One itty-bitty field goal missed right during the midst of a freezing blizzard, and Boise State dropped from the heights of festive hoopla and Rose Bowl parades, clear down to the depths of the “Who the crap cares bowl?” in Las Vegas.
Watched mostly by waiting-roomed husbands during last-minute Christmas shopping on small department store screens, instead of by millions as the fan-favorite on New Year's Day.
Well, okay, two kicks.
The game was played at the famed Sam Boyd Stadium in Las Vegas, the 19th edition of this storied tradition. And in honor of how bad a presentation it was, I’m sitting on the toilet as I write this.
As the game approached, Boise State fans daydreamed about what could have been.
One minute all the world watches your every move, in spite of you playing your home games on a field that leaves sun spots in eyes a month later.
At a stadium in a nicotine-stained city that nobody has heard of, on a night when few cared.
You could cut the pregame tension atmosphere with a knife. It was very intense, similar to what it’s like before every single UFL game featuring the feared and loathed Las Vegas Locomotives.
Only this one had fans in the stands.
At midfield was something that resembled an emblem. Barely visible in ghost tones, apparently the victim of torrential rain storms during the previous week.
Or it could have been what remained from last year. It was hard to tell.
Not to worry. Crack Las Vegas Bowl field staff made up for it by NOT changing the end zone verbiage. The words “Las Vegas” screamed from both end zones.
An unnecessary reminder too, because fans could see a small dimly-lit chapel across the street, where starry-eyed (and/or pregnant) brides could exchange vows. With or without grooms, before call girls hired as bridesmaids wearing nothing but white furry thongs.
Yes we know this is Las Vegas already.
On the field were two college football teams with frumpy uniforms, honed by this huge football spectacle.
On the near side loitered the all-blue-clad fighting Broncos of Boise State, with helmets done in a Pittsburgh Steeler-ish method of emblems on only one side. However, sadly the artwork looked similar to what one might find in the street after the helmet was run over by a bus.
Across the field stood the Utah Utes, soon to be members of the Pac-12, clothed in a religious all-white Christmas theme in honor of the stellar morality of the region. Where vendors sold beer served in tacky naked girl mugs for only 20 bucks. For another 50, mud flaps to match.
Legend has it that Utah’s nickname honors a tribe of local indigenous people, proud to have their heritage exploited by college football uniforms broadcast on national TV.
The design of Utah’s wardrobe was crisp and cutting edge.
Worn-out red helmets with the famed traditional Utah Ute emblem, apparently designed to honor squirrel road kill. A flat circle thing there on the left, resembling some sort of tire-pancaked head thing, with a limp tail hanging to the right.
Like a free advertisement for the nearby Mustang Ranch.
Hey Utah, here’s a suggestion: Lose the emblem and redesign the uniforms before joining the major leagues next year.
How 'bout snagging some of the once-used Oregon Duck helmets off eBay?
In fact, this could be an opportunity to one-up the hated Ducks in terms of football fashion.
Why not make your football emblem on the side of the helmet glow in the dark?
Like your own little neon billboard, just great for bowl games played in light-challenged stadiums where TV viewers have trouble seeing the players. Like this one, for instance!
Or better yet, maybe have the entire helmet light up. Do little moving patterns. It could change colors too, as the game is being played!
(Note to Oregon designers considering ripping off these creative ideas: I have good corporate brand lawyers standing by.)
Well, so anyway, they played the game and it was as bad as football games get.
There was one single memorable play during the game however: Boise’s guy fell on a fumble for a touchdown, and everybody across the nation saw it as a no-brainer call. Except for the referees, who ruled it a touchback.
See, this is the kind of stuff that happens in Vegas. Intoxicated referees are hired, who only moments prior were part of a fur-thonged wedding party.
Beyond that, the game sucked and was a complete slumberfest, much like this article.
Boise State won big 26-3. There was very little to keep someone interested in this game. Even the Elvis ushers with blue hair couldn't wake this crowd up.
Now one might ask, why were the 6-6 University of Washington Huskies not playing the Utes in Las Vegas? Why were the once barely-defeated Boise State Broncos not facing off against a pretty good Nebraska team next week in flood-infested San Diego?
Because this is the BCS, baby!
Who needs a playoff when we can enjoy important sports memories like this one?!