Thanksgiving Left-Overs by Bob Ryan

 college bowl gamesWe’ve all been there…..the Thanksgiving meal loads us down but the there is still an abundant amount of leftovers….doesn’t mean it was bad…just too much…..eventually we get to them…some stay good longer than others…likewise we also have some left-overs in the sports world…..


….rumor has it….. now that Chip Kelly’s win total has dropped each of the last 2 NFL years, his highly touted offense is sputtering, his players keep him at “arm’s length”…that he’s interested in returning back to college…did I hear you say “USC”…where he did most of his recruiting while at coaching previously at Oregon in the Pac 10—12–14—18–20…whatever it is


…with the 1-pt kicking conversion down to 94.7% in the NFL this year…teams like the Packers (3 of 4), Steelers (5 of 7), San Diego (2 of 3), in 2-point conversions should consider doing it each and every time….think how that’d change the strategy for the opposition if you maintain those percentages of 2 point conversions and score 8 points instead of 7 on a regular basis


….Do these college basketball coaches really think that taking their team “on the road” for 1 or 2 games over Thanksgiving is the best for their players…come on…the players already play 12 months a year…can’t you give them one of the biggest family Holidays at HOME …..Where they belong?


…if journeyman lefthander AJ Happ signs with Toronto for 3 years, $36mil …what’s a real pitcher going to seek….go ahead David Price…open that wallet even wider to hold all the cash that’ll be thrown your way..btw..Price has already reached his apex as a pitcher…he’s started the inevitable slide that touches all players…yet …teams will carry the treasure chest to him to sign


….the Bears upset win over Green Bay brought some thoughts to mind….the best part of the game was halftime….ya know the time when you usually “duck out” to go bathroom, get food, see if your wife went shopping, check on the dog, make sure the house isn’t burning down, look at the weather, etc…anyway seeing Bart Starr “welcome” Bret Favre into the GB HOF…or whatever they call it…brought back memories with both guys….apparently Starr had to really work hard physically to take that ride around the track..his ride brought back memories of the MAN’s final ride around Busch to me……other thoughts….GB receivers can’t get open….the Rammies showed the league that a cover 1 (i.e. m/m on each wide rec with 1 Free safety) severely bottles up the Packers…..btw…we saw the 3 best QB in the long history of Green Bay on the field on the same night…


….sports fans must REALLY be perverted….most that I know really enjoy football games played in the rain, wind, snow…anything out of the ordinary…sure it demolishes most offensive strategy but there is a different feel about the game…the Baylor-TCU game was one of those played in the pouring rain throughout the 2nd half of the game…these prolific scoring teams were 14-14 after a slow rain during the 1st quarter …after that…it was punt, punt, punt, punt….yada-yada-yada…yet was still entertaining as TCU won in 2-OT


….with all my years of high school coaching, I can’t ignore the MSHSAA football championship weekend… no particular order

… about Valle Catholic (Ste Genevieve)….won their 14th title in Class 1….steeped in tradition, the Warriors are coached by a Valle grad….don’t spell it Valley or they’ll be after ur head J …I haven’t been following the Warriors long (probably 10-12 years) but it always seems to be the same family names who are sons, grandsons, nephews of players of decades ago….congrats (again!)

…. John Burroughs ALWAYS seems to have a very high win total each year…this year they upended Odessa 30-6 to win their 9th championship in the Class 3 title game

….although they fell one game short…congrats to CBC & Chaminade …both from the MCC who fell in the Championship game…particular kudos to CBC the 2014 champion… where I taught/coached for 21 years –so I’m a biased….. who have been led by Coach Scott Pingel to new heights during his tenure as head coach…a tremendous coach but even a better person


…while I’m on the HS turf…it is assumed that in the 6 classes of football that the champion of Class 2 is better than 1; 3 better than 2..etc….why not offer the opportunity to any school (probably like Valle) who want to move up a classification to get more of a challenge or a better gauge on their skill level to do it? It would require…in my mind…that the ALL of the school’s teams move up a classification and the smallest school in the class above them would move down to the smaller classification. Each 2 year rotation, the school could reevaluate its status. Maybe a school wants more of a challenge in basketball, soccer, baseball….just a thought


..…Bears Coach John Fox’s gum chewing is from the same school as Pete Carroll…..dump in 3 packs of gum and chew in elongated , extended bites while vigorously using your jaws and cheeks in those wide bites …I guess so the gum doesn’t get stuck together?..anyway….do it as if you’re getting ready to swallow it and do it for each moment of the game…or at least when the camera is on you J However….Fox can coach…give him his due…


….I hardly follow the NBA…probably can’t name more than 10 players but….Golden State’s 18-0 record to start the season just jumps out at you…they have a 9 game lead in the division and we aren’t in December yet! Super-shooter Stephen Curry has the sweetest, longest J around. The NBA record of 33 consecutive wins is held by the LA Lakers. That team had some very famous basketball names…coached by Bill Sharman with a 35 year old Wilt Chamberlain, 2 slick shooting guards called Gail Goodrich and Jerry West. Those Lakers started their streak on Nov 5 (10th game of the year) and didn’t lose again until Jan 9 in Milwaukee..To a team with the great Oscar Robertson and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar..and went on to capture the NBA title. This record is really stunning when you consider the nightly game-game-game in one city and then the next.


….I’ve heard of riding the same horse….but Bama Coach Nick Saban went too far in his 29-13 win over arch-rival-Auburn….every running play for the Crimson Tide in the 4th quarter was carried by star running back—Derrick Henry.. .Henry lugged the ball 46x for 271 yards..including the last 16 consecutive running plays….ya know…sometimes coaches try to “fool” the opponent too often…. The longer I coached football….the less I “fooled” people (and myself)


….ready or not….here’s the bowl schedule…without the teams….although there should be a bowl or three for the smaller conferences….the “REAL” bowls don’t begin until after Christmas

….why not try a new approach of names …removing the corporate names from the titles of the game (that reek of money)…let the title say something about the game–

These are some possible “new “names as well….in some cases…the types of teams desired—

The Pony Express Bowl (two teams with best rushers in the country); or the Air-Mail Bowl (2 teams with best passers); the Plumbers Bowl (2 teams that plug up the offenses); the American Idol Bowl (teams with 2 talented, pretty-boy QB); the Fox News Bowl (two teams with conservative offenses);the Plain-Jane Bowl (teams with the least colorful, most drab uniforms); the Beat the Clock Bowl(where no reviews, discussions, TV timeouts other than half or called time outs are permitted ); the New Year’s Bowl (starting at 12 mid-night on New Year’s Day); the American Bandstand Bowl (where the two bands are on stages at each end of stadium and one plays tunes each time-out)—this would be one of those bowls located in a place like Hawaii (where things seem to be more relaxed J


Saturday, Dec. 19

Bowl Location Time (ET) / TV  
Gildan New Mexico Bowl C-USA vs. MWC University Stadium Albuquerque, NM 2:00pm / ESPN
Royal Purple Las Vegas Bowl MWC or BYU vs. Pac-12 Sam Boyd Stadium Las Vegas, NV 3:30pm / ABC
Raycom Media Camellia Bowl MAC vs. Sun Belt Cramton Bowl Montgomery, AL 5:30pm / ESPN
AutoNation Cure Bowl American vs. Sun Belt Citrus Bowl Stadium Orlando, FL 7:00pm / CBSSN
R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl C-USA vs. Sun Belt Mercedes-Benz Superdome New Orleans, LA 9:00pm / ESPN

Monday, Dec. 21

Bowl Location Time (ET) / TV  
Miami Beach Bowl C-USA vs. The American Marlins Park Miami, FL 2:30pm / ESPN

Tuesday, Dec. 22

Bowl Location Time (ET) / TV  
Famous Idaho Potato Bowl MAC vs. MWC Albertson’s Stadium Boise, ID 3:30pm / ESPN
Boca Raton Bowl MAC vs. American FAU Stadium Boca Raton, FL 7:00pm / ESPN

Wednesday, Dec. 23

Bowl Location Time (ET) / TV  
San Diego County CU Poinsettia Bowl MWC vs. MAC Qualcomm Stadium San Diego, CA 4:30pm / ESPN
GoDaddy Bowl MAC vs. Sun Belt Ladd-Peebles Stadium Mobile, AL 8:00pm / ESPN

Thursday, Dec. 24

Bowl Location Time (ET) / TV  
Popeyes Bahamas Bowl Middle Tennessee vs. MAC Thomas Robinson Stadium Nassau, Bahamas Noon / ESPN
Hawai’i Bowl American vs. MWC or BYU Aloha Stadium Honolulu, HI 8:00pm / ESPN

Saturday, Dec. 26

Bowl Location Time (ET) / TV  
St. Petersburg Bowl American vs. C-USA Tropicana Field St. Petersburg, FL 11:00am / ESPN
Hyundai Sun Bowl ACC/Notre Dame vs. Pac-12 Sun Bowl Stadium El Paso, TX 2:00pm / CBS
Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas Bowl Big 12 vs. C-USA Cotton Bowl Stadium Dallas, TX 2:20pm / ESPN
New Era Pinstripe Bowl ACC/Notre Dame vs. Big Ten Yankee Stadium  Bronx, NY 3:30pm / ABC
Camping World Independence Bowl ACC/Notre Dame vs. SEC Independence Stadium Shreveport, LA 5:45pm / ESPN
Foster Farms Bowl Big Ten vs. Pac-12 Levi’s Stadium Santa Clara, CA 9:15pm / ESPN

Monday, Dec. 28

Bowl Location Time (ET) / TV  
Military Bowl ACC/Notre Dame vs. Navy Navy-Marine Corps. Stadium Annapolis, MD 2:30pm / ESPN2
Quick Lane Bowl ACC/Notre Dame vs. Big Ten Ford Field Detroit, MI 5:00pm / ESPN

Tuesday, Dec. 29

Bowl Location Time (ET) / TV  
Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl Big Ten vs. MWC Amon G. Carter Stadium Fort Worth, TX 2:00pm / ESPN
Russell Athletic Bowl ACC/Notre Dame vs. Big 12 Orlando Citrus Bowl Orlando, FL 5:30pm / ESPN
Nova Home Loans Arizona Bowl C-USA vs. MWC Arizona Stadium Tucson, AZ 7:30pm / ASN
AdvoCare V100 Texas Bowl Big 12 vs. SEC NRG Stadium Houston, TX 9:00pm / ESPN

Wednesday, Dec. 30

Bowl Location Time (ET) / TV  
Birmingham Bowl SEC vs. American Legion Field Birmingham, AL Noon / ESPN
Belk Bowl SEC vs. ACC/Notre Dame Bank of America Stadium Charlotte, NC 3:30pm / ESPN
Franklin Amer. Mort. Music City Bowl SEC vs. ACC/ND or Big Ten LP Field Nashville, TN 7:00pm / ESPN
National University Holiday Bowl Big Ten vs. Pac-12 Qualcomm Stadium San Diego, CA 10:30pm / ESPN

Thursday, Dec. 31

Bowl Location Time (ET) / TV Tickets
Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl At-Large vs. At-Large (NY6) Georgia Dome Atlanta, GA Noon / ESPN
Goodyear Cotton Bowl Playoff Semifinal Game AT&T Stadium Arlington, TX 4 or 8pm / ESPN
Capital One Orange Bowl Playoff Semifinal Game Sun Life Stadium Miami Gardens, FL 4 or 8pm / ESPN

Friday, Jan. 1

Bowl Location Time (ET) / TV  
Outback Bowl Big Ten vs. SEC Raymond James Stadium Tampa, FL Noon / ESPN2
Buffalo Wild Wings Citrus Bowl Big Ten vs. SEC Orlando Citrus Bowl Orlando, FL 1:00pm / ABC
Fiesta Bowl At-Large vs. At-Large (NY6) U. of Phoenix Stadium Glendale, AZ 1:00pm / ESPN
Rose Bowl Game Big Ten vs. Pac-12 (NY6) Rose Bowl Pasadena, CA 5:00pm / ESPN
Allstate Sugar Bowl Big 12 vs. SEC (NY6) Mercedes-Benz Superdome New Orleans, LA 8:30pm / ESPN

Saturday, Jan. 2

Bowl Location Time (ET) / TV  
TaxSlayer Bowl ACC/ND or Big Ten vs. SEC EverBank Field Jacksonville, FL Noon / ESPN
AutoZone Liberty Bowl Big 12 vs. SEC Liberty Bowl Memphis, TN 3:20pm / ESPN
Valero Alamo Bowl Big 12 vs. Pac-12 Alamodome San Antonio, TX 6:45pm / ESPN
Motel 6 Cactus Bowl Big 12 vs. Pac-12 Chase Field Phoenix, AZ 10:15pm / ESPN

Monday, Jan. 11

Bowl Location Time (ET) / TV  
CFP National Championship Semifinal Winner vs. Semifinal Winner U. of Phoenix Stadium Glendale, AZ 8:30pm / ESPN



  1. John Rocco says:

    Good stuff Bob. I especially like your new college bowl game names.

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