Eastern Michigan, San José State Accept Invitations to Famous Idaho Potato Bowl

December 4, 2022
For Immediate Release

Eastern Michigan, San José State Accept Invitations to Famous Idaho Potato Bowl
Kickoff set for Tuesday, Dec. 20 at 1:30 p.m. MT

BOISE, Idaho – The 26th Famous Idaho Potato Bowl will feature Eastern Michigan from the Mid-American Conference and San José State University from the Mountain West Conference. The Famous Idaho Potato Bowl will be played Tuesday, Dec. 20, at Albertsons Stadium on the campus of Boise State University. Kickoff is set for 1:30 p.m. MT, on ESPN.

Tickets are on sale now through famousidahopotatobowl.com or the Boise State Athletics Ticket Office. Reservations for premium ticket packages are currently available, which include prime ticket locations, hospitality benefits in tent village and corporate exposure. For more package information contact the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl office at (208) 424-1011.

Eastern Michigan and San José State are both appearing in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl for the first time. The Eagles and Spartans have previously met once on the gridiron – also in a bowl game. Eastern Michigan defeated San José State in the 1987 California Bowl, 30-27 on a touchdown pass in the closing minutes.

“We couldn’t be more excited to bring San José State and Eastern Michigan to Boise,” said Danielle Brazil, executive director of the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl. “We know our community will embrace these student-athletes and provide unmatched hospitality – like we have for the last 25 years. This will be a great matchup for our fans and a true celebration of college football in Boise.”

San José State enters bowl season with a 7-4 record, including a 5-3 mark in Mountain West play. The Spartans have reached the postseason relying on a combination of taking care of the ball on offense and living in their opponents’ backfield on defense. They rank second nationally for fewest turnovers lost with just six giveaways on the year and are in the top 10 nationally in both sacks and tackles for loss.

The defense is led by Mountain West Defensive Player of the Year Viliami Fehoko. The two-time all-conference selection and Ted Hendricks Award Finalist ranks fourth in the country with 18.5 tackles for loss and 10th in the nation with nine sacks. Fellow defensive lineman Cade Hall was also named first-team All-Mountain West for the second time in his career, while linebacker Kyle Harmon earned first-team accolades for the third straight season.

Quarterback Chevan Cordeiro and wide receiver Elijah Cooks set the tone for San José State’s offense. Cooks was named first-team all-conference after hauling in 63 receptions for 983 yards and 10 touchdowns. Cordeiro picked up second-team honors.

The Spartans are making their 12th all-time bowl appearance and second in the last three seasons. Sixth-year head coach Brent Brennan led the program to its first Mountain West Conference title in 2020, the team’s first league title since 1991, and finished the season with a trip to the Arizona Bowl. This is the first time San José State has reached two bowl games in a three-year span since going to back-to-back California Bowls in 1986 and 1987.

Eastern Michigan will come to Boise riding a three-game winning streak to cap off an 8-4 regular season that included a 5-3 mark in MAC play, a share of the west division crown and the Michigan MAC Trophy. The Eagles took advantage of an opportunistic offense and a star-laden defense to secure the third eight-win season in program history.

Senior defensive end Jose Raimrez was named the MAC Defensive MVP, becoming the first player in program history to be named a conference player of the year. Ramirez, a finalist for the Ted Hendricks Award, leads the country with 1.09 sacks per game and is second nationally with 1.8 tackles for loss per game. Senior running back Samson Evans has scored 13 of his school-record 27 career rushing touchdowns this year on his way to second-team All-MAC honors.

Eastern Michigan is making its seventh all-time bowl appearance and 12 EMU student-athletes are expected to become the first in program history to suit up in four postseason contests with previous appearances in 2018, 2019 and 2021. It is the fifth bowl game under head coach Chris Creighton, the only coach in program history to lead the Eagles to multiple bowl games.

The Famous Idaho Potato Bowl is one of 17 college football bowl games owned and operated by ESPN Events. Game proceeds provide tickets and/or contributions to Idaho Charities that include the United Way, Optimist Youth Football, Big Brothers Big Sisters, the Boise School District, Treasure Valley YMCA, Boys and Girls Clubs, Girls Scouts and Armed Forces personnel.

ESPN Events 
ESPN Events, a division of ESPN, owns and operates a portfolio of collegiate sporting events nationwide. In 2022, the 32-event schedule includes three early-season college football kickoff games, 17 college bowl games, 11 college basketball events, and a college softball event, which account for approximately 400 hours of live programming, while reaching nearly 64 million viewers and attracting over 800,000 annual attendees. With satellite offices in more than 10 cities across the country, ESPN Events builds relationships with conferences, schools and local communities, as well as providing unique experiences for teams and fans.

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