To help prime you for Tuesday's college football doubleheader, I've compiled this handy list of fun factoids concerning the 2010 New Era Pinstripe Bowl.
Proper name: New Era Pinstripe Bowl. The sponsorship works on multiple levels. Not only is it the name of the actual sponsor, New Era, but it's also the first ever rendition of the Pinstripe Bowl, making this a "new era." Okay, so it works on two levels. Barely. While New Era is your official sponsor, it might as well be called the New York Yankees Present The New Era Pinstripe Bowl because the Yankees have been more high-profile and reported on than anyone else in the last month. I wouldn't be shocked if your mom thinks the Yankees are actually playing in the Pinstripe Bowl. Hell, I still think they might...
Setting: Sunny New York City. Specifically, the Bronx. Because if there's anything that says "reward for a job well done," it's a vacation in the Bronx in December.
Traditional conference pairing: Big East vs. Big 12
2010 matchup: The Syracuse Orange (7-5) versus the Kansas State Wildcats (7-5)
Announcers: Bob Wischusen, Brian Griese & Eamon McAnaney. These guys are one of the ESPN2 Nooner mainstays, which is perfect. Syracuse plays most of its games at noon and this match-up is certainly ESPN2 at Noon-worthy. Wischusen partners with Cuse alum Sean McDonough for golf events so we can assume he'll favor the Orange...if he knows what's good for him.
Neatest fact: Syracuse and Kansas State are the closest thing to bowl game buddies that are out there. This will be their third bowl meeting since the 1997 season. They previous met in the Fiesta Bowl (KSU won) and the Insight.com Bowl (SU won), making this the ruvbber match.
Previous Incarnations: It's the first Pinstripe Bowl but it's not the first bowl game to be played in New York. The Gotham Bowl existed between 1960 and 1962, though it was only actually played twice. The first year, the game was unable to find an opponent for Oregon State and was canceled. The '61 version saw Baylor beat Utah State 24-9 while the '62 version saw Nebraska beat Miami 36-34. Due to poor attendance, the game was canceled from there.
Tidbit of interest #1: The logo for the Pinstripe Bowl invokes the frieze that surrounds Yankee Stadium, but does not actually contain pinstripes. I suppose the Frieze Bowl doesn't sound too inviting, especially when the weather outside is already doing such a good job of showcasing that.
Tidbit of interest #2: You may have heard, Syracuse head coach Doug Marrone grew up a bit of a Yankee fan. How much of a Yankee fan? He grew up in the Bronx, his first game was Game 2 of the 1977 Series, he idolized Yankee 3B Graig Nettles and his grandfather worked as an usher at Yankee Stadium, to give you a start. Oh and Yankee announcer Michael Kay was one of his boyhood friends.
Tidbit of interest #3: This bowl game represents a change in culture for both programs. For the Orange, it's their first bowl game since 2004's Champ Sports Bowl. For the Wildcats, it's their first bowl game since 2006's Texas Bowl.