The first-ever Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl is raising money and awareness about the issue of hunger in the U.S.
The bowl celebrates the culmination of Kraft Foods’ HUDDLE TO FIGHT HUNGER program, which is the food company’s largest-ever branded initiative to fight hunger in America. The goal of the program is to donate as many as 20 million meals or more to Feeding America – a hunger relief organization-to help neighbors in need.
Boston College, riding a five game winning streak to close out the regular season, will face No. 13 Nevada in the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl game at AT&T Park.
The 7-5 Eagles and 12-1 Wolf Pack will play Sunday, Jan. 9, 2011 with a 6 p.m. [PST]/9:00 p.m. [EST] kickoff. ESPN will televise the game to a nationwide audience.
“Everyone at Kraft Foods is thrilled to have two wonderful universities playing in the inaugural Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl,” said Stephen Chriss, senior director, corporate scale and marketing partnerships at Kraft Foods North America. “The game provides us with a unique opportunity to thank millions of consumers and our retail partners for huddling with many of our iconic brands over the past several months in our ambitious fight against hunger. It’s also a big stage to shine a spotlight on this issue, which affects 50 million Americans, to get even more people engaged.”
The Kraft Foods brands leading the way behind the Huddle to Fight Hunger campaign, as well as the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl, include Kraft macaroni & cheese dinners, Oreo cookies, Ritz crackers, Planters nuts, Oscar Mayer meats, Maxwell House coffee, Kool-Aid beverages, Kraft cheese, Kraft Singles, Miracle Whip and Kraft Mayo.
Since its inception in 2002, the annual college football bowl game [nee Emerald Bowl] in San Francisco has generated more than $100 million in revenue for the City and County.
Let The Games Begin
Bowl Co-founder and Executive Director Gary Cavalli welcomed the Eagles back to San Francisco after prior visits in 2003, a victory over Colorado State; and 2009, a loss to USC. ”We’re excited to bring Boston College back to San Francisco,” Cavalli said. ”They’re a first-class organization in every respect. BC’s outstanding defensive unit, coupled with Nevada’s record-setting offense, will make for a very interesting and strategic matchup. We’re proud to feature one of the most explosive players in the country, Nevada quarterback Colin Kaepernick, and one of the top defensive players, BC linebacker Luke Kuechly.”
Boston College in 12 starts allowed just 962 rushing yards, seven rush TDs, a 2.7 average per carry and only 80.2 yards/game on the ground. The Eagles’ defensive effort was led by the sophomore Kuechly, the 2009 Emerald Bowl most outstanding defensive player. Kuechly led all ACC tacklers this season with 171 stops [102 solo, 69 assists], 42 more than his nearest pursuer.
The Eagles also boast the ACC’s leading ball carrier in RB Montel Harris. Harris, a junior, carried 269 times this year for 1,243 yards, eight TDs and a 103.6 yards/game average to pace all ACC rushers. For his 3-year career, the Jacksonville, FL native has 756 carries, 3,600 total yards and 27 touchdowns
Overall, Boston College ranked first among 2010 ACC defenses, allowing 310.0 yards/game. The Eagles intercepted 19 passes, returning two for scores, and were third overall in ACC takeaway/giveaway ratio at +7
“We are certainly looking forward to returning to San Francisco for the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl,” said Boston College head coach Frank Spaziani. “Nevada is a great program with a Hall of Fame coach and this will be a tough challenge for our young football team. This is a fitting reward for our team, which fought its way through adversity to win five straight games at the end of the season.”
Boston College goes to a bowl game for the 12th consecutive season.
This will be the first meeting between the ACC Eagles and WAC Wolf Pack. Boston College is 2-1 all time against WAC opponents. Its most recent outing against a WAC squad was a 27-21 win over Boise State in the 2005 MPC Computers Bowl, the last time any team defeated Boise State on its home turf.
Nevada won its last six games en route to a school-record 12-1 season, claiming a share of the WAC conference title for the first time since 2005.
“We are really excited to be in a bowl game so close to home,” said Nevada head coach Chris Ault, “and I know our fans are going to support us. The team is excited and looking forward to a great experience. We know Boston College is an outstanding football team and one with tremendous tradition. We are pleased to have the opportunity to play against them in this great bowl game.”
Wolf Pack quarterback Colin Kaepernick is now the only player in college football history to pass for over 9,000 yards [9,906 and counting] and rush for over 4,000 yards [4,090 and counting]. His 59 rushing touchdowns tie him with former Nebraska Heisman Trophy winner Eric Crouch for most rushing TDs by a quarterback in NCAA history.
Kaepernick also passed former Boise State RB Ian Johnson [58 TD] to become the WAC’s alltime rushing touchdown leader. With 60 TDs overall, Kaepernick is two shy of tying San Diego State’s Marshall Faulk for total career touchdowns. Faulk had 62 for the Aztecs.
On the season, Nevada has 75 touchdowns and 554 total points, both school records.
Three of the previous four games have been sellouts, topped by the standing-room-only 42,268 who viewed the ’08 game between Cal and Miami.
Last year’s Boston College-USC game is the third-most-watched college bowl game in ESPN history.