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National Champs or Beef O’Brady’s? Marshall fans debate.

Beef 'O' Brady's St. Petersburg Bowl - Florida International Panthers v Marshall Thundering Herd

ST. PETERSBURG, FL - DECEMBER 20: Quarterback Wesley Carroll #13 of the Florida International University Panthers releases a pass against the Marshall Thundering Herd December 20, 2011 in the Beef ‘O’ Brady’s St. Petersburg Bowl at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Florida. (Marshall won 20 - 10. Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)

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We all know by now, that when football and basketball go head to head, basketball loses. Stipulated, counselor.

So what are the odds that Marshall Thundering Herd hoops fans will turn up for a date with the defending national champion Kentucky Wildcats? Not as good as you might think. Who’s the culprit? Dang ol’ football again.

The Herd are scheduled to road trip to Rupp Arena to face Cal’s new kids on December 22. Guess what? That’s when C-USA football teams tend to get their bowl game on. Huntington residents are so confident that their gridiron heroes will win out that they’re already worrying about how they’ll split their forces - how many will go to Lexington, and how many will caravan to the crucial Beef O’Brady’s bowl matchup? Or whatever they’re calling it this year.

Chuck Landon of the Huntington Herald-Dispatch spilled a few gallons of ink, then sprinkled pixels on top, in the name of measuring the theoretical horns of this potential dillema:

Remember the Beef ‘O’ Brady Bowl in St. Petersburg, Fla.? A good time was had by all last season there, including Marshall’s football team which produced a 20-10 victory over Florida International. But the 2012 game is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. on Dec. 21 against a Big East opponent.

That’s a conflict unless someone is willing to fly from St. Petersburg to Lexington, Ky., the next day.

Then, there’s another potential bowl site -- the R+L Carriers in New Orleans. Talk about a scheduling dilemma. The New Orleans Bowl is at noon on Dec. 22 against a Sun Belt opponent.

And don’t forget the Sheraton Hawaii Bowl. It is played in Honolulu at 8 p.m. on Dec. 24 against a Mountain West foe.

There is one solution to this scheduling conflict, however. If the football team plays well enough to qualify for either the Liberty Bowl in Memphis as C-USA champions on Dec. 31 or the TicketCity Bowl in Dallas on Jan. 1, the snafu is averted.

At least they’re a hopeful bunch in western West Virginia.

Truth is, seats will be hard to come by at Rupp for anyone wearing green. There’s also the likelihood that it will be a full-on beatdown from a new class of future pros. Still, here’s hoping a few die-hard Herd fans opt to make the trek.

Eric Angevine is the editor of Storming the Floor. He tweets @stfhoops.