The Peterson Principle 1/5/11

While sitting in the press box last Thursday night at Qualcomm Stadium watching the Holiday Bowl, a version of the old Dire Straits song kept popping into my head. “You get your football for nothing, you get your grubb for free. No that ain’t working.”

It wasn’t work, that’s for sure. Although technically I was there to cover the game it seemed like anything but work. It makes sitting at Little League games, girls’ softball and yes sometimes even boys’ basketball games all these years make it all worth while.

They do a great job at the Holiday Bowl. They serve the press a hot meal and supply you with all the pepsi you can drink. A guy drops a sheet of stats in your lap after every quarter. A television right above your head gives you all the replays from every angle of the play you just watched on the field. It’s a wonderful experience.

But given the choice between sitting in the press box watching Washington and Nebraska or walking the sidelines on a Friday night covering say Rosemead at Arroyo I’d be at Bergstrom any day. It’s nice to get a taste of where you might be going but I’ll never forget where I’ve been. On the sidelines, on top of the action, there’s nothing like it.

You thought I had it good in San Diego did you catch Robledo and Melendez of the Trib/Star at the Rose Bowl? Yeah there they were right next to Erin Andrews interviewing TCU quarterback Andy Dalton on the field after the game.  

Geez that Robledo knows everybody! Somebody said Stevie R was there too.  

As bad as the Big 10 was on New Year’s Day, the Pac 10 is looking pretty good this Bowl season. Washington knocked off Nebraska in San Diego and as I’m writing this Andrew Luck and Stanford are destroying Virginia Tech. Undefeated League champ Oregon, who beat Stanford by three touchdowns earlier this year, gets its shot at undefeated Auburn next week. However Arizona did get smoked by Oklahoma State in the Alamo Bowl.  

It wasn’t just that they lost but the Big 10 representatives were embarrassed. Mississippi State hammered Michigan 52-14 while Alabama pasted Michigan State 49-7. Florida made Penn State Coach Joe Paterno feel older (is that possible?) with a 37-24 win over the Nittany Lions in the Outback Bowl. Northwestern racked up 38 points in something called the TicketCity Bowl but the problem was Texas Tech scored 45.

Wisconsin gave TCU all it wanted in Pasadena but the Badgers’ loss left the Big Ten at 0-5 while ringing in the New Year. 

Is there any question now whether or not Andrew Luck is the number one pick in the NFL draft? Of course he has to declare first. To go or not to go is the big question. Washington’s Jake Locker wishes he would have left school after last season while his stock was high. Now he isn’t even the best quarterback in his league. Luck, son of former NFL quarterback Oliver Luck, will no doubt take Locker’s case into consideration.

Nature of the beast: One day after his team was playing in the Fiesta Bowl, Connecticut Coach Randy Edsall bolted for Maryland. Edsall, who has been at U Conn for 12 years, had the Huskies on the national stage but when somebody else flashed some more cash he was gone.

Michigan’s Rich Rodriguez might be gone as well after that Gator Bowl disaster which has led to speculation that Stanford’s Jim Harbaugh, a Michigan alum, will replace him. Of course there will be four or five NFL teams after Harbaugh by next week.

Remember when New Year’s Day marked the end of the bowl season? Well now there are seven bowl games still to be played. There’s only one though that every fan has his eye on – the one that is a can’t miss; the one that leaves the world hanging in the balance. Of course I’m talking about the Bowl featuring Miami (Ohio) vs. Middle Tennessee on January 6.

That’s my principle.

Tim can be reached at

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