Instead of bowl games being seen as the end of the season, what if we viewed them as the first game of a new season. Have the wins and losses count in the total for the new year, considered in the rankings etc.
Sure the seniors who start the bowl game won’t be there in the fall and the new freshmen have yet to arrive, but the seniors have an opportunity to ‘gift a win’ to the underclassmen and pass the baton in a meaningful way. None of the games would be meaningless. Everyone would bring their A game and given the pecking order of the bowls, the vast majority of these games would be highly competitive.