There has been a lot of hatred slung at bowl games this year, with none receiving more scorn than tonight's Beef 'O' Brady's Bowl (formerly the St. Petersburg Bowl).
Maybe people are just put off by the subpar swill O'Brady's slings, but the hatred is misguided.
Often the hatred comes because there is no tradition in a bowl like the Beef 'O' Brady's. Or the New Era Pinstripe Bowl. Or the TicketCity Bowl. Or the Kraft Bowl.Many people who complain about bowls like these rail about how they have no tradition and thus have no merit. When they do so, it's as if bowl games of the past were held to some high esteem.
Apparently today you're not getting the pageantry of the 1951 Salad Bowl where Miami of Ohio beat up Arizona State 34-21. What about the epic Mercy Bowl in 1961 where Fresno State put up 36 to Bowling Green's 6? Or the 1989 Freedom Bowl with Washington topping Florida 34-7? Classics!
The same people complaining about bowls like these are the same ones asking for a playoff.
That's fine, but in 2010 there's no problem with these teams playing in bowl games. Who cares if they're 6-6 or 7-5? You're complaining in the first place because you like college football. Tear away the silly name and ignore the dumb commercials and this is just a college football game.
In fact, tonight's college football game (which happens to be a bowl), could be a good one with Southern Mississippi taking on Louisville. It's a rivalry game and the 29th time the two schools will meet.
It's two former coaching partners at Florida in Louisville's Charlie Strong and SoMiss' Larry Fedora.
It's an offensive team (SoMiss) against a defensive team (Louisville).
Heck, it's two teams that had a dance contest. And then got into a fight afterward.
For us NFL Draft nerds, it's a chance to watch one of the nation's best cornerbacks in Louisville's Johnny Patrick possibly matchup with former blue chip recruit DeAndre Brown of Southern Miss. It's also another chance to watch Louisville power runner Bilal Powell, who has a great back story.
It's something to do on a cold Tuesday night when you really should be wrapping gifts poorly.
It's a plausible reason to drink on a weekday night, and that's reason enough for me. It's the Beef 'O' Brady Bowl, dammit, and lets all watch it.