Thursday Night Football Withdrawals

Well it’s here and it got the drop on us. We have to wait till September to watch the NFL on Thursday nights again. Millions of Americans will work themselves into a panic in the next 90 minutes trying to figure out where Thursday Night Football is airing. NFL Network? NBC? CBS? Amazon Prime? We hated the quality of TNF all year, but that didn’t keep it from becoming part of our routine. So now what? Luckily for you, your trusted sports advisor has you covered.

Immediate solution: Watch the Bad Boy Mowers Gasparilla Bowl from St. Petersburg, FL. Ok, I know that doesn’t sound all that promising, but hear me out. According to Wikipedia: “It was first known as the magicJack St. Petersburg Bowl, after corporate sponsor magicJack, then the Beef O’Brady’s Bowl from 2009 until 2013, the Bitcoin St. Petersburg Bowl in 2014, the St. Petersburg Bowl in 2015 and 2016, and finally the Bad Boy Mowers Gasparilla Bowl beginning in 2017. The current name is a nod to the legend of Jose Gaspar, a mythical pirate who supposedly operated in the Tampa Bay area and who is the inspiration for Tampa’s Gasparilla Pirate Festival.” You can look around for a bowl with a better name history, but you won’t find one. 1- Pirates? Hell yes! 2- Bitcoin? Nothing is hotter right now! 3- Bad Boy Mowers? Sounds better than your weak-ass pull start Honda!

Seriously though, this ought to be a decent game. Florida International (from Miami) will be the de facto home team against Philadelphia’s Temple University which has become a sneaky good football program. Temple is a 7-point favorite and the game kicks at 8pm EST on ESPN. The good thing about getting into college bowl season now is that there is a ton of it ahead of us. In fact next Thursday there will be three games featuring six teams with a national ranking.

Extended solution: NBA hoops. Thursday has been primo NBA territory for quite a few years now. The NBA goes with a minimal schedule on Thursdays in order to really focus national attention on a couple of key matchups which air on TNT. The associated studio show is anchored by Ernie Johnson and features Kenny “The Jet” Smith, Charles Barkley, and Shaq. It’s a highly awarded show and is quite entertaining. The games themselves tend to be compelling as well. The major positive about welcoming Thursday night NBA into your life now is that you can rely on it like clockwork from now until June. Plus you’ll be getting plugged into the NBA just in time for Christmas which is their signature day. If you don’t know about NBA on Christmas, you’ve been missing out! The schedule makers hand select five matchups and then spread them out over the course of the day so you can always have a game on as you tolerate your Christmas guests. I could go on and on about how awesome Monday’s match ups are going to be, but for this column the point is Thursday night. If you’re not gonna watch the Gasparilla Bowl, check out the NBA match ups on TNT. (We get Celtics-Knicks and Spurs-Jazz; you won’t be disappointed).

Alternate solutions: Hockey, college basketball, get more sleep. The NHL goes every Thursday from now until late spring so it’s definitely an option. The problem is that they have kinda chosen Wednesday as their big national TV night so Thursday tends to be more of a local market thing. College basketball is an option, but Thursday isn’t really their marquee day, especially once conference play gets going. If you need viewing guidelines for hockey or college hoops, please email the site and I can put together a plan for you.

We would love to hear from you about your plans now that TNF is over. Leave us a comment, tweet @SportsIntel_1, or hit us on Facebook.