Friday, December 14, 2012

Michael5000's Absurdly Complete Guide to the Bowl Games

Golly, it's time for two weeks of occasionally exciting post-season play in college football!  Here, for the enthusiast and civilian alike, is a complete schedule of the bowl games on offer.

Each listing includes:
  • The Bowl's Name -  A real name, the kind of name you might give an institution that you wanted to be taken seriously, a name that would be respectful of the student-athletes whom it was to feature and the fans and enthusiasts who were to be its consumers.
  • The Bowl's Assy Name - The kind of name that a corporation's marketing division might insist on, making their sponsorship incumbent on a renaming of the whole event with a sort of hyperinflated institutional egotism that would have made a Medici blush. Assy names are notoriously tone-deaf to the possibility of self-parody -- the "Beef 'O' Brady's Bowl"? -- and are a standing embarrassment to us the spectators, to the athletes, to the games themselves, and to the companies made to look so preposterously avaricious.  I feel bad, too, for the guy who will look back in his dotage and realize that his biggest legacy to our culture and times was serving on the committee that decided that "the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl" was a better name for a football game than "the Copper Bowl."
  • The Time - Not the hegemonic EST of the Atlantic Coast political and financial elites that you see imposed on most such lists!  No, I bring you honest, hardworking Pacific Standard Time.
  • The Teams - Listed with their rank on my provisional list of all teams in order of preference.
  • The Disposition - The game is used as a test of my list.  When I look into my heart, do I find that I want the higher ranked team to win?  If not, revisions may be in order!
New Mexico Bowl
Assy Name: Gildan New Mexico Bowl 
Time: Sat., Dec. 15, 10:00 a.m. PST
Teams: #61 Nevada vs. #28 Arizona (Played in Albuquerque, NM)
Disposition: Quite right.  Without being too worked up, I definitely want Arizona to win.

Humanitarian Bowl
Assy Name:Famous Idaho Potato Bowl
Time: Sat., Dec. 15, 1:30 p.m. PST
Teams: #95 Toledo vs. #60 Utah State (Played in Boise, ID)
Disposition: Correct.  With no malice for Toledo, I have a mild preference for Utah State to prevail.

Pointsettia Bowl
Assy Name:San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl
Time:Thur., Dec. 20, 5:00 p.m. PST
Teams: #120 BYU vs. #33 San Diego State (Played in San Diego, CA)
Disposition: Perennial whipping-boy San Diego State in a bowl game?  Awesome.  I hope they crush the Cougars.

St. Petersburg Bowl
Assy Name: Beef 'O' Brady's Bowl
Time: Fri., Dec. 21, 4:30 p.m. PST
Teams: #124 UCF vs. #52 Ball State (Played in St. Petersburg, FL)
Disposition: Yes, I definitely hope that Ball State -- about which I know nothing but that it has an amusing name -- lays a beating on the Central Floridians.

New Orleans Bowl
Assy Name:R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl
Time: Sat., Dec. 22, 9 a.m. PST
Teams: #64 East Carolina vs. #111 Louisiana-Lafayette (Played in New Orleans, LA)
Disposition: Again, East Carolina has a very cute name, and I would like to see them pile it on against the Louisiana regional college.  I might like ECU better than #64; we might have to consider a promotion.

Las Vegas Bowl
Assy Name:MAACO Bowl Las Vegas 
Time: Sat., Dec. 22, 12:30 p.m. PST
Teams: #3 Washington vs. #13 Boise State (Played in Las Vegas, NV)
Disposition: The first bowl game between two teams that I have a modest emotional stake in!  I definitely prefer Washington -- #13 seems a bit low for Boise State.

Hawaii Bowl
Assy Name:Sheraton Hawaii Bowl
Time: Mon., Dec. 24, 2:00 p.m. PST
Teams: #26 Fresno State vs. #27 SMU (Played in Honolulu, HI)
Disposition: A razor's edge between the two teams in the Hawaii Bowl...  and in my heart I find that I would like to see SMU win.  A modest adjustment is in order.

Motor City Bowl
Assy Name:Little Caesars Pizza Bowl
Time: Wed., Dec. 26, 4:30 p.m. PST
Teams: #82 Western Kentucky vs. #119 Central Michigan (Played in Detroit, MI)
Disposition: It's definitely a case of wanting to see Central Michigan defeated, but Western Kentucky is new to the big leagues and kind of charmingly in over their heads -- they might have to get a raise, along with Middle Tennessee.

Military Bowl
Assy Name: Military Bowl Presented by Northrop Grumman
Time: Thur., Dec. 27, 12:00 p.m. EST
Teams: #25 San Jose State vs. #80 Bowling Green (Played in Washington, DC)
Disposition: Seems about right.

Bowl That Has Never Had a Non-Assy Name
Assy Name:Belk Bowl
Time: Thur., Dec. 27, 3:30 p.m. PST
Teams: #97 Cincinnati vs. #75 Duke (Played in Charlotte, NC)
Disposition: Again, this one seems pretty accurate.  I definitely prefer Duke, but don't especially give a damn.

Holiday Bowl
Assy Name:Bridgepoint Education Holiday Bowl
Time: Thur., Dec. 27, 6:45 p.m. PST
Teams: #62 Baylor vs. #10 UCLA (Played in San Diego, CA)
Disposition: Sure, definitely UCLA.  But I kind of like Baylor too, for reasons too esoteric to go into even here.

Independence Bowl:
Assy Name:AdvoCare V100 Independence Bowl
Time: Fri., Dec. 28, 11:00 a.m. PST
Teams: #68 Ohio vs. #116 Louisiana-Monroe (Played in Shreveport, LA)
Disposition: Another apathy vs. negativity match accurately reflected.

Another Bowl That Has Never Had a Non-Assy Name
Assy Name:Russell Athletic Bowl
Time: Fri., Dec. 28., 2:30 p.m. PST
Teams: #18 Rutgers vs. #56 Virginia Tech (Played in Orlando, FL)
Disposition: Sure, Rutgers over V-Tech, but I'm surprised I put the "Hokies" so low.  The name "Hokies" doesn't help, I suppose.

Texas Bowl
Assy Name:Meineke Car Care Bowl of Texas
Time: Fri., Dec. 28, 6:00 p.m. PST
Teams: #67 Minnesota vs. #100 Texas Tech (Played in Houston, TX)
Disposition: Yeah, whatever.

Armed Forces Bowl
Assy Name:Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl
Time: Sat., Dec. 29, 8:45 a.m. PST
Teams: #44 Rice vs. #17 Air Force (Played in Fort Worth, TX)
Disposition: Sure.  Go get 'em, Falcons.

Pinstripe Bowl
Assy Name:New Era Pinstripe Bowl
Time: Sat., Dec. 29, 12:15 PST
Teams: #57 West Virginia vs. #34 Syracuse (Played in Bronx, NY)
Disposition: Orangemen!  Syracuse's relatively high ranking is threatened by my recent discovery that they are now "the Orange" instead of "the Orangemen."  "The Orange" would have actually been pretty cool ex nihilo, but as it stands it's a name change that replaces my initial point of fondness for the program.

Emerald Bowl
Assy Name:Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl
Time: Sat., Dec. 29, 1:00 p.m. PST
Teams: #42 Navy vs. #28 Arizona State (Played in San Francisco, CA)
Disposition: This one feels like it should be closer than it is, although whether that means a demotion is in store for ASU or a promotion of Navy I'm not sure.

Alamo Bowl
Assy Name:Valero Alamo Bowl
Time: Sat., Dec. 29, 3:45 p.m. PST
Teams: #117 Texas vs. #2 Oregon State (Played in San Antonio, TX)
Disposition: I will not have much ambiguity of feeling in this contest.

Copper Bowl
Assy Name:Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl
Time: Sat., Dec. 29, 7:15 p.m. PST
Teams: #16 TCU vs. #31 Michigan State (Played in Tempe, AZ)
Disposition: Seems about right.  Go Horned Frogs!

Music City Bowl
Assy Name:Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl
Time: Mon., Dec. 31, 9 a.m. PST
Teams: #69 NC State vs. #71 Vanderbilt (Played in Nashville, TN)
Disposition: See, it's fun to say "Vandy."  But as the numbers would indicate, I could hardly care less.

Sun Bowl
Assy Name:Hyundai Sun Bowl
Time: Mon., Dec. 31, 11:00 a.m. PST
Teams: #11 USC vs. #66 Georgia Tech (Played in El Paso, TX)
Disposition: Go, Trojans.

Liberty Bowl
Assy Name:AutoZone Liberty Bowl
Time: Mon., Dec. 31, 12:30 p.m. PST
Teams: #87 Iowa State vs. #96 Tulsa (Played in Memphis, TN)
Disposition: As the numbers would indicate, I could hardly care less.  If I was teleported to the game, I would want Iowa State to win.

Peach Bowl
Assy Name:Chick-fil-A Bowl
Time: Mon., Dec. 31, 4:30 p.m. PST
Teams: #123 LSU vs. #73 Clemson (Played in Atlanta, GA)
Disposition: I think of Clemson and Marshall as the two teams about which I have no feelings whatsoever.  Of course, I'd like to see LSU beaten by either of them.

Gator Bowl
Assy Gator Bowl
Time: Tue., Jan. 1, 9 a.m. PST
Teams: #98 Mississippi State vs. #48 Northwestern (Played in Jacksonville, FL)
Disposition: Absolutely, go Northwestern.

Heart of Dallas Bowl
Assy Name: None
Time: Tue., Jan. 1, 9 a.m. PST
Teams: #40 Purdue vs. #44 Oklahoma State (Played in Dallas, TX)
Disposition: This is right on.  My mild liking for Purdue -- based almost entirely on their "Boilermakers" sobriquet -- exceeds my liking for Oklahoma State, just.

Hall of Fame Bowl
Assy Name:Outback Bowl
Time: Tue., Jan. 1, 10 a.m. PST
Teams: #19 South Carolina vs. #29 Michigan (Played in Tampa, FL)
Disposition: Go, [redacted]!

Tangerine Bowl
Assy Name:Capital One Bowl
Time: Tue., Jan. 1, 10 a.m. PST
Teams: #53 Georgia vs. #110 Nebraska (Played in Orlando, FL)
Disposition: I am never sure whether I dislike Nebraska as much as I seem to.  But certainly I would prefer to see Georgia win this one.

Rose Bowl
Assy Name: None
Time: Tue., Jan. 1, 3:00 p.m. PST
Teams: #83 Wisconsin vs. #4 Stanford (Played in Pasadena, CA)
Disposition: On, Stanford!  On Stanford!  On to victory!

Orange Bowl:
Assy Name:Discover Orange Bowl
Time: Tue., Jan. 1, 5:30 p.m. PST
Teams: #103 Northern Illinois vs. #126 Florida State (Played in Miami, FL)
Disposition: I think I like them better when I see "Northern Illinois" than the more usual "NIU," but by any name I'd like them to defeat the "'Noles."  But then statistically, I'd like anyone to defeat the "'Noles."

Sugar Bowl
Assy Name:Allstate Sugar Bowl
Time: Wed., Jan. 2, 5:30 p.m. PST
Teams: #101 Louisville vs. #121 Florida (Played in New Orleans, LA)
Disposition: I am not exactly hanging on the results of this contest.

Fiesta Bowl
Assy Name:Tostitos Fiesta Bowl
Time: Thur., Jan. 3, 5:30 p.m. PST
Teams: #1 Oregon vs. #38 Kansas State (Played in Glendale, AZ)
Disposition: I was actually a bit of a K-State fan after my adult rediscovery of football, but they have gradually faded down the (until recently entirely hypothetical) rankings.  It will be interesting to be hoping fervently for their sound defeat with every fiber of my being, purple livery notwithstanding.

Cotton Bowl
Assy Name:AT&T Cotton Bowl
Time: Fri., Jan. 4, 5:00 p.m. PST
Teams: #109 Texas A&M vs. #7 Oklahoma (Played in Arlington, TX)
Disposition: Boomer!  ...see, you're supposed to say "Sooner!", I mean, yes, but after I say "Boomer!"  ...well, yeah, but that was just an example.  ...can I try again?  Oh, forget it.

Birmingham Bowl
Assy Name: BBVA Compass Bowl
Time: Sat., Jan. 5, 10:00 a.m. PST
Teams: #74 Pittsburgh vs. #70 Ole Miss (Played in Birmingham, AL)
Disposition: That doesn't look right.  I like the University of Mississippi better than Ole Miss.  Now that would be a bowl game.

Mobile Alabama Bowl
Assy Bowl
Time: Sun., Jan. 6, 6:00 p.m. PST
Teams: #54 Kent State vs. #39 Arkansas State (Played in Mobile, AL)
Disposition: I might have Arkansas State ranked a little high due to cognitive association with the University of Arkansas, which is a very pleasant spot where I once spent an evening.  Still, I suppose I'd like to see them beat Kent State, perhaps in double overtime.

BCS National Championship
Time: Mon., Jan. 7, 5:30 p.m. PST
Teams: #20 Notre Dame vs. #78 Alabama (Played in Miami, FL)
Disposition: #20 for Notre Dame feels about right.  Such a legendary presence in American football, like SMU!  Or Harvard!  But I feel like I've not been entirely fair to Alabama, which has a fine "mascot," or nickname anyway -- they've got a name for the winners in the world, etc.  I will always pick Auburn in the Iron Bowl -- a "bowl" that is not included on this chart because, oh, never mind -- but I'd probably want them to beat Vandy.  Maybe if they lose the championship game, I'll give 'em a promotion.


Wishing you and yours a very happy bowl season,


Morgan said...

Not too esoteric! Go into it!

Christine M. said...

No bowls for Ohio State. Sad face. At least our shenanigans didn't involve child sex abuse.

On the bright side, the Columbus College Art & Design Mighty All-Nighters have been undefeated in football since 1879! Go All-Nighters! (waves Wacom tablet stylus wildly in the air).

Nichim said...

What happened to the Cherry Bowl? Army was in that one once. And I have BEEN to the Sun Bowl! Did I ever tell you (I must have, or else I was just saving it until now) that my family had a family flag for tailgating at Army football games, a black pennant with gold trim and a big gray and gold B in the center? My mom appliqued the last two numbers of every year that we attended in gold starting from the upper left, and then the appropriate icon (peach, cherry, sun) for bowl games that Army played in that year.

Michael5000 said...

Morgan: Well, OK. Let's see. Baylor is a fairly conservative Baptist University, and for more than a century did not allow dancing on campus. In 1996, when I was a graduate student in Kansas -- which is in the same athletic league as Baylor -- they lifted the prohibition. For the next several months, the Kansas student press snarkily referred to Baylor as the "Dancing Bears," and the name has kind of stuck with me, and I think it's cute. Also, Baylor is in a league with several teams that I dislike, so naturally I am often pleased when the Dancing Bears win.

Nichim: the Cherry Bowl only happened twice -- they had a hard time attracting folks to Michigan in December.

I didn't know about the family flag. That story is probably going to kick Army up a few notches in my rankings. (Not to belabor a point, but if Army went to Atlanta on December 31, do you suppose it would have given your mother more joy to applique a peach on her flag, or a chick-fil-a?)