The expanded CFB Playoff field changes perspectives on 'other' bowls

With a 12-team Playoff field, except for the six bowl games tied to the CFB Playoffs, how much do the 'others' matter?
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There will be 44 bowl games after college football's 2024 regular season. Six of them carry great import. The others in a nebulous range of fan opinions, don't much matter.

The six that do matter are the four CFB Playoff Quarterfinal games and the two Semifinals. The four bowl games hosting the quarters are the Fiesta Bowl, Peach Bowl, Rose Bowl, and Sugar Bowl. The semis will be hosted by the Orange Bowl and the Cotton Bowl.

The 12-team Playoff slams the door on any of the other bowls having more than entertainment value. In many cases, the entertainment value lacks any sizzle. The four, CFB Playoff, top-seed hosted, first-round games will eclipse the shine of all the non-Playoff bowls.

Will making a bowl game (any bowl game) continue to be used as a measurement of minimum success for a team's college football season? Also-ran programs and their coaches will try to continue the perception. Beyond the staunchest of fans, the measure will mean little.

Various college football experts have 11 or 12 SEC football teams playing in 2024-25 bowl games. The four SEC teams often left out are Vanderbilt, Mississippi State, Arkansas, and South Carolina. Florida is also sometimes excluded.

While fans of the Commodores, Bulldogs, and Razorbacks may be somewhat reconciled to an unpleasant 2024 season, the woe could be worse for the fans of some bowl-bound teams.

For example, three bowl games predicted for the Oklahoma Sooners are the ReliaQuest Bowl, the Liberty Bowl, and the Music City Bowl. Tampa, Memphis, and Nashville can be fun visits for Oklahoma fans, but their bowl games are poor matches for a college football blue blood.

It will not happen for a couple of reasons, but Vanderbilt fans would rejoice about a spot in Nashville's Music City Bowl. Fans of other SEC football programs, such as the Auburn Tigers, consider the Music City Bowl as an insult. Even worse for the Aubies is the prospect of a drive up U.S. Highway 280 for a game in the Birmingham Bowl.

What Alabama Crimson Tide fans certainly do not want is a spot in the Citrus Bowl. The Citrus gets the highest-ranked SEC team, not in the CFB Playoff field.

Note: The complete 2024-25 bowl season schedule is available here.

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