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Gameday is here: First, USF-NIU links ...

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January

Rogers2 Good morning from Toronto, where the last game of USF's 2009 football season is now just three hours away. It's been a fun two days in Ontario -- lots of snow Friday, lots of Celsius temperatures and kilometers and words like "defence" and "centre" so on. We'll live-blog throughout the game today, but first, we have lots of links to share for your pregame reading ...

-- No lie: Flipping through the channels this morning, just stumbled upon a magicJack commercial. Life is funny.

-- Really enjoyed the keynote speaker at Friday's bowl luncheon, former Toledo and CFL quarterback Chuck Ealey, who won 35 straight games for the Rockets from 1969-71. Speaking to the importance of every member of a team, he told the story of Naval pilot Charles Plumb, who was shot down over Vietnam, parachuted into enemy territory and spent six years as a prisoner of war before returning home. He later met a man who recognized him and explained that he had been the man who packed his parachute. Good story. Read more about Ealey, who certainly deserves a spot in the College Football Hall of Fame, at inductchuck.com.

-- The Associated Press advance for the game focused on B.J. Daniels, who is playing in his first bowl. The Toronto Star also wrote Daniels today -- he'll be thrilled on a personal level to hear NIU's coach comparing him to Michael Vick, for whom he wears the No. 7 jersey ...

-- The Daily Herald in Illinois looked at the MAC's 13-game losing streak, which goes back to 2006, when Joe Tresey was defensive coordinator for Central Michigan on this same field.

-- The public's picks for bowl wins at Yahoo.com have been wrong for 14 of 25 games. Less than half just picking winners ...

-- Favorite story for the media in Canada has been receiver Evan Landi, who played junior hockey before choosing a path to college football. Here's the Toronto Star's story from this week.

-- The Fan 590 here in Toronto has audio from a radio interview with Jim Leavitt this week.

-- Really good story from the Birmingham News' Jon Solomon about unsold bowl tickets and the millions of dollars lost each year by schools that can't sell large allotments they're contractually bound to. USF will lose about $360,000 on unsold tickets for this bowl, more money than was spent on airfare.

-- ESPN.com's Big East blogger, Brian Bennett, offers his preview and calls for a 31-16 USF win.

[Last modified: Thursday, May 27, 2010 7:49pm]

    

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