Boca Raton Bowl Photo Credit: ESPN

Boca Raton Bowl announcers Matt Barrie and Dan Mullen got stuck with a dog of a game Thursday night.

The South Florida Bulls jumped out to a 31-0 halftime lead over the Syracuse Orange, and by the end of the third quarter, the score was 38-0.

That left ESPN’s Barrie and Mullen desperately seeking something to talk about. That’s not unusual for announcers during a blowout, but they don’t usually voice that “What are we going to talk about now?” question out loud.

Barrie and Mullen did, however. This game was that bad.

“I have a question for you — what are we going to talk about in the fourth quarter?” play-by-play announcer Barrie asked his analyst late in the third quarter.

“I mean, a new season of The Crown just dropped?” Barrie continued.

“We should have filmed some Mattie and Mullen cup yesterday,” Mullen responded, referencing a golf game the two broadcasters had played.

“We can rank Christmas movies,” Barrie said.

Mullen started talking about their golf match.

“Yeah, I think you did get me yesterday,” Barrie conceded.

“I mean, the floor is ours,” Barrie continued. “Christmas is coming up.”

Then, it occurred to both men to talk about bowl season.

“We could legitimately get into every bowl,” Barrie said.

Then the duo brought ESPN reporter Harry Lyles Jr. into the conversation, and asked him what they could talk about.

“Honestly Matt, I was kind of wondering if you’d started my recommendation of Season 5 of Love Island UK,” Lyles responded.

Meanwhile, South Florida receiver Sean Atkins ripped off a big play on a reverse. We’ll mention it here because Barrie and Mullen didn’t; they were busy talking about Love, Actually and whether or not Die Hard was a Christmas movie.

“I want to point out everything that drives me crazy about Love, Actually,” Barrie said.

On the one hand, some critics might say that going off-script like that is unprofessional. Just think about the poor walk-on player, who enters the game because it is a blowout, his family’s watching on TV waiting to hear his name called on a play, and the announcers are talking about Love, Actually.

On the other hand, this game was 38-0 at that point — even players’ parents on both sides had probably turned off the game by then.

Sometimes, announcers go way overboard trying to inject fake drama into a game that has become a laugher. Barrie, Mullen and Lyles tried to put a humorous spin on an otherwise rotten game.

[Sickos Committee; Photo Credit: ESPN]

About Arthur Weinstein

Arthur spends his free time traveling around the U.S. to sporting events, state and national parks, and in search of great restaurants off the beaten path.