Remember how great it was when there were only four bowl games and they were all played on New Year’s Day? After a night of singing Auld Lang Syne you could just sit on the couch with your feet up and take in a little football.
There was the Rose Bowl, Orange Bowl, Sugar Bowl and the Cotton Bowl. Truth be known, the Sun Bowl is older than the Cotton Bowl, but it is played in El Paso and has never made it big like the other four.
Now, how many do we have? It’s 40 or 41, depending on whether the BCS Championship Game is considered a bowl game. They don’t call it a bowl game, but BCS stands for “Bowl Championship Series.” I still don’t know. There were so many bowl games this year that Nebraska got invited with a losing record (5 wins and 7 losses).
And the names of bowl games are wild. Some that struck my fancy include the Taxslayer Bowl, The Popeyes Bahamas Bowl and the Buffalo Wild Wings Citrus Bowl. That got me thinking about what the future might hold. How about the I Can’t Believe Its Not Butter Bowl; or simply the Chiquita Banana Bowl? I wonder if we will ever get to the point where a university refuses to play a bowl game because its name is so ridiculous? Not a chance!
A friend of mine, Chet Young, set up a bowl game pool. You had to select the winners, considering the spread and different games had different point values depending on the importance of the game. I selected my winners, and sent them to Chet. I added a note that said, “This is a piece of cake.”
I lost five of the first eight games and then it went down hill. Gee whiz. I started really feeling badly for the teams I had selected. I felt like my selection had cursed them. There is an old saying, “If you can’t be good, be lucky.” I couldn’t seem to be either.
Chet came out with a pool for the NFL playoffs. I passed for some reasons more obvious that others. I now realize that picking winners was somebody else’s piece of cake.
More importantly, I had a horse in the race. I would have conjured up all kinds of ways to get the Redskins to the Super Bowl. Silly? You bet, but that’s what you do. If we beat Green Bay and the Seahawks beat the Vikings, then we go to Arizona and the Seahawks go to Carolina. Under this strange tortured scenario, we beat the Cardinals and the Seahawks beat the Panthers. Now the NFC championship games is being played in Washington, DC (really Landover Maryland). I wasn’t sure we could beat the Seahawks, but at least we would have home field advantage.
Now, looking back at the playoffs, I would have gotten one out of five NFC playoff games right. And, the only game I got right required the Viking kicker to miss a chip shot. I don’t think I would have made a very good river boat gambler. All of us should stick to what we do well. Isn’t that right Pete Rose?
Written by PJ Rice at www.ricequips.com