3-point stance: Never too many bowls

December, 19, 2011
12/19/11
5:01
AM ET
1. For the third time this season, Utah State lost a double-digit lead in the second half and lost the game in the final minute. This time, Ohio scored with 13 seconds remaining to edge the Aggies 24-23 in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl. Yet, you had to love what Utah State (7-6) coach Gary Anderson said about his school’s first bowl team in 14 years. “It's been the most gratifying season of my career, hands down,” Andersen said. “This is unbelievably gratifying to get to this point. This crew of kids will be in my mind for the rest of my life.” Isn’t that a coach you’d want to play for?

2. The snarky comments about “too many bowls” disregard what these bowls mean for a Utah State or a Louisiana, which played in its first-ever bowl Saturday night. The Ragin’ Cajuns (9-4), picked last in the Sun Belt, beat San Diego State with a 50-yard field goal with one second to play to win the R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl, 32-30. If you saw the reaction of the Louisiana players after Brett Baer’s field goal, you understand.

3. It’s hard to believe that Penn State and Pittsburgh are trying to hire head coaches at the same time. It is doubly hard to believe Nittany Lion defensive coordinator Tom Bradley is not a shoo-in to get one of the jobs. Penn State’s defense has been the team’s backbone since Bradley took over the job in 1999. He has recruited in western Pennsylvania for 30 years. If the scandal prevents Penn State from hiring Joe Paterno’s top assistant, what is Pitt waiting for?

Ivan Maisel | email

Senior Writer, ESPN.com

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