Hale's Perspective: Bowl Games
If you are a college football fan starting this weekend you hit the jackpot.
It's bowl time again!
While it's not technically a bowl game the University of Maine is in Ogden, Utah getting ready for their fourth appearance in the NCAA FCS football quarterfinals.
Friday night at 8 pm eastern the Black Bears will face Weber State on national tv.
In fact the game is the only nationally televised game of the day and will be covered by ESPN 2.
Radio coverage with Rich Kimball, Bob Lucy and Brian Sullivan will be on the black bear network of radio stations.
Following a tremendous win over Jacksonville state the Maine team is riding a high wave of enthusiasm. One of the final 8 teams still standing the Black Bears are trying to make it out of the quarterfinal round for the first time in school history.
Both Maine and Weber State are similar teams.
No matter what this has been a banner year for Maine football and hopefully more to come.
Next will come one of my yearly football musts when army and navy collide tomorrow afternoon on CBS at 3pm in Philadelphia.
The game marks the end of the regular college football season and then the bowls line up and there is a lot to lineup.
When all is said and done 39 games will be played and the season will culminate with the college football playoff national championship on January 7, 2019.
The title game in Santa Clara is proceeded by the semi final Cotton Bowl with undefeated Clemson and Notre Dame and the Orange Bowl with undefeated Alabama and once beaten Oklahoma.
People have been saying we have too many bowl games for years and that the post season has been diluted.
Some still argue that.
The Rose Bowl was established in 1902 and eventually grew to five.
On New Years Day we had the Cotton, Orange, Rose, Sugar and Sun Bowls.
Here's a bit of history you may not know.
Years ago, a fabled University of Maine Athletic Director, Tad Weiman, who headed up the american football coaches association led a crusade against bowls because he felt the games were profit makers for commercial entities and not part of the educational scheme of things.
one can only wonder what Wieman would think some 70 years later as there are 40 of them now and most have Commerical names.
Bowl games promote various states, flowers, cars, drinks, camping and lots of fruits.
The bowl season begins December 15 and won't end until January 7.
But the world has turned over many times since the University of Maine coach and his organization fought expansion.
Of course he wasn't completely wrong.
It is very, very commercial.
But he could not of known about television networks with hours of time to fill and alumni who count on a bowl appearance as something indicating season success.
It could be argued that there is a glut of bowl games but fans and schools and networks seem not to care.
So for better of worse here we go again.
No the Maine game Friday night isn't a bowl but students, fans and the public are treating it that way.
On national TV, win or lose, the University of Maine will be seen around the world and that's good for everyone who call the pine tree state home.
This is George Hale with my perspective on sports.