By Chadd Cripe
© 2013 Idaho Statesman
San Diego State will play in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl in Boise. Buffalo will be the Aztecs’ opponent.
The Aztecs are 7-5. Buffalo is 8-4.
The game is at 3:30 p.m. Dec. 21 at Bronco Stadium. It will air on ESPN.
Buffalo, San Diego State Accept Invitations to Play Famous Idaho Potato Bowl
17th annual game slated for Dec. 21 at 3:30 p.m. MST
BOISE, Idaho – ESPN Regional Television announced today that University at Buffalo (8-4) of the Mid-American Conference and San Diego State (7-5) of the Mountain West Conference have accepted invitations to play in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl, Saturday, Dec. 21, 2013, at 3:30 p.m. MST in Bronco Stadium in Boise, Idaho. This is the first time either team will play in the Boise-based bowl game.
The University of Buffalo enters the bowl game with an 8-4 record, including a 6-2 MAC record making it bowl eligible for just the second time as an NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision program. The Bulls’ performance this season has been boosted by the outstanding efforts of Khalil Mack, who was recently named the 2013 Jack Lambert Award winner, an award going to the top linebacker in collegiate football. The 2013 MAC Defensive Player of the Year has totaled 94 tackles, 10.5 sacks, 19 tackles for loss, three interceptions and two touchdowns this season, while also establishing NCAA career records for tackles for loss (75) and forced fumbles (16). Offensively, quarterback Joe Licata, who averages over 200-yards passing and has thrown 21 touchdown passes, and running back Branden Oliver, who has 15 touchdowns and averages nearly 130-rushing yards per game, have led the team this season.
San Diego State will play in its fourth consecutive bowl and enters the bowl with a 7-5 record on the season. The Aztecs went 6-2 in conference play this season, falling only to then-ranked No. 15 Fresno State and UNLV. A persistent team, SDSU played through four overtime games (won three) to tie an NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision record, while also winning six of eight games played to within seven points. The Aztecs’ only losses outside MW play came to then-ranked No. 3 Ohio State, Eastern Illinois (then-ranked No. 2 in FCS) and the Pac-12’s Oregon State. Quarterback Quinn Kaehler leads the team with 2,796 yards passing, averaging 254 yards per game, while also throwing for 17 touchdowns. On the ground running back Adam Muema leads the team with 1,015 yards and 12 touchdowns. Wide receiver Tim Vizzi is second in the nation in punt returns for a touchdown, recording two this season. J.J. Whittacker and Nick Tenhaeff have added three interceptions (one for a touchdown) and 13.0 tackles for loss, respectively.
The Famous Idaho Potato Bowl is the third game of the entire 2013-14 bowl calendar. The Bowl will be telecast nationally on ESPN and broadcast on ESPN Radio. Six of the previous nine games have been decided on the last drive, with an average score of 37-25 over the Bowl’s 16-season history.
In its 17th season, the nation’s longest-running outdoor cold-weather bowl welcomes a MW and MAC match-up for the first time after the MW announced its affiliation with the bowl last December. The MAC has been a Famous Idaho Potato Bowl affiliate since the 2009 bowl season.
“We are thrilled to welcome Buffalo and San Diego State, two outstanding teams, to our game for the first time,” said Kevin McDonald, Executive Director, Famous Idaho Potato Bowl. “Both programs have produced great results throughout the season and I am sure they will bring that to the table to make our game an exciting one.”
Tickets are available at www.Idahotickets.com, by phone at (208) 426-4737 or at the Bronco Stadium ticket office.