Now that the matchup for the January 11th college football championship game has been set it's time to return to your regularly scheduled bowl season, already in progress. Here's the day's full schedule, including TV and streaming options:
Outback Bowl: Northwestern vs. Tennessee
Time: Noon ET
Citrus Bowl: Michigan vs. Florida
Time: 1 p.m. ET
Fiesta Bowl: Notre Dame vs. Ohio State
Time: 1 p.m. ET
Rose Bowl: Stanford vs. Iowa
Time: 5 p.m. ET
Sugar Bowl: Oklahoma State vs. Ole Miss
Time: 8:30 p.m. ET
Today's action kicks off at noon with the Northwestern Wildcats taking on Tennessee in the Outback Bowl. This one's for all the bloomin' onions. Be aware, if Tennessee wins this one Volunteer fans will be so certain that they're winning the SEC East next season that you may want to avoid them for the next nine months. 1 p.m. brings the rare chance to cheer against both Notre Dame and Florida at the same time. The tradeoff is that you have to cheer for Urban Meyer and Jim Harbaugh. It's the Kobayashi Maru of gridiron scheduling.
5 p.m. brings the Granddaddy of Them All, pitting Stanford against a resurgent Iowa. Iowa fans who were disappointed about not being in the playoff can take heart in the fact that the Hawkeyes really weren't 39 points better than the Michigan State Spartans. Finishing the season 13-1 with a Rose Bowl victory over David Shaw's Cardinal might be enough to get Kirk Ferentz a lifetime contract and the title of Caesar in front of his name.
Finally, the primetime matchup pits Oklahoma State against Ole Miss. The Rebels will be playing without noted hotel balcony-jumper Robert Nkemdiche, who is the fourth starting defensive lineman they've lost this season. Being thin on the defensive front against a team like Ok. State that wants to run 90 plays a game is decidedly suboptimal. On the other hand, it will be fun to watch the Cowboy defense chase Chad Kelly around like overweight hound dogs looking to hem up a chipmunk on molly.
We'll be hear from the first kick to the last whistle, taking copious breaks in between for extra helpings of black-eyed peas and collard greens, naturally. Happy New Year's to you and yours, and . . .