A rump Wing Bowl?

Some of the top competitive eaters in the world, including WIP Wing Bowl alumni Joey Chestnut and Sonya Thomas, will gather on Tuesday, Feb. 1 in Dallas for what's billed as the Wingstop World Wing-Eating Championship.

Seeing as this event will be three days before the 19th annual Wing Bowl in Philly, what's up?

George Shea, head of the eating-sanctioning body Major League Eating, scoffs at any thoughts that this contest, sponsored by the Wingstop eatery chain, might be trying to steal the Philly event's thunder.

First off, Shea told me, the Super Bowl and wings go together naturally. "Americans view Super Bowl parties as a way of eating competitively. But they're not eating crudites and mineral water -- they dive into chips and dip and in particular wings."

The Dallas contest is not intended to replicate the Wing Bowl spectacle. "We leave the babes and Mardi Gras vibe to Al [Morganti] and Angelo [Cataldi], who have elevated that into a high art," Shea said.

None of the "pro" eaters will compete in Phlly because Major League Eating hasn't sanctioned it since 2008.

This year's big Wing Bowl matchup -- Feb. 4 at the Wells Fargo Center -- will pit Bill "El Wingador" Simmons against returning champion Jonathan "Super Squibb" Squibb.