‘Tis the season, right? ’Tis the season for weird matchups of MAC teams taking on WHACK teams in locations that are as exotic as Fremont, Nebraska. ’Tis the season for coaches and players to mail it in while universities cash it in and the season when Swag bags aren’t just another name for dime bags in Justin Bieber’s posse. Sure, the bowl season is kind of lame. But it’s the same kind of lameness that we can’t stop watching and complaining about. This is America, damn it, and we invented the Hate-Watching experience. We revel in it. So we’ll still be tuning into all the bowls we can get our pizza-coated fingers on during the holidays.
But the names? Man, those are bad even for bowl season. They’re long. Strange. The source of much 140-character merriment. In short, they need to be changed. We already know, more or less, what the product on the field will look like, but the least we could do would be to rename the bowls.
What I have endeavored to do in this absurdly bloated (*Author’s note: just like the bowls, see what I’m getting at here, people?) piece is to bring a little freshness to most of the current bowls around. I’m changing their names and offering up any suggestions to help the games become a little more relevant while I’m at it. They’re listed chronologically and part II of this column will come tomorrow.
The New Mexico Bowl: December 21st, Albuquerque, NM
Matchup: Colorado State V.S. Washington State
Bowl Game Rename: The Every Fan’s Getting “Randomly” Searched at the Airport Bowl.
(*Author’s note: honorable mentions:
1. Or as the police are calling it: the paraphernalia bowl.
2. Or as the two fan bases are calling it, “Wait, did you say bowl, man? I’m totally in. . .”
3. The Spellcheck is a Lifesaver Bowl)
Renamed in honor of: The fact that both of these school’s have states that aren’t quite as worried about their teams’ passing attacks as they are about their team’s puff-puff-passing attacks. Good luck getting through the airport in Albuquerque carrying “my grandpa’s pipe, man. That’s all that is. A family heirloom.” every fan of both of these teams.
The Las Vegas Bowl: December, 21st, Las Vegas, NV
Matchup: Fresno State V.S. USC
Bowl Game Rename: The “No one leaves the hotel room without direct supervision. Do you understand me? Do you understand?!?!” Bowl
Renamed in honor of: Both schools’ NCAA compliance officers. Awesome idea, college football. Have a bowl game that unleashes a bunch of college kids in a city so renowned for its Sin and Vice that they basically trumpet that shit from the rafters in their nationally televised ads and then expect that game to not be a stumbling, hungover, post-hookers mess. (*Author’s note: after re-reading that last statement, I just realized that I will have to watch this game.)
The Famous Idaho Potato Bowl: December 21st, Boise, ID
Matchup: Buffalo V.S. San Diego State
Bowl Game Rename: The “Yup. You definitely stared at that blue turf on TV for too long. We’re going to have to operate.” Bowl
Renamed in honor of: The hubcap-sized cataracts you’re going to have to get lasered off your failing eyes from watching an entire football game on the corneal-curbstomping that is Boise’s field. On the plus side? I did consider just renaming this one The Racist Bowl. So there’s that, I guess.
The New Orleans Bowl: December 21st, New Orleans, LA
Matchup: Louisiana-Lafayette V.S. Tulane
Bowl Game Rename: The “Thank God we can just bus down to the game because our athletic departments are totally broke” Bowl.
Renamed in honor of: Gracious AD’s who are so crunk they get to go to a close bowl game that they give themselves another raise with all that leftover travel money.
The Beef ‘O’Brady’s Bowl: December 23rd, St. Petersburg, FL
Matchup: Ohio V.S. East Carolina
Bowl Game Rename: Tom ‘O’Brady’s Bowl
Renamed in honor of: The fact that all the football players would be hyper-crunk about getting swag-bags filled with Uggs. Bear with me, here, because this is going to sound like a feverish meth hallucination and it kind of is — sans the meth. You hire Tom Brady, let him name the bowl after himself and pretend that he’s Irish. The only stipulation is that, as an endorsement for the bowl, he walks around the sidelines angrily shouting at both teams while dressed like a super stereotypical “Irish” guy (*Author’s note: AKA a Leprechaun, for those of you people who aren’t entirely racist) and the intense media coverage generated makes this the can’t miss bowl game of the year. Are you going to read that and tell me you wouldn’t drop all your holiday merry-making and stiff arm an elderly woman to get to a TV to see that?
The Hawaii Bowl: December 24th, Honolulu, HI
Matchup: Oregon State V.S. Boise State
Bowl Game Rename: Vacation
Renamed in honor of: The fact that no one that goes to this game in this state really cares about doing anything other than getting lei’d and getting laid while kicking it on the beach and potentially getting a cameo on Dog the Bounty Hunter: Season 12. This game is just a really, really lucky draw for some teams that are pretty much irrelevant anyway. Enjoy the sun, Boise and Oregon State.
The Little Caesar’s Bowl: December 26th, Detroit, MI
Matchup: Bowling Green V.S. Pittsburgh
Bowl Game Rename: The “Are You Sure We Can’t Switch Locations With the Hawaii Bowl?” Bowl
Renamed in honor of: Detroit. That’s all.
(*Author’s note: how disappointed do you think Urban Meyer is that his team isn’t going to this bowl? I’m guessing the below picture would’ve been his exact reaction to the news that he was going to miss out on all that pizza-y goodness.)
The Poinsettia Bowl: December 26th, San Diego, CA
Matchup: Utah State V.S. Northern Illinois
Bowl Game Rename: The “Everyone watch Lynch. WATCH LYNCH. Hey, you guys, WATCH JORDAN F-ING LYNCH!!!!!!” Bowl
Renamed in honor of: Utah State’s coach, shattering his larynx like cheap china on a cold sidewalk, while shouting at his team to make sure that they’re watching Jordan Lynch on the keeper. RIP vocal cords.
The Military Bowl: December 27, Annapolis, MD
Matchup: Maryland V.S. Marshall
Bowl Game Rename: Believe it or not, I’m totally good with this one.
Renamed in honor of: It’s just too bad that they paired up two lousy teams, but I’m glad they have a game paying tribute to the brave men and women of our military. Now, if you wanted to make it a little more interesting, you’d let Matthew McConaughey coach Marshall. And then, since the game’s held in Annapolis, you’d let James Franco coach the Terrapins with Tyrese as his offensive coordinator. You wanna talk about a ratings explosion?
The Texas Bowl: December 27, Houston, TX
Matchup: Syracuse V.S. Minnesota
Bowl Game Rename: The “We Seriously Don’t Care, We’re Just Happy to be Somewhere Warm” Bowl
Renamed in honor of: The fact that the high in Minneapolis was 7 degrees yesterday.
The Fight Hunger Bowl: December 28, San Francisco, CA
Matchup: Washington V.S. BYU
Bowl Game Rename: The F- You, Sarkisian, We Just Traded Up Bowl
Renamed in honor of: The fact that Washington turned a steaming pile of mediocrity (*Author’s note: his career record at Washington was 34-29) tossed that bad boy into an alchemist’s starter’s kit and somehow ended up landing the guy who everyone wanted to come be their next head football coach (*Author’s note: Chris Petersen’s record — against far inferior competition — was a staggering 92-12). So, let me get this straight, Washington. You had an okay-to-mediocre head coach who you somehow fleeced off onto another program who was willing to handsomely overpay to get him and then you landed Chris Petersen? Maybe I should rename this bowl game The Husker Fans Are Super F-ing Jealous Bowl.
The Pinstripe Bowl: December 28, New York, NY
Matchup: Notre Dame V.S. Rutgers
Bowl Game Rename: The Look, the Yankees are Going to Need All the Cash They Can Get Bowl
Renamed in honor of: The fact that the game will be played in Yankee Stadium and these guys are going to need all the cash they can get their grubby little hands on, after dumping piles of money at the feet of anyone who can so much as swing a wiffle bat in their back yard without losing their grip and hitting themselves in the junk like they’re on America’s Funniest Home Videos. Not they they’re ever in danger of going broke, but if they keep making it rain like they’re The Biebs in a strip club, things might get a little tight. This game should help put a little more dough in their pinstriped pockets.
The Belk Bowl: December 28, Charlotte, NC
Matchup: Cincinnati V.S. North Carolina
Bowl Game Rename: The At Least You Have Some Sports Entertainment on December 28th Other than Watching the Bobcats Play Bowl
Renamed in honor of: The fact that the Charlotte sports fans need something to pick up their spirits on December 28th. Sure, they have the Panthers making a miraculous run through the NFC south. But, may I remind you who is in charge of their NBA franchise? This guy:
That’s right. Michael J. Jordan. And not the good Mike, either. I’m talking about the one who dresses like a tween background dancer in a Kriss Kross background video from 1995 and manages your team into a pile of rubble. So, cheer up, Charlotte: this game is for you.
The Russell Athletic Bowl: December 28, Orlando, FL
Matchup: Louisville V.S. Miami
Bowl Game Rename: The Miami V.S. Miami Bowl
Renamed in honor of: The 15 players Charlie Strong has on his roster that are from Miami, Florida. Which is the exact same amount of guys that “The U” has on its roster that are from Miami. That’s a helluva lot of hometown boys that’ll be playing in this one.
The Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl: December 28, Phoenix, AZ
Matchup: Kansas State V.S. Michigan
Bowl Game Rename: The Burns V. Christie Bowl
(*Author’s note: or as Brady Hoke calls it, “wait, did someone say something about getting some wings?”)
Renamed in honor of: The fact that Brady Hoke looks exactly like Chris Christie and that Bill Snyder might actually be Mr. Burns incarnate.
TO BE CONTINUED. . .