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Reasons to watch the 2022 Guaranteed Rate Bowl (Wisconsin vs. Oklahoma State)

Not necessarily good reasons, but reasons nonetheless

The third longest tenured coach in FBS football. He seems comfortable in his job.

Hi! I’m here to encourage you to check out the 2022 Guaranteed Rate Bowl. I’m not going to lie, though, as nobody I know—and I’m a Wisconsin fan—is really up for this game. That said, I’m nothing if not a pro, so here are 10 9 reasons why you should watch this game.

  1. A chess match between two of the best DCs in America! (Sorry, that would’ve been last year.)
  2. Both multi-year starting QBs are in the portal, anything can happen!!!
  3. You might get a glimpse at the future if UW plays Myles Burkett at QB! (Or the outgoing coaching staff might reward 5th-year SR Chase Wolf, instead.)
  4. You’ve always been reluctant to actualize MNW’s “It’s late and I’m drunk” from DWT; WT, but with a 9:15 kickoff the week between Christmas and New Year’s, this is your chance!!!
  5. UW (21) and Okie State (17) possess two of the six longest active bowl appearance streaks. (The other four—Georgia, Oklahoma, Clemson, and Alabama—have all won nattys during their streaks, but screw it).
  6. In a different sport, each school is the absolute bane, stylistically, of fans everywhere. What’s worse: 40 minutes of Badger hoops offense or 10 matches of Cowpoke edge wrestling? (No, this isn’t really a reason to watch, more like a rationalization if you find yourself watching and wondering why.)
  7. The teams are a combined 3-0 all-time in this bowl game. SOMETHING’S GOTTA GIVE!!!
  8. Wisconsin is 7-1 in their last 8 bowl appearances!
  9. Oklahoma State is 5-1 in their last 6 bowl appearances, and Mike Gundy sports an 11-5 career bowl record!
  10. It (probably) won’t be as bad as the 2018 version (though see #3 above)

Okay, whatever, here’s a quick capsule for each team:

Oklahoma State (7-5/4-5): The Cowboys started 5-0 before dropping a 43-40 loss in 2 0T @TCU after blowing a 14-point 4th quarter lead. A win over Texas moved them to 6-1 and #9, still with an inside track to a Big 12 title game appearance. Then they lost to K-State 48-0 to start of a 1-4 slide to end the season. This included the Bedlam game with Oklahoma (a win there might’ve ended Oklahoma’s bowl streak) and a season-ending home defeat to 9th place West Virginia that makes the most sense if you assume it was a devilish plot to entice the Mountaineers not to fire Neal Brown. Oklahoma State will be down 8 starters for this game.

BONUS: Check out Mike Gundy (with Thurman Thomas and Barry Sanders!!!) in a snowy 1987 Sun Bowl:

Wisconsin (6-6/4-5): The Badgers were preseason favorites to win the B1G West, but a 2-3 start, including a 52-21 no show against Ohio State (the score actually flatters the Badgers) and a 34-10 home embarrassment against Illinois* saw Paul Chryst fired. Following consecutive wins over Purdue and Maryland a storybook ending—go 3-0 vs. the Quadrangle, win the West, and get the HC job permanently—was in play for Jim Leonhard. Instead, despite holding Iowa to 146 yards of offense, UW face-planted in a 24-10 loss and failed to regain the Axe in a season-ending home loss to Minnesota where frosh QB Athan Kaliakmanis shredded the Badger D for 300+ yards. The only way Wisconsin made a bowl game? Graham Mertz leading UW back from a 14-3 4th quarter deficit against Nebraska.

*Maybe the most fun way to watch the game is with a Purdue and/or Illinois fan while debating the ramifications of this year’s Illinois/Wisconsin game for the future of all three programs.

BONUS: Check out Jim Leonhard helping (by grabbing his B1G record 11th INT of the season) take down the Big 12 North champs in the 2002 Alamo Bowl:

Bottom Line: Should I Watch?

Are you an Oklahoma State or Wisconsin fan?

Yes. Then you (probably) should watch but don’t feel bad if you fall asleep.

No. Well, is your threshold for unintentional humor and/or hate-watching high?

Yes. At least start the game.

No. You’re probably better off going to bed.

So, yeah, make sure you watch.

Or don’t.