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Bowl Destiny: Gift Edition

Choosing Vanderbilt’s Bowl Via the Best Player Gifts

Tennessee v Vanderbilt Photo by Frederick Breedon/Getty Images

According to the ESPN Mothership, Vanderbilt has two potential Bowl Projections, the Birmingham Bowl and the Gator Bowl (Jacksonville). It all depends on how the Conference Championship Games shake out. If the SEC gets multiple teams in the NY6 Bowls then the ‘Dores will get a bump up into the Gator.

But that’s really all for the corrupt bureaucratic bowl committees to determine. Here, let’s choose our bowl based on last year’s gifts.

Each bowl has a “gift suite” which is just a way for players to pick out gifts from an array of items. Each player can get up to $400 worth of gifts from both the school and conference. Basically, it’s when your family gives you a gift card instead of an actual gift because they realize that picking something out for your is more of a chore sense you’ll be taking it back anyways.

Then the bowls throw in a few bowl centric gifts, too.

Birmingham Bowl: Oakleys, a beanie, and a game day football.

Gator Bowl: Watch, Ogio Bag, a beanie.

These. Are. Not. Good.

What’s in the gift suite? We don’t know, but let’s speculate.

The Birmingham Bowl does not have a sponsor after BBVA stopped its sponsorship in 2014. So it’s a game put on by the city. So a hunk of steel? Is that impacted by the new tariffs?

The Gator is put on by Tax Slayer. It’s products include many different ways to efile taxes. So the players could get various sponsored gifts that they don’t have to claim on their taxes.

Yet, the Birmingham Bowl has this feature baked in, as it is the home of the SEC. We can pretend all these players choose their SEC schools for great academics, great college towns, coaches, and pipelines to the NFL. But we all know it’s because there is a bag man running around for each school. Cameron Jerrell Newton didn’t turn down $160k from MSU to play at Auburn so he could be “All In” with the “Auburn Family.”

If I’m a player, I’m turning down the beaches of the First Coast and the balmy December weather for the cold brick buildings of the Magic City because, well, “it just mean$ more.”