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Posted at 4:51 PM ET, 12/30/2008

Bowl-ed Over By College Football

By Fritz Hahn

If your alma mater made it to a college bowl game, you're probably pretty excited -- even if it's the Humanitarian Bowl -- and looking forward to rooting the team on to victory. Sure, you can do that in your living room, but it's far more fun to be surrounded by fellow alumni wearing team colors, singing fight songs and high-fiving after every score.

The game-watching parties thrown by local alumni groups are like giant tailgate parties, full of opportunities to reminisce about your school, network with other alums, maybe even get a phone number or two. Below is our guide to where alumni will be gathering in the D.C. area for all the big games. When you get to the bar, especially if it's a larger venue, be sure to ask where the alumni are.

Nonpartisan football fans who just want to check out the great matchups in the Rose or Orange bowls should check our list of top sports bars -- the Crystal City Sports Pub, Mister Days and Cleveland Park Bar and Grill in particular are always fun spots for college games.

We've tried to list every alumni group that's hosting a game-watching gathering, but not all universities are active in the area or having a party. If we missed something, please add it in the comments.

Tuesday, December 30
Humanitarian Bowl
Maryland vs. Nevada
Maryland fans will be in bars across the area -- try the Santa Fe Cafe or the Cornerstone in College Park, Rock Bottom Brewery, Caddies or BlackFinn in Bethesda, or the Crystal City Sports Pub. Ronda Bybee, the president of the University of Nevada's D.C. alumni chapter, says that the Wolf Pack will gather at the Crystal City Sports Pub.

Holiday Bowl
Oklahoma State vs. Oregon
Two top-20 teams battle it out in San Diego. The Oklahoma State Cowboys will head for the Penn Quarter Sports Tavern, while Oregon's Ducks flock to Summers.

Texas Bowl
Western Michigan vs. Rice
Western Michigan will join Oklahoma State at the Penn Quarter Sports Tavern, and Rice will be up the street at the Greene Turtle.

Wednesday, December 31
Sun Bowl
Oregon State vs. Pittsburgh
The Panthers will be at the Crystal City Sports Pub.

Music City Bowl
Boston College vs. Vanderbilt
Porter's is the traditional viewing spot for Boston College, and Vandy can be found at the Penn Quarter Sports Tavern.

Insight Bowl
Kansas vs. Minnesota
Jayhawks have three choices for the big game: Porter's, Bailey's or the Crystal City Sports Pub.

Chick-Fil-A Bowl
LSU vs. Georgia Tech
The Tigers roar at Bailey's in Ballston, while the Yellow Jackets head for Champps in Pentagon Row.

Thursday, January 1
Outback Bowl
South Carolina vs. Iowa
Both the Gamecocks and the Hawkeyes are regulars at the Crystal City Sports Pub

Gator Bowl
Nebraska vs. Clemson
Cornhuskers have gathered at Union Pub for years, and Clemson supports the Tigers at the relatively new Velocity Five.

Rose Bowl
Penn State vs. USC
The Nittany Lions have a game-watching party in each jurisdiction: Rhino Bar in D.C., Carpool in Arlington and BlackFinn in Bethesda. USC, meanwhile, takes over a large area at the Crystal City Sports Pub.

Orange Bowl
Cincinnati vs. Virginia Tech
Virginia Tech has alumni all around the D.C. area. The official game-watching location is Bailey's in Ballston, but you'll see maroon at Crystal City Sports Pub, Mister Days, Champps, Velocity Five or any number of Northern Virginia sports bars.

Friday, January 2
Liberty Bowl
Kentucky vs. East Carolina
Kentucky fans are loyal to the alumni-owned Grevey's, while East Carolina is celebrating its Cinderella season with parties at Bailey's in Arlington, Gaffney's in Bethesda and Ventnor Sports Cafe in D.C.

Sugar Bowl
Utah vs. Alabama
"The U" is hitting Penn Quarter Sports Tavern, and Alabama can be found at the Old Dominion Brewhouse.

Saturday, January 3
International Bowl
Buffalo vs. Connecticut
Join Buffalo alumni for a tailgate party (heavy on the wings) and game-watching at Jimmy's Old Town Tavern, beginning at 11 a.m.

Monday, January 5
Fiesta Bowl
Ohio State vs. Texas
Ohio State has three viewing locations -- Rhino Bar in D.C., Union Jack's in Bethesda and Ri-Ra in Arlington. The loud and rowdy Texas Exes will be at Rhodeside Grill.

Thursday, January 8
BCS National Championship Game
Florida vs. Oklahoma
The D.C. Gators return to the Pour House, while the Sooners host a party at Mackey's in Crystal City.

-- Fritz

By Fritz Hahn  | December 30, 2008; 4:51 PM ET
Categories:  Bars and Clubs  
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Michigan State on Jan 1 (Capital One Bowl) will be at Capitol Lounge (231 Pennsylvania Ave., SE)

Posted by: EL1234 | December 31, 2008 12:17 PM | Report abuse

You forgot a very important bowl--the Cotton Bowl. Where can OLE MISS fans go?!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: mhipolit | January 2, 2009 9:19 AM | Report abuse

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