Bowl Game Names That Make You Want to Gag: The Corporate Takeover of Naming Rights


The corporate takeover of naming rights is out of control.

College Football bowl games don’t get a bad rap because UAB is playing Miami (Ohio). Football fans love that. The problem is that these bowl games sound like you’re regurgitating a NASCAR hood. And marketing executives wonder why kids are opting out…

Bowl Game

If you want a 20-year-old to take your game seriously, don’t make him tell his grandkids that he played in the “Radiance Technologies Weed-Eater Independence Bowl.”

Previously, a bowl game was a reward for the team and a way to send the upperclassmen out with one more game and hopefully one more win. Understandably so, as businesses grow and evolve, priorities tend to change.

Nowadays, most bowls have more backups than a Juvenile music video. The extra practice time for the young guys has become the primary value of these matchups. It appears that if you aren’t playing for a chance at the title bowl, the games are expendable. And for those in the position of having a chance to become a professional, it is now a roadblock, not an avenue.

As hard as it may be to admit, this is the new era of college football, and it won’t be changing anytime soon.

Rose Bowl

The original bowl games had geographical roots that boosted the allure. Orange for Florida. Rose for California.

Then as the dollar signs grew, those games became the FedEx Orange Bowl and the Allstate Sugar Bowl.

We now must endure the “Boise Bridgepoint Education Holiday Bowl” and the “Raycom Media Camellia Bowl.” Or, we can take it one step further and use a company’s website like the “ Bowl.”

What about the “Gaylord Hotel’s Music City Bowl presented by Bridgestone?” Apparently one sponsor wasn’t enough.

The most egregious might be the “Jimmy Kimmel L.A. Bowl presented by Stifel.” How does Jimmy Kimmel have a football game named after him, but Morgan Freeman does not?

Morgan Freeman God

This is a satirical lesson on branding. Just ask the Miami Heat about “FTX Arena.”

When you allow another brand to take control of your own, you risk diluting the value and integrity of your brand. By relinquishing control, you risk losing the unique qualities and characteristics that make your brand outlast the test of time.

Fortunately, the bowl landscape is not all doom and gloom. In 2024, there will be six more bowl games that will certainly matter.

So, do bowls really matter anymore? They do, but it’s fading fast. In the meantime, follow me on Elon Musk’s Presented by Tesla in association with WoodwardSports and sponsored by SpaceX.

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