September 8th, 2016 | BAHAMAS BOWL


Popeyes Bahamas Bowl Weekly Release – 2016 Week 2 (September 9-10)

Click here to read the 2016 Popeyes Bahamas Bowl Weekly Release – Week 2 – September 9-10 (PDF)

BEST OPENING WEEKEND EVER: ESPN billed Week 1 of the 2016 season as the “Best Opening Week Ever,” and our conference partners at the American, Conference USA and MAC could not agree more. The American got a signature victory as Houston beat then-No. 3 Oklahoma 33-23 in the AdvoCare Texas Kickoff at Houston’s NRG Stadium. C-USA’s Southern Miss went on the road to Kentucky and stunned the Wildcats, scoring 34 unanswered points to win 44-35. USM trailed 35-10 with 56 seconds remaining in the first half and stormed back to win. In the MAC, defending 2015 Popeyes Bahamas Bowl champ Western Michigan defeated Northwestern 22-21 for the Broncos’ first win over a Big Ten opponent since 2008.

POLLING PLACE: Houston (AAC) is No. 6 in the Associated Press and No. 7 in the Amway Coaches’ Poll. Receiving votes in the Coaches’ Poll are (in order of votes received), Western Kentucky (C-USA), Navy (AAC), South Florida (AAC), Southern Miss (AAC) and Toledo (MAC).

WKU BEGINS DEFENSE OF C-USA TITLE: WKU, which followed up its 2014 Popeyes Bahamas Bowl victory by winning the 2015 C-USA title, played the only conference game in Week 1. The Hilltoppers beat Rice 46-14 in Bowling Green behind 517 passing yards and 3 TD by junior QB Mike White.

THIS WEEKEND: In the American, USF (1-0) visits No. 5 (AP) Michigan and Tulsa (1-0) visits No. 4 (AP/Coaches) Ohio State in games against ranked teams. The AAC will also begin conference play as UConn (1-0) visits Navy (1-0). In Conference USA, WKU (1-0) visits top-ranked Alabama (1-0), Florida Atlantic (1-0) plays No. 25 (AP) Miami and UTEP (1-0) visits No. 11 (AP) Texas (1-0). In the MAC, Central Michigan (1-0) will visit No. 17 (Coaches) Oklahoma State (1-0) and Akron (1-0) goes to No. 10 (AP) Wisconsin (1-0).

BIG STREAK: Thanks to Western Michighan’s victory over Northwestern, the MAC has a regular-season victory over a Big Ten opponent in each of the last 11 consecutive seasons (2006-16), the longest such streak in conference history.


Saturday, Sept. 10
UCF at Michigan (ABC)
Cincinnati at Purdue (BTN)
N.C. State at East Carolina (ESPNU)
Lamar at Houston (ESPN3/ASN)
Stony Brook at Temple (ESPN3)
* UConn at Navy (CBSSN)
SMU at Baylor (FS1)
Tulsa at Ohio State (ABC)
Northern Illinois at USF (CBSSN)
Southern at Tulane (ESPN3)

Friday, Sept. 9
Maryland at FIU (CBSSN)
Saturday, Sept. 10
Rice at Army (CBSSN)
Old Dominion at Appalachian St. (ASN)
WKU at Alabama (ESPN2)
Middle Tennessee at Vanderbilt (SECN)
UTSA at Colorado State (CI)
Elon at Charlotte (CUSATV)
Florida Atlantic at Miami (Fla.) (ESPN3)
Morgan State at Marshall (beIN)
South Carolina St. at LA Tech (CUSATV)
Bethune-Cookman at North Texas (CUSATV)
Savannah State at Southern Miss
UTEP at Texas (LHN)

Saturday, Sept. 10
Central Michigan at Oklahoma State (FS1)
Ohio at Kansas (FSN)
Akron at Wisconsin (BTN)
Eastern Illinois at Miami (ESPN3)
North Dakota at Bowling Green (ASN/ESPN3)
Ball State at Indiana (ESPNews)
North Carolina A&T at Kent State (ESPN3)
Maine at Toledo (ESPN3)
NIU at South Florida (CBSSN)
NC Central at Western Michigan (ESPN3)
Eastern Michigan at Missouri (SECN Alt)

* – conference games


Thursday, Sept. 1
Cincinnati 24, UT Martin 7
UConn 24, Maine 21
Wake Forest 7, Tulane 3
Friday, Sept. 2
Army 28, Temple 13
Saturday, Sept. 3
Houston 33, Oklahoma 23
Navy 52, Fordham 16
East Carolina 52, Western Carolina 7
UCF 38, South Carolina State 0
Memphis 35, Southeast Miss. State 17
USF 56, Towson 20
SMU 34, North Texas 21
Tulsa 45, San Jose State 10

Thursday, Sept. 1
* WKU 46, Rice 14
Louisville 70, Charlotte 14
Indiana 34, FIU 13
Saturday, Sept. 3
Southern Miss 44, Kentucky 35
Florida Atlantic 38, Southern Illinois 30
Middle Tennessee 55, Alabama A&M 0
UTSA 26, Alabama State 13
UTEP 38, New Mexico State 22
Arkansas 21, Louisiana Tech 20
SMU 34, North Texas 21
Sunday, Sept. 4
Old Dominion 54, Hampton 21

Thursday, Sept. 1
Central Michigan 49, Presbyterian 3
Friday, Sept. 2
Albany 22, Buffalo 16
Ball State 31, Georgia State 21
Eastern Michigan 61, Miss. Valley St. 14
Toledo 31, Arkansas State 10
Saturday, Sept. 3
Ohio State 77, Bowling Green 10
Western Michigan 22, Northwestern 21
Penn State 33, Kent State 13
Iowa 45, Miami 21
Texas State 56, Ohio 54 (3OT)
Akron 47, Virginia Military Institute 24
Wyoming 40, NIU 34 (3OT)

* – conference games


Offensive Player of the Week
Houston QB Greg Ward Jr.: The senior completed 23-of-40 passes for 321 yards and two TDs in a 33-23 win against No. 3 Oklahoma.

Defensive Player of the Week
Tulsa LB Trent Martin: The senior had a team-high 11 tackles (7 solo/1.5 for loss) in a 45-10 win over San Jose State.

Special Teams Player of the Week
Houston CB Brandon Wilson: The senior returned a missed FG attempt 100 yards for a score in a 33-23 win against No. 3 Oklahoma.

Offensive Player of the Week
WKU QB Mike White: The junior threw for 517 yards on 25-of-31 passing with three touchdowns in a 46-14 win over Rice.

Defensive Player of the Week
Louisiana Tech S Xavier Woods: The senior tied his career high with 10 tackles and added an interception and a sack at Arkansas.

Special Teams Player of the Week
Southern Miss K Parker Shaunfield: The sophomore scored 14 points (5 PATs and 3 field goals) in the 44-35 win at Kentucky.

East Division Offensive Player of the Week
Akron QB Thomas Woodson: The junior was 23-of-32 passing for 407 yards and a school record six touchdowns in a 47-24 win over VMI.

East Division Defensive Player of the Week
Kent State S Nate Holley: The senior had a team-high 17 tackles (one for loss), including a 2-point conversion stop at Penn State.

East Division Special Teams Player of the Week
Ohio K Louie Zervos: The redshirt freshman went 4-5 on field goals and 4-4 on PAT attempts against Texas State.

West Division Offensive Player of the Week
Toledo QB Logan Woodside: The junior threw for 371 yards on 23-of-31 passing and 3 TDs in a 31-10 win at Arkansas State.

West Division Defensive Player of the Week
Western Michigan LB Robert Spillane: The junior had seven tackles, a sack and a key forced fumble in a 22-21 win at Northwestern.

West Division Special Teams Player of the Week
Eastern Michigan K Paul Fricano: The redshirt freshman made eight PATs and a field goal in a 61-14 victory over Missouri Valley State.

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

Team (Conference): Opponent/Score
Sept. 3
Houston (AAC): Oklahoma (Big XII)/33-23
Southern Miss (C-USA): Kentucky (SEC)/44-35
Western Michigan (MAC): Northwestern (Big Ten)/22-21

Teams from the American Athletic Conference were a combined 10-2 in the first week of the season as the .833 percentage trailed only the Big Ten’s .857 mark among FBS conferences.

Each week in 2016, the Popeyes Bahamas Bowl will spotlight an alumni player from each of our partner conferences: the American Athletic Conference, Conference USA and the Mid-American Conference.


Blake Bortles

UCF QB Blake Bortles (Photo Credit: UCF Athletics)

Current NFL quarterback Blake Bortles was the 2013 American Athletic Conference Offensive Player of the Year during his college career at UCF from 2011-13.

He is fifth in UCF career pass attempts with 891, fourth in completions with 585, fourth in passing yards (7.598), fourth in touchdowns (56) and first in passing efficiency rating (153.76). He joined Daunte Culpepper as the only two UCF quarterbacks to have two seasons of at least 3,000 yards passing.

As a junior in 2013, Bortles was named first team AAC All-Conference, the Sporting News American Athletic Conference Player of the Year and a Sports Illustrated Honorable Mention All-American. He completed 259 of 382 passes for 3,581 yards, 25 touchdowns and a 163.43 efficiency rating. He was the 2014 Fiesta Bowl’s Offensive MVP after throwing for 301 yards and three TDs in a 52-42 victory over Baylor.

In his sophomore season of 2012, Bortles was named to All-Conference USA second-team honors. He started all 14 games and threw for 3,059 yards, 25 touchdowns, a 62.9 completion percentage and a 144.48 rating. He was selected as the 2012 Beef ‘O’ Brady’s Bowl MVP after completing 22 of 33 passes for 272
passing yards and three TDs vs, Ball State.

Bortles entered the NFL Draft after his junior season, and he was selected third overall by the Jacksonville Jaguars in the 2014 NFL Draft.

Through the 2015 season, Bortles has completed 635 of 1081 passes for 7,336 yards and 46 touchdowns (all fourth place in club history). He set Jaguars franchise records with 4,428 pass yards and 35 TDs in 2015.

Media Organization (Reporter) – Date: Matchup (John Marc Nutt) – Sept. 8: Temple vs. Florida Atlantic
Nassau Tribune (Renaldo Dorsett) – Sept. 8: Cincinnati vs. FIU
USA Today (Erick Smith) – Sept. 7: Marshall vs. Northern Illinois (Brett McMurphy) – Sept. 6: Louisiana Tech vs. Tulsa (Mark Schlabach) – Sept. 6: Old Dominion vs. Temple (Jerry Palm) – Sept. 5: Marshall vs. Ohio
Campus Insiders (Dave Miller) – Sept. 5: UConn vs. Toledo (Pete Fiutak) – Sept. 4: Temple vs. Northern Illinois (Colin Becht) – Aug. 30: Memphis vs. Ohio (Stuart Mandel) – Aug. 30: Tulsa vs. Akron
Orlando Sentinel (Brant Parsons) – Aug. 24: UConn vs. Central Michigan
Sports on Earth (Matt Brown) – Aug. 22: Memphis vs. Northern Illinois
Athlon Sports (Steven Lassan) – July 6: Toledo vs. Marshall
SB Nation (Jason Kirk) – June 28: Tulsa vs. Ohio
The Sporting News (Bill Bender) – May 29: Cincinnati vs. Middle Tennessee
Bleacher Report (Brian Pedersen) – May 4: Bowling Green vs. Tulsa
Phil Steele Magazine (Phil Steele) – Magazine: Marshall vs. Bowling Green

ESPN Events, a division of ESPN, owns and operates a large portfolio of collegiate sporting events worldwide. The roster includes three Labor Day weekend college football games; 13 college bowl games, 10 college basketball events and two college award shows, which accounts for approximately 250-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); AdvoCare V100 Texas Bowl (Houston); Air Force Reserve Celebration Bowl (Atlanta); Birmingham Bowl (Alabama); Boca Raton Bowl (Florida); Camping World Kickoff (Orlando, Fla.); Famous Idaho Potato Bowl (Boise); Gildan New Mexico Bowl (Albuquerque); Hawai’i Bowl (Honolulu); Las Vegas Bowl (Nevada); Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl (Dallas-Fort Worth); MEAC/SWAC Challenge (Orlando, Fla.); Popeyes Bahamas Bowl (Nassau); Raycom Media Camellia Bowl (Montgomery, Ala.); St. Petersburg Bowl (Florida); 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 (Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Honolulu); DIRECTV Wooden Legacy (Orange County, Calif.); 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 (Uncasville, Conn.); NIT Season Tip-Off (Brooklyn, N.Y.); Puerto Rico Tip-Off (San Juan) and State Farm Champions Classic (New York City)

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