If Ron Burgandy was still on the air in San Diego, he would describe this game as "the single greatest event ever to come to our fine city." Of course, he would also dismiss Northern Illinois' Garret Wolfe. "What? A MAC player leading the country in rushing? What is this, amateur hour?"
For this one game only, Oregon head coach Mike Bellotti ought to think about moving offensive coordinator Gary Crowton to the other side of the ball. After all, no one did a better job slowing down BYU quarterback John Beck than Crowton did as Beck's head coach in 2003 and '04.
Rice is playing in its first bowl game since the 1961 Bluebonnet Bowl. Troy, however, is making its second postseason trip in the past three seasons. Which means Troy can officially say it's been to as many bowl games since 2004 as Nebraska, Penn State, Texas A&M and Colorado.
How to get a free pizza: Go to PapaJohns.com during the game and place an order. When the delivery guy arrives, tell him you're unsatisfied and refuse to pay. "But sir, you haven't even tasted the pizza yet," he'll say. "I know," you'll reply. "But this football game of yours ruined my appetite."
Second-year coach Dick Tomey led the Spartans to their best season and first bowl berth since 1990. Their reward? An extra road game. "The Southwest is a beautiful area of the country," Tomey told the student paper. "We're very excited for the opportunity." Good seats still available.
You know those clips you see every year of arriving bowl teams walking off their plane to a red-carpet greeting? If you live in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, keep your eyes peeled on the local news Dec. 20 for shots of Tulsa's players getting off their bus following a four-and-a-half-hour drive.
Since its 2002 inception, the Hawaii Bowl has rarely failed to entertain. In '02, J.P. Losman led Tulane past Hawaii, 36-28. In the '03 and '04 games, the Warriors put up 54 and 59 points, respectively. And in '05, Nevada beat UCF 49-48 in overtime. Even Santa's been known to stop and watch a few plays.
Interim coach Jeff Quinn, stepping in for the departed Brian Kelly, will lead the Chippewas in this one. If CMU happens to hire a new coach sometime soon, it's possible Quinn will also be Kelly's offensive coordinator for Cincinnati's Jan. 6 International Bowl. What will he do with the extra watch?
It will be the last game for Florida State offensive coordinator Jeff Bowden, whose unit ranked 73rd in the country this season. His last assignment: Outwit UCLA defensive coordinator DeWayne Walker, whose unit held USC to its lowest scoring output (nine points) in five years.