Navy accepts Emerald Bowl bid

This will be Navy's 11th bowl game appearance overall and the second-straight year the Mids have played in postseason play. It marks just the second time in school history that Navy has gone to back-to-back bowl games (1980 Garden State Bowl and 1981 Liberty Bowl).

ANNAPOLIS, Md.-Naval Academy Director of Athletics Chet Gladchuk announced Monday that the Naval Academy (8-2) has accepted an invitation to play in the Emerald Bowl against either New Mexico (7-4) or Wyoming (6-5) of the Mountain West Conference. The game will be played on Dec. 30 at 1:30 p.m. (4:30 p.m. EST) at SBC Park in San Francisco and will be televised by ESPN2.

"Bringing our football team to one of the best cities in the world is as good as it gets," said Gladchuk. "I am certain those affiliated with Navy who visit for this prestigious bowl game will be immeasurably impressed with what Gary Cavalli and his bowl committee have created. I expect Navy fans will turn out by the thousands to enjoy the city's enthusiastic hospitality, while cheering on one of the best football teams in school history. The Navy, Marines, our alumni and fans are preparing to "invade" San Francisco with a winning spirit and a sincere sense of appreciation for being selected."

"This is exciting news for our football program. I couldn't be happier for our players and coaching staff in getting this opportunity," said head football coach Paul Johnson. "These young men have earned this through their dedication in the weight room and on the practice field. We still have three major goals left to accomplish. Beat Army, which would give us the Commander-In-Chief's Trophy, and win a bowl game."

"We're thrilled that Navy has accepted our invitation," said Gary Cavilli, Executive Director of the Emerald Bowl. "Navy was being courted by a number of other bowl games throughout the country, and we're honored that they have decided to come to San Francisco. They bring the whole package-a quality team, a big crowd, a strong national following and the incredible pageantry of the U.S. Naval Academy. This is a real coup for the Emerald Bowl."

Navy is off to its best start since 1996, and a victory over Army on Dec. 4 in Philadelphia would give the Midshipmen nine regular-season wins for the first time since 1963 when Navy, behind Heisman Trophy winner Roger Staubach, posted a 9-1 mark. It would also be just the eighth time in school history that Navy has won nine or more games in the regular season and just the third time in the last 67 years.

Navy would also win the Commander-In-Chief's Trophy for the second-consecutive year with a victory over the Black Knights.

This will be Navy's 11th bowl game appearance overall and the second-straight year the Mids have played in postseason play. It marks just the second time in school history that Navy has gone to back-to-back bowl games (1980 Garden State Bowl and 1981 Liberty Bowl). Last year, Navy brought 25,000 fans to Houston for the Mids' encounter with Texas Tech.

This is the third year for a bowl game in San Francisco. In 2002, Virginia Tech defeated Air Force, 20-13, while last year Boston College defeated Colorado State, 35-21.

SBC Park, the home of the Emerald Bowl, is also the home of Barry Bonds and the San Francisco Giants.

Tickets are priced at $75 for club level seats, $50 for seats on the sidelines and $40 for seats in the upper deck. For those fans interested in purchasing tickets to donate to Midshipmen or enlisted personnel who plan to attend the game the cost of the $40 seat is $30. The Academy hopes to transport 3,000 midshipmen to San Francisco in support of the team. Supporters of the Naval Academy are asked to "buy a ticket for a Mid" through the Naval Academy Athletic Association ticket office to help address their expenses. Tickets are available at the Naval Academy Box Office in Ricketts Hall, by calling 1-800-US4-NAVY or online at www.navysports.com.

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