FANDOM


For the stadium, see Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium.
Liberty Bowl
AutoZone Liberty Bowl
175px
AutoZone Liberty Bowl logo
Stadium Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium
Location Memphis, Tennessee
Previous stadiums John F. Kennedy Stadium (1959–1963)
Convention Hall (1964)
Previous locations Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (1959–1963)
Atlantic City, New Jersey (1964)
Operated 1959–present
Conference tie-ins C-USA #1 Pick vs SEC #8 Pick; Big East #5 Pick (alternate)[1]
Previous conference tie-ins MWC (1998–2005)
Air Force/Army/Navy (1989–1992)
Payout US$1,700,000 (As of 2006)
Sponsors
AXA Financial (1997–2003)
AutoZone (2004–present)
Former names
AXA Liberty Bowl (1997–2003)
2011 matchup
Cincinnati vs. Vanderbilt (Cincinnati 31–24)
2012 matchup
Iowa State vs Tulsa (December 31, 2012)

The Liberty Bowl is an annual U.S. American college football bowl game played in December of each year from 1959 to 2007 and in January in 2009 and 2010. The Liberty Bowl was sponsored by AXA Financial and was known as the AXA Liberty Bowl from 1997 to 2003. Since 2004, the game has been sponsored by Memphis-based auto parts retailer AutoZone, and is now called the AutoZone Liberty Bowl.

A. F. “Bud” Dudley, a former Villanova University athletic-director, created the Liberty Bowl in Philadelphia in 1959. The game was played at Philadelphia's Municipal Stadium. It was the only cold-weather bowl game of its time, and was plagued by poor attendance. The 1963 game between Mississippi State and NC State drew less than 10,000 fans and absorbed a loss in excess of $40,000. The first Liberty Bowl game was the most successful of the five held in Philadelphia, as 38,000 fans watched Penn State beat Alabama 7–0 in 1959.

Atlantic City convinced Dudley to move his game from Philadelphia to Atlantic City's Convention Hall for 1964 and guaranteed Dudley $25,000. It would be the first Bowl Game played indoors. AstroTurf was still in its developmental stages and was unavailable for the game. Convention Hall was equipped with a 4-inch-thick (100 mm) grass surface with two inches of burlap underneath it (as padding) on top of cement. To keep the grass growing, artificial lighting was installed and kept on 24 hours a day. The entire process cost about $16,000. End-zones were only 8 yards long. 6,059 fans saw Utah rout West Virginia. Dudley was paid $25,000 from Atlantic City businessmen, $60,000 from the gate, and $95,000 from television revenues, for $10,000 net profit.[2]

Dudley moved the game to Memphis in 1965, where it has made its home at what became Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium to much larger crowds and has established itself as one of the oldest non-BCS bowls. During the late 1980s and early 1990s, the Liberty Bowl offered an automatic invitation to the winner of the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy, if that team was bowl eligible.[3] From 1996–2004, the regular season champion of Conference USA served as the host team. Since 2005, the winner of the C-USA Championship game has received the berth, with 2011 being an exception.

In 1996 and 1997, the opponent for the C-USA champion was a team from the Big East Conference. In 1998, C-USA faced either the Western Athletic Conference champion or an at-large team, taking the WAC champion if the Cotton Bowl Classic had not already done so. From 1999 to 2005, the opponent for the C-USA champion was the Mountain West Conference champion. There were two exceptions:

  • In 2004, Mountain West Champion Utah qualified for the BCS. In their place, the Liberty Bowl chose WAC champion Boise State.
  • In 2005, Mountain West Champion TCU chose to play in the Houston Bowl instead of the Liberty Bowl. At-large WAC team Fresno State took their place.

In 1999, the Mountain West Conference did not have an outright champion, as three teams tied for the conference lead. The conference's bid for the game was given to Colorado State.

From the 2006 through the 2010 football seasons, the game matched the Conference USA champion with a team from the SEC. However, controversy has emerged following a report by the Orlando Sentinel where it was revealed that the SEC controlled who it would play "every two years"; as such, Conference USA champion Southern Miss was not chosen for the bowl (as they normally would have been)."[4] This new agreement results in a 2011 matchup between Vanderbilt University from the SEC and the University of Cincinnati from the Big East Conference, thus ending a 16 consecutive year Conference USA representation.

Also, starting in 2010–11, if the SEC does not have enough eligible teams to fill all of its bowl obligations, the Liberty Bowl can also select a Big East team.[5]

The game is televised nationally on ESPN, and is carried nationwide by ESPN Radio, and internationally by ESPN International.

The most recent edition of the Liberty Bowl was played on December 31, 2011. The game matched Coaches' Poll #24 Cincinnati against Vanderbilt and unlike most minor bowls aired on the broadcast network ABC rather than its cable brandmate ESPN. The game returned to December at the end of 2010 after being played on January 2 in 2009 and 2010, the only times since the bowl was founded in 1959 that it had a non-December date. (Technically there was no 2008 game, as the game after the 2008 season was played January 2, 2009.) Cincinnati defeated Vanderbilt in a second-half comeback.

The 2012 Liberty Bowl will feature a matchup between the Iowa State Cyclones (9th place in the Big 12) and the Tulsa Golden Hurricane (Conference USA champions).[6] Iowa State defeated Tulsa 38-23 in the season's first weekend.[6] Though the bowl normally selects a team from the SEC, it invited Iowa State because the SEC did not have enough bowl-eligible teams to fill all of its contracted bowl games.[7]

Game resultsEdit

File:Liberty-bowl-2004.JPG
Date Played Winning Team Losing Team Notes
December 19, 1959 Penn State 7 Alabama 0 notes
December 20, 1960 Penn State 41 Oregon 12 notes
December 16, 1961 Syracuse 15 Miami (Florida) 14 notes
December 15, 1962 Oregon State 6 Villanova 0 notes
December 21, 1963 Mississippi State 16 North Carolina State 12 notes
December 19, 1964 Utah 32 West Virginia 6 notes
December 18, 1965 Mississippi 13 Auburn 7 notes
December 10, 1966 Miami 14 Virginia Tech 7 notes
December 16, 1967 North Carolina State 14 Georgia 7 notes
December 14, 1968 Mississippi 34 Virginia Tech 17 notes
December 13, 1969 Colorado 47 Alabama 33 notes
December 12, 1970 Tulane 17 Colorado 3 notes
December 20, 1971 Tennessee 14 Arkansas 13 notes
December 18, 1972 Georgia Tech 31 Iowa State 30 notes
December 17, 1973 North Carolina State 31 Kansas 18 notes
December 16, 1974 Tennessee 7 Maryland 3 notes
December 22, 1975 USC 20 Texas A&M 0 notes
December 20, 1976 Alabama 36 UCLA 6 notes
December 19, 1977 Nebraska 21 North Carolina 17 notes
December 23, 1978 Missouri 20 LSU 15 notes
December 22, 1979 Penn State 9 Tulane 6 notes
December 27, 1980 Purdue 28 Missouri 25 notes
December 30, 1981 Ohio State 31 Navy 28 notes
December 29, 1982 Alabama 21 Illinois 15 notes
December 29, 1983 Notre Dame 19 Boston College 18 notes
December 27, 1984 Auburn 21 Arkansas 15 notes
December 27, 1985 Baylor 21 LSU 7 notes
December 29, 1986 Tennessee 21 Minnesota 14 notes
December 29, 1987 Georgia 20 Arkansas 17 notes
December 28, 1988 Indiana 34 South Carolina 10 notes
December 29, 1989 Mississippi 42 Air Force 29 notes
December 27, 1990 Air Force 23 Ohio State 11 notes
December 29, 1991 Air Force 38 Mississippi State 15 notes
December 31, 1992 Mississippi 13 Air Force 0 notes
December 28, 1993 Louisville 18 Michigan State 7 notes
December 31, 1994 Illinois 30 East Carolina 0 notes
December 30, 1995 East Carolina 19 Stanford 13 notes
December 27, 1996 Syracuse 30 Houston 17 notes
December 31, 1997 Southern Miss 41 Pittsburgh 7 notes
December 31, 1998 Tulane 41 BYU 27 notes
December 31, 1999 Southern Miss 23 Colorado State 17 notes
December 29, 2000 Colorado State 22 Louisville 17 notes
December 31, 2001 Louisville 28 BYU 10 notes
December 31, 2002 TCU 17 Colorado State 3 notes
December 31, 2003 Utah 17 Southern Miss 0 notes
December 31, 2004 [8] Louisville 44 Boise State 40 notes
December 31, 2005 Tulsa 31 Fresno State 24 notes
December 29, 2006 South Carolina 44 Houston 36 notes
December 29, 2007 Mississippi State 10 UCF3 notes
January 2, 2009 Kentucky 25 East Carolina19 notes
January 2, 2010 Arkansas 20 East Carolina 17 notes
December 31, 2010 UCF 10 Georgia 6 notes
December 31, 2011 Cincinnati 31 Vanderbilt 24 notes
December 31, 2012 Tulsa 31 Iowa State 17 notes


MVPsEdit

Date played MVP School Position
December 19, 1959 Jay Huffman Penn State C
December 17, 1960 Dick Hoak Penn State RB
December 16, 1961 Dick Easterly Syracuse RB
December 15, 1962 Terry Baker Oregon State QB
December 21, 1963 Ode Burrell Mississippi State HB
December 19, 1964 Ernest Allen Utah QB
December 18, 1965 Tom Bryan Auburn FB
December 10, 1966 Jimmy Cox Miami (Fla.) SE
December 16, 1967 Jim Donnan North Carolina State QB
December 14, 1968 Steve Hindman Mississippi TB
December 13, 1969 Bobby Anderson Colorado TB
December 12, 1970 Dave Abercrombie Tulane TB
December 20, 1971 Joe Ferguson Arkansas QB
December 18, 1972 Jim Stevens Georgia Tech QB
December 17, 1973 Stan Fritts North Carolina State FB
December 16, 1974 Randy White Maryland DT
December 22, 1975 Ricky Bell USC RB
December 20, 1976 Barry Krauss Alabama LB
December 19, 1977 Matt Kupec North Carolina QB
December 23, 1978 James Wilder Missouri RB
December 22, 1979 Roch Hontas Tulane QB
December 27, 1980 Mark Herrmann Purdue QB
December 30, 1981 Eddie Myers Navy TB
December 29, 1982 Jeremiah Castille Alabama DB
December 29, 1983 Doug Flutie Boston College QB
December 27, 1984 Bo Jackson Auburn RB
December 27, 1985 Cody Carlson Baylor QB
December 29, 1986 Jeff Francis Tennessee QB
December 29, 1987 Greg Thomas Arkansas QB
December 28, 1988 Dave Schnell Indiana QB
December 28, 1989 Randy Baldwin Mississippi RB
December 27, 1990 Rob Perez Air Force QB
December 29, 1991 Rob Perez Air Force QB
December 31, 1992 Cassius Ware Mississippi LB
December 28, 1993 Jeff Brohm Louisville QB
December 31, 1994 Johnny Johnson Illinois QB
December 30, 1995 Kwame Ellis Stanford CB
December 27, 1996 Malcolm Thomas Syracuse RB
December 31, 1997 Sherrod Gideon Southern Miss. WR
December 31, 1998 Shaun King Tulane QB
December 31, 1999 Adalius Thomas Southern Miss. DE
December 29, 2000 Cecil Sapp Colorado State RB
December 31, 2001 Dave Ragone Louisville QB
December 31, 2002 LaTarence Dunbar TCU WR
December 31, 2003 Brandon Warfield Utah RB
December 31, 2004 Stefan LeFors Louisville QB
December 31, 2005 Paul Smith Tulsa QB
December 29, 2006 Blake Mitchell South Carolina QB
December 29, 2007 Derek Pegues Mississippi State FS
January 2, 2009 Ventrell Jenkins Kentucky DT
January 2, 2010 Ryan Mallett Arkansas QB
December 31, 2010 Latavius Murray UCF RB
December 31, 2011 Isaiah Pead Cincinnati RB
December 31, 2012 Trey Watts Tulsa RB

BroadcastersEdit

Appearances by teamEdit

Rank Team Appearances Record
T1 Mississippi 4 4–0
T1 Louisville 4 3–1
T1 Air Force 4 2–2
T1 Alabama 4 2–2
T1 Arkansas 4 1–3
T1 East Carolina 4 1–3
T7 Tennessee 3 3–0
T7 Penn State 3 3–0
T7 Mississippi State 3 2–1
T7 Southern Miss 3 2–1
T7 Tulane 3 2–1
T7 North Carolina State 3 2–1
T7 Colorado State 3 1–2
T7 Georgia 3 1–2
T15 Utah 2 2–0
T15 Syracuse 2 2–0
T15 Tulsa 2 2–0
T15 UCF 2 1–1
T15 South Carolina 2 1–1
T15 Illinois 2 1–1
T15 Auburn 2 1–1
T15 Ohio State 2 1–1
T15 Missouri 2 1–1
T15 Colorado 2 1–1
T15 Miami (Florida) 2 1–1
T15 Houston 2 0–2
T15 BYU 2 0–2
T15 LSU 2 0–2
T15 Virginia Tech 2 0–2
T15 Iowa State 2 0–2

ReferencesEdit

  1. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named BigEastLibertyBowl
  2. Antonick, John (2005-06-22). "Unique Game". West Virginia Mountaineers (MSNsportsNET.com). http://www.msnsportsnet.com/page.cfm?section=8032. Retrieved 2009-04-26.
  3. Cavanaugh, Jack (1989-11-12). "COLLEGE FOOTBALL; Boston College Surprises Army". New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/1989/11/12/sports/college-football-boston-college-surprises-army.html. Retrieved 2009-05-04.
  4. http://blogs.orlandosentinel.com/sports_college_ucf/2011/12/blame-sec-for-the-liberty-bowl-spurning-conference-usa.html
  5. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named BigEastCriteria
  6. 6.0 6.1 Chatmon, Brandon (2012-12-02). "AutoZone Liberty Bowl". ESPN.com. http://espn.go.com/blog/big12/post/_/id/60795/autozone-liberty-bowl. Retrieved 2012-12-02.
  7. Higgins, Ron (2012-12-02). "Tulsa, Iowa State land in Liberty Bowl; Rebels to Birmingham". The Commercial Appeal. http://www.commercialappeal.com/news/2012/dec/02/tulsa-play-iowa-state-liberty-bowl/. Retrieved 2012-12-02.
  8. Mountain West Conference champion Utah was released from their contractual obligation to the Liberty Bowl after earning a BCS berth in 2004. Western Athletic Conference champion Boise State took Utah's place.

External linksEdit

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.