Bowling for Bowls of Bowl Game Success (Bowler optional)
Well we are here. The longest running and most-popular of the 5-at-10 contests in which you can win stuff. As always, the contests are free to enter.
As always, I and several 5-at-10 family members will play along as well.
The rules are simple. Please submit your picks before Dec. 15. (That's a week from Saturday, Spy.) One entry per person. Feel free to share with friends and family. We are picking the games against the spreads listed below. If there's massive line movement between now and kickoff time, well, that's part of the charm of Bowling for Bowls of Bowl Game Success (Bowler optional).
Also, a correct pick gets those points; no lost points for incorrect picks. We will do all the bowl games so that everyone has at least some tangental interest in every game.
And since there is no hat required, let's remain casual and enjoy the process. (Copyright Nick Saban.)
One-point games (max of 6 points)
Autonation Cure Bowl (Did you know Autonation was that ill? I did not.): Tulane (-3.5) vs. Louisiana
New Mexico Bowl: Utah State (-9.5) vs. Texas State
Las Vegas Bowl: Fresno State (-4.5) vs. Arizona State
Camellia Bowl: Georgia Southern (-1.5) vs. Eastern Michigan
New Orleans Bowl: App State (-7.5) vs. MTSU
Boca Raton Bowl: UAB (-1.5) vs. Northern Illinois
Two-point games (max of 14 points)
Frisco Bowl: San Diego State (-3.5) vs. Ohio
Bad Boy Mowers Gasparilla Bowl: Marshall (-1.5) vs. South Florida
Bahamas Bowl: FIU (-5.5) vs. Toledo
Idaho Potato Bowl: BYU (-11.5) vs. Western Michigan
Birmingham Bowl: Memphis (-4.5) vs. Wake Forest
Armed Forces Bowl: Army (-3.5) vs. Houston
Dollar General Bowl: Buffalo vs Troy, pick 'em
Hawaii Bowl: Hawaii (-1.5) vs. La. Tech
Three-point games (max of 21 points)
First Responder Bowl: Boise State (-3.5) vs. Boston College
Quick Lane Bowl: Georgia Tech (-4.5) vs. Minnesota
Cheez-It Bowl: California vs. TCU, pick 'em
Independence Bowl: Temple (-3.5) vs. Duke
Pinstripe Bowl: Miami (-3.5) vs. Wisconsin
Academy Sports & Outdoors Texas Bowl: Vandy (-3.5) vs. Baylor
Arizona Bowl: Arkansas State (-1.5) vs. Nevada
Four-point games (max of 28 points)
Camping World Bowl: West Virginia (-4.5) vs. Syracuse
Alamo Bowl: Washington State (-3.5) vs. Iowa State
Belk Bowl: South Carolina (-3.5) vs. Virginia
Military Bowl: Cincinnati vs. Virginia Tech, pick 'em
Sun Bowl: Stanford (-6.5) vs. Pittsburgh
Red Box Bowl: Oregon (-2.5) vs. Michigan State
Holiday Bowl: Utah (-6.5) vs. Northwestern
Five-point games (max of 40 points)
Music City Bowl: Auburn (-3.5) vs. Purdue
Chick-Fil-A Bowl: Michigan (-7.5) vs. Florida
Liberty Bowl: Missouri (-7.5) vs. Oklahoma State
Gator Bowl: Texas A&M (-4.5) vs. NC State
Outback Bowl: Mississippi State (-6.5) vs. Iowa
Citrus Bowl: Penn State (-6.5) vs. Kentucky
Rose Bowl: THE Ohio State (-6.5) vs. Washington
Sugar Bowl: Georgia (-10.5) vs. Texas
Eight-point games (max of 16 points)
Cotton Bowl: Clemson (-11.5) vs. Notre Dame
Orange Bowl: Alabama (-13.5) vs. Oklahoma
For a 10 point bonus: (Pick the winner of the national championship; no spreads, just the winner).
If we need a tie-breaker going into the title game, we'll come up with one.
Of course the big news Tuesday was Urban Liar walking away from his most recent dream job. Hey, maybe there will be a new dream job down the road. Who knows? (Certainly not Mrs. Liar.)
But that was far from the only detail on the coaching treadmill.
In fact there were a few moves that could have interesting ripple effects, a couple of them local.
We'll start with former Boyd-Buchanan quarterback and local kid making very good Will Healy, who has left Austin Peay to be the head coach at Charlotte. Kudos.
There also was the news Tuesday that after parting ways with Terry Bowden, the powers that be at Akron have interested in UTC head coach Tom Arth. It was reported in
We'll start with Mike (Don't call me Robin of) Locksley being named the new Maryland head coach. Locksley of course was the Alabama OC before heading north.
This news came after Monday's announcement that FSU OC Walt Bell will be the new head coach at UMass and Auburn OC Chip Lindsey headed to Lawrence to be Les Miles' OC.
So, with THE Ohio State promoting its OC to replace Urban and the Alabama OC gig coming open shortly, Tennessee filling its OC job just got a little more complicated considering there are OC openings at Bama, THE OSU, FSU, and Auburn as well. And that's after USC has already filled its OC spot with Kliff Kingsbury.
Yes, lots of Johnny Vols Fans want Hugh Freeze. We also know Alabama boss Nick Saban was interested in adding Freeze to the staff last summer. That move reportedly did not please SEC commish Greg Sankey, who pleased with his boss Nick Saban not to do it.
So if you are Freeze, who also has been rumored to be interested in the open head coaching spot at Liberty, you now occupy what's know as the fabled cat bird seat.
Louisville has hired Scott Satterfield, who was at Appalachian State. If one of those high-powered folks wants an OC with some pedigree that means ol' Bobby Petrino is also on the market. Yes, he's another dude we do not want watching our kids, but he can call some ball plays.
Also on the market is Matt Canada, who was the fill-in at Maryland this year — and did a pretty good job there all things considered.
NL East fight
Last year, as the Nationals were underachieving, the Braves seized on the opening and grabbed the NL East flag.
Now, other than the Marlins, every team in the NL East appears intent on trying to follow the Braves' inspiring rebuild and postseason return.
Washington signed Patrick Corbin, one of the most-coveted free agent pitchers on the market, to a reported six-year, $140 million deal. That gives them a 1-2-3 of Scherzer, Strasburg and Corbin, which is as good as any in the NL. (Side note: That Corbin, who will soon be 30 and is a lefty who has battled arm issues and relies on a power slider, got more than $23 million per year after going 11-8 with an ERA in the low-3s has to make guys like Steve Carlton throw up in their mouth just a little right?)
The Phillies made a big deal with Seattle to get all-star shortstop Jean Segura (.304, 10 HRs, 20 SBs) and were in the mix for Corbin. The Phillies are looking for another starting pitcher, which is not unlike saying, I am looking for another Co-Cola during a college football Saturday.
The Mets dealt a slew of big-time prospects to the Mariners for Robinson Cano and power closer Edwin Perez. Yes, they gave up a lot, but the Mets are going to better next year.
We know the Braves added Josh Donaldson and Brian McCann. (Cue the Major League scene, "Wish we had him two years ago." "We did." "Four years ago then.") And they, like the Phillies are looking for another starting pitcher — the race for Madison Bumgarner just got a little more interesting, friends.
Yes, we are more than two months from pitching and catchers reporting, but the NL East got a lot tighter in the last week.
This and that
— Here are some of the prop/situation bets for the various outcomes of the college football playoff. Yes, Alabama is a big favroite. To win $100 on Alabama winning the whole thing you have to bet $220. If you bet $100 on Clemson you would win $310. A $100 bet on Oklahoma pays $1,000 and a $100 bet on Notre Dame pays $1,400.
— As per his usual posturing, TFP ace sports columnist Mark Wiedmer is 100 percent correct this morning. The Guns and Hoses charity boxing event between the firemen and the law enforcement folks in town is aces.
— Bill Snyder stepped down Sunday at Kansas State. That's not news. That's an every five-or-so-year thing. Pretty cool detail here: Snyder is going tor receive $250,000 a year in salary and benefits in an ambassador's role for KSU.
— Buckle up for some Twitter blasts later today. At a sports conference, NCAA president Mark Emmert closed his Q&A with a rapid-fire, word-association game. When asked "Jay Bilas" — the longtime ESPN commentator and one of the foremost critics of the NCAA — Emmert said plainly, "Everybody's got to make a living, man."
— Never heard of TOS before, but apparently it's a real thing and causes jump shots and free throws to be completely unpredictable and unreliable. At least that's what the Markelle Fultz folks are saying.
Which way Wednesday is this way. Follow along.
Which will happen first: Bill Snyder will coach at K-State again or Urban Meyer will coach anywhere again.
Which way should it go: Jayson Stark writes for The Athletic that support against 'The Shift' in baseball is growing. Should 'The Shift' be eliminated, limited — like no more than 5 per game — or left alone?
Which non-playoff, bowl game not involving your favorite team catches your eye, and why?
On this day, Dec. 5, Walt Disney would have been 117. Dude made a monster impact, no? Well-done Walt.
NL MVP Christian Yellich is 27 today.
It's National Communicate with Your Kids day. (Another one that should be everyday right?) It's national blue jeans day.
On this day in 1933, prohibition was repealed by the 21st Amendment. #Murica.
On this day in 2001, "Ocean's Eleven" was released.
Rushmore of movie remakes better than the original. Go, and remember the mailbag and the Bowling for Bowls of Bowl Game Success (Bowler optional).
Enjoy the day friends.