43 Bowl games next year? Bowls for 66% of D1 FBS schools

Submitted by The Mad Hatter on April 3rd, 2015 at 8:36 AM

I heard this on the radio yesterday and I thought it was a little insane.  Four cities have applied to the NCAA to host bowl games for next season.  If all are approved the total number of bowl games could be as high as 43.

20 years ago there were 18 bowl games.

Personally, I'm not fond of 6-6 teams playing in the "Valvoline Nobody Cares Bowl".  I think at least having a winning record should be required for post-season play.





April 3rd, 2015 at 8:41 AM ^

It really waters down the meaningfulness of making a bowl game. On the other hand, I'm sure all the athletes that would not normally make a bowl game would love the experience. So I suppose I don't really mind having a ton because it's a positive for the athletes, plus I'm not watching these types of bowls anyway.


April 3rd, 2015 at 9:00 AM ^

This is what I never understand. People rage against how little athletes "get" for their hard work but then we begrudge two 6-6 teams getting a free trip to Hawaii or Vegas or somewhere. The fact you or I don't want to watch the "Valvoline No Name Bowl" is completely inconsequential. 

I wish people who rant about too many bowl games framed the issue honestly: "I don't want some kids getting a free trip somewhere and a swag bag and an experience they may not otherwise be able to have because I am a complete degenerate who is unable to control myself from watching a football game I don't want to see."

The Mad Hatter

April 3rd, 2015 at 9:15 AM ^

that saying "I'm not fond of" counts as ranting, but that's neither here nor there.  My point is that getting to play in a bowl game used to be something special.  An honor that was bestowed upon winners.

Now a bowl game amounts to a participation trophy.  The number of BS bowls played waters down the prestige of the big bowls.  


April 3rd, 2015 at 10:05 AM ^

I'm sorry if this comes off as rude, but that's complete garbage. The Rose Bowl is not watered down by the existance of the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl. You don't believe that; no one believes that.

Anyone who cannot make an intellectual distinction between a major bowl game and a "participation trophy" bowl game has problems. "Too many bowl games" is not a negative for any player ever, only for message board commentees.


April 3rd, 2015 at 10:19 AM ^

But......he just disagrees with you and stated his reasoning without insulting you. He even said he wasn't trying to be rude. Isn't that the type of discussion we want on this board? No need to insult someone because you disagree on a certain topic.


April 3rd, 2015 at 10:53 AM ^

He impied that Slago is a degenerate incapable of controlling himself, then he labeled Hatter's opinion "complete garbage" and suggested he is a liar who is too stupid to make the "intellectual distinction" between bowl games.  That's kinda the definition of rude.


April 3rd, 2015 at 11:11 AM ^

It has nothing to do with Mad Hatter. I have no idea what the guy is like. His argument, however, is junk. He argument against more bowl games consists of exactly two points: (1) he is not fond of it/doesn't want to see them, and (2) more bowl games makes the Rose Bowl less special. His second point is so ridiculously insane, that I maintain he, nor any other sane person (of which he seems to be one) cannot actually believe it, they're just having an especially sanctimonious SPORTS HOT TAKE. 

His first issue is easily rectified by not watching it. There are all sorts of things on TV I don't like. I don't watch them; I don't think they shouldn't exist. That is how a reasonable person deals with that situation. If some hypothetical person -- Mad Hatter or otherwise -- has such a compulsion to watch college football that they cannot avoid watching a bowl game they don't want to see, that hypothetical person has issues.


April 3rd, 2015 at 11:21 AM ^

For example: I hate NASCAR. I think NASCAR is the stupidest thing in the history of the world. I have no idea how anyone could find watching it entertaining. I, therefore, do not watch NASCAR. 

I do NOT say NASCAR shouldn't exist. I don't think NASCAR shouldn't be televised. I don't argue that ESPN showing NASCAR highlights somehow makes the Indianapolis 500 less special. If I did, people would be like, "whoa, that's nuts, settle down." But that's the entirety of the argument against more bowl games. Kids on a mediocre football team shouldn't get to experience a bowl game and get some of their only (NCAA legalized) reward for their hard work because the mere existance of a third-tier bowl game is an affront to the sensibilities of someone sitting on their couch at home. Uh, that's nuts, settle down.

EDIT: I also, for the record, was AGREEING with Slago in his initial post. He said: "So I suppose I don't really mind having a ton because it's a positive for the athletes, plus I'm not watching these types of bowls anyway." Which is entirely my argument. 


April 3rd, 2015 at 8:55 AM ^

If fans watch and the bowl & teams make money fine. If not, the bowls will go out of business.

Personally, I generally like watching any CFB, so am good with more Bowl Games.


April 3rd, 2015 at 8:57 AM ^

So, basically if the trend continues unabated, I shall turn on my television one day around Christmas and see "The Clorox Bowl Presented By One Hour Martinizing", at which point I shall turn off the television and drink until New Year's Eve or so. I will be intrigued to see how many bowls actually occur before someone realizes that bowl season has jumped the shark. 

rob f

April 3rd, 2015 at 9:02 AM ^

and way way too many empty seats. I've seen Rocket Football games with more fans than the attendance at some of the bowl games the last few years.

M Go Cue

April 3rd, 2015 at 9:03 AM ^

At that time of year I will take all the football I can possibly get. Bowl games are mostly just exhibitions anyways so what the hell. Load it up!


April 3rd, 2015 at 9:03 AM ^

I couldn't agree more. These are student athletes, and in football especially, most of them will graduate and do something else. Why are we begrudging allowing these students to have some additional fun and an experience they can carry with them for the rest of their life.

Yes, I know: big businesses making money, blah blah, but if the students are having fun and the schools want to participate, who cares?


April 3rd, 2015 at 11:54 AM ^

I agree.  Just because something makes money doesn't make it bad.  You know what makes money?  Hamburgers.  Lots of places sell hamburgers "just to make money" and you know what?  I love hamburgers.  

The reasons bowls make money is because people like to watch them.  At a time when college football is about to be over for7-8 months, we get a few more games.  And a few more teams get to take free trips to somewhere different.  I really don't see why this is bad.

Does it "water down" or "de-value" the other bowls?  No.  Having a 43rd bowl does not make winning the Orange Bowl any less important to the team that wins it.  


April 3rd, 2015 at 9:09 AM ^

I don't think it diminishes the value at all.  It's fairly understood which are "good" bowls and which are not.  So more teams will play in a game you might not watch, so what?

Pretty much anytime we are given the choice more football or less football I'll pick the former.


April 3rd, 2015 at 9:48 AM ^

I wouldn't care if all the teams played postseason, its a CFB game. Like the early season non conference schedule, it's fun to watch your team play against a school or conference you normally wouldn't be matched up against. I watch the games I find entertaining, skip the others, whether early or postseason.

I don't buy that they're "meaningless" exhibitions. Most early season games are gimmies. Sure, your team can get upset, but big upsets are rare. At least the bowl games tend to have some interesting matchups.

And how is a major bowl any more "meaningful" than the toilet bowl? Either way, your team's not playing for a NC.

Do I get more revved up when my Huskers are playing for a conference title or major bowl game? Sure, but I wanted them to beat Southern Cal last in last year's bowlgame.


April 3rd, 2015 at 11:59 AM ^

Agreed.  I wouldn't have a problem if every single team played in a bowl.  I wouldn't watch all of them, but I already don't do that.  I would watch some of them though - maybe because it's a local team I've somewhat followed or because a kid from my high school is on the team or because I just happen to be home and it's on TV.  I've watched a lot of no name bow games over the years and sometimes they're great games.  What's wrong with having a few more of those?


April 3rd, 2015 at 9:15 AM ^

Great. Fans only get to watch their team play 12 games normally. Now more get to watch 13. As a fan of college football, personally I'll watch some random bowl game if I turn it on. Sure beats whatever other crap is on tv that time of year.


April 3rd, 2015 at 9:21 AM ^

example of the tail wagging the dog.  Lure of money and destination towns wanting to boost tourism dollars.   It's insane and too much of a good thing.  I watch the lesser games only because I am in a bowl pool and want to keep tally.  My wife makes comments like why are you watching Witchaweeny tech against Hobokan U?  Good question and I don't have an answer. 


April 3rd, 2015 at 9:27 AM ^

I personally love having a lot of bowl games because it's more football and I'll take that any day but I do have to admit that it's getting a little out of hand. But I don't want to see an insane drop off back down to 20 or so as that's 20 less football games I get to watch every year.


April 3rd, 2015 at 9:48 AM ^

These games would be more watchable if the atmospheres were better. Part of what separates college football from shitty NFL games is the great atmospheres. These shitty bowl games with shitty teams have about 3,000 people in attendance and that just makes it boring to watch. Now, clearly the people who are fans of any of the teams in the game will have fun watching, but as a neutral observer, the games with tiny crowds at terrible NFL stadiums are unwatchable - and that sucks because I love college football more than any sport.


April 3rd, 2015 at 10:02 AM ^

Expand the playoffs. They can still keep the 1,000 damn bowl games if they want, I don't watch 99% of them anyway.

Any bowl game that is not directly involved in determining the National Champion amounts to an exhibition game.


April 3rd, 2015 at 10:04 AM ^

On the one hand, nothing wrong with more football.  On the other, adding bowls with crappy attendance generally means more costs for the schools to subsidize (required ticket allocations to sell etc.) which I don't think is a good thing.


April 3rd, 2015 at 10:16 AM ^

128 teams in FBS last year.  Subtract UAB but add Charlotte, and we're still at 128 in 2015.  

Anyway, that would mean one Bowl game for everybody!!!  Which city and Bowl game last year would have got stuck with 1-11 Georgia State vs. 1-11 SMU?  Or 1-10 Idaho vs. 2-10 Eastern Michigan?


April 3rd, 2015 at 10:50 AM ^

Count me in with the people who don't have a problem with it.  It's a reward for the players, many of whom come from poor backgrounds and wouldn't otherwise get a chance to travel to some of these places.  I do however think those bowl games should have to guarantee a minimum level of compensation/profit to the schools.  If a bunch of sponsors for a bowl game want to lose money that's their choice, but schools shouldn't have to lose money to attend a game.

If we're really going to stand behind the principle of bowl games meaning something important we might as well go back to the days when only one B1G team could go to a bowl game but I doubt anyone here would want that either.


April 3rd, 2015 at 11:20 AM ^

and I'm cool with it.  More teams play other teams in matchups we'd probably never see otherwise. 

There's probably some economic reason not to do it, but I'm alright with more football.