Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

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Sports column

December 24, 2013

The hunger games: Bowls with food-related titles have proliferated

BLUEFIELD — A curous editor here in the newsroom asked me a simple question the other day: “What is this ‘Beef Logo’ about?”

The graphic for Monday afternoon’s Beef ‘O’ Brady’s Bowl had been put into our collective newsroom files temporarily, and the shortened reference to it had drawn her attention. Maybe she thought we were doing some sort of wacky sports story about beef.

We got a chuckle about that.

Then I looked at this year’s list of bowl games, and started reading out selections from the list. The Famous Idaho Potato Bowl. The Little Ceasar’s Pizza Bowl, followed the next day by the Fight Hunger Bowl.

One of our newsroom folks suggested they could fight hunger by serving pizza.

A really interesting matchup on Saturday pits Michigan and Kansas State in the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl — thankfully, not being played in Buffalo.

New Year’s Day will bring the Outback Bowl and the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl. The next couple of days after that feature the Sugar Bowl and the Orange Bowl.

Then there’s the Chick-fil-A Bowl on New Year’s Eve. It used to be the Peach Bowl until the restaurant chain came on board as a new sponsor. For a few years of transition, it was the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl, though I’m pretty sure their restaurants never served a Chick-fil-A peach dessert, either in a bowl or not.

When the temperature gets chilly in late November and December, I am struck by some subconscious urge to eat lots of starchy stuff. The urge probably got programmed into the human brain — add on the calories so that we wouldn’t starve before food became plentiful in the spring.

If that sounds like an excuse to avoid watching my weight, so be it.

The marketing gurus at various high-profile food-related businesses must have taken notice of the hungry masses at that time of the year, and started gobbling up naming rights to bowl games.

This year, I will not be partaking of Chick-fil-A products in the days leading up to the bowl game in Atlanta. Doing that a few years ago produced my record high weight.

On the contrary, I’ll be at the Military Bowl in Annapolis, Md. Maybe I will find some Maryland crab cakes while I’m there.

Whatever your taste in bowl games, feast on.

Tom Bone is a Daily Telegraph sports writer and cartoonist. Contact him at tbone @ bdtonline.com.

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