ATHENS, Ohio -- The Ohio football team (6-6, 5-3 MAC) has accepted an invitation to play in the 23rd Famous Idaho Potato Bowl against Nevada (7-5, 4-4 MW). The game will be played on Friday, Jan. 3, at Albertsons Stadium in Boise, Idaho. Kickoff is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. ET/1:30 p.m. MT, and the contest will be nationally televised on ESPN. The game can also be heard on the radio on the Ohio Sports Network from Learfield IMG College, with "Voice of the Bobcats" Russ Eisenstein and Ohio alum Rob Cornelius on the call.
The Bobcats are set to make their second appearance in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl. Ohio earned its first-ever bowl victory in the 2011 Famous Idaho Potato Bowl, a 24-23 win over Utah State.
Ticket information will be released on Monday (Dec. 9).
"We're excited about getting the invitation to the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl," said 15th-year head coach Frank Solich. "We've been at that bowl before. We were treated great. The people there were amazing. Our guys had a great deal of fun. We were able to combine all that with a win. We have nothing but good memories and are looking forward to being there again."
The nation's northern-most bowl game traditionally features a Mountain West vs. Mid-American Conference matchup. The Mountain West has been represented in five of the last six games, while the MAC has earned a spot in the game nine of the last 10 years. The Famous Idaho Potato Bowl is one of 15 bowl games owned and operated by ESPN Events, a division of ESPN.
The Bobcats are making their 13th bowl appearance in program history, 11th in the last 14 years and fifth in a row. Ohio has won four bowl games in its history, posting back-to-back victories twice, and will be going for its third-straight bowl win. Ohio's 13 bowl appearances are tied for the second-most among MAC programs. Ohio's four bowl wins are tied for fourth-most among MAC programs, and a third-straight bowl win would tie Ohio with Toledo (1969-71) and Miami (1973-75) for the most consecutive bowl wins in conference history. In addition to the win over Utah State in the 2011 Famous Idaho Potato Bowl, Ohio knocked off ULM, 45-14, in the 2012 Advocare V100 Independence Bowl, rolled to a 41-6 win over UAB in the 2017 Bahamas Bowl and posted a 27-0 shutout of San Diego State in the 2018 DXL Frisco Bowl. The Bobcats are set to battle a team out of the Mountain West in a bowl game for the second year in a row and second time in program history.
Ohio's six-win 2019 regular season clinched its 11th-straight year of bowl eligibility, which is the longest current streak in the MAC. The Bobcats posted a winning conference record for the fifth year in a row. Ohio is led by Solich, who is the winningest head coach in MAC history with 112 victories. The Bobcats placed seven student-athletes on the 2019 All-MAC Awards list, which was announced by the league office last Wednesday (Dec. 4). Senior quarterback Nathan Rourke (Oakville, Ontario, Canada) and redshirt senior defensive back Javon Hagan (Jacksonville, Fla.) earned All-MAC First Team selection. Redshirt senior offensive lineman Austen Pleasants (Ironton, Ohio) and redshirt senior punter Michael Farkas (Mishawaka, Ind.) garnered All-MAC Second Team recognition. Redshirt senior offensive lineman Marques Grimes (Southfield, Mich.), redshirt senior offensive lineman Steven Hayes (Dacula, Ga.) and redshirt senior kickoff return specialist DL Knock (Springboro, Ohio) received All-MAC Third Team honors.
Ohio will square off with Nevada for the first time in program history. Led by third-year head coach Jay Norvell, the Wolf Pack finished the 2019 regular season with seven victories, including four Mountain West wins. Six Nevada football players have earned Mountain West honors for the 2019 season, including defensive end Dom Peterson who was named first-team All-Mountain West. Freshman kicker Brandon Talton earned second-team honors, while senior defensive back Daniel Brown, sophomore wide receiver and punt returner Romeo Doubs, senior linebacker Gabriel Sewell and sophomore running back Toa Taua earned All-MW Honorable Mention accolades.
Stay tuned to OhioBobcats.com for more coverage of Ohio's trip to the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl.