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Pre-season bowl games would improve college football

We were treated to the best early college football weekend in history.

We saw Clemson take on Georgia in a battle of top-five opponents. Michigan State launched its Big Ten season early with a ground and pound victory at Northwestern. Top-ranked

Alabama took on 13th ranked Miami, although the result was predictable. The Crimson Tide looks like a team ready to defend its title. LSU traveled to the Rose Bowl to play UCLA.

Heavy hitters played each other, and it was fun to watch. I have a proposal to make the opening weeks of the college football season even better.

What about preseason bowl games in northern cities?

The bowl games not only could help local economies in places like Detroit, Cleveland, and Milwaukee, but they could give us a slate of games fans genuinely care about and want to attend. Detroit has the Little Caesars Pizza Bowl, but coming to Detroit in the dead of winter around Christmas time is hardly a just reward for winning six games.

The game usually pits the Mid-American Conference champion against a Big Ten at-large team. The game has no meaning in the big picture of college football. Few fans show up, and the entire Metro Detroit area ignores the game.

However, that all changes if you have a Labor Day weekend game between Ohio State and Georgia. The weather is nice. People might come to our area to discover the new haps of Detroit. And they would enjoy a game that could begin to paint a picture for the college football playoffs.

Let’s take this concept all over the place.

We could do the same in Cleveland, where Alabama takes on Wisconsin.

Milwaukee: Miami vs. Oklahoma.

Chicago: Notre Dame vs, LSU.

Why not have Ohio State in Cleveland and Wisconsin in Milwaukee? I am trying to encourage tourism. And these games are interesting enough where locals would still attend. The national media would love it, as would fans across the country.

And now, we have a college playoff system in place that determines a national champion. We no longer care about the Citrus Bowl or Gator Bowl unless your team is in it. Who cares about an Alabama-LSU matchup if both teams are 9-3?

In a preseason bowl, you get two teams with national title aspirations trying to beat down one another. That makes for a must-watch game.

College football legend Charles Woodson
Charles Woodson leaves the podium after the trophy celebration in post-game action at the Rose Bowl on Thursday, Jan. 1, 1998 in Pasadena, California. michigan rose bowl win woodson

The other day I got into a debate with Braylon Edwards, who says Michigan fans are passionate. I say they are arrogant.

That arrogance showed its ugly head again this weekend on Twitter. I praised the 264-yard, four-touchdown performance of Michigan State running back Kenneth Walker during the Spartans opening game victory at Northwestern. Immediately some Wolverines downplayed it by saying Northwestern is not a good team, although it has been in the Big Ten title game two of the last three years and was favorite to beat MSU.

The Wolverines tried to hype up former Michigan running back Sam McGuffie and quarterback Joe Milton before they even played a game back in the day. Both failed to make an impact in Ann Arbor. But Walker shows out in an actual game, and it means nothing?

That’s arrogance and disrespect.

Follow Foster on Twitter at TerryFosterDet.

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