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Arts and Entertainment

College Football Schedule Week 12: Nostalgic Nonsense

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I can easily be derided as a sentimental traditionalist at times - I hate the designated hitter; I hate the yellow first-down marker on television; I hate replay but have grudgingly come to accept it. But sometimes tradition sucks. Old things are dusty and cumbersome and sometimes should be done away.

Take for instance this week’s Illinois-Northwestern game that will be played in the Friendly Confines of Wrigley Field. I get that the Chicago Bears played at Wrigley Field until 1970 and that baseball stadiums used to regularly host football games, Yankee Stadium, Fenway Park, Forbes Field and Griffith Stadium included. But this is ridiculous.

The pictures of the field at Wrigley make the term “confines” a very generous statement. Only mere inches separate the sideline and endzones from the walls and dugouts. Yeah it’s cool in the same way watching the Dodgers play an exhibition game at the Coliseum was cool, but kitsch should not get in the way of the players’ health and figuring into the regular season.

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The football field for the Notre Dame-Army game at Yankee Stadium. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)
It’s bad enough that the Emerald Nut Bowl is played at AT&T Park in San Francisco which forces the two teams to share the same sideline. Oh wait. Now it’s the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl. At least Yankee Stadium has just enough room to host the Notre Dame-Army game, but just barely.’s Ivan Maisel waxes poetic about the history of the Notre Dame-Army rivalry, but my only response is so what? Why does that justify trying to fit an entire football field into a baseball stadium?Also John D. Lukacs writes beautifully in a special on about the history of college football being played in baseball stadiums, but again is it really necessary? Does college football still need the marketing that they yearned for back in the 1920’s, ‘30’s and ‘40’s?

The short answer is no. The long answer is no. So why do it?

The only way I’ll condone this is if they do away with the forward pass.

Update: The Big Ten announced today they will only use the west endzone for offense and the east endzone for kickoffs to protect the players at Wrigley Field. See me planting my hand in my face in shame.

9:00 a.m.

Troy at South Carolina. KDOC.
Oklahoma State at Kansas. FSWest.
Virginia at Boston College. ESPNU.
Wisconsin at Michigan. ESPN.
Pittsburgh at South Florida. ESPN2.
Lehigh at Lafayette. Fox College Sports Atlantic.
Yale at Havard. Versus.

LAist Pick: Wisconsin at Michigan

12:30 p.m.

Bethune-Cookman at Florida A&M. ESPN Classic (11:30 a.m.)
Mississippi at LSU. CBS.
Ohio State at Iowa. ABC.
Stanford at California. FS Prime Ticket.
Illinois at Northwestern. ESPNU.
Virginia Tech at Miami (FL). ESPN.
Arkansas State at Navy. CBS College Sports.
Chatanooga at Wofford. Fox College Sports Atlantic (Noon.)

LAist Pick: Ohio State at Iowa

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2:00 p.m.

Portland State at Northern Arizona. Fox College Sports Pacific.

4:00 p.m.

Notre Dame at Army. NBC.
Missouri at Iowa State. FS Prime Ticket.
Connecticut at Syracuse. ESPNU.
Arkansas at Mississippi State. ESPN.

LAist pick: Arkansas at Mississippi State

5:00 p.m.

USC at Oregon State. ABC.
Oklahoma at Baylor. ESPN2.
Houston at Southern Mississippi. CBS College Sports.

LAist pick: USC at Oregon State

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