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BOWL SEASON IS HERE! Opening Weekend Open Thread

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College football’s greatest three weeks kick off today! Come talk about the games here.

NCAA Football: Celebration Bowl Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Not in the mood to talk Big Ten basketball? The most wonderful time of the year kicks off today! There’s a fresh blanket of snow on the ground here in Minnesota, I’ve got nowhere to go until a Christmas party at 6pm...let’s get weird.

If you’d like full(er) previews for these games, click here.

Celebration Bowl

Grambling Tigers vs. North Carolina A&T Aggies

11am | ABC | NCA&T -7.5

Should you watch this game? If it’s halftime.

Bands. And bad kickers. That’s what the Celebration Bowl is good for. Occasional feats of “how the fuck did he do that?” athleticism, too.

ESPN pick: 64% North Carolina A&T

MNW’s pick: North Carolina A&T, 17-14. (2 points confidence)

Poll

How much of this game will you watch?

This poll is closed

  • 0%
    The first hour.
    (0 votes)
  • 40%
    Halftime.
    (2 votes)
  • 40%
    The little bits when the other game(s) is/are on commercial break.
    (2 votes)
  • 20%
    None.
    (1 vote)
5 votes total Vote Now

New Orleans Bowl

Troy Trojans vs. North Texas Mean Green

12pm | ESPN | Troy -6.5

Should you watch this game? Yes, on commercial breaks and/or until your team’s basketball game starts.

Troy has a legit Top 25 defense, a gunslinging QB in Brandon Silvers, and a good coach in Neal Brown. Sean Littrell has the Mean Green playing good football and should be in line for a job like Kansas in another year or two, but UNT is a step off the Trojans’ pace.

ESPN pick: 91% Troy

MNW’s pick: Troy, 31-17. (39 points)

Poll

Troy, or the school with the cool mug?

This poll is closed

  • 83%
    The school without the cool mug
    (5 votes)
  • 16%
    UNT
    (1 vote)
6 votes total Vote Now

Cure Bowl

Georgia State Panthers vs. Western Kentucky Hilltoppers

1:30pm | CBSSN | GSU -6.5

Should you watch this game? No.

Mike Sanford navigated Life After Brohm in Bowling Green. But the Hilltoppers lost to Illinois and beat teams with a combined record of 14-46. Georgia State one-upped them, beating teams with a combined record of 16-56. Do not watch this game.

ESPN pick: 77% Western Kentucky.

MNW’s pick: Western Kentucky, 37-21. (5 points)

Poll

Why?

This poll is closed

  • 15%
    Because you deserve it
    (3 votes)
  • 84%
    You know what you did
    (16 votes)
19 votes total Vote Now

Las Vegas Bowl

Boise State Broncos vs. Oregon Ducks

2:30pm | ABC | Oregon -6.5

Should you watch this game? Yes.

Mario Cristobal remains a fine coach, and Justin Herbert was 5-1 as the UO starter this year. This is the one to tune into today, so find your way to ABC once you’re done watching the Battle for the Mayor’s Key on FS1.

ESPN pick: 72% Boise State.

MNW’s pick: Oregon, 41-35. (24 points)

Poll

Which garish jersey wins?

This poll is closed

  • 66%
    BLUE BLUE AND MORE BLUE
    (6 votes)
  • 33%
    Green, silver, white, yellow, chrome, pink, black, gray, off-gray, slightly-darker-gray, brighter yellow, darker green
    (3 votes)
9 votes total Vote Now

New Mexico Bowl

Marshall Thundering Herd vs. Colorado State Rams

3:30pm | ESPN | CSU -3.5

Should you watch this game? If Oregon-Boise is on commercial or at halftime, sure.

Doc Holliday and the HERD have rebounded from a 3-9 campaign to play their new brand of hard-nosed defense. Hot tip: Marshall has won the last 5 bowls it appeared in.

ESPN pick: 69% (nice) Colorado State

MNW’s pick: Marshall, 24-21. (17 points)

Poll

Which coach’s name is more amusing?

This poll is closed

  • 50%
    Doc Holliday
    (4 votes)
  • 50%
    Mike Bobo
    (4 votes)
8 votes total Vote Now

Bonus! FCS Playoffs Semifinal

South Dakota State Jackrabbits at James Madison Dukes

3:30pm | ESPNU

MNW’s pick: James Madison, 34-17 :( Go Jacks!

Camellia Bowl

Arkansas State Red Wolves vs. Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders

7pm | ESPN | A-State -3

Should you watch this game? If you’re not at a Christmas party, drunk, watching basketball, seeing a Star War, washing your hair, filing your nails, or getting a colonoscopy, sure.

The Red Wolves are 23rd in S&P+. Middle Tennessee lost to Minnesota. By a lot. This one should be pretty easy, right? (Unless Brent Stockstill is fully back from injury and huckin’ it around, probably.)

ESPN pick: 79% Arkansas State

MNW pick: Arkansas State, 34-28. (13 points)

Poll

Which colorful mascot?

This poll is closed

  • 80%
    Red Wolves
    (8 votes)
  • 20%
    Blue Raiders
    (2 votes)
10 votes total Vote Now

So yeah. Here’s your open thread. Don’t be shitty.