It’s 2021, time for college football bowls to branch out from Gatorade dumping

We came up with a list of the best (and worst) ideas for brand-specific celebrations

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Hooray! That’s not Gatorade!
Hooray! That’s not Gatorade!
Photo: Getty Images

As french fries rained down upon the head of Wyoming head football coach Craig Bohl against the bright blue background of the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl yesterday in place of the usual victory Gatorade bath, I thought to myself as I (and many others) do every year — why don’t all bowl games do something like this?

Bowls have already become such corporate gimmicks that at this point that the best way to advertise the product to the public is to have the bowls embrace their own ridiculousness. Now of course, you can’t pour, say, a Playstation Fiesta Bowl-themed Gatorade replacement on someone, so our options are limited. With that in mind, here are the rankings for semi-realistic Gatorade substitutes based on bowl names, a la Idaho Potato Bowl fry shower.


5. Armed Forces Bowl/Military Bowl

Right off the bat, my first thought is that the Gatorade replacement would essentially be a missile being dropped on the winning coach. As that would be particularly unpleasant for both the coach and pretty much everyone there to witness, the Armed Forces Bowl obviously lands in dead last on the semi-realistic Gatorade celebration replacement rankings, as the coach would almost certainly immediately perish. Alternatively, the Army fans could storm the field, but 20 years and $1 trillion later, they’re forced to withdraw having achieved no strategic advantage. Last year’s Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl actually gave us an on-field fight (no weapons were used, but they really embraced the spirit of their corporate sponsors). Either way, 0/10.

4. Gator Bowl

In this situation, I’m picturing a live alligator crawling out of one of those enormous Gatorade urns they keep on the sideline. The alligator would have to be relatively small to fit, thus giving the winning coach of the Gator Bowl a slight size advantage against whatever was going to happen next, but the gator would have the element of surprise on its side, as the coach definitely wouldn’t be expecting that. Would an alligator wrestling spectacle ensue? Perhaps. Hopefully. Since immediate death isn’t on the table, but a fair amount of danger is, this ranks at No. 4. 3/10.


3. Peach Bowl/Orange Bowl/Citrus Bowl

I felt that I could probably group all of these together as there wouldn’t be a significant difference in a shower of peaches, oranges, or other citrus fruits. I would say this is a pretty average replacement Gatorade shower. If the fruits were too big, there might be some danger of slight bruising in the winning coach’s head and shoulder area, but I find it hard to imagine that the fruits would build up the necessary amount of momentum from the pour to actually do any damage, as it’s limited to the pouring players’ reach. Since it would be pretty easy and safe to keep to the theme but also not exactly thrilling, this earns the third spot in semi-realistic Gatorade replacements. 6/10.

2. Duke’s Mayo Bowl

Too cowardly to shower the winning coach in real, tangy Duke’s Mayonnaise last year, substituting with a white-ish watery substance that was a halfhearted attempt at looking like the condiment, the coaches of North Carolina and South Carolina have both gone on record this year saying that they will accept a real, authentic mayo bath upon winning the greatest bowl game to ever exist. Honestly, if you have to get explicit and premeditated consent for a replacement Gatorade bath, you just know it’s gonna be a good one. However, it’s also going to be disgusting and even possibly vomit-inducing depending on how much of it gets onto the coach’s face and such. For that, Duke’s Mayo gets the second ranking for replacement Gatorade showers. 8/10.


1. Cheez-It Bowl

Who wouldn’t want to be covered in Cheez-Its? I think that if I ever reach heaven, it’ll look like an eternal fountain of Cheez-Its that somehow never makes my stomach hurt, because, you know, I’d be in eternal paradise and all. The only downside to a Cheez-It shower is the waste of crackers that fall on the ground, never to be eaten. No, this isn’t an advertisement, just a personal obsession. Bonus points if they’re white cheddar. Because of how delicious and physically harmless a Cheez-It shower would be, this bowl wins top spot. Last year’s winning coach actually did receive a replacement Gatorade shower of the cheesy snack. This year, it’ll either be Dabo Swinney or Matt Campbell living out my dream. 11/10.