2014 Hawai’i Bowl schedule and coverage: Fresno State vs. Rice
A starting quarterback was suspended for last year’s Hawai’i Bowl for peeing off a balcony. Will it happen again in 2014?
Aloha, and welcome to the 2014 Hawai’i Bowl! What could be better than a little Christmas Eve football in paradise? Fresno State and Rice will be enjoying a tropical holiday this year, according to ESPN.
The Hawai’i Bowl has been around since 2002 and actually draws some pretty big-name programs. Arizona State played in Honolulu in 2006, Boise State played there in 2007 and last year, where they faced Oregon State, and even Notre Dame made the trip in 2008. Last year’s tilt between the Broncos and Beavers wasn’t too intriguing, though it did include a quarterback being sent home from practices after allegedly peeing off a balcony. Don’t pee off the balconies, kids.
Date and time Wednesday, Dec. 24, 8 p.m. ET
TV channel: ESPN
Location: Honolulu, Hawai’i
Stadium: Aloha Stadium; 50,000
Last year’s score: Oregon State 38, Boise State 28
Last year’s attendance: 29,106
Last year’s TV rating: 1.2
Last year’s payout for each school: $750,000
Team with the most all-time appearances: Hawaii, 6
Team with the most all-time wins: Hawaii, 3
Rice Owls (7-5, 5-3 C-USA)
After an upset win over Marshall in last season’s Conference USA Championship game, things got off to a rough start this season for David Bailiff’s Rice Owls. Road tests against Notre Dame and Texas A&M were expected to be losses, but the Owls followed those two up with a disappointing defeat to Old Dominion.
Things rebounded significantly from there, as Rice won its next six games in a row. The Owls lost two of their last three games to C-USA division title winners Marshall and Louisiana Tech, and saw less offensive production than they’re used to under Bailiff. They’ve now made three bowl games in a row, however, and will look to improve on last season’s postseason defeats.
Last bowl game: 2013 Liberty Bowl, 44-7 loss to Mississippi State.
All-time bowl record: 6-5
Head coach’s bowl record: David Bailiff, 2-1
Fresno State Bulldogs (6-7, 5-3 MWC)
Fresno State won the West Division despite a down year, recovering from a 3-6 start to beat out San Diego State for the divisional crown. Wins against the Aztecs and Nevada were the Bulldogs’ only victories against winning teams this season, and they suffered disappointing losses to UNLV and Wyoming.
Fresno State’s offense struggled to adjust without quarterback Derek Carr, and replacement Brian Burrell was inconsistent in his stead. The Bulldogs instead relied on the running game, with strong seasons from Marteze Waller and Josh Quezada. The defense was a disappointment, however, allowing at least 40 points in four different games.
Last bowl game: 2013 Las Vegas Bowl vs. USC, 45-20 loss
All-time bowl record: 10-12
Head coach’s bowl record: Tim DeRuyter, 1-2