Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl: Weekly Release: Aug. 31, 2017

A FITTING MATCHUP

A game between Army West Point and a team from Conference USA makes for a fitting matchup for the 15th edition of the Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl. The patriotic game has featured the armed forces theme since 2006, and is the only bowl to host all three service academies (Army, Navy and Air Force).

 

BACK IN BLACK (KNIGHTS)

Last year, Army competed in the postseason at the Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas Bowl at historic Cotton Bowl Stadium, which is just 39 miles from TCU’s Amon G. Carter Stadium. The Black Knights came away with a 38-31 overtime triumph over Conference USA member North Texas.

 

If Army achieves bowl eligibility, the Black Knights would become the sixth team ever to play in the Armed Forces Bowl multiple times, joining Air Force (5), Houston (4), California (2), Navy (2) and Tulsa (2). It would be the first time that Army has played the game in Fort Worth, however, as the Black Knights made their lone appearance in 2010, when the game was played at SMU’s Ford Stadium due to renovations at TCU’s Amon G. Carter Stadium.

 

A LONG HISTORY WITH C-USA

Eleven of the previous 14 games have featured a representative from Conference USA in the Fort Worth bowl game, beginning with hometown TCU in 2003. The others have been: Cincinnati (2004), Houston (2005), Tulsa (2006), Houston (2008), Houston (2009), SMU (2010), Tulsa (2011), Rice (2012), Middle Tennessee (2013) and Louisiana Tech (2016). C-USA (11) is the league that has made the most appearances. The Mountain West is next with six.

 

FOUR WHO HAVE BEEN HERE BEFORE

Four C-USA schools could appear in the LMAFB for the second time. Those teams include: Marshall (2004), Rice (2012), Middle Tennessee (2013) and LA Tech (2016).

 

NEW FACES

A trio of new coaches are set for their C-USA debuts: Butch Davis (FIU), Lane Kiffin (FAU) and Mike Sanford (WKU). Exactly half (7) of the league’s 14 coaches are in their first or second year at their respective schools.

 

FOUR AGAINST THE POWER 5

Four Conference USA teams will have opened their seasons with games against schools from Power 5 conferences. Rice was downed by No. 14 Stanford Saturday. UTEP will also square off against a ranked foe when it travels to No. 7 Oklahoma (Big 12). The C-USA schools host the other two games, both against SEC teams, as Southern Miss takes on Kentucky and Middle Tennessee welcomes Vanderbilt.

 

HARVEY’S IMPACT

In the wake of Hurricane Harvey, officials have postponed the Houston/UTSA game, which was set for Saturday at 7 p.m. It may be rescheduled later this season.

 

The Rice football team took refuge in Fort Worth this week and practiced at TCU after returning from their season opener played Saturday in Australia. The team is scheduled to return to Houston on Friday morning. Read more about it from the Star-Telegram.

 

The bowl game’s long-time partner, the American Red Cross, is in South Texas and Louisiana providing support and relief for many of those affected. You can help out by visiting the organization’s web site, calling 1-800-RED CROSS or texting HARVEY to 90999 to make a $10 donation.

 

MANY HAPPY RETURNS

The highly-anticipated return of UAB football is here when the Blazers host Alabama A&M on Saturday in the program’s first football game since a 45-24 victory at Southern Miss on Nov. 29, 2014.

 

Head coach Bill Clark and 14 players remain a part of the program since the Blazer football team last played a game 1,008 days ago. Read Drew Champlin’s story in the Birmingham News about the team’s expectations here.

 

WE’D LIKE TO LOOK BACK FOR A MOMENT

Each week this season, the Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl will take a look at highlights from the previous games as part of a “Top 15 Moments” package. Here is a look back at No. 15 from a clash between a pair of nationally-ranked teams, TCU and Boise State, in 2003. Watch