Fourth Annual Papajohns.com Bowl to be Played Jan. 2 as Part of Tripleheader on ESPN
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – ESPN Regional Television announced today that the 2009-10 Papajohns.com Bowl will be played Jan. 2 at Legion Field. The game, in its fourth year, will feature a team from the BIG EAST Conference and one from the Southeastern Conference and will be televised nationally on ESPN.
Game time for the 2009 Papajohns.com Bowl is 2 p.m. ET. The bowl will be followed by the AutoZone Liberty Bowl at 5:30 p.m. and the Valero Alamo Bowl at 9 p.m.
“Traditionally Saturdays have been great for bowl ratings, and this shows the confidence we have in the Papajohns.com Bowl,” said Dave Brown, vice president, programming & acquisitions, ESPN. “Saturdays have been terrific in offering bowls more exposure than they’ve had before.”
The 2008 game drew a record crowd of 36,387 as the contest matched two of the nation’s hottest teams – Rutgers came into the game in Birmingham with six consecutive victories while N.C. State rode a four-game winning streak into the contest. The Scarlet Knights prevailed, 29-23, in the Dec. 29 game.
“We are excited to be carrying on the tradition of terrific postseason college football in Birmingham. The game on January 2 being part of a tripleheader just adds to that excitement,” said Pete Derzis, senior vice president and general manager, ESPN Regional Television, “The Papajohns.com Bowl continues to grow in popularity each year, and we look forward to working with the Birmingham community to give the teams and the fans who come to enjoy the bowl game another great event.”
“We are pleased to once again showcase the great city of Birmingham to a national television audience while our teams and their fans experience the unique hospitality and passion for college football that makes this game special,” said Mark Meadows, executive director of the Papajohns.com Bowl.
The inaugural Papajohns.com Bowl marked the return of postseason football to Birmingham. The bowl game was played Dec. 23, 2006, at Legion Field. South Florida, representing the BIG EAST, defeated C-USA representative East Carolina 24-7 in front of a crowd of nearly 30,000. In 2007, the Cincinnati Bearcats, ranked No. 20 nationally, and the Southern Mississippi Golden Eagles squared off, with Cincinnati claiming a 36-21 victory in front of more than 32,000 fans.
The Papajohns.com Bowl is an NCAA-certified college football game owned and operated by ESPN Regional Television (ERT). ERT markets and owns five other bowl games — the Sheraton Hawai’i Bowl, Las Vegas Bowl, Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl, New Mexico Bowl and St. Petersburg Bowl.
Tickets to the 2009 Papajohns.com Bowl will go on sale June 1 and will be available at the official Web site, Papajohns.com Bowl.
About ESPN Regional Television/Event Ownership
The nation’s largest syndicator of collegiate sports programming, ESPN Regional Television (ERT) annually produces more than 1,000 telecasts of sporting events. Programming includes football, basketball, NCAA events, golf and NHRA events accounting for more than 2,200 live and/or original hours of programming. In addition to event ownership, ERT is the production headquarters for ESPNU, the 24-hour college sports network; syndication rights-holder and producer of national, regional and local shows for college conferences (e.g. – BIG EAST, Big 12, Mid-American, Sun Belt, WAC).
ESPN Regional Television markets and/or owns several sporting events, including collegiate football events: the Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl (Fort Worth, Texas); New Mexico Bowl (Albuquerque); Papajohns.com Bowl (Birmingham, Ala.); MAACO Bowl Las Vegas; Sheraton Hawai’i Bowl (Honolulu); St. Petersburg Bowl; the MEAC/SWAC Challenge presented by Disney (Orlando, Fla.) ; and The Home Depot ESPNU College Football Awards; collegiate basketball events: the 76 Classic (Anaheim, Calif.); Charleston Classic (S.C.); Diamond Head Classic (Honolulu); Old Spice Classic (Walt Disney World Resort near Orlando, Fla.); O’Reilly Auto Parts Puerto Rico Tip-Off (San Juan); O’Reilly Auto Parts All-College Classic (Oklahoma City); SEC/BIG EAST Invitational; and the ESPNU BracketBusters; as well as the ESPN National Golf Challenge presented by Callaway. For more information, visit ESPNPlus.com.
About Papa John’s
Headquartered in Louisville, Ky., Papa John’s International, Inc. (NASDAQ: PZZA) is the world’s third largest pizza company. For nine years running, consumers have rated Papa John’s No. 1 in customer satisfaction among all national pizza chains in the highly regarded American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI). Papa John’s also ranks first among pizza companies in the 2008 Brand Keys Customer Loyalty Engagement Index, was honored by Restaurants & Institutions Magazine (R&I) with the 2008 Silver Award for Consumers’ Choice in Chains in the pizza segment, and was named 2007 Pizza Today Chain of the Year. For more information about the company or to order pizza online, visit Papa John’s at www.papajohns.com.