The Falcons are back in the Military Bowl, just not the ones usually associated with the military.
Bowling Green accepted an invitation Sunday to play No. 24 San Jose State at RFK Stadium in the nation’s capital on Dec. 27.
This year’s college football landscape again forced officials to stray from the Military Bowl’s planned parameters of pitting a military academy against a familiar team from the East. The Air Force Falcons played in last year’s game, and this year was supposed to match Army against a team from the Atlantic Coast Conference, but Army isn’t bowl-eligible and the ACC doesn’t have enough eligible teams to fulfill its bowl tie-ins.
A pair of teams from Ohio and California will be a harder sell for the local market, but Military Bowl president Steve Beck said fans are also drawn by the game’s mission of honoring servicemen and their families as well as raising money for the USO.
The game will feature a Top 25 team for the first time in its five-year history, with San Jose State (10-2) of the Western Athletic Conference entering the rankings Sunday. The Spartans, who have their first 10-win season since 1987, accepted the bid Friday for their first bowl game since a 20-12 victory over New Mexico in the 2006 New Mexico Bowl.