Not having watched many bowl selection shows (but just about every March Madness one), I figured the program for the day would go something like the basketball one.
You know, the brackets get released, comments are made, and the show moves along at a brisk pace.
The football version was like four hours in a dentist chair.
Beat the same dead horse about the relative merits of the top six Power 5 teams for over an hour, rehashing pretty much the same arguments that we’ve heard over the last month or so.
As Deion Sanders might say, “C’mon Man!”
This was my favorite tweet at the time:
I give 0 shits about who is making the College Football Playoff… all I wanna know is who will Temple be SPANKING this year in our bowl game.
— Maddie (Super Bowl III) McDonald (@h00psmaddie) December 2, 2018
A better show would have been to build up to the championship talk by listing every non-NY6 bowl game and keep the thing moving along. People would have waited for the Final 4 discussion later on and teams like Temple and Duke would have got the information they wanted up front.
I put down the remote at about 1:05 and headed for the gym, periodically checking my phone for twitter updates.
The winner for the first “Temple vs. Duke” pick was college football reporter Brett McMurphy, who tweeted that Independence Bowl matchup at 4:38 p.m. The first Owlscoop.com tweet confirming that came across at 4:51.
As far as the game itself, it will be a made-for-TV affair on Thursday, Dec. 27 (1:30 p.m. kickoff). The only people in bars watching it will be fans of either team who took the day off or just plain alcoholics who occasionally look up at the TV while passing out at the bar.
Not very many Temple fans will be able to make it nor should they be blamed for it. There are no direct flights from Philadelphia to Shreveport. The cheapest indirect flight I could find was $700 with a layover in Atlanta.
Temple would have drawn roughly 6-10K real fans to the Military Bowl, but because that bowl did not want any repeat teams from the last three years they picked Cincinnati instead. Cincy won’t bring more than 1,000 to D.C., if that. VT will pack the place so the MB probably won’t need Cincy’s fan support.
A lot of Temple fans would have been willing to spend that coin for a flight to Texas to face Baylor in the Frisco, Texas or Armed Forces Bowl but that opportunity went out the window when Oklahoma made the playoffs. The Big 12 didn’t have enough teams to fill their bowl affiliations and that was that.
As far as the game itself, Duke is a team to be respected but I expect Temple will be a slight favorite. Duke lost its last two games and was beaten, 59-7, by Wake Forest in its last game. Still, the Blue Devils beat two ranked teams–Army and Northwestern–and that’s one more ranked team than the Owls were able to beat.
Beat a team that beat Northwestern and Army and the Owls will take a lot of momentum into the 2019 season so coach Geoff Collins’ goal should be to go light on the air hockey, beach volleyball and bowling and heavy on the game prep.
After all, Duke did beat Baylor, so beating Duke would be the next best thing and give the Owls transitive property bragging rights when Collins gets on the horn with Matt Rhule.
The Baylor fan base looks a little less diverse than ours. 🙂
Wednesday: Atlanta Closure
Friday: The Elephant In The Room
Monday: An Argument That Cannot Be Won
Wednesday: Comparing Seasons
Friday: Swapping the Bowls Out Fidrych-Style