UTEP Will Win

UTEP needs to get its groove back in a three-game losing streak. So what’s going wrong?

The defense has stopped taking the ball away.

The Miners forced 12 takeaways in the six wins, and it has a grand total of zero in the four losses. The Rice offense should be able to help change all of that.

The Owl offense might be playing better, but it’s also giving the ball away in bulk with five turnovers in the loss to WKU and six games with multiple mistakes.

NFL Expert Picks: CFN Week 11

What’s Going To Happen

Rice desperately needs a win to make something positive happen over the back half of the season, but UTEP will turn things back around with enough deep passing shots to matter and more than enough third down stops and takeaways to get by.

It might not be anything pretty, but in the home finale in a strong season, UTEP will close with a bang before going to UAB on the way to a bowl game.

College Football Schedule: Week 12 Predictions, Lines

Rice vs UTEP Prediction, Lines

UTEP 26, Rice 24
Line: UTEP -9.5, o/u: 47
ATS Confidence out of 5: 3

Must See Rating: 2

5: Tummyache Soak
1: Adele 30

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Rankings CFP | AP | Coaches | CFN 1-130
Bowl Projections | Heisman Race
College Football Playoff Chase, Who’s Alive?
Coach Hot Seat Top 10 | Bowl Bubble: Who’s In, Out

UTEP vs North Texas Prediction, Game Preview

UTEP vs North Texas prediction, game preview, how to watch, lines, and why each team might – or might not – win this Saturday.

UTEP vs North Texas prediction, game preview, how to watch: Saturday, November 13


UTEP vs North Texas How To Watch

Date: Saturday, November 13
Game Time: 4:00 ET
Venue: Apogee Stadium, Denton, TX
How To Watch: ESPN+
Record: UTEP (6-3), North Texas (3-5)
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UTEP vs North Texas Game Preview


Why UTEP Will Win

Time to get back on track.

The Miners have the Conference USA world there for the taking, but losses to Florida Atlantic and UTSA in back-to-back weeks all but ended that.

Whatever. UTEP is going bowling.

The Miners continue to be the best in the league at third down defense, the line is getting into the backfield, and the offensive front is giving everyone time to work.

North Texas might have cranked up the offense against a sad Southern Miss team, but the passing game isn’t efficient, the defense doesn’t come up with third down stops, and the running game that’s been so strong now has to go up against a UTEP defense that’s been a rock until dealing with UTSA.

College Football Expert Picks, CFN Week 11

Why North Texas Will Win

The Mean Green running game is rolling.

They have a slew of smallish, quick backs who can all come up with yards in chunks, and they did that with 321 yards last week, they’re averaging a Conference USA-high 228 yards per game, and the O is working with 12 touchdowns over the last four weeks.

The defense has’t been great, but it’s not getting gouged. As good as UTEP is, it’s not putting up big numbers – it hasn’t scored more than 28 since September 4th.

NFL Expert Picks: CFN Week 10

What’s Going To Happen

North Texas is trending up with two straight road wins, and offense that’s finally starting to do what it wants, and with a schedule that’s more manageable. It lost six straight games before the recent two wins, but it was supposed to lose all six.

UTEP is playing well on the lines, the downfield passing games are there, and it’ll grind through with a good day from the run defense to stop the current slide.

College Football Schedule: Week 11 Predictions, Lines

UTEP vs North Texas Prediction, Lines

UTEP 28, North Texas 26
Line: UTEP -1, o/u: 55
ATS Confidence out of 5: 1.5

Must See Rating: 2.5

5: House of Gucci
1: Yellowstone

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UTSA vs UTEP Prediction, Game Preview

UTSA vs UTEP prediction, game preview, how to watch, lines, and why each team might – or might not – win this Saturday.

UTSA vs UTEP prediction, game preview, how to watch: Saturday, November 6


UTSA vs UTEP How To Watch

Date: Saturday, November 6
Game Time: 10:15 ET
Venue: Sun Bowl, El Paso, TX
How To Watch: ESPN2
Record: UTSA (8-0), UTEP (6-2)
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UTSA vs UTEP Game Preview


Why UTSA Will Win

You don’t think the 8-0 Roadrunners are a tad bit peeved about being left out of the College Football Playoff top 25 rankings?

No one’s saying they should be in the mix for the College Football Playoff, but to be snubbed?

What’s the team doing that’s so right? It’s getting a nice balance on offense, it’s moving the chains, it’s among the best teams in the country at not getting flagged, and it’s amazing against the run.

It doesn’t screw up and it hasn’t allowed more than 100 yards rushing in six of the last seven games.

UTEP can throw, but it gets hit with a whole lot of flags, and it’s among the worst teams in the nation in turnover margin. It has to be perfect to win this, and it won’t be.

College Football Expert Picks, CFN Week 10

Why UTEP Will Win

The Miners have the offensive balance to give the UTSA defense some problems.

It’s versatile – it threw well over the last two weeks when the running game wasn’t rumbling – and it’ll try pounding away to set everything else up.

They’re terrific at grinding the game down and controlling the clock – they’re owning the time of possession battle – and comes from a defense that’s the best in Conference USA and is outstanding on third downs.

No one’s running well on this group – no one has moved from more than 131 rushing yards – and the D hasn’t allowed more than 300 yards in any of the last five games.

However …

NFL Expert Picks, CFN Week 9

What’s Going To Happen

UTEP beat a whole bunch of bad teams. It has yet to come up with a win over anyone who’ll come close to going bowling, and it lost to Boise State and Florida Atlantic.

The D did a solid job last week against the Owls, and the offense cranked up 442 yards, but it wasn’t enough.

UTSA is great against the run, too, and it’s also terrific at controlling the time of possession battle. Again, it just doesn’t screw up enough to lose this as it all but takes the Conference USA West title.

College Football Schedule: Week 10 Predictions, Lines

UTSA vs UTEP Prediction, Lines

UTSA 38, UTEP 20
Line: UTSA -11.5, o/u: 53
ATS Confidence out of 5: 3

Must See Rating: 4

5: Belfast
1: Ghostbusters: Afterlife

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UTEP vs Florida Atlantic Prediction, Game Preview

UTEP vs Florida Atlantic prediction, game preview, how to watch, lines, and why each team might – or might not – win this Saturday.

UTEP vs Florida Atlantic prediction, game preview, how to watch: Saturday, October 30


UTEP vs Florida Atlantic How To Watch

Date: Saturday, October 30
Game Time: 6:00 ET
Venue: FAU Stadium, Boca Raton, FL
How To Watch: ESPN+
Record: UTEP (6-1), Florida Atlantic (4-3)
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UTEP vs Florida Atlantic Game Preview


Why UTEP Will Win

What’s bowl eligible UTEP doing that’s so right?

It’s one of the best stories of the 2021 season – the Miners are good at football and have a shot to take over the Conference USA West division with a win over UTSA next week.

First, they have to keep the shocking production going from a defense that’s traditionally been a doormat.

It’s been amazing on third downs, the pass defense has been wonderful, and overall, the D is No. 1 in the league allowing fewer than 300 yards per game.

The offense might not be devastating, but there’s a nice downfield passing game to complement the defense that’s allowed fewer than 14 points in three of the last four games.

College Football Expert Picks, CFN Week 9

Why Florida Atlantic Will Win

Florida Atlantic has the offense to make UTEP press a bit.

The Owls were terrific in blowout wins over Charlotte and FIU, hitting well over 200 yards both running and passing, starting with a passing attack that should be able to push the Miner secondary.

Louisiana Tech can throw, but other than that, there haven’t been a whole lot of high-powered passing teams on the UTEP slate. Florida Atlantic won’t go off, but the offense is among the best in the country on third downs, and …

College Football Schedule, Predictions, Game Previews, Week 9

What’s Going To Happen

That’s how this is all going to work for Florida Atlantic. It’s not about the explosion. It’s about the consistency of the offense that won’t turn the ball over and should force UTEP to take a few too many chances.

The Miners keep getting challenged and they keep coming through, but they have yet to beat a team that’s likely to go bowling. This is when they have to prove they can play with the conference big boys. They’ll fall just short in a good game on the road, but they’ll show they’re for real, and that they belong.

Winning would be nice, but they can drop this and be just fine as long as they beat UTSA next week.

NFL Expert Picks, CFN Week 8

UTEP vs Florida Atlantic Prediction, Lines

Florida Atlantic 27, UTEP 24
Line: Florida Atlantic -11, o/u: 48.5
ATS Confidence out of 5: 3

Must See Rating: 4

5: The French Dispatch
1: Finch

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Louisiana Tech vs UTEP Prediction, Game Preview

Louisiana Tech vs UTEP prediction, game preview, how to watch: Saturday, October 16

Louisiana Tech vs UTEP prediction, game preview, how to watch: Saturday, October 16


Louisiana Tech vs UTEP How To Watch

Date: Saturday, October 16
Game Time: 9:00 ET
Venue: Sun Bowl, El Paso, TX
How To Watch: ESPN+
Record: Louisiana Tech (2-3), UTEP (5-1)
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Louisiana Tech vs UTEP Game Preview


Why Louisiana Tech Will Win

UTEP might be 5-1, but it hasn’t beaten anyone who’s all that great.

Who cares? It’s UTEP – 5-1 is 5-1 no matter who you are. However, Louisiana Tech is the second-best team on the slate just behind Boise State, and there’s a massive drop to everyone else.

Louisiana Tech’s passing game should work.

The Miners have done a great job on defense against everyone but Boise State, and they allowed 340 yards to Hank Bachmeier and company.

Louisiana Tech QB Austin Kendall should be able to hit 300 yards without breathing hard.

Week 7 CFN College Football Expert Picks

Why UTEP Will Win

UTEP might not have beaten anyone great, but it’s doing exactly what a good team is supposed to do against a schedule like this.

It’s not like the mediocre squads are going off on the Miner D. The run defense has been fantastic – it has yet to allow 125 rushing yards – and the team hasn’t given up 300 yards of total offense in any of the last three games.

Can UTEP get the passing attack going? The Louisiana Tech pass defense isn’t anything special – to be fair, it’s faced a slew of high-octane passing teams – but the Miners are going to try grinding it out first.

A good rotation of backs are producing for an O that got to 200 yards on the ground in three of the six games.

Week 7 College Football Schedule, Predictions, Game Previews

What’s Going To Happen

UTEP is a fantastic story.

It’s having a special season, but it’s going have to fight to get that sixth win to become bowl eligible – and it’s not going to happen here.

Louisiana Tech has a way of playing up or down to its competition, and it’ll do it again. It has yet to be in any game that hasn’t been decided by a touchdown or less. That’s going to change – passing game will open it up late – but UTEP won’t be a pushover.

CFN Week 6 NFL Expert Picks

Louisiana Tech vs UTEP Prediction, Line

Louisiana Tech 34, UTEP 20
Line: Louisiana Tech -6.5, o/u: 56.5
ATS Confidence out of 5: 2

Must See Rating: 2.5

5: Caramel apple anything
1: Pumpkin spice anything

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UTEP vs Southern Miss Prediction, Game Preview

UTEP vs Southern Miss prediction, game preview, how to watch: Saturday, October 9

UTEP vs Southern Miss prediction, game preview, how to watch: Saturday, October 9


UTEP vs Southern Miss How To Watch

Date: Saturday, October 9
Game Time: 7:00 ET
Venue: MM Roberts Stadium, Hattiesburg, MS
How To Watch: ESPN3
Record: UTEP (4-1), Southern Miss (1-4)
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UTEP vs Southern Miss Game Preview


Why UTEP Will Win

UTEP is actually playing well in tight games.

It’s not beating anyone great, but who cares? Southern Miss isn’t all that great.

The Miners are getting timely play from their defense, they’re great overall at holding on to the ball – at least when it comes to controlling the clock – and the offensive line isn’t allowing anything behind the line.

On the flip side, the Southern Miss offense isn’t going anywhere. There’s no running game over the last three weeks and there are way, way too many turnovers. But …

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Why Southern Miss Will Win

UTEP’s offense isn’t exactly lighting it up.

The defense has been solid, but there’s no running game over the last three weeks, the team hasn’t hit 350 yards of total offense during the span, and there are way, way too many penalties, special teams issues, and mediocre passing problems for a team that’s 4-1.

Southern Miss is way overdue for a good day.

The passing game worked in the 24-19 loss to Rice, there’s good pressure from the defensive front, and UTEP isn’t going to run the ball.

Week 6 College Football Schedule, Predictions, Game Previews

What’s Going To Happen

Is UTEP really good enough to be 5-1?

Southern Miss has to finally get the O going against an FBS team, but the Miners are playing just well enough defensively to pull this off. However, both teams are overdue to go the other way with their respective momentum.

UTEP’s wins have come at home, with the exception of the layup against New Mexico State. Southern Miss went on the road to deal with Alabama and Rice, and this week the passing game should click just enough to push ahead and finally get something positive going after a rough start.

Week 5 CFN NFL Expert Picks

UTEP vs Southern Miss Prediction, Line

Southern Miss 24, UTEP 20
Line: UTEP -2, o/u: 44.5
ATS Confidence out of 5: 1.5

Must See Rating: 2

5: When Facebook and Instagram are down
1: The Bradshaw Bunch

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