We're all about tradition here at Off Tackle Empire, and one of those traditions is the yearly staff word association game. Now, if you're not familiar with word association, first off, you're not good at discerning meaning from definition. Secondly, our word association isn't so much word association as it is whatever snarky thought you can come up with first. In theory, none of the writers saw what the others wrote before sending in their gut reaction to the B1G games, Maryland and Rutgers, and BCS games. I told them to give me whatever they thought of each game. What transpired is below.
Military Bowl - Marshall vs. Maryland
- Graham: Lots of MMM's, lots of Zzzzzz's.
- Ted: Marshall, Maryland, 'Merica
- GoAUpher: Could we have both teams run a Basic obstacle course for the win? That would be more interesting.
- MNWildcat: Nice quick daytrip for the Maryland faithful.
- Candystripes for Breakfast: Pity the people who watch this game willingly.
- Aaron: This is going to be one of the toughest bowls to watch, but I'll do my best anyway. #Football
- Green Akers: Man, even the service academies were able to find better bowls to play in.
- Jesse: Win and we claim you. Lose and we embrace your contribution to #B1G tradition.
Texas Bowl - Minnesota vs. Syracuse
- Graham: Finally a beatable ‘Cuse zone.
- Ted: Year three and Kill has Goldy fans already apathetic about going bowling
- GoAUpher: At least the Gophers aren't playing Texas Tech again.
- Hilary: Minnesota should win this. Should.
- MNWildcat: Minnesota 20, Northwestern 17. Northwestern 48, Syracuse 27. QED Minnesota, 44-20
- Candystripes for Breakfast: Don't Goof it up, Goldy.
- Aaron: Didn't Minnesota just play Syracuse a few months ago? They should break up matches like this that aren't as fresh. Also, I hate that Syracuse abbreviates themselves 'CUSE. I would rather them be SYRA.
- Green Akers: I'd suggest Killing the Orange with fire, but they play in the Carrier Dome which is basically an inferno anyway so that won't help
- Jesse: I assume this isn't actually a football game, but rather a rodeo. I like the Gopher's chance with Hagemen.
New Era Pinstripe Bowl - Notre Dame vs. Rutgers
- Graham: ND should come out in pinstripes and their little-used White Jerseys.
- Ted: Overrated football team plays in overrated baseball team stadium
- GoAUpher: Rutgers owns New York so this thing will be sold out with Knights fans. Right? RIGHT?
- Hilary: Notre Dame + Yankee stadium = Most insufferable thing ever?
- MNWildcat: Notre Dame vs. Rutgers - Notre Dame, just in time for the 150th anniversary!
- Candystripes for Breakfast: New Yorkers cheering for the Irish, or for UNewJersey. Hm........
- Aaron: Winter in New Yawk! Should be a lot of people at this game because of Subway Alumni.
- Green Akers: Sigh...I can't believe MSU lost to the freaking Irish this year. We could be complaining about being left out of the natty right now...
- Jesse: Win and we claim you. Lose and we embrace your contribution to #B1G tradtion... two times over.
Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl - Kansas State vs. Michigan
- Graham: Bill Snyder has been around enough to remember good Michigan teams.
- Ted: ALL THE WINGS FOR HOKE
- GoAUpher: You better win Michigan. Your sorry ass got jumped over two more deserving teams so you better win.
- Hilary: 1000 total yards O/U?
- MNWildcat: zzzzzzzzzzzz
- Candystripes for Breakfast: Hope they have enough Wings for Hoke.
- Aaron: Might have to watch this game at a Buffalo Wild Wings!
- Green Akers: The Brady Hoke fat jokes are about to enter a golden age
- Jesse: The most important question: How many blazing wings could each coach eat? I think Snyder would wizard his way out of this contest.
TaxSlayer.com Gator Bowl - Georgia vs. Nebraska
- Graham: This game is going to come down to a Hail Mary, I can just feel it.
- Ted: ALL OF THE INJURIES
- GoAUpher:I'd make fun of the TaxSlayer name but this is the bowl I wanted the Gophers to end up in. So I'll simply point out that this matchup is so "meh" that RittenBennet trolled both fanbases on Twitter:
Still looking ... MT @HuskerExtraSip: Pelini on rematch aspect: "I don't know why anybody would complain. You're looking for good matchups."
— ESPN Big Ten (@ESPN_BigTen) December 9, 2013
- Hilary: It's like a cripple fight. But in bowl form.
- MNWildcat: true story: Has Mark Richt lost control of Bo Pelini?!
- Candystripes for Breakfast: No matter who wins, disappointment abounds.
- Aaron: OSU making the BCS is going to end up being a bad thing because every other B1G team is mismatched like this.
- Green Akers: Winner gets an entire year of free healthcare! Which in this case is a serious incentive
- Jesse: Gator seems apt considering we'll see a lot of them when these teams play... you know, carting players off the field.
Capital One Bowl - South Carolina vs. Wisconsin
- Graham: Both sidelines are going to have to be on high alert for overthrown footballs.
- Ted: Bucky in a close one
- GoAUpher: The press conferences for this game would be so much better if Bert and Spurrier were there.
- Hilary: At least we aren't playing Alabama.
- MNWildcat: true story: those are actual Wisconsin fans in those CapOne commercials
- Candystripes for Breakfast: Stave vs. (the potentially way overrated) Clowney. That's your ballgame.
- Aaron: Well this one might actually be good, Wisconsin with a chance to make a statement after tripping over PSU.
- Green Akers: Betcha the media machine tries to rev up the Clowney hype one last time before he turns into a JaMarcus Russell-sized bust.
- Jesse: Faux Pelini will be missed.
Outback Bowl - Iowa vs. LSU
- Ted: C'mon, Iowa, and it won't be close
- GoAUpher: I will not cheer for you Iowa. That's against my rules. However, if you were to beat LSU I would not be displeased to see the SEC go down a peg.
- Hilary: At least they aren't playing Alabama.
- MNWildcat: over/under on Drew Tate highlights set at 97.5
- Candystripes for Breakfast: LSU fans aren't taking this game seriously, so let's point and laugh when they lose.
- Aaron: I need to check the backup QB for LSU before picking this game, but I'm guessing it will be bad for Iowa no matter what. Drew Tate flashbacks, though!
- Green Akers: Yellow-on-yellow violence
- Jesse: Honestly, I just don't see how Iowa doesn't win this game... which means Les Miles will find a way to put seventeen people on the field for the last play and sneak out a win.
Rose Bowl Game - Michigan State vs. Stanford
- Graham: If you signed up for the "drink everytime an announcer says the word smashmouth" game, you are.in.trouble.
- Ted: Sparty steamrolls OSU
- GoAUpher: Michigan State, for the love of all that is holy please put out a PSA preparing your ultra sensitive fans for the trolling they are going to receive from the Stanford band. Also, Stanford band, if you create a formation that is an apple with a tinfoil hat on it I will love you forever and ever and ever.
- Hilary: Sparty should be the favorite. But has Sparty NO! been banished forever?
- MNWildcat: man, Wisconsin fans will be sooooo smug when MSU pulls a Sparty NO
- Candystripes for Breakfast: Sparty Rose to the occasion once; do I hear twice?
- Aaron: Yes! Old School Football! I love the Rose Bowl, but playing this game is pristine weather is kind of wrong.
- Green Akers: Finally, a game I actually care about. BURN THE TREES
- Jesse: I look forward to Pac 12 Officiating Magic screwing over Sparty. Mostly because #CONSPIRACY
Tostitos Fiesta Bowl - Baylor vs. UCF
- Graham: Both thrilled to be here. Remember Baylor being a Top 10 team is the B1G equivalent of Indiana being in the BCS. Seriously.
- Ted: George O'Leary put this loss as a win on the resume
- GoAUpher: Baylor, if you hang less than 80 on UCF I'll be disappointed.
- Hilary: Lowest rated BCS game
- MNWildcat: my eyes...my poor, poor eyes
- Candystripes for Breakfast: The weakest BCS game for all the Tostitos.
- Aaron: So many points!
- Green Akers: Blood everywhere
- Jesse: Art Briles puts the finishing touches on his $Texas resume.
Allstate Sugar Bowl - Alabama vs. Oklahoma
- Graham: Assuming here that the Tide will, in fact, roll.
- Ted: Big Game Bob is no more. 'Bama rolls
- GoAUpher: BOOMER SOONER!
- Hilary: Awesome to see Alabama not in the NCG, but I feel bad for OU.
- MNWildcat: playoffs?!
- Candystripes for Breakfast: This one is also boring.
- Aaron: 'm not disappointed because the Tide would have rolled Oregon. There aren't many worthy opponents for 'Bama anyway.
- Green Akers: MOAR blood everywhere
- Jesse: Remember the last time Alabama had a potential National Championship team that made mistakes and were relegated to a bowl less than they could have been in against a team that was outmatched? Yeah...
AT&T Cotton Bowl Classic - Missouri vs. Oklahoma State
- Graham: Fun!
- Ted: MIKE GUNDY IS A MAN! HE CAN'T BEAT OKALHOMA
- GoAUpher: I demand that no one play any defense in this game. Shouldn't be too hard a request to grant.
- Hilary: This will be a good game.
- MNWildcat: it's a Big XII reunion! ... did these two teams ever care about each other?
- Candystripes for Breakfast: I might actually watch most of this game.
- Aaron: Come back to the Cotton Bowl, Cotton Bowl! This should be a great game, though. Big XII will need a win after OU gets housed.
- Green Akers: I hear Southerners care about this one a lot. Sure, whatever.
- Jesse: Big 8 foes reunite. Missouri pretends they don't know what that means.
Discover Orange Bowl - Clemson vs. Ohio State
- Graham: Something about OSU's secondary being treated like a couch in Cedar Village. How apropos.
- Ted: Tajh Boyd throws for 500 yards, but OSU wins 66-65. Woody Hayes punches someone in Heaven.
- GoAUpher: LPW, I'm hoping you can take a CSI: MIAMI poster and somehow turn it into a CLEMSONING: MIAMI poster.
- Hilary: Before last week, I think OSU is an easy favorite in this. Now? Hm.
- MNWildcat: well, OSU, at least it's not an SEC team?
- Candystripes for Breakfast: Clemson gonna Clemson.
- Aaron: Goodbye Clemson. I don't think the spread for this can be big enough for me. #BuckeyeLove
- Green Akers: It'll be interesting to see if OSU's horribawful pass defense or Clemson's general Clemsonness carries/derps away the day here.
- Jesse: Look, Clemsoning is still an actual thing. Meyer leaves no prisoners.
BCS National Championship Game - Florida State vs. Auburn
- Graham: Tasty game - should be closer than last year's Bama ND "go to bed in the 2ndquarter" game.
- Ted: Meteor
- GoAUpher: Dammit Auburn, why do you have to play in the SEC. Malzahn's sometimes batshit insane playcalling and your rabbit foot luck make me interested in cheering for you. But your SEC membership makes me into a Florida State fan. METEOR SAVE ME NOW!
- Hilary: Definitely cheering for FSU.
- MNWildcat: I have my excuse to get really drunk that night. Hooray!
- Candystripes for Breakfast: #FuckTheSEC
- Aaron: The SEC's reign is over! Breaking: FSU transferring to SEC, effective immediately. Darn.
- Green Akers: Roll Tide. Or whatever.
- Jesse: Seems like a proper end to the BCS.