College Football

If I Ran the Bowl Games Redux

The bowl games have begun.  Some have been pretty darn good.  Others have been crap and almost unwatchable.  I love college football but I will reiterate what I have said since I started this blog: there are too many bowl games.  And the bigger problems are: calibre of teams in some of the games; the times of some of these games; and now, the potential first rounders in the next draft deciding not to play in them.

So something has to change.  And I came up with a solution last year.  And now I will revisit it this time around to see what we come up with.  So let’s go!

Let’s go over a few things first to refresh your memory or if you didn’t want to click the link in the previous paragraph.  First off, we have to eliminate some bowls.  It’s getting to the point that sponsors don’t even want to step up to support these bowl games so it’s time to cut the fat so to speak.  The following bowls are hereby eliminated:

  • Cure Bowl
  • Boca Raton Bowl
  • Idaho Potato Bowl
  • Bahamas Bowl
  • St. Petersburg Bowl
  • Heart of Dallas Bowl
  • Birmingham Bowl
  • Arizona Bowl

Hardly anyone will miss them.

I have fixed the times for some of the games.  No more pre-Christmas afternoon games.  That is absurd.  No one watches these things.  I would really like to know how many people, outside of fans/alumni of Tulsa and Central Michigan, watched the Miami Beach Bowl live two days ago.  My guess is very few.  I put it on the PVR and ended up watching like fifteen minutes of it because it was such a blowout.  Part of the ideas for bowl games is to give teams national audiences that some may not receive otherwise.

I have also moved a few games off of ESPN.  People, at least in this country, get pissed off when more and more of these bowl games are moved to the specialty pack.  And the way ESPN is losing viewers, it’s just a matter of time before some cable company decides to remove ESPN from any semblance of a basic package.  I know a lot will change in the next five years when it comes to college football on television (see Big Ten to FS1) so I am starting that now with this.

I have dropped bowl tie-ins.  Power Five conferences get five bowl tie-ins, the AAC, MWC, and C-USA get four, and the MAC and Sun Belt get three.  Then it’s at-large city.  It opens up the possibility for better matchups.   In addition this time around, I am including a reward for the G-5 teams.  Most G-5 conferences, the prize for winning your conference is sweet fuck all.  It doesn’t matter unless you are up for the New Year’s Six spot.  So I am including, this time around, the idea that all G-5 champs get their shot at a P-5 team.  Let them show what they’re made of in a national showcase game.  Some teams have broken barriers with this type of opportunity.  Call it the Boise State Protocol if you will.  It’s about as good a way to reward these conference champions.

Also, to truly qualify, you must win 7 games.  The bowls will only go to 6 win teams if they need more teams.  This takes out a lot of the mediocre games that we may end up seeing this season.

The final thing I would do is as follows: that 4-hour marathon crapfest show on ESPN would now truly become Selection Sunday.  The schedule would go as follows (if the show started at Noon):

  • Noon-12:05 – Introduction of hosts and panel
  • 12:05-12:30 – CFP Bowls filled and analysis
  • 12:30-1:00 – NY6 bowls filled and analysis
  • 1:00-2:00 – Tie-ins filled and analysis
  • 2:00-3:30 – Selection time! Bowls are selected in random order of selection that morning (to give bowl committees time to pick their teams).  At-large selections shown every couple of minutes.  Analysis can follow every pick and at the end of this timeslot.
  • 3:30-4:00 – Final analysis of bowl games

That would be a show I would watch.  It would be like CBS’s March Madness Selection Show except with a lot less Greg Gumbel and a lot more intrigue.

So, before we fill the at-large bids, this is what you would see:

January 9, 2017 8:30 CFP Championship ESPN Peach Winner Fiesta Winner
December 31, 2016 7:00 Fiesta Bowl ESPN CFP Poll #2 CFP Poll #3 #2 Clemson #3 Ohio State
December 31, 2016 3:00 Peach Bowl ESPN CFP Poll #1 CFP Poll #4 #1 Alabama #4 Washington
January 2, 2017 8:30 Sugar Bowl ESPN SEC #1 Big XII #1 #14 Auburn #7 Oklahoma
January 2, 2017 5:00 Rose Bowl ESPN Big Ten #1 Pac-12 #1 #5 Penn State #9 USC
January 2, 2017 1:00 Cotton Bowl ESPN CFP At-Large G-5 #1 #8 Wisconsin #15 Western Michigan
December 30, 2016 8:00 Orange Bowl ESPN ACC #1 CFP At-Large #11 Florida State #6 Michigan
January 7, 2017 1:00 Military Bowl ESPN ACC #5 American #1 #23 Pittsburgh #24 Temple
January 6, 2017 9:00 Foster Farms Bowl FOX MWC #1 Pac-12 #5 San Diego State Washington State
January 5, 2017 7:00 Pinstripe Bowl ABC at-large at-large
January 4, 2017 7:00 Liberty Bowl ESPN C-USA #4 at-large Middle Tennessee
January 3, 2017 7:00 TaxSlayer Bowl ESPN at-large ACC #3 Miami
January 2, 2017 12:00 Outback Bowl ABC SEC #4 Big Ten #3 Texas A&M Iowa
December 31, 2016 11:30 Citrus Bowl ESPN SEC #2 Big Ten #2 #17 Florida Nebraska
December 30, 2016 4:30 Music City Bowl ESPN SEC #5 C-USA #1 #21 Tennessee Western Kentucky
December 30, 2016 2:00 Sun Bowl CBS SEC #3 Big XII #4 #20 LSU Kansas State
December 29, 2016 9:00 Alamo Bowl FOX Pac-12 #2 Big XII #2 #10 Colorado #12 Oklahoma State
December 29, 2016 7:00 Belk Bowl ESPN at-large ACC #4 #22 Virginia Tech
December 28, 2016 9:00 Texas Bowl ABC at-large Big XII #3 #16 West Virginia
December 28, 2016 7:00 Russell Athletic Bowl ESPN at-large ACC #2 #13 Louisville
December 27, 2016 10:30 Cactus Bowl ESPN Sun Belt #1 Big XII #5 Arkansas State
December 27, 2016 7:00 Holiday Bowl ESPN Big Ten #4 Pac-12 #3 Minnesota #18 Stanford
December 26, 2016 8:00 Las Vegas Bowl ABC Pac-12 #4 at-large #19 Utah
December 26, 2016 5:00 Independence Bowl ESPN American #4 at-large Houston
December 26, 2016 1:30 Quick Lane Bowl ESPN MAC #1 Big Ten #5 Toledo
December 24, 2016 8:00 Hawaii Bowl ESPN MWC #4 American #2 New Mexico #25 Navy
December 24, 2016 4:30 Armed Forces Bowl ESPN MWC #2 at-large Boise State
December 23, 2016 8:00 Dollar General Bowl ESPN MAC #3 at-large Eastern Michigan
December 21, 2016 9:00 Poinsettia Bowl ESPN at-large MWC #3 Wyoming
December 20, 2016 7:30 Miami Beach Bowl CBSSN American #3 at-large USF
December 17, 2016 9:00 New Orleans Bowl ESPN C-USA #2 Sun Belt #2 Louisiana Tech Troy
December 17, 2016 5:30 Camellia Bowl ESPN MAC #2 Sun Belt #3 Ohio Appalachian State
December 17, 2016 2:00 New Mexico Bowl ESPN at-large C-USA #3 Old Dominion

The College Football Playoff and New Year’s Six would stay the same.  There are quite a few differences below that though:

  • The G-5 conference champion process will set up the following:
    • Temple (AAC champ) goes to the Military Bowl to face Pitt
    • San Diego State (MWC champ) plays Washington State in the Foster Farms Bowl
    • The Music City Bowl gets C-USA champ Western Kentucky and they face Tennessee
    • The Sun Belt champ (Arkansas State) and MAC #1 pick (Toledo since WMU is in the Cotton) are left hanging. The rule I would state is that these bowls MUST pick a P-5 team because both the Big XII and Big Ten did not have enough 7+ win teams to qualify.
  • That WKU-Tennessee match would be a very tasty one and I would venture to say is way better than WKU playing Memphis (as we saw) and possibly better than Tennessee playing Nebraska.
  • Getting rid of the riff-raff should create better bowl matchups. For instance, the Hawaii Bowl has New Mexico facing Navy.  So we would see 1,000 rushing yards and the game being over in just a hair over two hours.

So who’s left?  All those empty spots have to be filled.  Here’s the list of teams with at least seven wins that are waiting for their bowl spot: Georgia, Kentucky, Arkansas, North Carolina, Georgia Tech, BYU, Tulsa, Memphis, Air Force, Colorado State, Idaho.  Eleven teams.  This means five spots will be filled by teams with six wins.  The bowls can pick from any of the 6-win teams at any time during the process as long as no more than five teams are selected.  Now we start the random draw.  So I did this, at random, and this is what I came up with:

  • Cactus – Arkansas
  • TaxSlayer – Georgia
  • Pinstripe – BYU
  • Russell Athletic – Vanderbilt*
  • Liberty – Kentucky
  • Miami Beach – Georgia Tech
  • Quick Lane – Indiana*
  • New Mexico – Air Force
  • Armed Forces – Idaho
  • Belk – Memphis
  • Texas – UTSA*
  • Poinsettia – Tulsa
  • Pinstripe – North Carolina
  • Independence – TCU*
  • Dollar General – South Carolina*
  • Las Vegas – Colorado State

So after these selections this is what the new bowl schedule will look like:

January 9, 2017 8:30 CFP Championship ESPN Peach Winner Fiesta Winner
December 31, 2016 7:00 Fiesta Bowl ESPN CFP Poll #2 CFP Poll #3 #2 Clemson #3 Ohio State
December 31, 2016 3:00 Peach Bowl ESPN CFP Poll #1 CFP Poll #4 #1 Alabama #4 Washington
January 2, 2017 8:30 Sugar Bowl ESPN SEC #1 Big XII #1 #14 Auburn #7 Oklahoma
January 2, 2017 5:00 Rose Bowl ESPN Big Ten #1 Pac-12 #1 #5 Penn State #9 USC
January 2, 2017 1:00 Cotton Bowl ESPN CFP At-Large G-5 #1 #8 Wisconsin #15 Western Michigan
December 30, 2016 8:00 Orange Bowl ESPN ACC #1 CFP At-Large #11 Florida State #6 Michigan
January 7, 2017 1:00 Military Bowl ESPN ACC #5 American #1 #23 Pittsburgh #24 Temple
January 6, 2017 9:00 Foster Farms Bowl FOX MWC #1 Pac-12 #5 San Diego State Washington State
January 5, 2017 7:00 Pinstripe Bowl ABC at-large at-large BYU North Carolina
January 4, 2017 7:00 Liberty Bowl ESPN C-USA #4 at-large Middle Tennessee Kentucky
January 3, 2017 7:00 TaxSlayer Bowl ESPN at-large ACC #3 Georgia Miami
January 2, 2017 12:00 Outback Bowl ABC SEC #4 Big Ten #3 Texas A&M Iowa
December 31, 2016 11:30 Citrus Bowl ESPN SEC #2 Big Ten #2 #17 Florida Nebraska
December 30, 2016 4:30 Music City Bowl ESPN SEC #5 C-USA #1 #21 Tennessee Western Kentucky
December 30, 2016 2:00 Sun Bowl CBS SEC #3 Big XII #4 #20 LSU Kansas State
December 29, 2016 9:00 Alamo Bowl FOX Pac-12 #2 Big XII #2 #10 Colorado #12 Oklahoma State
December 29, 2016 7:00 Belk Bowl ESPN at-large ACC #4 Memphis #22 Virginia Tech
December 28, 2016 9:00 Texas Bowl ABC at-large Big XII #3 UTSA #16 West Virginia
December 28, 2016 7:00 Russell Athletic Bowl ESPN at-large ACC #2 Vanderbilt #13 Louisville
December 27, 2016 10:30 Cactus Bowl ESPN Sun Belt #1 Big XII #5 Arkansas State Arkansas
December 27, 2016 7:00 Holiday Bowl ESPN Big Ten #4 Pac-12 #3 Minnesota #18 Stanford
December 26, 2016 8:00 Las Vegas Bowl ABC Pac-12 #4 at-large #19 Utah Colorado State
December 26, 2016 5:00 Independence Bowl ESPN American #4 at-large Houston TCU
December 26, 2016 1:30 Quick Lane Bowl ESPN MAC #1 Big Ten #5 Toledo Indiana
December 24, 2016 8:00 Hawaii Bowl ESPN MWC #4 American #2 New Mexico #25 Navy
December 24, 2016 4:30 Armed Forces Bowl ESPN MWC #2 at-large Boise State Idaho
December 23, 2016 8:00 Dollar General Bowl ESPN MAC #3 at-large Eastern Michigan South Carolina
December 21, 2016 9:00 Poinsettia Bowl ESPN at-large MWC #3 Tulsa Wyoming
December 20, 2016 7:30 Miami Beach Bowl CBSSN American #3 at-large USF Georgia Tech
December 17, 2016 9:00 New Orleans Bowl ESPN C-USA #2 Sun Belt #2 Louisiana Tech Troy
December 17, 2016 5:30 Camellia Bowl ESPN MAC #2 Sun Belt #3 Ohio Appalachian State
December 17, 2016 2:00 New Mexico Bowl ESPN at-large C-USA #3 Air Force Old Dominion

A few games here that look a whole lot better and will be great for the media because it creates storylines like:

  • Mark Richt facing his former team in the TaxSlayer Bowl. Justin Fuente also facing his former team in the Belk Bowl.
  • Arkansas State getting their shot at big brother Arkansas. Same goes with Idaho facing Boise State.
  • Houston get an in-state battle against TCU.

These are just a few of the improvements I believe are being made here.  Plus the times make it so most of the games are on their own.  They get the national spotlight and when a game exceeds expectations, it can only mean good things for the teams involved and college football as a whole.  So can someone in power give me a call?  This idea is gold, Jerry…GOLD!

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s