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The best, worst college football games


The college football playoff is down to one game, with next Monday’s Dawgs vs. Frogs Championship game between Georgia and TCU being the only one remaining.

Here’s what we learned after the 42 bowl games.

The semifinals made Saturday the greatest day in college football playoff history.

If you weren’t a fan of Ohio State or Michigan, it was the most fun college football ever. But playoff games shouldn’t be on New Year’s Eve, when everyone’s attention is focused elsewhere.

If Big Ten commissioner Kevin Warren leaves become president of the Chicago BearsSaturday was a fitting farewell.

The two legendary conference programs could have staged a rematch in the championship game, only to fold in the semifinals. At least Big Ten fans can stop complaining about an SEC bias in the standings.

The Hypnotoad is a real thing.

TCU’s nickname is Horned Frogs. But the school has adopted the Hypnotoad, a cartoon character from “Futurama,” as its unofficial mascot. Watching a psychedelic cartoon frog is a fitting way to end a goofy college football season.

JJ McCarthy does not respond to anyone.

After losing to TCU in the Fiesta Bowl semifinals, Michigan’s LaGrange Park quarterback made a brief statement at the postgame press conference, then got up and walked out. That kind of attitude is why many college football fans root against Michigan. Accountability matters.

Jim Harbaugh has outdone himself.

Calling a fix play on fourth and goal in the opening practice of the semi-final was ridiculous. Of course, that didn’t work. “Put it on me,” Harbaugh said afterwards. No need to make such a request, Coach. Twitter was way ahead of you.

Bowling games in baseball stadiums should disappear.

Maybe it was cool the first time a bowling game was held at Fenway Park and Yankee Stadium. Now it’s an old hat and no one cares to see it. At least there’s no Wintrust Wrigley Field Bowl yet.

CJ Stroud is the best player in the country.

The Ohio State quarterback showed everyone what he was capable of in a heartbreaking loss to Georgia. It was one of the most impressive CFP performances of all time and should seal Stroud’s status as the top QB in the NFL Draft.

A .500 team should not receive a bowl invite.

There’s no reason a mediocre 6-6 team deserves to play in a bowling game. If you can’t even put together a winning season, stay home and try again next year.

There’s always a rainbow at the Sun Bowl.

I would love to see a college student write a thesis on why this always seems to happen at the annual game in El Paso, Texas.

Too many star players are sitting bowl games for the draft.

If you’re worried about getting hurt and hurting your NFL draft status, maybe you should just sit back all season and avoid the risk altogether. No top players are missing playoff games, and that’s the same risk.

ESPN Radio needs to pull itself together.

Announcer mics malfunctioned on Michigan-TCU’s opening player. All you heard was the pitch announcer giving the down and distance after each play. It’s the playoffs and you’re the self-proclaimed “National Sports Leader.” Do better.

Guillermo needs a screenwriter.

Jimmy Kimmel and his sidekick, Guillermo Rodriguez, were brought to the stand during the Jimmy Kimmel LA Bowl. Guillermo stood there like a bump on a log and said nothing. Maybe next year they can write him a few lines before he goes on live TV, or just leave him out of the booth.

Not all coaches have had a great season.

After Notre Dame’s victory over South Carolina in the Gator Bowl, an ESPN announcer updated us on the fine work of first-year Irish coach Marcus Freeman. This praise from every college football coach is unnecessary. The Irish, who recruit more talent than almost any other program on name alone, lost at home to Marshall and a Stanford team 3-9. Freeman may turn out to be a great coach, but four losses doesn’t translate to a great season at Notre Dame.

Just when you thought you’d seen it all, Tulane said, “Hold my hurricane.”

Tulane players celebrate after a 46-45 victory over USC in the Cotton Bowl on Monday, Jan. 2, 2023, at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.

The Green Wave trailed USC 45-30 with 4:30 left in Monday’s Cotton Bowl when they scored a touchdown in two plays, earned a safety and scored the game-winning touchdown on a 12-play, 66-game drive. yards that ended with a 6-yard pass from Michael Pratt to Alex Bauman with 9 seconds left. The pass was called incomplete but reversed on video review. Of the many last-minute comebacks, including Pitt over UCLA at the Sun Bowl, Tulane’s miracle may have been the best of them all.

The next generation of NFL quarterbacks look amazing.

Stroud (348 yards, four TDs in the Peach Bowl), Alabama’s Bryce Young (321 yards, five TDs in the Sugar Bowl), and USC’s Caleb Williams (462 yards, five TDs in the Cotton Bowl) all looked set for their NFL close-ups. Too bad the Bears don’t need a quarterback.

Mike Leach tributes have dominated the bowl season.

Running back Jo'quavious Marks and the rest of the Mississippi State players wear stickers on their helmets honoring former coach Mike Leach at the ReliaQuest Bowl on Monday, Jan. 2, 2023, in Tampa, Fla. .  Leach died on December 13.  2022, from heart disease.

It was a shame that Illinois’ bowling season comeback ended in a loss to Mississippi State in Monday’s Gator Bowl, but it seemed karma was on the side of the Bulldogs, who were wearing pirate decals on their helmets as a tribute to their late trainer, Mike. Leach. All of the tributes to Leach during bowl season were special, including Missouri coach Eli Drinkwitz sporting the coach’s t-shirt at the Gasparilla Bowl.



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