Good Sunday morning, Uni Watchers. Tonight we ring out 2023. In the words of Chris Berman, let me be the first to wish you a Happy New Year.
In case you missed it, yesterday I ran another set of “bad weather” NFL games, and asked you guys to guess when they were played. That post has now been updated with answers.
Yesterday, we looked at all the Bowls played between December 18th and December 26th. Today we’ll cover those played from the 27th through yesterday afternoon, including Georgia’s 63-3 demolition of FSU in the Orange Bowl.
After an undefeated regular season (13-0), FSU got screwed out of a playoff berth, which not only prompted calls of bias but also a lawsuit — so does the drubbing they took yesterday validate the Selection Committee’s snub? Or maybe it had something to do with 23 players opting out of yesterday’s game, in essence turning the game into a mockery. Georgia was something like a 20-point favorite going in, and ended up tripling that margin of victory in Miami yesterday. FSU made history once by being the only undefeated P5 team not to make the CFP, and then again yesterday by losing by the most lopsided point total (60) in Bowl history.
While I watched some of the game, I flipped over to the much more competitive Arizona Bowl (won by Wyoming in a last second field goal), so I didn’t watch the Orange Bowl victory presentation — and I’m not sure if the crystal bowl pictured above was at one time full of oranges (as has been the case in many previous trophy presentations). But the 2023 Orange Bowl seemed to be a bit short on the juice.
[Note: I wrote this intro before receiving Terry’s writeups — and indeed, he inadvertently answered my question about the full orange bowls. Read on! — PH]
In any event, we’ve got a lot of Bowls to cover today, so I’m gonna turn it over to Terry now with your…
by Terry Duroncelet, Jr.
16 games left for 2023, and then it’s on to the new year. Let’s see what schools brought their A-game, and which schools were hittin’ the eggnog too hard.
Wednesday, December 27, 2023
|USC vs Louisville| Given Louisville’s closet, I was expecting some tomfoolery, but it turned out to be really classy! We have the University of Southern California Trojans in The Classics, and the University of Louisville Cardinals wore white/white/red.
|Oklahoma State vs Texas A&M| An old Big XII matchup renewed. The Cowboys of Oklahoma State University–Stillwater wore white/black/white, and the Texas A&M University Aggies wore maroon/white/white. One of my favorite details on Oklahoma State’s unis returns, in the form of the sheriff’s star with the captain’s ‘C’.
|Tulane vs Virginia Tech| Ah, yes: two teams with excellent color schemes, surely they’ll leverage those colors to their advantage… right??? I… have no words to describe my disappointment. All the visual flair and unique color schemes in the world, and YOU DON’T USE THEM?!?! *grumbles* Whatever, let’s just go over this quickly: the Tulane University of Louisiana Green Wave wore green/black/black (such a letdown from their last bowl game appearance just barely shy of an entire year ago), and the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University Hokies (our military school for this bowl, in essence) wore white/white/orange (at least SOMEONE knows how to use color a little bit), with S&S decals on the helmets. So much colorful potential, WASTED.
Duke’s Mayo Bowl
|West Virginia vs North Carolina| See, NOW we’re cooking with color. Although I prefer Kewpie Mayo, myself. The West Virginia University Mountaineers wore their 2023 Country Roads unis against the Tar Heels of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, who wore white/white/Carolina Blue.
|Oklahoma vs Arizona| There’s a Hank Hill joke here somewhere. The University of Oklahoma Sooners wore their classic look, while the University of Arizona Wildcats (who have a neat logo/seal, I should add) wore all-white.
Pop Tarts Bowl
|Kansas State vs NC State| I prefer homemade, myself. The Kansas State University Wildcats wore silver/purple/silver (am I the only one who thinks their shade of purple looks like it belongs in a shopping mall from the 90s? Not that that’s a bad thing, of course). The opposing North Carolina State University Wolfpack wore all-white.
|Miami vs Rutgers| Not to be outdone by Fenway having a bowl game, Yankee Stadium renewed their annual contest, featuring the University of Miami Hurricanes, who wore white/orange/white, and the Scarlet Knights of Rutgers University–New Brunswick (or is it Rutgers |The State University of New Jersey| New Brunswick?) wore scarlet/white/white.
|Notre Dame vs Oregon State| What’s in a name (on back)? Here, we have the University of Notre Dame du Lac Fighting Irish in their classic gold/navy/gold (I STILL think they have the best helmets in college football after, what, 12 years of doing this?), the twist being that Notre Dame added player names, per their tradition of only using NOBs in bowl games. Meanwhile, The Oregon State University Beavers wore orange/white/white. Who knows what the Pac XYZ (I don’t know what to call it other than DEAD) future holds for them and Washington State (the only other school from the dissolved conference to not leave) in 2024?
|Kentucky vs Clemson| Opposite of the color wheel of each other, this wasn’t too bad on the eyes! Well, minus the chrome domes. The United Kingdom University of Kentucky Wildcats wore chrome/blue/blue against the Clemson University Tigers, who wore orange/white/orange.
|Ohio State vs Mizzou| Of all of the things that were on my 2023 bingo card, Ohio State not scoring a single touchdown in their NY6 bowl game loss to Mizzou was NOT one of them. In this color-vs-color matchup, we have THE Ohio State University Buckeyes in their classic scarlet jerseys and grey helmets and pants (really, more of a silver), and in what might be a new thing that they’re doing, Chris Beck noticed black name tape on the back of their helmets, similar to what the Dallas Cowboys use. The ultimately-victorious University of Missouri Tigers wore all-black, with the classic block ‘M’ helmet decals, and a boatload of patches. A nice-looking game, but one of these two combos for Mizzou would’ve been the icing on the cake.
Music City Bowl
|Maryland vs Auburn| In the final black-and-white affair of the year, we have the University of Maryland, College Park Terrapins in all-black, and the Auburn University Tigers (how many ‘Tigers’ does the SEC need?) in all-white, complete with white facemasks (and check out the jolted nose bumper decal).
|Wyoming vs Toledo| Up next, we have the University of Wyoming Cowboys, who wore white/gold/white against the University of Toledo Rockets, who wore navy/white/navy. I think this game suffered from too much white.
|Penn State vs Ole Miss| Inaccurate logo, but I think it looks better. On one side of the ball, we have The Pennsylvania State University Nittany Lions (the school has gone through SO MANY NAMES in their lifetime), who of course wore The Classics, facing off against the University of Mississippi Rebels, who wore light blue helmets, with white jerseys and pants.
|Florida State vs Georgia| …Well, that was a bloodbath. Our final college football game of 2023 comes in what is now the largest margin of victory in bowl game history. The Florida State University Seminoles arrived on the scene in their usual gold helmets and pants, with garnet jerseys. The University of Georgia Bulldogs wore red helmets, white jerseys, and silver britches, in their 63-3 BEATDOWN of Florida State. So much for the undefeated push.
And that will do it for 2023! We have 5 games left to cover to ring in the new year, so until then, I hope you all have a wonderful (and safe!) new year, and I’ll see you next week!