Once upon a time, not long ago, there were three bowl games known to the United States for college football teams. Chief of them was the Rose Bowl of Pasadena. There were also the Sugar Bowl of Louisiana and the Orange Bowl of Florida. But even these paled before the Rose Bowl, with its magnificent pre-game parade of floats composed of flowers and bedecked with pretty girls and interspersed with marching bands. There was nothing to compare.
Today, we are literally "bowled over." There is the Ticketcity Bowl, the Outback Bowl, the Capital One, the Gater Bowl, the Fiesta Bowl. I have omitted the Meineke Bowl, Sun Bowl, Liberty. Chic-Fil-A, Cotton, Fight Hunger Bowl, even the GoDaddy. These will stretch on until what is called a BCS National Championship Bowl to be played January 10. There is not yet a Toilet Bowl, not at least to our attention.
One suspects that money has to do with this. Regional competition used to rule -- the West would pick a good team from the east or Midwest and invite it to California for the Rose Bowl, which, by the way, has already been played this weekend and won by Texas Christian University over Wisconsin.
While these college teams are playing, the National Football League is battling it out to select two Super Bowl teams, but that is another story -- a long story.
There is something for everybody in this. Teams hardly heard of are now debarking for bowls in strange cities, their players, many of them, preparing to declare for NFL teams and money-drenched careers. Speaking of money, five teammates from Ohio State were accused of selling trinkets -- rings etc. and were banned from playing the next five games. Well, not quite. They have been re-instated in order to play in the upcoming Sugar Bowl and the five-game suspensions can come later. Wouldn't want to miss a big bowl game, and school officials wouldn't want that to happen, either.
This correspondent may miss some of these contests. Will be attending a Testicle Festival in Montana.