Good morning! We continue our march toward bowl season, B1G Bowlapalooza, having already given you our rapid reactions as well as voted on our best and worst Big Ten bowl games:
Today we’re taking a look at how we came to get some of the mid-tier bowl games, particularly these four:
- Music City Bowl: Purdue Boilermakers vs. Tennessee Volunteers
- Outback Bowl: Penn State Nittany Lions vs. Arkansas Razorbacks
- Guaranteed Rate Bowl: Minnesota Gophers vs. West Virginia Mountaineers
- Las Vegas Bowl: Wisconsin Badgers vs. Arizona State Sun Devils
...and surprise, surprise, Minnesotans have a grievance to air.
III. Selection Process
Minnesota and Purdue got jumped by Wisconsin and Penn State for the Las Vegas and Outback Bowl, respectively. Anyone have a particularly good grievance here?
BRT: I have no grievances, as I wish nothing but the worst for all of the teams mentioned here.
Kidding, kind of—I don’t really hate Purdue overly much.
This is about eyeballs though, and this is what you get for having perceived lackluster fanbases and/or losing to Bowling Green. If I were running a bowl, I would also take Wisconsin and Penn State over Minny and Purdue—that’s showbiz, baby. Or bowl biz, but you get the idea.
Kind of...: There’s an official selection process? With a rule-bound pecking order? And it was violated in some official way? Holy shit! Somebody should do something about that.
misdreavus79: First of all, it’s two games. The “rule” people keep referring to stipulates that the “inferior” season benchmark is two games. So Wisconsin, who holds the same record as the slighted, and Penn State, who has one fewer win than the slighted, are both within the confines of the rules.
BRT hit the other point. Private businesses want to make money. Thus, bowl games will create the matchups they think will make them the most money.
Stew: Fuck’m all. But I’m glad for the TN/Purdue matchup.
WSR: Funny, Minnesota has no problem filling up Colorado’s stadium or selling more than our allotment to the Outback Bowl and making Tampa full of pale/sunburnt folks in Maroon. So maybe those old, preconceived notions about Minnesota not traveling are as outdated as building a program Brick by Brick.
Anyway, I’m frustrated that we ended up in the Desert Detroit Bowl, but I can live with not playing in a Vols home game. The one I’m frustrated by is wisconsin in Vegas. Fuck them skunks and their cheaper airfare to a bowl game.
But at the end of the day, this is what we get for forgetting to play offense against the three shitty teams we lost to in Bowling Green, Iowa, and Illinois.
BoilerUp89: Purdue fans don’t really travel all that well for football so I’m not shocked. And I don’t really have a place to yell as I wasn’t going to go unless it was Pasadena - which surprise! wasn’t on the table. I could complain about capitalism ruining
society college sports, but well that won’t actually change anyone’s opinion.
Who has the real grievance here?
This poll is closed
Minnesota—head-to-head over wisconsin should mean something
Purdue—a historic season and all they get is another road game
Both make excellent—and might I say good-looking—points
Neither—might I point you to the OTE Commandment of "git gud, scrubs"
Conference selection: In your world, how should it work? Is there a better setup we’re missing here?
BRT: This hasn’t been personally relevant to me in some time, so I am not giving any thought to this question until it is again. But as long as bowls have such a large business component, this will keep happening to less-developed/invested fanbases. Bring the butts or get bounced, losers.
Kind of...: The B1G should create a couple more northern bowls, dip into the BTN petty cash drawer, and create inordinate payouts for any southern team to play in them. Otherwise, what we’ve got is no worse than most alternatives I hear.
Stew: Let the teams within 2 games of each other submit ranked choice of available bowls and sort it out based that way. If there’s a tie, the ADs have to fight to the death.
MNW: Kind of... has the right idea here, particularly since the ACC has now tied itself into the Fenway Bowl. Currently the Wrigley Field Bowl appears stalled, but a game at US Cellular/Guaranteed Rate of the North would be just as assy.
Or, I mean, you could leverage one of the half-dozen NFL stadiums across the Big Ten footprint, since it’s clear now that warm-weather destinations don’t matter—see Detroit, Boise, Boston, New York, the 2015 Sun Bowl, etc. I mean, you have SO MANY options:
- The Land’O’Lakes Bowl at US Bank Stadium
- The Giordanos/Lou Malnati’s Deep Dish and/or Portillo’s Italian Beef Bowl at Soldier Field
- The Rock-and-Roll Bowl at Jacobs Field or wherever the Browns play
- The I Don’t Know a Famous Indiana Business Bowl at Lucas Oil Stadium
- THE POPCORN BOWL AT LUCAS OIL STADIUM, SPONSORED BY ORVILLE REDENBACHER—PURDUE GETS AN AUTOBID!
Oh, right, and The Culver’s Bowl at the Artist Formerly Known as Miller Park in Milwaukee.
More importantly, though, and more selfishly—BRT’s idea of “bring the butts or get bounced” does kind of naturally leave Northwestern out of any conversation here. Which seems inherently shitty, but perhaps only to the 10,000 fans of that football team. There should be some kind of line between “bring butts” and “deserve has something to do with it,” and that 2-game proximity rule feels like the best the B1G will be willing to do.
WSR: I don’t know how to fix it.
I do know that since wisconsin traveled well to the Pinstripe Bowl we should be sending them to that and Detroit forever, since the goal is to get revenue for the conference and nobody else lives anywhere that would lead them to thinking a trip to NYC or Detroit is an improvement over staying home.
misdreavus79: Well if I were running the selection process I’d be, in one way or another, running a business (whether on the side of a given bowl game or on the side of the conference). That means that I’d be doing my business a disservice if I didn’t select the matchups that I thought would bring the best ratings.
And therein lies the issue, doesn’t it? In this year’s example, you got four teams within a win of each other, all available to go to any one of these bowl games (with the exception of Minnesota, who couldn’t go to the Outback Bowl two straight times), the only thing separating them being who they beat and didn’t beat, or, in the case of Penn State, whether those teams played each other or not.
Why, if the goal is to make the conference, which shares revenue evenly, would I not choose the matchups that maximize the amount of money those teams then get? After all, it’s the extra money that will hopefully put these very teams in the New Year’s Six instead...
Any bowl game selection process solutions?
This poll is closed
The Earl Butz Approach: Get big or get out (of the way), losers
The ACC Approach: Build more northern bowl games
The Minneapolis Approach: Ranked-Order Bowl Games
The Constructive Solution Approach: None of these, but I’ll tell you in the comments
The OTE Approach: None of these, but I also don’t have a better idea so I’m just gonna bitch about something anyway
Thanks as always for reading OTE. Part III.B of the Bowlapalooza will be up once I figure out just how much blood I wanna get from this stone of bowl previews.
Oh, and do you want to join the fun and games at OTE? Join our Bowl Game Pick’em Challenge!
Now let us know those solutions in the comments.