THE SWAG GIVEN to college football players participating in bowl games isn't child's play anymore folks - we're talking big-boy toys.
From Fossil watches to Sony "gift packs" featuring everything from camcorders to Slingboxes, the gifts seem to be on steroids this year - even for the smaller bowls.
First reported by the SportsBusiness Journal, "participants will receive the gifts via gift suites set up by the respective bowl committees rather than just presented with a box of goodies when they check into the team hotel," like in years past.
The NCAA allows each bowl to award up to $500 worth of gifts to 125 participants per school. Schools can opt to purchase additional packages to exceed the 125 limit. In addition, each school can give its players gifts worth up to $350 from its own budget.
For example, Temple, set to play UCLA in the Dec. 29 EagleBank Bowl in Washington, D.C., will have its choice of the following: a Slingbox SOLO mini-television (which retails on the company's Web site for $180), footballs and a Kanata tailgate blanket. Penn State and LSU, participants in the Capital One Bowl, have their pick of a $420 shopping spree at Best Buy or a Timex watch.
The complete list of goodies for each bowl can be found at www.sportsbusinessjournal.com.
So while we clown about the participants of the "Little Ceasars Pizza Bowl," know they're the ones getting the last laugh.
Flyers winger Scott Hartnell will be a guest on the "Price is Right" today.
Hartnell, along with Bruins player Marc Savard, will help present a showcase that features a round-trip ticket, hotel accommodations and a pair of tickets to the NHL's Winter Classic between the two teams at Fenway Park on New Year's Day.
On his Twitter page, Allen Iverson alerts fans to "check out this rare piece" - an autographed No. 3 Nuggets jersey with his name on the back up for auction on eBay. As of 9 o'clock last night, the jersey and its asking price of $250 had zero bids.
- Kerith Gabriel