Football Terms – College Bowl Games
A bowl game is a term most often used to describe post-season college football games. However, leagues such as the NFL, Arena League and CFL also have bowls of their own. The term was originally coined from the shape of the Rose Bowl, which was the first site to host an annual post-season college game.
In the upper echelons of college football, teams must win at least six games and not have a losing record to be eligible for a bowl game. The team may then be invited to a bowl game based on their record and the tie-in which each conference has to the various bowl games.
Rose Bowl – Granddaddy of the All
The first post-season Rose Bowl game took place in 1923, and other cities soon followed with their own bowl games. By 1940, there were five major college bowl games throughout the country (the Rose, Orange, Cotton, Sugar and Sun Bowls). This number rose to eight in the 50s and 60s, and it increased to 11 by 1970. By 2000, it had risen to 25, and there were 34 games played in 2008.
Bowl games are played from mid-December to mid-January, and teams need to win less games due to the increasing number of bowls. This is especially popular with college football programs, because even an average team may receive the national exposure of playing in a televised bowl game.
Super Bowl – Other Bowl Games
The word “bowl” also has an extensive history with the NFL. The Super Bowl and Pro Bowl are the final two events of the NFL post-season, while special games have earned such nicknames as the Ice Bowl, Bounty Bowl, Snow Bowl, Fog Bowl and Freezer Bowl.