Bowl Rankings: How Good Were All The Bowl Games? 2021-2022

Jenna Watson-USA TODAY Sports

Bowl Rankings: How Good Were All The Bowl Games? 2021-2022

Bowls College Football Playoff

Bowl Rankings: How Good Were All The Bowl Games? 2021-2022


Bowl Rankings: “Too Many Bowls”

The “too many bowls” crowd needs ammunition, and these bowl games provide it. These games made the world a lesser place.

39. Allstate Sugar Bowl

Baylor 21, Ole Miss 7
Pre-Bowl Matchup Ranking: 7
Post-Bowl Ranking: 2020: 10, 2019: 25

What should’ve been among the best games of the bowl season was a painful end to a wonderful New Year’s Day of phenomenal games.

Ole Miss star QB Matt Corral injured his knee early, and that was it for the 2022 Allstate Sugar Bowl.

The rest of the game devolved into discussion about whether or not Corral should’ve been playing at all – his choice, his call – Ole Miss didn’t have a prayer, and Baylor was able to grind it out to a win over a team that played like it got punched in the gut.

38. Mercari Texas Bowl

Kansas State 42, LSU 20
Pre-Bowl Matchup Ranking: 33
Post-Bowl Ranking: 2020: NA, 2019: 14

It was a whole lot of fun if you’re a Kansas State fan, and it was a college football game on a Tuesday night, but it was just … sad.

LSU didn’t have any players. It gave it the old college try and brought the energy, but it had no chance. Kansas State was fully-functional, fully-engaged, and it held a light scrimmage against a group of guys wearing LSU uniforms. Again, give the Tiger players credit – they did everything they could – but this wasn’t a fair fight.

37. New Era Pinstripe Bowl

Maryland 54, Virginia Tech 10
Pre-Bowl Matchup Ranking: 25
Post-Bowl Ranking: 2020: NA, 2019: 18

The only saving grace in this was the fun had by Maryland as its team and long-suffering fan base got stretch their legs. There were huge plays from the Terps in all phases against a Virginia Tech team that wasn’t all that great even when it was fully functional.

The Hokies were a shell of their normal selves – they were never really in this. The Terps scored the final 33 points of the game.

36. Cricket Celebration Bowl

South Carolina State 31, Jackson State 10
Pre-Bowl Matchup Ranking: 41
Post-Bowl Ranking: 2020: NA, 2019: NA

It was never close. It was supposed to be an ugly blowout, and it was absolutely that … the other way. Deion Sanders’ Jackson State team was far better, far stronger, and far nastier defensively, but South Carolina State was just a weeeeeee bit jacked to show its own swagger after all hype on the other side. That was a master class performance on how to be motivated for a bowl game.

35. TaxSlayer Gator Bowl

Wake Forest 38, Rutgers 10
Pre-Bowl Matchup Ranking: 16
Post-Bowl Ranking: 2020: 12, 2019: 15

It was sort of cool to see Rutgers fill in for Texas A&M, but Rutgers didn’t beat Alabama. The Aggies didn’t go with a slew of players skipping the game and others out with COVID, but even a shell of a team probably would’ve done more than the Scarlet Knights did.

It was tight for the first 20 minutes, and that was it for the Rutgers offense that finished with 276 yards. Wake Forest scored 24 unanswered points.

34. LendingTree Bowl

Liberty 56, Eastern Michigan 20
Pre-Bowl Matchup Ranking: 34
Post-Bowl Ranking: 2020: 23, 2019: 28

Liberty picked a bad time – at least for our bowl entertainment – to finally play like it was supposed to in 2021. Eastern Michigan got out to an early lead on a field goal, and it was 13-10 Liberty early in the second quarter, and that was about it.

Liberty went on a 36 point run, Eastern Michigan’s defense went bye-bye, and outside of scouting Malik Willis as an NFL quarterback prospect, this was an instant memory dump of a game.

33. Capital One Orange Bowl

Georgia 34, Michigan 11
Pre-Bowl Matchup Ranking: 1
Post-Bowl Ranking: 2020: 3, 2019: 12
5 Thoughts: Capital One Orange Bowl Analysis

There’s the Georgia that ripped through the regular season before the SEC Championship.

It scored easily on its first drive, it scored easily on its second drive, and that was about it for the most disappointing game of the bowl season.

Michigan turned it over three times, couldn’t do much against the Georgia defense that swarmed like it had 14 guys on the field, and managed just one lonely second quarter field goal until the final moments.

32. Valero Alamo Bowl

Oklahoma 47, Oregon 32
Pre-Bowl Matchup Ranking: 38
Post-Bowl Ranking: 2020: 18, 2019: 38

If watching Bob Stoops on the sidelines did it for you then this wasn’t totally awful, but it was the one big game that summed up a slew of the problems with the modern day bowl world.

A mini-comeback by Oregon made the score look a bit better late, but this was never a game. There were lots of points and plenty of big plays to make it sort of entertaining, but a slew of top guys weren’t there, neither team had its head coach, and the outcome was never in doubt.

31. AutoZone Liberty Bowl

Texas Tech 34, Mississippi State 7
Pre-Bowl Matchup Ranking: 4
Post-Bowl Ranking: 2020: 6, 2019: 7
5 Thoughts: AutoZone Liberty Bowl Analysis

Everyone came to see the fireworks and instead we got a big fat dud.

It was a huge moment for a Texas Tech program in transition, and a total disaster for Mike Leach as his Mississippi State team couldn’t seem to function without a few key opt-outs – especially on the offensive line. The Red Raiders were up 10-7 early in the second, scored 24 unanswered points, and the grudge bowl didn’t produce like it should’ve.

Bowl Rankings 2021-2022
Cancel Culture | “Too Many Bowls”
Just Bowls | “Bowl Games Matter” | Great Bowls
Classic Bowls No. 6No. 5 | No. 4 | No. 3 | No. 2 | No. 1

NEXT Bowl Rankings: Just Bowls


More College Football News