OT: Wow, Pac-12 bowl tie-ins are terrible

Submitted by iawolve on December 9th, 2013 at 11:58 AM

I was scanning the bowl match ups with the Pac-12 winner, Stanford, obviously going to the Rose this year for a New Year's Day game. That is a distinction that none of the other big names were able to claim. Here are some of the other "big" games with ranked teams and 8-4 Washington


#10 Oregon (10-2): Alamo Bowl Dec 30th

#14 ASU  (10-3): Holiday Bowl Dec 30th

#17 UCLA (9-3): Sun Bowl Dec 31st

#25 USC (9-4): Las Vegas Bowl Dec 21st

Washington (8-4): Fight Hunger Bowl Dec 27th


We have 3 NYD games and the Orange Bowl in addition to the other games. Delany owns Larry Scott in this aspect for some reason.




December 9th, 2013 at 12:36 PM ^

always watch the Sun Bowl. It is one of my favorite Bowl Games, along with the Holiday Bowl, so I guess I kind of disagree with the OP, and with everybody.

But I still watch Army v. Navy every year so I guess I am kind of old school.


December 9th, 2013 at 12:03 PM ^

Most of the lower-tier NYD games are in the east, and I don't imagine Florida is a particularly attractive winter vacation for fans living in California or Arizona. I can see why they'd rather tie themselves to bowls in California and Nevada and West Texas.

MI Expat NY

December 9th, 2013 at 12:37 PM ^

And, conversely, the Florida bowls would rather select fan bases from the eastern half of the U.S. and those to whom a little Florida sun sounds great come January 1st.

Did the Pac 10 also have a Rose Bowl only policy for a while?  That and the relative lack of FBS schools west of the rockes would explain why there aren't good secondary bowl games in the Pac 12's home turf.  

Bando Calrissian

December 9th, 2013 at 12:06 PM ^

As bad as that 2005 game was, the Alamo Bowl was an absolutely fantastic trip. They do a top-notch job putting on a really, really great event. When it was a B1G tie-in, pretty much every team that went came back saying it was the best-run bowl game outside of the Rose Bowl. 

Yet because it's not a January 1, it gets treated like a dumpster fire.


December 9th, 2013 at 12:16 PM ^

Agreed.  This whole January 1st games for the B1G are awful.  Give it to the Rose and mayble one other bowl.  As it happens, I can usually only end up watching one team play (as they have lately put all the games on at the same time!).  I'm either driving to a location to watch a team play or driving back, which ends up making me miss the other B1G games.  As a conference, we need to get over this Jan 1st love-affair.  It's stupid.  I'd much rather watch the B1G games on three seperate days than only be able to catch one on Jan 1st.


December 10th, 2013 at 1:41 AM ^

but I thought the Big Ten games on NY's Day used to be more staggered in their start times so you could watch most of the games.  Now, with the exception of the Rose Bowl they all seem to start at the same time so you have to constantly flip between games.


December 9th, 2013 at 12:06 PM ^

Obviously biased here, but Sun Bowl is an underrated bowl. Sells out regularly, gets good CBS TV ratings as well. Its a good precursor to New Year's Eve plans both here and around the country on TV.


December 9th, 2013 at 12:08 PM ^

Pac12 bowls are on the West Coast and likely will be the only game on at that time.   Seems like Larry Scott favors "home" advantage over New Years Day.  Plus Cap1 and Outback bowls are overrated.  I'd rather be playing in Pasadena.  Hopefully Jan 1, 2015.


December 9th, 2013 at 12:21 PM ^

for the most part, Pac-12 teams don't travel that well, and in addition, most aren't a great draw on TV either.

In you're on a bowl committee, you want to make sure you're getting teams that hopefully travel well and will bring viewer to the TV. 



December 9th, 2013 at 12:53 PM ^

I think it's a conspiracy to keep us happy about our mediocrity. Playing on Jan 1 for the Big Ten has traditionally meant you have had a successful season. Therefore, bowls that are not as prestigious try to get theirs on that day to up fan interest.

I'm only partially joking.


December 9th, 2013 at 1:02 PM ^

Anyone have a link to a site where we can see the new bowl alignments for next year?

I know there are some major changes happening, but I can't seem to find out what they are (other than the playoff obviously). 


December 9th, 2013 at 8:31 PM ^

Their top-3 are Alamo, Holiday and Sun in that order.  Compare that to Capital One, Outback and BWW (or Gator, if you prefer) and ours is far better.  

Compare our opponents vs theirs:

#9 South Carolina (Cap 1) vs. NR Texas (Alamo)

#16 LSU (Outback) vs. NR Texas Tech (Holiday)

#22 Georgia (Gator) vs. NR Virginia Tech (Sun)

Outside of Stanford, every Pac-12 team plays an unranked bowl opponent.  That shows you how poor their bowl tie-ins are.  You can say how great you think those bowls are, but their #2 bowl (Holiday) picked a Big-12 team that finished behind our BWW Bowl opponent.


December 9th, 2013 at 2:17 PM ^

Capital One: Likely vs. SEC
Outback: Likely vs. SEC
Holiday: vs. Pac-12  NICE LOCATION
Gator/Music City (rotating tie-in): Likely vs. SEC 
Kraft Fight Hunger: vs. Pac-12  ANYONE WANT TO GO TO SAN FRANCISCO?
Heart of Dallas/Armed Forces: Opponents TBA
New Detroit Bowl: Likely vs. ACC  AT LEAST WE WOULD BE CLOSE TO HOME



December 9th, 2013 at 8:34 PM ^

I agree that those are great tie-ins.  Two CA bowls is great because there are so many Big Ten alumni on the West Coast and so many of the Pac-12 teams travel poorly anyway.  If Michigan played in the Holiday or Kraft Fight Hunger bowls against almost any Pac-12 team, we'd have 2/3 of the stadium, I bet.  


December 9th, 2013 at 2:27 PM ^

one of the best bowls, period.  San Diego -- a great place to go over New Year's, and you can make it up to watch the Rose, if you want.

Dates really don't matter any more, in my opinion.  It used to.  But, now, with games well after the 1st, it's sort ot lost its meaning.


December 9th, 2013 at 4:03 PM ^

I gotta admit, I was very confused when I saw Oregon was in the Alamo Bowl, I even had to check ESPN to make sure they hadn't lost an additional 2 or 3 games when I wasn't paying attention...


December 9th, 2013 at 5:00 PM ^

Some of these might not be bad games for the Pac-12, in my opinion. In most of these, I would think the Pac-12 teams is the favored team. In the Holiday Bowl, I would go with ASU over Texas Tech and I would think UCLA is favored in the Sun Bowl by maybe a score, going off instinct there. I imagine Oregon stands a decent chance of beating Texas too. 



December 9th, 2013 at 6:29 PM ^

  • Washington St. -14 1/2 over Colorado St.
  • USC -12 1/2 over Fresno St.
  • Oregon St. -4 1/2 over Boise St.
  • Washington -8 over BYU
  • Oregon -11 1/2 over Texas
  • Arizona St. -18 over Texas Tech
  • Arizona -9 1/2 over Boston College
  • UCLA -11 over Virginia Tech
  • Stanford -2 1/2 over Michigan St.

Favored in all nine games, by more than a TD in all but two.

They're probably happy with the matchups.


December 9th, 2013 at 8:38 PM ^

But that's the result of the whole thesis of the OP - that the Pac-12 has terrible bowl tie-ins.  They have a total of 1 ranked bowl opponent, and 4 bowl opponents from non-BCS conferences (almost half).  

Wanna know why they aren't so happy about those match-ups?  Because they'll get about half the money the Big Ten will.  


December 9th, 2013 at 8:57 PM ^

B1G $49,600,000

PAC $28,531,250

It's true that the B1G's auxiliary bowls pay out better than the PAC's, but the big difference isn't the tie-ins but the fact that one conference has one BCS bowl this year and the other has two. If Oregon had been taken for the Sugar instead of Oklahoma the PAC's total would be $44,881,250, about 10% less than the B1G.


December 9th, 2013 at 9:03 PM ^

Obviously a big part of that is from the BCS bowls, but when you take them out completely, the Big Ten bowls pay much better.  Also, that number is distorted some because the Pac-12 has 9 bowl eligible teams to our 7.  Take out their last two bowls, and compare all non-BCS bowl revenue, and that would be the fair comparison between our tie-ins and theirs.


December 9th, 2013 at 9:06 PM ^

And I kind of addressed this below, but the Pac-12 will always have a tough time getting a second BCS bowl when there is other good competition because they don't draw well nationally.  The last few years they've had two because their second team was a no-brainer (the previous 3 years their second highest ranked team was #4, #5, and #6).  But when their second best team is a 2 loss, borderline team, the bowls will take the bigger name and usually that's not a Pac-12 team.  


December 9th, 2013 at 5:17 PM ^

Remember, bowls are all about travel destinations -- the games are just ads/sideshows for that. The Pac-12 has:

- San Antonio, San Diego, El Paso, Las Vegas, San Francisco.

Four of those are Top 10 in the nation tourist destinations in terms of popularity. El Paso is not as popular, but I'm sure it also has its charms.

Meanwhile, the B1G stuipdly ovlerlaps its bowls on New Year's Day.

So I'm sure the Pac-12 is just fine with its bowls.


December 9th, 2013 at 8:42 PM ^

That's not true at all.  The bowls are primarily about TV revenue, just like regular season games.  Do you think the Big Ten championship game made more money off of attendance or TV revenue?  It's not even close.  

I agree that the destinations work well for the Pac-12.  But look at the match-ups.  Outside of the Rose Bowl (which, duh) there isn't a single interesting bowl match-up on there (except maybe Oregon-Texas).  Do you think the nation is going to get excited to tune in to watch USC-Fresno St?  How about Arizona St-Texas Tech?  UCLA-VT sure isn't going to move the needle.  


December 13th, 2013 at 3:47 PM ^

If bowls are primarily about TV revenue, why do they require all these schools to buy 7500 - 15000 tickets? These bowls were literally founded 20-80 years ago by local chambers of commerce (or their spin-offs) to get people to various, sunny locales during December. Football is a sideshow.

Now, in the last 10 years, a few bowls have been started by networks eager for programming. But just look at the websites of the bowls, http://www.sunbowl.org/

- You see "BUY TICKETS", "PARKING INFO" and "STAY IN EL PASO" - you don't even see what network the game is on listed. The primary sponsor of the page is "It's All Good. El Paso."

There's a reason 95% of bowls are in tourist (or at least warm) destinations. They are designed to fill hotels and restaurants.