Ross’s college football bowl-watching guide

I am incredulous: the college football season is almost over! Luckily you can watch football almost every day between December 19 and January 7. That is a lot of football, mayhap too much for all but most the robust fans to consume. Therefore, I bring you Ross’s College Football Bowl Watching Guide.

I am incredulous: the college football season is already almost over! It seems like just minutes ago I was packing up my stuff, driving eight hours to Atlanta, and watching the Hokies get beat by the Crimson Tide. GOOD TIMES.

Luckily, College Football bestows upon us one last fix before sending us into spring/summer withdrawal; you can watch college football every day but three starting December 19 and ending January 7. That is a lot of football, mayhap too much for all but most the robust fans to consume. Therefore, I bring you Ross’s College Football Bowl Watching Guide.

Note: I realize today is the 21st and you’ve already “missed” three bowls. Worry not, you didn’t miss much — unless Middle Tennessee really gets your hackles up. Ok, ok, you may have missed a two-overtime thriller where Wyoming beat Fresno.


MAACO Las Vegas Bowl

  • Dec. 22 (Tuesday), 8pm. ESPN.
  • #14 Brigham Young (10-2) vs. #18 Oregon State (8-4)

Here’s your first bowl of the year featuring ranked opponents. BYU started the year off with that shocking win against Oklahoma (which looks less shocking now) and finished only dropping games to FSU and TCU. This will be BYU’s fifth straight Las Vegas Bowl appearance; they are 2-2 over four years. Oregon State had a not-so-shocking win over Stanford (which now looks a lot more shocking).

The Vegas Bowl has been around since 1992.


Sheraton Hawai’i Bowl

  • Dec. 24 (Thursday), 8pm. ESPN.
  • Southern Methodist University (7-5) vs. Nevada (8-4)

I know, I know, Christmas Eve! What are you doing watching a football game on Christmas Eve? I have no idea people, but I always end up doing it. I think by the time 8pm rolls around everyone else is dead off of hams and figgy pudding.

Two reasons to watch this bowl: 1) this is SMU’s first bowl since the NCAA handed down the “death penalty” in 1987 (read that wiki if you’ve ever wondered why there is no SWC to match the SEC) and 2) Nevada runs an interesting offense called the “Pistol” which was created by current head coach Chris Ault.

The Hawai’i Bowl has been around since 2002.


Champs Sports Bowl

  • Dec. 29 (Tuesday), 8pm. ESPN.
  • #15 Miami (9-3) vs. #25 Wisconsin (9-3)

The U! THEY’RE BACK! Psyche! Listen people, I hate the U just as much as the next God-fearing Virginian, but seriously, have you seen the Big10? If you enjoy games where Jacory Harris dominates a team from the Midwest with feats of miracle athleticism feel free to tune in.

The Champs Sports bowl has been around since 1990. Wisconsin lost last year’s matchup to FSU.


Brut Sun Bowl

  • Dec. 31 (Thursday), 2pm. CBS.
  • #21 Stanford (8-4) vs. Oklahoma (7-5)

Oklahoma! How the mighty have fallen. After three straight BCS bowl appearances Oklahoma finds itself in the Sun Bowl matched up against Stanford. Stanford always seems to win some they shouldn’t, don’t they? This one is worth watching if only to catch Heisman candidate Toby Gerhart in action.

Hey guys, did you know that the Sun Bowl is the second oldest bowl? It was started in 1934, and only the Rose Bowl is older.


Capital One Bowl

  • Jan. 1 (Friday), 1pm. ABC
  • #11 Penn State (10-2) vs. #13 LSU (9-3)

Joe Pa is so old, and Les Miles is so young! It’s Experience vs. A Guy Who Is Not 82 Years Old! It’s exciting!

Justin seems to think that LSU “will crush” Penn State. Vegas, however, disagrees and currently has the line of this game at 2.5 in PSU’s favor. A BCS bowl game against two traditional powers, this one just feels like it’ll be a good one.

And, honestly, how much more compelling is this matchup than the Sugar Bowl? What’s the over/under on Tim Tebow crushing the Bearcats using only his mind while simultaneously talking them through the loss of Brian Kelly?


Fedex Orange Bowl

  • Jan. 4 (Monday), 8pm. FOX
  • #10 Iowa (10-2) vs. #9 Georgia Tech (11-2)

So, full disclosure here. I hate Paul Johnson. I think he cheats and that his offensive system is built on bending and breaking the rules — to the detriment of the opposing players’ health. That said, his offense is really, really fun to watch work.

Iowa has the 33rd ranked rushing defense in the nation — which it will totally need to stop the crazy Paul Johnson triple option. Srsly.

By the way, the Orange Bowl is the fourth oldest bowl (1935). GT is 3-2 in the Orange Bowl while Iowa is 0-1.


Citi (Mythical) National Championship Game

  • Jan. 7 (Thursday), 7pm. ABC.
  • #1 Alabama (13-0) vs. #2 Texas (13-0)

I mean what is there to say? Mark Ingram, Colt McCoy, some other dudes that were mentioned in the Heisman race. It should be a good game and is probably the best/most intriguing BCS matchup this year — which is what the (Mythical) National Championship Game should be.

Although if I were Cincinnati, boy would I be pissed.


Emerald Bowl: USC vs. BC

When was the last time USC played in the Emerald Bowl? I will tell you: never. In fact, when was the last time USC was not in a BCS bowl? 2001, a year before the Emerald Bowl was created.

Pacific Life Holiday Bowl: Nebraska vs. Arizona

This is your last chance to see Ndamukong Suh, the best college football player in America, suit up. He’s yet another reason the Heisman Trophy is sometimes complete crap (Chris Weinke over Michael Vick!?).

Chick-Fil-A Bowl: Virginia Tech vs. Tennessee

This one’s New Year’s Eve at 7.30pm. If you aren’t kissing some boy/girl, you should be watching this game. VT has been angling to get Tennessee in the regular season for quite a while, and with the schools only three hours apart this can and should be a regional rivalry.

Rose Bowl Game presented by Citi: Oregon vs. Ohio State

The aforementioned Justin also chided me for not including The Rose Bowl Game in my list of games to watch. Storylines! he said. Well, he’s right about that. Remember when that dude punched a dude? After that loss to Boise, Oregon went on to win all of their games — save the one against The Cardinal. All this under first-year head coach Chip Kelly. Compelling!

And Ohio State! Oh wait, they were in the boring Big10. Soooo maybe compelling?

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Ross Catrow

Founder and publisher of RVANews.

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