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Baby Poop and Guaranteed Responder Rates: Bowl Previews by Two New Dads

Two new dads talk worst diapers on the market, handling baby and WFH life, and more:

SERVPRO First Responder Bowl - Boston College v Boise State Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

You’ve not been paying attention—and why would you have been?—but three OTE writers have recently become fathers, the two of us for the first time (and, by the time this sees the light of day, we’ll maybe have been joined by Beez? are you even reading this?).

Of course, as we all know, that comes with loads of spare time while the little potato just lies there and requires no attention or assistance from us, no sir.

What follows is a set of previews of college football bowl season, written thanks to all that extra time we currently have laying around:

Bowl Games

Quick Lane Bowl

New Mexico State Aggies (6-6) vs. Bowling Green Falcons (6-6)

Monday, Dec. 26 | 1:30pm | ESPN | BGSU -2.5 | O/U 48
Ford Field, Detroit, MI

Green Akers: Every year I tell myself I’m going to look into this game, but there’s always a good reason not to; this time it’s that Christmas Day is on a Sunday, so this is the only day off I get.

At least it’s not an 11 am kickoff like it usually is, and you can make that drive from Bowling Green in a tick more than an hour if you really feel like it, so there should even be a few butts in the stands as Jerry Kill makes his triumphant return to Minnesota’s true postseason Mecca — and I’m only being like 70% snarky there, taking this NMSU team to a bowl really is remarkable.

MNW: Man, this took a turn when Bradley Cooper Holding a Baby in American Sniper showed up.

Know that there are some—like me—who would like to see the Quick Lane Bowl in person. Perhaps someday I can allegedly go to that game in Detroit, too.

Do you have plans to eventually take the Mad Lass to Sparty games? I suppose there’s less of a degree of difficulty for you as there is us—driving 6+ hours with a kid?—but I’m debating when MNWildkit will be ready to go to her first Northwestern game.

Outside the answer “never, it’s not safe for human consumption,” I’m not sure what age might be the right time.

Green Akers: Eventually, I’m sure I will. I have a grand notion in my head of trying to let her find her own destiny in terms of rooting interests and lifelong fixations, but that will mean doing combat with an entire half of her family that is Disney-fixated, so the war is already lost and I may as well guide her to the green and white light as a consolation.


kid being raised in your (college) fandom?

This poll is closed

  • 27%
    a must
    (26 votes)
  • 34%
    please god let it happen
    (33 votes)
  • 32%
    eh, there are worse things
    (31 votes)
  • 5%
    in fact, i insist they don’t
    (5 votes)
95 votes total Vote Now

Camellia Bowl

Georgia Southern Eagles (6-6) vs. Buffalo Bulls (6-6)

Tuesday, Dec. 27 | 11am | ESPN | GASo -3.5 | O/U 67.5
Cramton Bowl, Montgomery, AL

Green Akers: I have to admit, this is around the point in the calendar when the mostly-straw man argument of “there are too many bowls!!” starts to sound kind of reasonable. Which of these teams is less jazzed about going to Montgomery between Christmas and New Year’s? Or actually, spending Christmas there, because there’s no way you’d fly in less than 2 days beforehand?

How much shit talking does Buffalo endure from GaSo here for losing to Scott Frost Nebraska, albeit last season?

MNW: I thought the 2010 TicketCity Bowl—Texas Tech! Northwestern! lukewarm Dallas weather! the burned-out husk of the Cotton Bowl! Evan Watkins starting at quarterback!—was as miserable as it got...but this is a good reminder that it could, in fact, be worse. Thankfully there’ll be points, since the Iggles and Bulls are both shit on defense.

Speaking of shit, GA, we received feedback in our critically*-acclaimed** first previews that these were more like “bowel games”.


Green Akers: I don’t know how to say this without assuredly jinxing it but honestly…that hasn’t been so bad yet. She’s still fully on milk, and yes, I understand the beat drops on this front when we pivot to solid foods but other than a few leaks here and there as we cycled through various diaper brands (conclusion: Target’s diapers are TRASH) it’s been within reasonable expectations so far.

MNW: oh my god YES target’s diapers are trash


who’s got the worst diapers?

This poll is closed

  • 72%
    (34 votes)
  • 27%
    i’ll tell you in the comments
    (13 votes)
47 votes total Vote Now

First Responder Bowl

Memphis Tigers (6-6) vs. Utah State Aggies (6-6)

Tuesday, Dec. 27 | 2:15pm | ESPN | Mem -7.5 | O/U 62.5
Gerald J. Ford Stadium, University Park, TX

MNW: The reason I ask about the poop is because we learned—through trial-and-error, right, which is what this all is—that some babies don’t poop for 10+ days (call a doctor at 14 or if fever/fussing/screaming ensues, we were told) if they’re on breast milk and at home.

The record in the MNW household is 12 days between poops. And it was hell.

Because, you see, Mrs. MNW—I refuse to call her BlugoldBadger, which was her suggestion when she learned I was doing this—did not accept that it could be 12 days. And so oh my, did we begin ordering stupid things from Target and Amazon. Gas drops. Prune juice. A more potent rectal thermometer. A “Wind-ee”, which is a glorified whistle you stick up your kid’s ass to make them fart.

None worked. She is a potato. She will shit when she is good and ready.

(Daycare cleared it up. Kid gets a little bug, as is natural, and now shits like a firehose. I’m sure it’s nothing another $50 pissed away on Amazon can’t fix.)

Green Akers:

oh sweet rollerblading Jobu we have been so fucking lucky

how did I get an easy mode baby

…Memphis is usually pretty fun

MNW: Speaking of poop, a little late-breaking news from Memphis:



speaking of, we prepped these on dec. 17 and i just once again on the 26th had to use the wind-ee because kid’s got a ton of gas

This poll is closed

  • 69%
    (29 votes)
  • 30%
    utah state
    (13 votes)
42 votes total Vote Now

Birmingham Bowl

Coastal Carolina Chanticleers (9-3) vs. East Carolina Pirates (7-5)

Tuesday, Dec. 27 | 5:45pm | ESPN | ECU -9.5 | O/U 59.5
Protective Stadium, Birmingham, AL

MNW: We’re almost out of the “games played in obscure Sun Belt cities” section, and I’m getting nostalgic already for the Shreveport Bowl:

This was, effectively, the first three months of parenting: slip-sliding around on ice and snow in fucking Shreveport, ordering crates of prune juice and then looking back on it and thinking “Fuck, more days oughta be like that.”

Green Akers: This one’s diminished a bit on the field by Grayson McCall entering the portal, and the line reflects that; remember, ECU was a College Kicker Moment away from upsetting NC State back when the Wolfpack were a top-10 team with an NFL-caliber QB.

I’m going to be starting at a couple of office days between Christmas and New Year’s when this game happens, no better place to capture that milieu than a naming rightsless bowl in a non-fun Southern city (anywhere other than New Orleans or Atlanta basically).


for all birming’s ham

This poll is closed

  • 34%
    that carolina
    (15 votes)
  • 65%
    no, the other carolina
    (29 votes)
44 votes total Vote Now

Guaranteed Rate Bowl

wisconsin badgers (6-6) vs Oklahoma State Cowboys (7-5)

Tuesday, Dec. 27 | 9:15pm | ESPN | wisc -3 | O/U 43
Chase Field, Phoenix, AZ

MNW: This is coming right in the middle of manuscript-editing season for me, so I’ll absolutely be awake wrestling with the transition from Chs. 2-3 to 4-5 on nuclear disarmament actions—Wisconsin passed a statewide referendum on it in 1982!—to “Farms not Arms” among the diehard grassroots left.

That’s become A Thing now, though: 4-7pm is blocked off for Kiddo Time, 7-8:30pm is a very tired “So how was your da—” “Sucked, stop fucking asking” with the wife while Maine Cabin Masters plays in the background, and then she goes to bed and I do all the work I’d put off during the day. How’s the work-life thing going out there?

Green Akers: Well, I don’t have any students who declined to attend class for a full semester demanding unearned grade glow-ups from me, so I will go with the seldom-sincere-but-I-do-mean-it Can’t Complain. Hobbies have mostly dried up, but working from home a few days a week means I can see the kiddo as necessary to chase away The SADs even during the workday.


Guaranteed Rate Bowl?

This poll is closed

  • 55%
    (57 votes)
  • 13%
    (14 votes)
  • 30%
    (31 votes)
102 votes total Vote Now