Wednesday, December 16, 2015

College Football Silly Season 2015-16

Here we go again. The college football bowl season begins on December 19, 2015 and doesn't end until January 11, 2016. During that span there will be 41 bowl games played. Exactly three of them have any real meaning, the two semi-final playoff games and the championship game. The other 38 games are just exhibitions. Sort of like soccer "friendlies". 

I'm not against bowl games but I think 41 is way too many. I remember when there were fewer than 10 bowl games and it was an honor to be invited to one of them. Now 80 teams go to a bowl. I think there are 127 FBS division schools. That means 63% of the teams go to bowls. Quite an elite group. Teams are supposed to have at least six wins a .500 winning percentage to be bowl eligible. With this many games it is usually impossible to find a full compliment of eligible teams. This year there are three bowl teams with losing records. That isn't right. 

ESPN is one of the major reasons there are so many bowls. They have started several bowls just so they have more games to televise. Watch some of the lesser games and check out how few people are in the stands. Almost all the game revenue comes from TV and the title sponsor. The NCAA has said that they are looking into a fix for the current situation. 

I'm certainly not going to go into all the games, but here are a few things I find interesting.
There is the Royal Purple Las Vegas Bowl, is that the bowl color? There is the Cure Bowl in Orlando, no clue what they are trying to cure. Always enjoy the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl, I don't think I've ever seen a famous potato. There is the Marmot Boca Raton Bowl, is it named for the animal or the clothing company? Popeyes Bahama Bowl is actually played in football crazy Nassau. I think the San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl wins the longest name title. What is the BattleFrog Fiesta Bowl? The Gator Bowl, one of the oldest bowl games and one I attended a few times when it was played in the actual Gator Bowl, has completely lost its identity. After a couple of years as the TaxSlayer Gator Bowl, it is now just the TaxSlayer Bowl. 

How about this exciting matchup, Middle Tennessee vs Western Michigan in the Bahamas. It is rarely good when two directional schools meet.

I'm sure I'll watch a few of these games, some might even turn out to be good. I'll watch my teams, Florida, South Florida and TCU. 

The two College Playoff semifinal games are on December 31st in Texas and Florida. The winners meet on January 11th in Arizona.

Let's hope with 41 games in the next month we get at least a few good ones. Let's also hope that in the near future they reduce the number of bowls and require a winning record to participate. And let's get the Gator back in Gator Bowl.


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