The Music City Bowl: There's a trophy and everything! (AP)
The 2012 Music City Bowl is just hours away. We’re sure you have so many questions. We’re here to help. (For an X's and O's breakdown, click through to Bill Trocchi's game preview.)
• What's all this, then? The game born in 1998 under sponsorship from American General Life & Accident is played very much on purpose, now in its third season of being called the Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl. How can a city that shelters Taylor Swift dare to lay claim to "music" anything? Beef 'O' Brady's claims to be known for its buffalo wings. The world is an uncertain place, and full of little mysteries.
• Where will this game be played? Nashville's LP Field, home to the Tennessee Titans and Tennessee State Tigers.
• When is it on television? Coverage begins at noon ET on ESPN, featuring the vocal talents of Carter Blackburn, Rod Gilmore and Jemele Hill. The game will also be streamed on WatchESPN.
• Whom does it feature? ACC versus SEC.
• What about this year? A six degrees of Debbie Yow matchup! The North Carolina State Wolfpack will face the hometown Vanderbilt Commodores.
• Does the bowl have a social media presence? It does, and it is very sorry about you missing out on your favorite tater skins this bowl season:
• What wacky activities will be on offer during bowl week? Does bringing football players into a major American metropolis and then making them go to the Hard Rock Café count? There are two separate bowl week events staged here, and another at Dave & Busters. (You know what, on second thought, presenting Nashville as a giant mall to the out-of-towners makes its own kind of sense.)
• What's the pick? Stewart Mandel thinks Vanderbilt can come away with a multi-score win on a near-home field: "After scoring fewer than 20 points in five of their first seven games, the Commodores exploded for 40-plus in four of their last five contests. NC State has been all over the map, scoring six points one week and 37 the next."
• Please impart any miscellaneous knowledge you might have concerning the 2012 Music City Bowl.
WERE YOU AWARE ... Bill Belichick was born in Nashville? Try not to hold that against Nashville.