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home : opinion : opinion July 28, 2015


12/9/2012 6:00:00 AM
Editorial Column: Another winter to appreciate

Rich Thurlow
Editor


After waiting for weeks for the other shoe to drop, today might be the day when the December weather is more in line with what to expect this time of year.

And if this is your first winter in the Kingman section of the Sunbelt, I'll be the first to break the news to you: No, the weather isn't always this nice. But even when it's rotten, it's probably better than where you came from.

I arrived in 1989 from Wyoming, only eight months after the worst winter storm I've ever been in, a storm that convinced me a job closer to the equator was a good move.

After that it took a couple of years of watching the weather before the winter terrors were finally cured. The weather guy would warn of a cold front barreling in and I'd tense up, then relax when I found out the high temperatures were going to be way above freezing, not way below.

Today, they predict, might be one of those cold front days, at least compared to what we've become accustomed to of late, with a high of 55 and some wind. And maybe from this point we'll have weather more in line with what is normal until it starts to warm up again.

But 23 years after arriving, I can tell you this: No matter what the forecast this time of year, it's sure better than where I came from.

And to my Wyoming friends following online, think of me when you throw another log on the fire. Some people are a better fit for that kind of weather, so it's a good thing we can all enjoy winter.

•••

I'm not the sports guy here, but it's hard to pass up commenting about how stinky three of the BCS games are this year.

Sure, Alabama and Notre Dame in Miami Jan. 7 figures to be a must-see game, and Oregon-Kansas State Jan. 3 in Glendale could have been for the title if both teams didn't lose that same November weekend.

After that, though, it's Stanford vs. a Wisconsin team that has lost five times this year. That Jan. 1 stinker in the Rose Bowl is followed by Florida State vs. Northern Illinois in the Orange Bowl, perhaps the worst BCS game ever. And Florida will play Louisville Jan. 2 in the Sugar Bowl. Louisville has a good record (10-2) against weak competition, but it's the Big East champ so it's in even though it's nowhere near top 10 material.

Northern Illinois, meanwhile, benefited from the years Boise State had outstanding teams but got screwed by the BCS. The worst part of the deal, as a football fan, is the conference tie-in. Not only was Boise State denied a big-time game, it played in Las Vegas against an inferior opponent.

Don't get me wrong: I think Vegas is a heckuva treat, but the game would be much better against the second-best the Pac-12 had to offer instead of the fifth- or sixth-best.

The protester's reward, then, is not watching three BCS games if there's something better to do. Besides, there are plenty of good bowl games that don't have BCS attached to them.

One is the first, Nevada against Arizona, in the New Mexico Bowl at 11 a.m. Saturday in Albuquerque. Two 7-5 teams in what figures to be a fun shootout.

Arizona State plays Navy in the aptly named Fight Hunger Bowl at 1:15 p.m. Dec. 29 in San Francisco. Aptly named because of certain San Franciscans habit of dining nude in restaurants, an unappetizing prospect for many of the rest of us.

Others of note:

Dec. 31, 5:30 p.m. - LSU vs. Clemson in the Chick-Fil-A.

Jan. 1, 11 a.m. - Georgia vs. Nebraska in the Capital One and South Carolina vs. Michigan in the Outback. Michigan's not that great, but a chance to watch Denard Robinson play shouldn't be passed up. Nebraska, meanwhile, got slaughtered by Wisconsin in the Big 10 title game. Will the Huskers regroup?

Jan. 4, 6 p.m. - Texas A&M with Johnny Football against Oklahoma, the team that should be in the BCS rather than Northern Illinois. As a matter of fact, A&M should be in the BCS, too, but for a rule limiting conferences to two teams in the five games.

BCS heartburn aside, there's a lot for college football fans to enjoy. Stock up now - it's a long, long time until the 2013 season kicks off.


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