Recently, it was announced that the Wisconsin Badgers would take part in the Las Vegas Bowl on December 30th at 9:30 PM (Thanks west coast). Their opponent will be the Arizona State Sun Devils; who finished the year with an identical overall record of 8-4 and 6-3 in the Pac-12. It’ll mark the Badgers’ first appearance ever in this bowl game. While it’s not the bowl game players, coaches and fans had hoped for; it’s still an opportunity to add another trophy to the case. Badger fans should be grateful that Wisconsin is able to play in a postseason game and not view it as a “meaningless bowl game.”
Not Forgetting About This Season
Make no mistake, the Badgers underperformed this year; especially on offense. Prior to the season; the Badgers were picked by many to go to the Big Ten Championship. They even opened the season ranked 12th. Despite all that hype, the lights got a little too bright for the cardinal red and white. The Badgers stumbled out to a 1-3 start but were able to win seven straight games and be in position to win the west. Unfortunately, the Badgers’ offense went back to early season form and lost to Minnesota 23-13. This cost them the chance to get back to the Big Ten Championship game.
Since the College Football Playoff was introduced, fans have begun to think that no other bowl game is good enough; except maybe the Rose Bowl. Badger fans are very guilty of this. The Badgers are going to a bowl game for the 20th straight season. Only Oklahoma and Georgia have gone to more bowl games in consecutive years. Ohio State, Alabama, Notre Dame, and other schools don’t have consecutive bowl appearances that long. Considering how the season started, it looked like that streak could have been snapped. With the position the Badgers are in now, fans ought to be more grateful.
When Teams Become Greedy
The saying “don’t get too greedy” is becoming very common in college football. For example, look at the current state of the Nebraska Cornhuskers program. Despite Bo Pelini leading them to consecutive bowl games, winning division titles in two conferences, never having a losing year, and finishing outside the AP Top 25 just twice; Nebraska fired him due to not being able to get them to a National Championship. Since Pelini has been gone, Nebraska hasn’t been to a bowl game since 2016 and has had five consecutive losing seasons.
I guess Darth Vader was right in Rogue One, “Be careful not to choke on your aspirations director.”
Don’t Complain or Whine About a Bowl Game
Be grateful fans, there are plenty of programs that would take the position the Badgers are in now. I am sure that rivals like Nebraska, Illinois, Northwestern, and others would gladly accept an invite to the Las Vegas Bowl. While it’s not what everyone expected; Wisconsin has an opportunity to end the season on a high note. After all, I am sure Badger fans don’t want to relive the pre-Alvarez days of not going at all. Remember fans, no bowl game is meaningless.