It’s time for the college bowl games

If you are a real fan of college football, this is the week you have been waiting for.

It’s the high point of the bowl season, and fans throughout the Tri-State Area will looking forward to several games.

Granted, a lot of interest in the bowls was lost on Dec. 2, when members of the College Football Playoff selection committee left Ohio State out of this year’s four-team championship tournament. That said, Notre Dame fans — and there are many in our region — were thrilled when the Irish were selected.

Notre Dame (12-0) will meet Clemson (13-0) at 4 p.m. Saturday in the Cotton Bowl in the first of the semifinal games. The winner will meet the winner of the Saturday’s 8 p.m. Orange Bowl matchup between Oklahoma (12-1) and Alabama (13) in the College Football Championship game at 8 p.m. Jan. 7 in Santa Clara, Calif.

There’s still plenty of football left to be played that will involve teams of interest to our region. Ohio University, for instance, was a 27-0 winner over San Diego State in the Dec. 19 Frisco Bowl.

On Friday, West Virginia will carry an 8-3 record into the 5:15 p.m. Camping World Bowl against 9-3 Syracuse in Orlando, Fla., while Pitt will put its 7-6 record up against Stanford’s 8-4 mark at 2 p.m. Monday when they meet in the Sun Bowl in El Paso, Texas.

Penn State (9-3) will meet Kentucky (9-3) at 1 p.m. Tuesday in the Citrus Bowl in Orlando, Fla.

Ohio State (12-1), meanwhile, will be playing in a traditional Rose Bowl game when the Big Ten champs take on Pac-12 champion Washington (10-3) at 5 p.m. Tuesday in Pasadena, Calif.

Many argue that the bowl season, which began Dec. 15 and will end Jan. 7, is too long and includes too many games. Others, meanwhile, are happy to have the opportunity to have more games to watch.

Wherever you fall in that spectrum, we hope you will sit back and enjoy the games.