Bowl season, glorious unimpeachable bowl season, is finally upon us!
With the petty squabbles of conference play behind us, we celebrate this most hallowed time of year, resplendent in its corporate tie-ins and shady back room deals. Lucky alums across this great nation now prepare to butt unfamiliar heads with ascot-sporting, strangely-accented counterparts from distant conferences.
Except for Louisiana Tech's alums
. They're still wondering what the hell happened.
Kicking off the bowl season with the seventh-annual Gildan New Mexico Bowl has become a tradition as American as gerrymandering, coming to work hungover, and apple pie. And we here at MyHOFS congratulate the Wildcats of Arizona and the Wolf Pack of Nevada as they usher in bowl season: a 35-piece nugget of piping hot football action.
Now let's head west, to the Land of Enchantment!
-Distance Traveled to Albuquerque:
1,020 for Nevada vs. 450 for Arizona
Gabriel Damon, the kid who played Spot Conlon in Newsies
, is a member of the Wolf Pack. The Wildcats counter with a strong showing of Wilson from Home Improvement
AND Craig T. Nelson
-You'll Be Surprised To Know:
The film "Mr Belvedere Goes to College
" was shot at Nevada's Reno campus.
-Brent Musberger says
: "This one's for all the low-cost activewear!"
The year was 1941. In October, Disney was about to release the film Dumbo, while workers in South Dakota were putting the final touches on Mt. Rushmore. The Germans were staging an all-out assault on Moscow. And the Universities of Arizona and Nevada played their last football game against one another. Oh, how the time flies by!
The 2012 season has been up and down for both programs. Nevada entered the third week of October with a one-point loss to South Florida as its only blemish amid a 6-1 start.
But shifty quarterback Cody Fajardo and his boy band good looks couldn’t float a porous defense forever, as it surrendered 197 points over its final five games while stumbling to 1-4. But a 7-5 record and a bowl invite has coach Chris Ault’s team looking to finish on a high note.
In Tucson, coach Rich Rodriguez returned the Wildcats to football relevance, as promised. Though his 7-5 record mirrors Ault’s, his program posted two impressive wins versus ranked opponents, demolishing Oklahoma State and besting USC behind the last second heroics of quarterback Matt “Puke ‘n Rally” Scott
Impressively, Nevada has played in a bowl game every year since 2005. Unimpressively, they have gone 2-5 in those games. Arizona has played in only three bowls since 1998, and coach Rodriguez’s lousy 2-4 bowl record doesn’t inspire a lot of confidence.
But Wildcat running back and 2013 Heisman hopeful Ka’Deem Carey is averaging 247 yards on the ground over his last three contests, and has finished with over 114 rushing yards in nine games this season, and scored in every game but one.
So while this may not be the bowl game either team envisioned going into the season, with the Wolf Pack’s suspect defense and a red-hot Carey getting plenty of touches, I like the Wildcats to score early and often on their way to victory.