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Winless teams will be bowl eligible in 2020

The most absurd season in college football history gets even weirder.

Illinois Fighting Illini running back Mike Epstein runs the ball against the Akron Zips during the second half at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Patrick Gorski Patrick Gorski-USA TODAY Sports

When you’ve got 40 licensed bowl games, many of whom have full-time employees that work year-round for very comfortable salaries in their cities just on the events and sponsorships surrounding such games, there’s an entire economy invested in making sure the postseason games happen.

And that’s before ESPN, which owns 17 of the games themselves, considers how to fill the inventory they offer.

So in a season as broken as 2020, with games being canceled each week and Covid-19 interfering with the best-laid plans... let’s just invite everyone to the party that wants to come!

From the NCAA:

The Division I Football Oversight Committee recommended waiving the requirements for bowl eligibility for the 2020-21 bowl season Thursday.

To be eligible for a postseason bowl, a team must meet the criteria to be considered a deserving team, which is generally defined as having a .500 overall record against Football Bowl Subdivision opponents. The Football Oversight Committee’s recommendation would eliminate that requirement for the 2020-21 season. For the 2020-21 bowl season only, postseason games could be played Dec. 1, 2020-Jan. 11, 2021.

Bowl games used to be guarded tighter than the VIP room at Studio 54, but the explosion of them in the 21st Century has meant any team that can get to 6-6 including an FCS victory, or in some years even 5-7, has been able to play in the postseason.

But this is 2020, so we’ve gone being on the bouncer’s list behind velvet ropes to sending out an ad on Craigslist that anyone who brings Solo cups can come to the kegger. And why not??

Bowl games are good and fun, and if the players enjoy the experience, where’s the harm here? The democratization of collegiate postseason football over the last few decades has been a good thing. Not only for local economies and TV rights holders, but also for the athletes. Did we mention they’re terrific for wagering purposes? Also you haven’t lived until you’ve seen an offensive lineman from the midwest win a hot-wing eating contest on the beach with palm trees swaying in the breeze. It’s everything that’s wonderful about America.

The Kansas Jayhawks are the team with the longest-active bowl-free streak in FBS, last appearing in the 2008 Orange Bowl. They better put up the cash this year to get someone to take them, because once The Law re-enters our lives in 2021, it might be awhile until their eligible for one again.