Do you remember when you could name all of the college bowl games and they fit on two hands with a couple of fingers to spare?
Back then, you actually had to be, you know, a “good” team with a winning record in the regular season. It was mostly conference champions and a few other perennial powers who went on to play in college’s postseason. Now, you’d need to find the hands of five people to count all the bowl games, but you still probably couldn’t name two hand’s worth.
Going to a bowl game used to be a big deal, a reward for excellence on the playing field, a reward for the school and the players for having a great season. Now if you can manage to limp across the finish line with a .500 record, congratulations! You get to go to the Potato Bowl in lovely Boise, Idaho in mid-December.
Now nothing against Boise, I happen to like it there. I’m just making a point. Who watches these games? It’s good thing we have legal sports betting. Outside of the playoff Bowls and maybe a couple of others, they have nothing more than participation ribbons for programs that managed to not have a losing season and some cash for the schools.
My big problem is that I will bet on a cockroach race, so let’s take a little look at some of these “huge” bowl games coming up.
New Mexico Bowl – North Texas (+9) vs. Utah State: The Mean Green from Denton, TX own a win over Arkansas this year, which was their biggest win of the season,. The Aggies from Logan, UT almost beat Michigan State in their first game of the year, but they do down wins over BYU and Colorado State. All things being equal, we see no reason not to be taking the points. NORTH TEXAS
Cure Bowl – Tulane (-3.5) vs. Louisiana: These early bowl games betting-wise mostly depend on what team really wants to be playing. One thing we do know is that Tulane really wanted to be here. They made a big late drive vs. Navy in their last game of the season to score and then went for the two-point conversion to get the needed sixth win. TULANE
Las Vegas Bowl – Arizona State (+4) vs. Fresno State: The Sun Devils finished strong, winning four of their last five games, with that one loss coming against Oregon on the road,. They have played the much stronger schedule and will be well represented here in Vegas. Fresno also finished strong but the wins came vs. New Mexico, Hawaii, UNLV and San Jose State. ARIZONA STATE
New Orleans Bowl – Middle Tennessee vs. Appalachian State (-7): Regular bowler Appalachian State has won four straight bowl games the last four years. They own a good defense than can shut down Middle Tennessee. Penn State could only beat them by a late TD.
My good friend in New Orleans told me that fans have been rolling into town early to get a big head start in the Big Easy. APPALACHIAN STATE
Last week: 0-1