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BOWL PREVIEWS: Thursday, December 27th—The Independencing

Today we visit three of America’s cultural breadbaskets: Houston, New York City, and Shreveport.

Independence Bowl logo
Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

Good morning! It has come to our attention via social media, the medium that never presents false representation, that some of you thought that last night’s CheezIt Bowl, the thrilling 10-7 OT frogstomper that saw TCU edge out Cal by the finest of margins, was actually bad. We are sorry that you are so wrong about college football, and therefore, probably everything else. If you don’t get off on watching nine-interception games at midnight on a Wednesday, perhaps just stick with the NFL or whatever other sterilized game of non-chance you call a “real sport.” Nobody’s forcing you to watch all these bowls that you think don’t belong in the pantheon of history. Leave the rest of us to our beautiful controlled burns in peace. ‘Tis the season.

Independence Bowl

by Lucas Jackson

Duke v. Temple | 12:30 p.m. ESPN

If the cancellation of yesterday’s SERVPRO First Responder Bowl left a sour taste in your mouth, refresh your palate with a helping of the Independence Bowl. Escape the sense of bowl inflation by immersing yourself in the nations 11th oldest bowl, which has never succumbed to the pressures of extreme weather. Shreveport’s calling card is the working fan’s bowl game, with a history of sponsors that includes weedeaters and beard-loving peddlers of duck hunting equipment. The Independence Bowl embraces the underdog role. Its title sponsor is “Walk-Ons” and its matchup of Duke vs Temple pits two perennially overlooked football programs with something to prove against each other. This is a contest between the ignored in the land of the forgotten. So remember, the Independence Bowl may not be flashy, but it’s still here. So enjoy, because you’ll miss it if it ever disappears.

Pinstripe Bowl

by Shooter Flatch

Miami vs Wisconsin | 4:15 | ESPN

Taking two college football teams to play a bowl game in a baseball stadium in the Bronx illustrates that just because you CAN do something, doesn’t mean that you should. But if you’re going to make this game happen, I have a few requests...

- Michael Irvin should handle the coin flip in a full length mink coat.

- Wisconsin fans are allowed free beer through the first half.

- Miami’s starting QB will be decided by a Twitter poll.

- Barry Alvarez can fire two coaches from either team at any point of the game.

- Uncle Luke handles kickoff duties.

- If Wisconsin wins, the whole team stays on South Beach for a week at Miami’s expense.

- If the Hurricanes win, they can choose three offensive lineman to play for them for 2019.

- ESPNU provides a live camera feed on the subway to Yankee Stadium before and after the game.

Texas Bowl

by Rush

Baylor vs. Vanderbilt | 8 p.m. | ESPN

This is your punishment. This is your lump of coal. Do not rely on this game for any sort of ancillary emotional fulfillment, because even if Baylor loses, they lose to Vandy, which is akin to watching an ant slowly rip a tiny leaf in half: it’s fairly impressive on a small scale, but looking back you can’t believe you started at it for three hours. And if Baylor wins? Well, that’s just Santa sending a metric compressed shit-ton of unclean coal straight down your chimney, then dancing in the cloud of resultant black dust briefly so his Baptist parishoners don’t see. Make plans to engage in other means of distraction before you enter this time window, just in case it’s precisely as awful as it sounds like it could be.