Mississippi State & Miami (OH) To Meet in 2016 St. Petersburg Bowl
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (December 4, 2016) – The St. Petersburg Bowl has announced that Mississippi State from the Southeastern Conference and Miami (OH) from the Mid-American Conference have accepted invitations to play in this year’s game. The ninth edition of the bowl game will be played at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla., on Monday, Dec. 26 at 11 a.m. ET and air on ESPN and ESPN Radio.
The Bulldogs will be the first SEC program to appear in the St. Petersburg Bowl, while the RedHawks will be the third MAC school (Ohio 2013, Ball State 2012) to appear in the game.
“We are happy to be in position to reward both schools with a trip to a bowl game in our beautiful resort city of St. Petersburg,” said Brett Dulaney, Executive Director of the St. Petersburg Bowl. ”I’m sure that the players and fans from both programs will enjoy spending the holidays in our vibrant downtown and also our beautiful top-rated beaches.”
Mississippi State (5-7, 3-5) finished the regular season with a dominating 55-20 road win over rival Ole Miss in the Egg Bowl. The Bulldogs have been a regular on the bowl scene since 2011 and are returning to the state of Florida for a bowl for third time in the last five years. The school’s last trip to a Florida bowl game was the 2014 season when current Dallas Cowboys QB Dak Prescott led the team to an appearance in the Capital One Orange Bowl.
“On behalf of everyone at Mississippi State, we are excited to accept a bowl invitation for a school-record seventh straight year,” MSU Director of Athletics John Cohen said. “St. Petersburg is an excellent destination, and our fans have shown over the years how well they travel to support the Bulldogs. Congratulations to head coach Dan Mullen and his staff on earning a bid to the St. Petersburg Bowl.”
“We are thrilled to reach a bowl game for a school-record seventh straight year and finish the season in St. Petersburg,” MSU head coach Dan Mullen said. “This is a great opportunity for one of the winningest senior classes in school history and for our program to build momentum for 2017. It also speaks volumes of our student-athletes for their commitment in the classroom to qualify for a bowl based on our successful APR.”
Miami (6-6, 6-2) is riding a six-game winning streak, and with its season finale win over Ball State, became the first team in college football to finish a regular season 6-6 after losing its first six games. The RedHawks will be playing in a bowl game for the first time since 2011.
“We are thrilled to be headed to the St. Petersburg Bowl,” said Miami Athletics Director David Sayler. “Miami has a strong alumni base in Florida and our fans are excited for the warm weather. Chuck has turned the corner this year and I look forward to celebrating a great season with thousands of Miami alums at Tropicana Field.”
“We are thrilled and honored to be selected to play in the St. Petersburg Bowl,” said Miami head football coach Chuck Martin. “This is a great reward for our players and staff who have put in so much work and effort to build our program back to bowl eligibility. It will be exciting to be able to spend the holiday season with the RedHawk family in St. Petersburg.”
Tickets for the 2016 St. Petersburg Bowl start as low as just $40. Tickets are available for online purchase from Tickets.com. The St. Petersburg Bowl is owned-and-operated by ESPN Events, a division of ESPN, which manages 13 postseason bowl games.
ESPN Events, a division of ESPN, owns and operates a large portfolio of collegiate sporting events worldwide. The roster includes three Labor Day weekend college football games; FCS opening-weekend game; 13 college bowl games, 11 college basketball events and two college award shows, which accounts for approximately 250-plus hours of programming, reaches almost 64 million viewers and attracts over 700,000 attendees each year. With satellite offices in Albuquerque, Birmingham, Boca Raton, Boise, Dallas-Fort Worth, Honolulu, Las Vegas, Montgomery and St. Petersburg, ESPN Events builds relationships with conferences, schools and local communities, as well as providing unique experiences for teams and fans.
ESPN Events also manages the Big 12 Corporate Partner Program.
AdvoCare Texas Kickoff (Houston); AdvoCare V100 Texas Bowl (Houston); Air Force Reserve Celebration Bowl (Atlanta); Birmingham Bowl (Alabama); Boca Raton Bowl (Florida); Camping World Kickoff (Orlando, Fla.); Famous Idaho Potato Bowl (Boise); Gildan New Mexico Bowl (Albuquerque); Hawai’i Bowl (Honolulu); Las Vegas Bowl (Nevada); Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl (Dallas-Fort Worth); MEAC/SWAC Challenge (Baton Rouge, La.); Montgomery Kickoff Classic (Montgomery, Ala.); Popeyes Bahamas Bowl (Nassau); Raycom Media Camellia Bowl (Montgomery, Ala.); St. Petersburg Bowl (Florida); The Home Depot College Football Awards (Atlanta) and Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas Bowl (Dallas-Fort Worth)
AdvoCare Invitational (Walt Disney World Resort near Orlando, Fla.); College Basketball Awards Presented by Wendy’s (Los Angeles); Gildan Charleston Classic (South Carolina); Hawaiian Airlines Diamond Head Classic (Honolulu); Jimmy V Men’s Classic presented by Corona (New York City); Jimmy V Women’s Classic presented by Corona (Uncasville, Conn.); NIT Season Tip-Off (Brooklyn, N.Y.); PK80 (Portland, Ore.); State Farm Armed Forces Classic (Honolulu); State Farm Champions Classic (New York City); Tire Pros Invitational (Orlando, Fla.) and Wooden Legacy (Orange County, Calif.)