No title at stake. No David-versus-Goliath match-up. No villainous group of gridiron ghouls like the Miami Hurricanes. Still, the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl at Sun Devil Stadium on Friday, January 2, has something the other Bowl Championship Series games don't: the Ohio State Buckeyes, the defending national champs of college football. And, making their first BCS appearance, the Kansas State Wildcats couldn't have asked for a heftier challenge -- which will prove to be even more gratifying if K-State manages to upset the Buckeyes, who are favored by a touchdown.
But enough of all this football, schmootball talk! The nonstop party atmosphere around the Fiesta Bowl is reason enough to head to Tempe, especially since -- unless you've forked over as much as $750 a ticket on the street for the sold-out game -- you probably won't get through the gates at the stadium anyway. Kickoff is at 6 p.m. For more information, see www.tostitosfiestabowl.com. - Joe Watson
Learn all the right moves at Green Mantis
Looking to learn some ancient Chinese secrets? Consider Mesa's Green Mantis Kung Fu School of Internal Virtue. Offering studies in traditional Chinese medicine and internal martial arts, the school celebrates its 20th anniversary with a day of demos and discussion, Saturday, January 3, at its research library in Chandler. Call 480-782-9393 for details and directions. - Jill Koch
The WWE brings the smackdown to the Valley
Glendale's finally making a name for itself out on the west side, and we don't mean the Coyotes' arrival. We're talking about WWE Wrestling, folks. On Saturday, January 3, the brand-new Glendale Arena is hosting its first ever WWE event, the Road to Wrestlemania, and it doesn't get much bigger than that. Expected performers include Kurt Angle, the Big Show, Chris Benoit, Rikishi, Scotty 2 Hotty, Eddie Guerrero, and Rey Mysterio. Doors open at 7:30 p.m., and tickets are $20 to $40. Visit www.ticketmaster.com or www.glendalearenaaz.com for tickets or more information. - Brendan Joel Kelley
UA and ASU's b-ball teams do battle
Like everyone else in Tempe, we like Ike (Diogu, that is). But when the Arizona State Sun Devils -- led by Diogu, reigning Pac-10 Freshman of the Year -- take on the Arizona Wildcats -- the state's best basketball team, pro or amateur -- on Saturday, January 3, it seems no amount of love will push ASU over the top. Arizona, ranked in the top five teams in the country for most of the early season, has won 16 of the last 17 meetings between the two. Unless Ike takes the court in a Sherman tank, we fear more of the same. Game time is 1:30 p.m. at ASU's Wells Fargo Arena. For tickets call 480-965-2381. - Joe Watson