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Blue Raiders accept bid to Motor City Bowl

MT gets at-large bid for first-ever I-A bowl game

December 3, 2006 · MT Media Relations

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. - The Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders are going bowling - I-A style.

Middle Tennessee was officially extended an invitation on Saturday night for Rick Stockstill's Blue Raiders to represent the Sun Belt Conference as an at-large team in the 10th annual Motor City Bowl on Dec. 26. It will mark the first bowl game of the I-A era for Middle Tennessee and the first overall since going to the Grantland Rice Bowl back in 1964.

The game against Mid-American Conference Central Michigan will be played at Detroit's Ford Field, home of the 2006 Super Bowl, at 6:30 PM before a nationwide television audience on ESPN. It will mark the first meeting between the schools.

"We are thrilled to extend our season in Detroit and appreciate the invitation by the Motor City Bowl," said Director of Athletics Chris Massaro. "It looks like a great bowl for our players and fans and we can't wait to get there. We are proud to be one of just two schools in the state of Tennessee going to a bowl game and we will represent the state well."

Under Stockstill the Blue Raiders had an incredible turnaround from a year ago by going 7-5 overall and winning a school record six Sun Belt Conference games to earn a share of the league title.

"This is a tremendous accomplishment for our team and very deserving because of the hard work these players put in day after day to have an opportunity to be in the postseason," said Stockstill. "To be able to attend a bowl game in just our eighth season at the I-A level is a testament to our program and shows the direction we are headed."

Fans need to purchase tickets through the Middle Tennessee ticket office by calling 1-888-YES-MTSU or logging onto GoBlueRaiders.com. Premium club level tickets are $55 and reserved tickets will be $45. Students, with a valid Middle Tennessee ID, will be admitted free.

"To earn an at-large bid and put a second team in a bowl game demonstrates the progress the Sun Belt Conference has made in such a short time," said Middle Tennessee President Sidney McPhee, who also serves as the president of the SBC. "This is also unbelieveable exposure for our university in all areas and serves as a great reward to our loyal fans and supporters."

Middle Tennessee Bowl History

1956 Refrigerator Bowl - Evansville, IN
Sam Houston State 27, MT 13

1960 Tangerine Bowl - Orlando, FL
MT 21, Presbyterian 12

1961 Tangerine Bowl - Orlando, FL
Lamar Tech 21, MT 14

1964 Grantland Rice Bowl - Murfreesboro, TN
MT 20, Muskingum 0

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