The pretenders can stop pretending. Cincinnati and Michigan didn’t even show up.

Georgia over Michigan 34-11

The Tide over Cincinnati 27-6

There was no surprise there. Georgia and Alabama each won by at least three TDs, and Georgia could have won by a lot more if they had chosen to. The two SEC powerhouses will square off again, as anticipated.

The championship game is considered a toss-up. Alabama was a slight favorite in the opening line, but Georgia is now a two or three point favorite. Alabama won the first match-up by 17.

In other bowl news, riddle me this, Batman. How the hell did Rutgers get in a bowl game, and how did I not notice until now? Apparently they have a Pity Bowl rule. As you might expect, the mighty Rutgers 11, proud possessors of a 2-7 conference record, were ground into holiday mincemeat by Wake Forest, which was ranked in the top twenty nationally. Moreover, Rutgers scored only ten points against WF, which has one of the most porous defenses of any major team. (They beat Army 70-56, for example. They scored 55 against North Carolina – and lost. Three of their other wins were 37-34, 40-37 and 45-42.)

The answer to the riddle? They got into a bowl game because of their good academic performance, based on the “give the nerds a participation trophy” trend. Honest to god, I did not make that up.

“The Scarlet Knights didn’t qualify for a bowl game with their record. They got an assist by virtue of the classroom and having the highest Academic Progress Rate.”

They needed rules like this when I was in school. Despite my pathetic throwing skills, I could have been our starting quarterback instead of a math nebbish.

Maybe I could even have gotten laid.

OK, maybe not on the laid thing. I know for sure that my female classmates didn’t give a free pass to their vaginas for good academic performance. I think that would have been especially true after they saw me throw ten interceptions and cry like a baby after getting sacked.

But I could have started for Rutgers.


The rest of the story.

Everything I wrote is accurate or at least a reasonable hyperbole, but I left out a lot of details to make the story funnier. Texas A&M was supposed to play in the Gator Bowl against Wake Forest, and they are damned good. As evidence of that, I submit that they handed Alabama their only loss this season! But A&M had to withdraw. Rutgers found out they were going to be in a bowl game just a short time ago, and they were just as surprised as I was. I mean, they lost games by scores like 52-3 and 52-13 and 28-0 during the regular season, when they were actually in training, and were … er … prepared for their opponents. Given those circumstances, you have to give them some credit. They did pretty well to keep the score at 38-10 when (a) they suck mightily and (b) just nine days earlier they had been drinking beer and planning their holiday vacations.

So it worked out for everybody, except maybe the fans who were expecting a better game:

  • The kids from Rutgers got to greet the New Year in Florida (81 degrees in Jacksonville today) instead of New Jersey.
  • And the kids from Wake Forest got to celebrate a rousing triumph instead of playing the team that beat Alabama.

4 thoughts on “The pretenders can stop pretending. Cincinnati and Michigan didn’t even show up.

  1. Rutgers accepted the bid 9 days before the game, had to bring players back to campus from as far away as Australia, held 3 practices after shutting down weeks ago, and played without their top WR, top 2 RBs, all their starting LBs and a starting OL. They were a couple of yards shy of tying the game at 17 at the end of the first half before throwing an INT.

    In the second half, the lack of depth and game shape got the best of us. Once WF went up 24-10 and it looked like a win was off the table, we put in our freshman QB who skipped his senior year of HS to join the team in September and just turned 18 last month. We have nothing to be ashamed of, the Gator Bowl should and did thank us for saving their game.

    1. Well, they won, but they did kind of lay an egg, allowing Utah to score 35 in the first half! You have to be impressed, however, with 6 passing TDs and a total of 573 yards in the air.

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