Bowl-related timewasting lists: part the first!
This year was even worst than most. I spend nine months looking forward to the college football season -- especially since college basketball started going down the toilet in the early 'aughts; say, I sure hope the new rules preventing kids from jumping straight to the NBA improve the college game ... but I guess that's neither here nor there -- and then it finally gets here, and it's gone in the blink of an eye. I like to think that I enjoyed it as much as possible, but considering how shitty most of the Big Ten was, the 12:00/12:30 slot on ESPN and the Droppa became pointless to watch. Also, having a house now, there was housework. (I obviously get to keep my ManCard though, considering how many appletinis I devoured during OSU games. Dr. John Dorian would be proud.)
As a result, it seemed like this season, a hopefully historic one for the Bucks, flew by even faster than usual. Now we're almost to the Most Wonderful Time of the Year, and it seems like just yesterday I was fretting about the Texas game. *Sigh*. Anyway, what better way to waste time before the bowls than pointless lists? Maybe my fellow blogtributors could, um ... contribute ... their own after this, but since I'm so giddy about the bowls -- and the pick 'em -- I'm gonna list the top 10 bowl games I'm looking forward to...
1. National Championship: Florida vs. Ohio State
2. Sugar Bowl: Notre Dame vs. LSU
I'm trying to adjust to the reality that for as long as Chaz Weis is at Notre Dame and the BCS rules favor the Irish like no other team, the Domers are gonna be invited to play in prestigious big-money games that they have no business playing in. I guess I can take solace in the fact that Notre Dame probably couldn't have drawn a worse matchup for this game: LSU, with their man-beast pass rush and man-beastlier QB who also happens to be mobile and more than a little bit accurate in the throwing department. Oh, and it's a de facto home game for the Tigers. As Jeffy and I discussed last week, ND is probably gonna need at least three Patented Notre Dame Hilariously Fortuitous Turnovers just to keep this game reasonably close. As you can probably guess, I'm giddy. (Update: someone has the gall to hypothesize about an "anti-Notre Dame bias" in the Heisman voting. I'm pretty sure my brain just threw up.)(Update to the update: Brian at MGoBlog goes apeshit on the BGS post. Hilarity and head-nodding ensues.)
3. Fiesta Bowl: Boise State vs. Oklahoma
Intriguing in many ways: it's the last game out of six on New Year's day, right after the Rose Bowl (this was the slot occupied by the WVU-UGa game last year); Adrian Peterson is rumored to be coming back for the game, which, if he's planning on entering the draft this spring, would simply be an astonishingly bad decision (sidenote: I'm more interested than usual in this year's NFL draft, as I can't wait to see whose career the Lions are going to ruin by taking with the #1 pick. Will they go with conventional wisdom and take Quinn? Are they scared enough of Kevin Jones to roll the dice with the equally injury-prone Peterson? Or will they conform to the usual M.O. of the Millen Era and take Calvin Johnson? Pins and needles!); Lastly, this is the best chance yet that a "non-BCS" school has at giving the big boys a pop and earning some legitimate national respect, because, I mean, Utah annihilating a mediocre Pitt team meant next to nothing in the big scheme of things.
4. Rose Bowl: USC vs. Michigan
As just about everyone is saying, this just may be the battle for 2007 preseason #1. Not that it necessarily matters who wins, like "winner = #1, loser = #2." Everyone's just noticing that these two teams are pretty much guaranteed of each being top 3 in the preseason polls. And hey, they're playing! Plus there's the tradition and the Big 10/Pac 10 Rose Bowl and the yada. It's also the only BCS game that's still on ABC, so it'll be super-interesting to see which announcing team they stick on the gig. Will they go with the A-team of Musberger, Davie, and Herbie, the B-team of Nessler, Griese, and Maguire, or will they dig up Keith Jackson to babble incoherently and get facts wrong one last time in the Rose Bowl?
5. Capital One Bowl: Wisconsin vs. Arkansas
I haven't got a goddamn clue what's gonna happen in this game. How good is Wisconsin? Nobody knows. Will someone other than McFadden complete a pass for the Hogs against a (supposedly) great 'Sconsin pass D? Plus, Arkansas's trickerationified "single-wing from the shotgun" offense is always fun to watch. This game is driving me crazy in the pick 'em -- if Alvarez was still there, I'd take the Badgers in a heartbeat (Barry Alvarez with a month to prepare vs. a one-dimensional offensive team? Please), but as it is, your guess is as good as mine.
Next five, as I'm short on time:
6. Holiday Bowl: Texas A&M vs. Cal
Will the Pac 10 (and Cal, specifically) continue to roll over and piss in the air against adequate Big 12 teams? Cal's next win over a nonconference team that's actually legit will be their first.
7. Gator Bowl: Georgia Tech vs. West Virginia
White and Slaton vs. a stout GT run defense; Calvin Johnson vs. a terrible WVU pass D and Reggie Ball. Fascinating.
8. Meineke Car Care Bowl: Boston College vs. Navy
The most underrated power conference program, with seven straight bowl wins. Plus, I always try to go out of my way to catch Navy whenever I can. Flexbone, bitches!
9. Las Vegas Bowl: Oregon vs. BYU
Your guess is as good as mine. Should be a lot of points, though.
10. Cotton Bowl: Nebraska vs. Auburn
Two good teams. Two mild disappointments. Who finishes the season on a high note, in one of the worst facilities in the country?
Questions? Comments? Complaints? Observations?