It’s true that college football can’t compare with the NFL in terms of player quality. But it seems that football fans and sports bettors don’t care too much about that. Many of them prefer college football over the elite football championship. Sometimes, the best doesn’t equal the most interesting. And that might be the case with college football.
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We are not talking about regular season games but the ones during the college football bowl season, in which the best college football teams compete. More often than not, these matches are packed with memorable moments, which is why it’s not surprising that sports fans from America are crazy about these sorts of games.
And the same goes for bettors. If you consider yourself a gambling person, you will be glad to hear that in college football bowl games, literally anything can happen. In those matches, every team is both the favorite and the underdog at the same time. And that means that the odds on every possible outcome are pretty high. With a little bit of luck and a lot of football knowledge, you can make nice betting profits during the bowl season.
Why Americans Love About College Football Bowls (and Why You Should, Too)
The largest stadium in the United States is Michigan Stadium with nearly 110,000 seats. And just behind it is Beaver Stadium with over 106,000 seats. And behind it is Kyle Field. And behind Kyle Field is Nevland Stadium. What’s interesting about these stadiums is that they’re all used for American football. But, not a single of these venues is used by an NFL franchise. Instead, they’re used by college football teams!
The fact is that the eight largest stadiums in the United States are used by NCAA teams. This shows just how popular college football is in this part of the world. Of course, not every match played at these stadiums attracts more than 100,000 spectators. College football fans prefer watching games in which teams of similar strengths are pitted against one another. And the games that fall into this category are the college football bowls.
Whenever college bowl games are played, stadiums are full. And many of those bowls get additional tens of thousands of people glued to the TV screens. The fact that Disney has gotten involved in the broadcast of these games tells a lot about how loved football bowls are. Disney-owned TV channels ABS and ESPN are among those that broadcast these events, attracting a viewership measured in millions.
The obvious question is why do Americans love college football bowls so much? The obvious answer is that they’re extremely exciting to watch. And they’re also very exciting to bet on. So, even if you’re not the biggest football fan in the world, you definitely need to give college football a shot, especially during the bowl season.
When is the Bowl Season in College Football?
The regular season of the NCAA football lasts for about 14 weeks. It starts in late August and ends in mid-December. And once the season is over, the postseason commences. And the postseason in college football is made of nearly 40 bowls, in which some of the best NCAA football teams compete.
However, even though bowls feature college football teams, the NCAA doesn’t have too much to do with the organization of bowl games. In fact, each bowl has its organization committee that decides which teams are going to take part in the event.
But what criteria are used for deciding which teams will compete in which bowl? The answer is that it all differs from bowl to bowl and from college to college. Still, in most cases, the factors that come into account include the financial payout, location of the bowl venues, and of course, the quality of the team.
Speaking of quality, the practice is that only the teams with at least .500 record can play in bowl matches. In layman’s terms, this means that only the teams with at least five or six wins in the regular season will feature in postseason bowls.
Of course, there are exceptions, which often depend on the reputation of the team, as well as its fan base. The bowl organizers surely don’t want to leave out a team with an enormous fan base. That said, bowl games are all about entertainment. And that’s exactly what makes them so attractive to both football aficionados and bettors.
The New Year’s Six – The Biggest College Football Bowls
The reason why college football bowls exist is to bring entertainment to sports fans. There are almost 40 of them every year, which feature the best teams from the NCAA Division I. And there are plenty of other bowls with teams from the lower divisions of the NCAAF. More than enough to quench the thirst for football in every fan, don’t you agree?
Considering that there are so many of them, you might wonder which bowl is the best. The answer is that there isn’t a single bowl that stands out, but six of them! The New Year’s Six are the college football bowls that feature the best teams from the college football universe. These six bowls feature the 12 best-ranked teams in the entire Division I of the NCAAF.
Apart from being the best in terms of player quality, these bowls are also the games with the longest tradition. In fact, each of the New Year’s Six games belongs to the top 10 oldest bowl games in the United States.
Rose Bowl Game
The Rose Bowl Game usually happens on New Year’s Day. Its name comes from the name of the venue where it’s played, the Rose Bowl Stadium in Pasadena, CA. This game is the very oldest bowl game that’s still being played, hence its nickname is “The Granddaddy of Them All”.
Another thing that makes this bowl stand out is the payout, which is why the Rose Bowl Game attracts the cream of the crop of college football. It’s usually the clash between the teams from the Pac-12 and Big Ten conferences. We say ‘usually’ because every three years, this game is played as a part of the College Football Playoff. That’s when the Rose Bowl Game is played as one of the semifinals of the playoff.
Taking place at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana, the Sugar Bowl is very similar to the Rose Bowl Game. What makes these two similar is the fact that both of these bowls happen in the early days of January. It’s usually either 1st or 2nd day of the New Year.
Another similarity is that the Sugar Bowl game is also a matchup between high-ranking teams from the Pac-12 and Big Ten conferences. And the final similarity is that this game too has a huge payout. Each team gets about $15M for taking part in the Sugar Bowl.
Here’s a bowl game that’s taking place in Atlanta, GA in late December. The venue is the Mercedes-Benz Stadium where a team from the Group of Five is pitted one a team invited by the Peach Bowl committee.
The exception is when the Peach Bowl is played as a part of the CFP Playoff. In that case, this bowl game assumes the role of the semifinal. It happens every three years, something which has been the case since 2016.
Same as the three bowls we previously discussed, the Fiesta Bowl is also a part of the College Football Playoff. And same as those bowls, this one too hosts a semifinal game every three years. But, in the meantime, the Fiesta Bowl is a matchup of two college teams, one from the Group of Five conference and one that’s invited by the bowl committee.
The event is taking a place at the State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona. Although the venue is in the southwestern region, the teams from almost the opposite part of the country have been most successful in these games. We’re talking about schools like Penn State, which has a 100% score in the last 7 bowls and Ohio State, which holds the record for the most appearances in the Fiesta Bowl.
The Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, Florida is the venue where the Orange Bowl is taking place every December. This is a bowl game that sees a matchup of a team from the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) and a team from one of the following two conferences – the Southeastern Conference (SEC) and the Big Ten Conference. Sometimes, Notre Dame replaces the team from the SEC/Big Ten and is paired with a team from the ACC in the Orange Bowl.
Cotton Bowl Classic
The Cotton Bowl Classic is held at the AT&T Stadium in Dallas Texas, a venue that’s otherwise used as the home ground of the Dallas Cowboys in the NFL. But, every year around New Year’s Day, it hosts the Cotton Bowl, a game in which a team from the Group of Five is pitted against a team that can be from any conference. The decision on which team will play against the Group of Five team is made by the bowl committee.
Other Major College Football Bowls
The events nicknamed the New Year’s Six are the most popular bowls in college football, but they’re not the only ones. In fact, there are many other bowls that are almost as equally interesting. Only in Division I of college football, there are more than 30 other bowls every year. Obviously, you have plenty of options to bet.
Of course, this is only true if your sportsbook has these events in the offer. Some bookmakers prefer to focus only on the major ones, such as those from the New Year’s Six. Others might have a broader offer when it comes to college football bowl betting. But even those bookmakers tend to focus on those that attract big viewership. So, which bowls are that?
It’s been around for more than half a century and such, the Citrus Bowl is one of the bowls with the longest tradition. It’s definitely the oldest existing bowl in the state of Florida. Speaking of which, the Citrus Bowl is taking place in Orlando, at the Camping World Stadium. Usually, it happens on New Year’s Day, that is, the 1st of January. The teams that take part in the Citrus Bowl are those from the Big Ten and SEC.
Here’s another bowl happening in Florida. The Outback Bowl is taking place at the Raymond James Stadium in Tampa. Same as the Citrus Bowl, this one too is usually played on the first day of the year. And same as the bowl taking place in Orlando, this one too is a matchup between the colleges from the SEC and the Big Ten conference.
Traditionally, the Alamo Bowl is played in late December, although from time to time, its date moves to early January. The game takes place at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas, hence the name of the bowl. The teams featuring in this game are from the Pac-12 Conference and the Big-12 Conference.
The Holiday Bowl is one of the biggest football events in Southern California. Taking place at the SDCCU Stadium in San Diego, the bowl attracts a huge number of spectators. We’re not only talking about those watching it from the stands of the stadium, but also about those sitting in front of their TV screens.
The reason why this bowl is so popular is that it features high-ranking teams from two major conferences, namely Pac-12 and Big Ten. Another reason is that it usually takes place before other major bowls. The date of the Holiday Bowl is usually in the days between Christmas and the New Year’s Eve.
The venue where the Texas Bowl is taking place is thought of as one of the best football stadiums in the United States. The stadium in question is the NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas, which is used by Houston Texans, a major NFL franchise. This stadium hosted NFL Super Bowls on two occasions, while in the world of college football, it’s been used as the facility for the Texas Bowl since 2006.
Sell-outs happen all the time when the Texas Bowl is concerned, even though the stadium has a capacity of more than 70,000 seats. And the reason why spectators are swarming to the NRG Stadium to watch the Texas Bowl is that these games are almost always incredibly entertaining. It’s because this bowl matches-up two teams of similar abilities from the Big 12 Conference and the SEC.
The Celebration Bowl basically determines the champion of historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs). It’s a game in which the best team from the Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC) plays against a team from the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC).
This bowl is taking place at the Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, Georgia. The same venue is used as the facility of the Peach Bowl, which is scheduled a few days after the Celebration Bowl. Actually, the Celebration Bowl is one of the first events in the college bowl season, usually happening a few days before Christmas Day.
Betting on College Bowls
The bowl season is a great time of the year for football fans. For a couple of weeks around New Year’s Day, college football aficionados get to enjoy some extremely exciting games, with the very best NCAA teams. And when best teams play, there’s always a possibility that a huge surprise is going to happen. Actually, every year there’s some historical moment that true college football fans will remember forever.
And when matches are exciting, it’s fun to bet on their outcomes. That’s exactly why bettors love college football bowls. Anything can happen in these matches, which is why the odds are usually pretty competitive. Plus, many offshore bookmakers use the bowl season as an opportunity to promote themselves by giving enhanced odds on these events, as well as some bonuses that can be claimed when betting on bowl games.
What this all means is that you have an amazing opportunity to add a few digits to your account by betting on bowls. Your chance is even better if you’re a knowledgeable college football enthusiast. Passionately following the regular NCAAF season is a way to prepare yourself for the big events that come around New Years’ time.
But, if you think it’s late for you to get your college football education for the upcoming bowls, you can always find useful info on our website. VegasOdds is the place where you can find out a lot about college football odds and college football betting sites, as well as read the latest news from the NCAAF universe.
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