Barry Bolton of CougFan.com put out this terrific, thought provoking article last night asking the question “is the 2013 Gildan New Mexico Bowl the most important bowl game of all time at Washington State?” Barry puts a very compelling argument forth, but do we agree with it?
We responded on the CF.C forum board and here’s what we said:
Great post. Interesting thoughts.
Easy to say that the current bowl game is the most important ever after the drought. It’s certainly up there for multiple reasons, but I still think that 98 Rose Bowl was the most important at this point. Just the fact that we made it changed the course of the program for the next 5 seasons and it didn’t matter win or lose, but the showing against a National Champion was an eye-opener for recruits and fans everywhere. I believe that led to the next Rose Bowl also.
Now, this NM Bowl is the same type of deal, but on a smaller level because there’s more to WSU now. The football ops building, the Pac-12 TV contract where recruits’ parents and friends can watch them play anywhere, every week, Moos is a proven commodity and Leach is a proven winner and obviously changing the tide here in Pullman with a fun offense and the best coaching staff he’s ever had (his words). 15 years ago WSU was simply selling Price, a new turf and a close-knit community.
Maybe a few years down the road we can point to a win (hopefully) here as the time when WSU took off and all that, but for now it can’t be considered the number 1 bowl ever in my opinion. If and when the Cougs make their next Rose Bowl (or playoff game, god willing) that will probably take the title.
Again, it’s easy right now to see it that way because we’ve been so down, but the aftermath of history says otherwise. We could go all the way back to the ’81 Holiday Bowl too. After 50 years(!) of no postseason berths, that put Washington State back on the map at all.
Regardless of it is or isn’t in your own mind, there’s no doubt it would become a huge springboard into 2014, much like the OT Apple Cup victory of 2012 spring-boarded Washington State into this season. Barry, we here ya! Three hours to game time, let’s go get it Cougs!