November 9th, 2017 | BAHAMAS BOWL


Bahamas Bowl Weekly Preview – 2017 Week 11 (November 9-15)

Click here to read the 2017 Bahamas Bowl Weekly Release – Week 11 – November 9-15 (PDF)

PASSPORT STAMPED (BOWL-ELIGIBLE TEAMS): C-USA (5): FIU (6-2), Florida Atlantic (6-3), Marshall (6-3), North Texas (6-3), UAB (6-3); MAC (5): Central Michigan (6-4), Northern Illinois (6-3), Ohio (8-2), Toledo (8-2), Western Michigan (6-4). AT CUSTOMS (ONE VICTORY SHY): C-USA (3): Southern Miss (5-4), UTSA (5-3), WKU (5-4); MAC (1): Akron (5-5).

There are a combined 14 teams either bowl eligible or one victory away from eligibility from Conference USA and the MAC. If all 14 reached eligibility, it would mark the largest pool of bowl candidates in the four years of the Bahamas Bowl. Three other C-USA teams and two additional MAC schools remain in contention for bowl-eligible status.

THIS WEEK: #MACtion begins Thursday in the West as Northern Illinois (6-1, 4-1) will try to keep pace with division leader Toledo as the Huskies host Ball State (2-7, 0-5). Next Tuesday, there is a big game in the East Division as current division leader Ohio (8-2, 5-1) vists Akron (5-5, 4-2), which trails the Bobcats by one game and needs a victory for bowl eligibility. Also on Tuesday, Central Michigan (6-4, 4-2) heads to Kent State (2-8, 1-5). Wednesday, Nov. 15, there are three games on the schedule. West leader Toledo (8-2, 5-1) is at Bowling Green (2-8, 2-4). Eastern Michigan (3-7, 1-5) goes to Miami (4-6, 3-3), and Western Michigan (6-4, 4-2) visits Northern Illinois (6-3, 4-1).

The entire Conference USA schedule will take place Saturday. East Division leader Florida Atlantic (6-3, 5-1) goes to Louisiana Tech (4-5, 2-3). West leader North Texas (6-3, 5-1) hosts UTEP (0-9, 0-5). WKU (5-4, 3-2) needs a victory at Marshall (6-3, 3-2) to be bowl eligible. Southern Miss (5-4, 3-2) also needs a victory at Rice (1-8, 1-4) for bowl eligibility. UTSA (5-3, 2-3) is one victory shy of bowl eligibility as they host UAB (6-3, 4-2). Middle Tennesse (4-5, 2-3) is at Charlotte (1-8, 1-4) and Old Dominion (3-6, 1-4) goes to FIU (6-2, 4-1).

POLLING PLACE: Toledo is receiving votes in both the Associated Press and USA Amway Coaches polls.



Saturday, Nov. 11
* Middle Tennessee at Charlotte (ESPN3)
* Florida Atlantic at Louisiana Tech (STAD)
* Southern Miss at Rice (STAD FB)
* UTEP at North Texas (ESPN3)
* WKU at Marshall (beIN)
* Old Dominion at FIU (CUSA TV)


Thursday, Nov. 9
* Ball State at Northern Illinois (CBSSN)
Tuesday, Nov. 14
* Ohio at Akron (ESPN2)
* Central Michigan at Kent State (ESPNU)
Wednesday, Nov. 15
* Toledo at Bowling Green (ESPNU)
* Eastern Michigan at Miami (CBSSN)
* Western Michigan at Northern Illinois (ESPN2)

* – conference games



Friday, Nov. 3
* Florida Atlantic 30, Marshall 25
Saturday, Nov. 4
* North Texas 24, Louisiana Tech 23
* FIU 14, UTSA 7
* UAB 52, Rice 21
* Old Dominion 6, Charlotte 0
* Middle Tennessee 30, UTEP 3
Tennessee 24, Southern Miss 10
Vanderbilt 31, WKU 17


Thursday, Nov. 2
* Eastern Michigan 56, Ball State 14
* Toledo 27, Northern Illinois 17
Tuesday, Nov. 7
* Buffalo 38, Bowling Green 28
* Miami 24, Akron 14
Wednesday, Nov. 8
* Central Michigan 42, Eastern Michigan 30
* Ohio 38, Toledo 10
* Western Michigan 48, Kent State 20

* – conference games



Offensive Player of the Week
Florida Atlantic RB Devin Singletary: The sophomore rushed for 203 yards and a TD and had 72 receiving yards and another TD in a 30-25 victory over Marshall.

Defensive Player of the Week
Florida Atlantic S Jalen Young: The junior picked off three passes in a 30-25 victory over Marshall.

Special Teams Player of the Week
UAB K Nick Vogel: The sophomore had a field goal and 7 PATs in a 52-21 victory over Rice.


East Division Offensive Player of the Week
Ohio QB Nathan Rourke: The sophomore three for three touchdowns and rushed for three more in a 45-28 victory over Miami.

East Division Defensive Player of the Week
Bowling Green LB Nate Locke: The senior had eight tackles, four for loss and a sack in a 44-16 victory over Kent State.

East Division Special Teams Player of the Week
Bowling Green KR Matthew Wilcox: The freshman averaged 40.0 yards per kickoff return in a 44-16 victory over Bowling Green.

West Division Offensive Player of the Week
Central Michigan RB Jonathan Ward: The sophomore had 213 all-purpose yards, including 132 rush yards in a 35-28 victory over Western Michigan.

West Division Defensive Player of the Week
Toledo DB Trevon Mathis: The senior intercepted two passes and had six tackles in a 27-17 victory over Northern Illinois.

West Division Special Teams Player of the Week
Central Michigan P Jack Sheldon: The junior averaged 44.2 yards on nine punts in a 35-28 victory over Western Michigan.


• In Conference USA, Florida Atlantic (5-0) controls its destiny to win the East Division. The Owls can clinch the East crown with victories over Louisiana Tech on Saturday and FIU on Nov. 18. They can also clinch the division title with victories over FIU and Charlotte on Nov. 25. In the West, North Texas (5-1) controls its destiny and can win the division with one victory over either UTEP on Saturday or Rice on Nov. 25.

• Central Michigan scored 21 points in the fourth quarter to turn a 28-14 deficit into a 35-28 win at Western Michigan on Nov. 1 to win the “Battle of the Cannon Trophy”. Central Michigan QB Shane Morris found WR Corey Willis for a 77-yard TD pass with 2:37 left in regulation for the victory.

• After not playing football for two seasons, UAB became bowl eligible with a 52-21 victory over Rice to go to 6-3 overall. The Blazers, who reached bowl eligibility in the program’s last season in 2014 are eligible for the fifth time in school history.

• Ohio posted a 45-28 win over Miami to win the 94th meeting for the “Battle of the Bricks”. Bobcats QB Nathan Rourke accounted for six touchdowns (three passing and three rushing). He threw for 294 yards and rushed for 54 yards in the victory.


The 2017 Bahamas Bowl will be contested between Conference USA and the Mid-American Conference. C-USA won the 2017 season series vs. the MAC 4-3. Conference USA is 2-1 vs. the MAC all time in the Bahamas Bowl.

Sept. 1
Eastern Michigan (MAC) 24, Charlotte (C-USA) 7
Sept. 2
Marshall (C-USA) 31, Miami (MAC) 26
Sept. 9
Ball State (MAC) 51, UAB (C-USA) 31
Sept. 16
Marshall (C-USA) 21, Kent State (MAC) 0
Sept. 23
WKU (C-USA) 33, Ball State (MAC) 21
Middle Tennessee (C-USA) 24, Bowling Green (MAC) 13
Buffalo (MAC) 34, Florida Atlantic (C-USA) 31


Eight players who played in the Bahamas Bowl have seen action for NFL clubs in 2017.

S Kevin Byard – Tennessee (Middle Tennessee)
WR Corey Davis – Tennessee (Western Michigan)
S Kavon Frazier – Dallas (Central Michigan)
TE Tyler Higbee – Los Angeles Rams (WKU)
G Taylor Moton – Carolina (Western Michigan)
QB Cooper Rush – Dallas Cowboys (Central Michigan)
WR Taywan Taylor – Tennessee (WKU)
DE Leterrius Watson – Pittsburgh (Central Michigan)


A list of Conference USA and MAC victories over “Power Five” opponents (teams from the ACC, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac-12 and SEC).

Sept. 9
Central Michigan (MAC) 45, Kansas (Big 12) 27
Eastern Michigan (MAC) 16, Rutgers (Big Ten) 13
Middle Tennessee (C-USA) 30, Syracuse (ACC) 23
UTSA (C-USA) 17, Baylor (Big 12) 10
Sept. 16
Northern Illinois (MAC) 21, Nebraska (Big Ten) 17
Ohio (MAC) 42, Kansas 30 (Big 12) 30


During 2017, the Bahamas Bowl will spotlight an alumni player from our partner conferences: Conference USA and the Mid-American Conference.


Willie Roaf (Photo Credit: Louisiana Tech Athletics)

Former NFL offensive lineman and a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame Willie Roaf was a consensus All-American during his college career at Louisiana Tech from 1989-92.

A four-year letterman, Roaf became the program’s first consensus All-American in his 1992 senior season.

During his college career, Roaf was selected All-South Independent and All-Louisiana in 1991 and 1992. Louisiana Tech had a record of 25-16-3 during his four seasons, and the Bulldogs did not lose at home during that time.

During his time in Ruston, he blocked for two of the top five career rushers in Louisiana Tech history (Jason Cooper, Jason Davis). His No. 71 jersey is one of two retired by the school.

Roaf was drafted No. 8 overall in the first round of the 1993 NFL Draft by the New Orleans Saints, and he was an All-Rookie selection at right tackle. He moved to left tackle the following season, and he became of the most dominant players at his position.

An 11-time Pro Bowler and a seven-time All-Pro, Roaf played nine seasons with the Saints. Traded to Kansas City prior to the 2002 seasons, Roaf played four years with the Chiefs and retired after the 2005 season.

He was voted to both the 1990s and the 2000s NFL All-Decade Team by the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Selection Committee.

Roaf was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2012, and he was named to the 75th Anniversary All-America Third Team by the Football Writers Association of America in 2015.


Media Organization (Reporter) – Date: Predicted Matchup
Orlando Sentinel (Brant Parsons) – Nov. 9: Marshall vs. Northern Illinois (John Marc Nutt) – Nov. 8: FIU vs. Ohio
Nassau Tribune (Renaldo Dorsett) – Nov. 8: FIU vs. Akron
Athlon Sports (Steven Lassan) – Nov. 7: FIU vs. Ohio
The Score (Brett McMurphy) – Nov. 7: FIU vs. Ohio
USA Today (Erick Smith) – Nov. 7: Florida Atlantic vs. Northern Illinois
The Sporting News (Bill Bender) – Nov. 7: Florida Atlantic vs. Toledo
SB Nation (Jason Kirk) – Nov. 7: UAB vs. Ohio
Bleacher Report (Kerry Miller) – Nov. 6: UAB vs. Western Michigan (Pete Fiutak) – Nov. 5: WKU vs. Northern Illinois (Kyle Bonagura) – Nov. 5: UAB vs. Central Michigan (David M. Hale) – Nov. 5: FIU vs. Akron (Jerry Palm) – Nov. 5: WKU vs. Central Michigan (Eric Single) – Nov. 5: Florida Atlantic vs. Central Michigan
College Sports Madness (CSM Staff) – Nov. 5: Florida Atlantic vs. Toledo
Sports on Earth (Matt Brown) – Oct. 18: Ohio vs. Marshall
The Athletic (Stewart Mandel) – Oct. 17: FIU vs. Ohio
Phil Steele Magazine (Phil Steele) – Magazine: Louisiana Tech vs. Miami


ESPN Events, a division of ESPN, owns and operates a large portfolio of 31 collegiate sporting events worldwide. The roster includes three Labor Day weekend college football games; FCS opening-weekend game; 14 college bowl games, 11 college basketball events and two college award shows, which accounts for approximately 300-plus hours of programming, reaches almost 64 million viewers and attracts over 700,000 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
AdvoCare Texas Kickoff (Houston); Bad Boy Mowers Gasparilla Bowl (St. Petersburg, Fla.); Bahamas Bowl (Nassau); Birmingham Bowl (Alabama); Boca Raton Bowl (Florida); Camping World Kickoff (Orlando, Fla.); Celebration Bowl (Atlanta); DXL Frisco Bowl (Frisco, Texas); Famous Idaho Potato Bowl (Boise); Gildan New Mexico Bowl (Albuquerque); Guardian Credit Union FCS Kickoff (Montgomery, Ala.); Hawai’i Bowl (Honolulu); Las Vegas Bowl (Nevada); Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl (Dallas-Fort Worth); MEAC/SWAC Challenge (Baton Rouge, La.); Raycom Media Camellia Bowl (Montgomery, Ala.); Texas Bowl (Houston); The Home Depot College Football Awards (Atlanta) and Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas Bowl (Dallas-Fort Worth)

Collegiate Basketball
AdvoCare Invitational (Walt Disney World Resort near Orlando, Fla.); Armed Forces Classic (Ramstein Air Base, Germany); College Basketball Awards Presented by Wendy’s (Los Angeles); Gildan Charleston Classic (South Carolina); 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 (TBD); NIT Season Tip-Off (Brooklyn, N.Y.); PK80 (Portland, Ore.); Puerto Rico Tip-Off (San Juan); State Farm Champions Classic (Chicago) and Wooden Legacy (Fullerton, Calif.)

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