Forty-two bowl games have been played since Dec. 16, and one more remains: the National Championship.
However, it goes without saying that the bowl season has lost its luster in recent years.
More and more players are opting out of bowl games, whether it is to protect themselves for the NFL Draft, realignment forcing traditional bowl game matchups to be a thing in the past or other reasons.
More than two dozen Florida State players did not play in the Orange Bowl this past weekend – some were prepping for the Draft, some may have been protesting over being snubbed out of the playoff, and, because there is a playoff, some probably just found it pointless; they lost to Georgia, 63-3.
Bowl season is not what it used to be, and Senior Bowl executive director Jim Nagy knows it.
“What these games have basically become is glorified spring ball,” he said on OutKick’s “Hot Mic” on Tuesday. “You’re almost getting a foreshadowing of next season.”
Nagy says he has seen some wild ideas to save bowl season.
“I’ve seen maybe move them to the spring, that’s interesting. I’ve heard about move them to Week 0 so you get some really cool head-to-head matchups to start the year. I don’t know. I don’t know what the answer is,” he said.
“This isn’t what we’ve grown up watching,” he continued. “I just remember growing up as a kid, laying up in the living room with my family and watching big-time bowl games, and big-time players that were going on to the NFL. It’s hard when there’s no star power in the bowl games. I used to watch the bowl games and sweat it out every week that our players would get through the game injury-free. Even in the six years I’ve been in this role, our players have stopped playing in bowl games, so I don’t have to sweat it out anymore.
“Something needs to be done. I don’t know what that answer is, but something needs to be done, for sure.”
Nothing needs fixing with the bowl games that make up the semifinals, though, as both came down to the final play on New Year’s Day.
No. 1 Michigan stopped No. 4 Alabama on 4th and goal in overtime to win the Rose Bowl, while No. 2 Washington avoided a wild collapse after knocking down one final pass in the end zone as time expired against No. 3 Texas.
The Wolverines and Huskies, both 14-0, will battle it out in Houston next Monday night.