Dec. 15, 2011
BOISE, Idaho - Day three of Famous Idaho Potato Bowl preparations Thursday meant another day of practice along with the Humanitarian Awards Banquet, as Saturday's kickoff for the bowl game against Ohio gets nearer.
The Aggies had meetings in the morning, then senior linebacker Bobby Wagner and junior running back Robert Turbin joined head coach Gary Andersen at the press conference, with several Utah State, Ohio, Boise and other regional media in attendance. After the press conference, USU had practice at the Caven-Williams Indoor Facility, Boise State's indoor facility. After a little bit of free time, Wagner, Turbin and Andersen were on the KVNU Coach's Radio Show, hosted by Al Lewis. The team, coaches and some of the support staff attended the Humanitarian Awards Banquet, joining their counterparts from Ohio, the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl board of directors and committee, and various local representatives and sponsors.
One of the main events of the banquet was the presentation of the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl Idaho Sports Medicine Institute Humanitarian Award to senior wide receiver Eric Moats, who was USU's recipient. Ohio tight end Jordan Thompson was the award honoree for the Bobcats.
Other events of the night included presentation of the Strikes for Spuds trophy to Utah State for winning Tuesday's bowling event for charities.
For their winnings, the Aggies earned 350 pounds of potato products for the Cache Community Food Pantry in Logan along with the Ronald McDonald House of Boise. The potatoes were donated by two Idaho-based companies, the J.R. Simplot Company and Potandon Produce and then the Food Services of America matched the donations, meaning the respective charity groups will earn 700 pounds each. Ohio earned 600 pounds each for its two charities, Southeastern Ohio Regional Food Center in Logan, Ohio and Meals on Wheels in Boise.
One of the lighter events of the night was a trivia challenge, pitting USU's offensive line and position coach, T.J. Woods, against Ohio's offensive linemen and position coach. Sporting Famous Idaho Potato Bowl potato hats, the Aggies lost in a tight battle. The USU players got one "Spuddy Buddy" stuffed potato characters as their consolation prize, while the Ohio players earned two "Spuddy Buddies" each.
Following the banquet, the team had more free time, before ending the night and resting for Friday's final day of preparation.
The Famous Idaho Potato Bowl will be held on Saturday, Dec. 17, 2011, at 3:30 p.m. MST at Bronco Stadium in Boise, Idaho. The Bowl will feature the Ohio Bobcats (9-4) of the Mid-American Conference (MAC) against the Utah State Aggies (7-5) of the Western Athletic Conference (WAC). Utah State is the closest WAC school to the potato-growing region of eastern Idaho, and Ohio is the nation's second-largest state consumer of Idaho potatoes according to the Idaho Potato Commission.
The Famous Idaho Potato Bowl is the second game of the entire bowl calendar and the only one in its timeslot. The Bowl will be telecast nationally on ESPN and broadcast on ESPN Radio. Five of the previous seven games have been decided on the last drive, with an average score of 38-25 over the past 14 Bowls.
A few $30 tickets in the curved areas of Bronco Stadium remain, for purchase in person or over the phone. There are also various $50 tickets on the east side are still available, for purchase in person, over the phone or online. Also, there are also roughly 50 student tickets remaining at a cost of $18 with student ID, for purchase in person only.
For more Aggie Football Famous Idaho Potato Bowl ticket information, fans can contact the USU Ticket Office at 1-888-USTATE-1 (1-888-878-2831) or 435-797-0305, in person at the USU Ticket Office inside the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum.
Fans can follow the Aggie football program at twitter.com/USUFootball or on the USU football blog at usufootball.wordpress.com. Aggie fans can also follow the Utah State athletic program at twitter.com/USUAthletics or on facebook at Utah State University Athletics.
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