University of Miami

UM bowl swag is cool for Russell Athletic Bowl. But national title game gift ‘iconic’

Miami Hurricanes tight end David Njoku (86) celebrates in the end zone after a fourth quarter touchdown as the University of Miami hosts Duke at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens on Saturday, November 26, 2016.
Miami Hurricanes tight end David Njoku (86) celebrates in the end zone after a fourth quarter touchdown as the University of Miami hosts Duke at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens on Saturday, November 26, 2016. adiaz@miamiherald.com

College football bowl games are so much fun — but not just on the field.

The Miami Hurricanes will soon be thrilled with their biggest gift at the Russell Athletic Bowl: a $300 Best Buy shopping spree, among other goodies.

Players are pampered with “a maximum value,’’ per NCAA rules, of $550 in gifts from the bowl organizing committees, plus are allowed an additional $400 in gifts from their schools and $400 in gifts from their conference (sometimes used for bowl rings).

SportsBusiness Daily recently published its 11th annual “rundown of the gift packages’’ provided by the bowls, and the Hurricanes and opponent West Virginia, who kick off at 5:30 p.m. Dec. 28 at Camping World Stadium in Orlando, will both be winners in that realm.

Each of the players will get that shopping spree, plus a Timely Watch Co. watch, I-slide footwear, beach towel and athletic performance pullover.

The Hurricanes could have gotten a cool, personalized bobblehead doll with the player’s face, name and uniform number, if they had been selected to the TaxSlayer Bowl — plus a Fossil watch, carry-on bag and Under Armour sunglasses. Somehow, though, we think they’ll like the shopping spree more.

If Miami had gone to the New Era Pinstripe Bowl, it would have received “a variety of New Era products,’’ according to SportsBusiness Daily.

And if the Canes had landed in the Belk Bowl, they would have received a shopping spree to a Belk department store — last year’s was worth $450 —and a Fossil watch.

The Florida Gators, who will play Iowa in the Outback Bowl at 1 p.m. Jan. 2 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, each get a gift suite, Fossil watch, commemorative coin, cap, beanie, Ogio duffle bag and Big Game autographed football.

And the Florida State Seminoles and Michigan Wolverines, who play in the Capital One Orange Bowl at 8 p.m. Dec. 30 at Hard Rock Stadium, will each get a gift suite, a Tourneau watch (the best among the bowls) and Schutt mini-helmet.

At the Miami Beach Bowl, where players from Tulsa and Central Michigan will square off at 2:30 p.m. Dec. 19 at Marlins Park, each participant will get an Under Armour backpack, hat and sunglasses, I-slide sandals, portable power bank, beach paddleball set and football.

And Western Kentucky and Memphis players, who meet in the Marmot Boca Raton Bowl at 7 p.m. Dec. 20 at FAU Stadium, will get a gift suite “and other items that are not disclosed to the public.’’

As for the College Football Playoff National Championship particpants, yet to be determined?

“Iconic gift,’’ is what the CFP folks will only reveal.

A national title, of course, would be the best gift of all.

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