I used to get really fired up about lower tier bowls and lower tier post-season basketball tournaments, but I’ve learned to relax a bit and turn my attention and ire onto other more meaningful matters. Does it impact me if some 5-7 team plays in a bowl? It doesn’t. I don’t have to watch it, and I won’t. Except for the CFP, all of the bowls (meaning, all bowls minus three) are just exhibition games. A win may bump you higher in post-season polls; a loss could drop you down or out. Oh well. What the NCAA should do, but won’t, is allow everyone those extra weeks of practice that the bowl teams get. If they let you get into a bowl and you’re 5-7 and you can practice between now and your bowl, why not grant that to everbody else?
Now, I can think of one person among us with very noble intentions who will question lost class time for the students. I get that, I respect that, and I haven’t reconciled that in my brain yet. I want our student-athletes to be students and am appreciative of the tough balance between sport and class. If some programs get the benefit of extra practice time because they go to a bowl game, shouldn’t everyone else get it? If not, then what do you do? No one gets extra weeks of practice, even if you go to a bowl? Or maybe you can practice for one week and one week only leading up to your game, and everyone gets a week and that’s it? I could support that.
Anyway, food for thought. I used to hate the minor bowls a lot, but to me now, they are trees falling in the forest. I’m choosing not to be in the forest to hear them. Same for the post-season hoops tourneys that are not the Big Dance or NIT (although I won’t watch the NIT unless Penn State is in it).