Happy New Year everyone! For college football fans, New Year's Day is like Christmas, as the day is loaded full of football. It's not as quite as big as it used to be. 30 years ago, there were only one or two games televised each football Saturday. Then cable and multiple broadcast networks came on board, but even then, only five or six games were broadcast. In the middle 1990's, telecasting of college football exploded, and now non-televised games are the exception rather than the rule.
So when New Year's Day rolled around with five or six televised games, it was the ultimate for football fans. Today, it's a little less. A couple of minor bowls have edged their way onto the New Year's rotation, while the BCS has made the decision to not overlap games.
The overlap was one of the great things about New Year's. I always enjoyed setting up a second TV next to the big screen and going back and forth between multiple games. The day usually began with the Cotton and Fiesta Bowls. Then you were forced to take a break with the Irrelevant Yawner Bowl, since the Rose usually ran without an alternative. Then the main course... the Orange and Sugar Bowls side by side. If a game started to suck, you always had an escape route. And in the early 90's, even the Rose had a worthy alternative as when ABC took over broadcasting rights to the Rose Bowl, NBC kept their tripleheader alive by moving the Fiesta and Cotton Bowls opposite the Rose. College football nirvana!
Now, the BCS spreads the big games over the first week of January. The Orange and Fiesta bowls will be played on the 2nd and 3rd, and the BCS title game won't be for another week. On one hand, it's nice to be able to watch all of them. But part of me still longs for the "good 'ol days" when we could go back and forth from game to game. (Especially when a particular game goes to blowout status...)
Right now, Wisconsin and Tennessee are getting ready to kick off in the Outback. Missouri and Arkansas kick off in a half-hour in the Cotton. The Citrus (oops, I mean some credit card company) Bowl fires up in a couple of hours with the Weasels and Gators, as does the Gator Bowl with Texas Tech and Virginia. And for something different, the NHL plays an outdoor hockey game on NBC. (Kind of like serving ham on Thanksgiving, I guess...) It's supposed to snow, so I'll have to find time to check that out as well.