UAB BLAZERS TO TAKE ON NIU HUSKIES IN THE 2018 CHERIBUNDI BOCA RATON BOWL

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BOCA RATON, FL. – This year’s Cheribundi Boca Raton Bowl will feature the Northern Illinois Huskies from the MidAmerican Conference (MAC) and the UAB Blazers from Conference USA (CUSA). The 2018 Cheribundi Boca Raton Bowl will be held on Tuesday, Dec. 18, 7 p.m. ET, at FAU Stadium. It is the only matchup this season outside of the New Year’s Six hosting two conference champions. The game will be aired live on ESPN before a national audience and globally on ESPN’s affiliates around the world. Northern Illinois finished the season 8-5 overall after becoming the 2018 MAC Champion under sixth-year head coach Rod Carey. NIU has won four MAC Championships (1983, 2011, 2012, 2014) and has played in ten postseason bowl games since 2004, most notably the 2014 Inaugural Boca Raton Bowl. Junior defensive end Sutton Smith became the first Huskie to win back-to-back MAC Defensive Player of the Year awards. NIU is ranked No.1 in total defense and leads the country in quarterback sacks. UAB finished the season 10-3 overall under head coach Bill Clark after claiming the team’s first Conference USA championship. In the two years since UAB’s program has been reinstated, the Blazers have played to an overall record of 17-8 and a league mark of 13-3. The 13 C-USA wins are the most of any school in that two-year span. The team is also ranked in the top-10 in seven different statistical categories. Sophomore running back Spencer Brown is ranked seventh in the nation for rushing offense with 15 rushing touchdowns and has scored at least one rushing touchdown in 10 of 12 games. Media members wishing to participate in the 2018 Cheribundi Boca Raton Bowl Coaches Teleconference with UAB beginning at 5:30 p.m. this evening should dial toll-free (877) 358-3976. Once connected, provide the operator with the Conference ID 5363304. It is suggested that media members call in at 5:20 p.m. EST. Media members wishing to participate in the 2018 Cheribundi Boca Raton Bowl Coaches Teleconference with Northern Illinois University beginning at 6 p.m. this evening should dial toll-free (877) 358-3976. Once connected, provide the operator with the Conference ID 3398848. It is suggested that media members call in at 5:55 p.m. EST. The Cheribundi Boca Raton Bowl is currently accepting credential applications. Credential applications will be accepted until Friday, Dec. 7. Media can access the application by logging on to http://www.sportssystems.com/bocaratonbowl For additional information about the Boca Raton Bowl, please visit CheribundiBocaRatonBowl.com or e-mail dnapier@orangebowl.org # # # # # ESPN Events ESPN Events, a division of ESPN, owns and operates a large portfolio of 32 collegiate sporting events worldwide. The roster includes three Labor Day weekend college football games; FCS opening-weekend game; 15 college bowl games, 10 college basketball events, a college softball event and two college award shows, which accounts for approximately 375-plus hours of live programming, reaches almost 64 million viewers and attracts over 800,000 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. Collegiate Football Academy Sports + Outdoors Texas Bowl (Houston); AdvoCare Texas Kickoff (Houston); Air Force Reserve Celebration Bowl (Atlanta); Bad Boy Mowers Gasparilla Bowl (Tampa, Fla.); Birmingham Bowl (Alabama); Cheribundi Tart Cherry Boca Raton Bowl (Florida); Camping World Kickoff (Orlando, Fla.); Famous Idaho Potato Bowl (Boise); DXL Frisco Bowl (Texas); Guardian Credit Union FCS Kickoff (Montgomery, Ala.); Hawai’i Bowl (Honolulu); Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl (Dallas-Fort Worth); Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl (Nassau); Myrtle Beach Bowl (South Carolina); MEAC/SWAC Challenge (Atlanta); Mitsubishi Motors Las Vegas Bowl (Nevada); New Mexico Bowl (Albuquerque); Raycom Media Camellia Bowl (Montgomery, Ala.); SERVPRO First Responder Bowl (Dallas-Fort Worth); The Home Depot College Football Awards (Atlanta) Collegiate Basketball AdvoCare Invitational (Walt Disney World Resort near Orlando, Fla.); Armed Forces Classic (Fort Bliss, Texas); Charleston Classic (South Carolina); College Basketball Awards Presented by Wendy’s (Los Angeles); 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 (South Bend, Ind.); Myrtle Beach Invitational (Conway, S.C.); NIT Season Tip-Off (Brooklyn, N.Y.); State Farm Champions Classic (Indianapolis) and Wooden Legacy (Fullerton, Calif.) Collegiate Softball St. Pete/Clearwater Elite Invitational (Clearwater, Fla.) For more information, visit the official website, Facebook, Twitter or YouTube pages.

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