Famous Idaho Potato Bowl
The Famous Idaho Potato Bowl (previously the Humanitarian Bowl and the MPC Computers Bowl) is an NCAA-sanctioned post-season college football bowl game that has been played annually since 1997 at Albertsons Stadium on the campus of Boise State University in Boise, Idaho. The game is televised nationally on the ESPN family of networks. Cincinnati defeated Utah State in the inaugural game in 1997.
|Famous Idaho Potato Bowl|
|Location||Boise, Idaho, U.S.|
|Conference tie-ins||MWC, MAC|
|Previous conference tie-ins||Big West (1997–2000)|
|Payout||US$325,000 (as of 2015)|
Sports Humanitarian Bowl (1997)
Humanitarian Bowl (1998)
Crucial.com Humanitarian Bowl (1999–2003)
MPC Computers Bowl (2004–2006)
Roady's Humanitarian Bowl (2007–2009)
uDrove Humanitarian Bowl (2010)
|BYU vs Western Michigan (BYU 49–18)|
|2019 season matchup|
|MWC vs. MAC (January 3, 2020)|
The Humanitarian Bowl was launched in part to give the Big West Conference a bowl to send its champion to. From 1982 until the end of the 1996 season, the Big West champion faced the winner of the Mid-American Conference (MAC) championship in a bowl; this was the California Bowl until 1991 and the Las Vegas Bowl afterward. After the 1996 game the Las Vegas Bowl renegotiated its contract, forcing both conferences to look for other options. This led to the creation of the Humanitarian Bowl as well as the creation of the Detroit-based Motor City Bowl, where the MAC was to send its champion.
From 1997 to 1999, the Big West champion was matched with a team from Conference USA (C-USA), while in 2000 the Western Athletic Conference (WAC) sent a representative. The Big West stopped sponsoring football after the 2000 season, and bowl organizers extended a permanent invite to the WAC to replace the Big West as host of the game, and struck an agreement with the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) to provide a bowl-eligible team if it had yet to fill its bowl allotment. The WAC champion would receive the automatic bid to the game unless that team received a better offer from another bowl game or qualified for the Bowl Championship Series (BCS).
The WAC and ACC met in the 2001 through 2008 editions of the bowl, except for 2002 when the ACC's slot was filled by Iowa State of the Big 12 Conference. In 2009, the Mountain West Conference was to provide a team, but Mountain West champion TCU was selected for the Fiesta Bowl and the conference did not have enough bowl-eligible teams to send a replacement; as a result, Bowling Green of the Mid-American Conference (MAC) was invited. In 2010, the bowl inherited the MAC's International Bowl tie-in after that Toronto-based bowl folded; the bowl featured a MAC vs. WAC matchup through 2012.
After the WAC stopped sponsoring football in 2012, Mountain West inherited its spot as host, reaching agreement with the bowl to provide a team, starting with the December 2013 edition. The bowl featured MAC vs. Mountain West matchups in the 2013 through 2015 games. In 2016, the bowl invited in-state Idaho of the Sun Belt Conference in place of a MAC team. The 2017 edition returned to MAC vs. Mountain West, while in the 2018 edition, independent BYU was invited in place of a Mountain West team. In late July 2019, it was announced that the Mountain West and Mid-American Conferences would maintain their tie-ins to the bowl through the 2025-2026 football season.
The game was sponsored by Micron Technology, an Idaho-based manufacturer, from 1999 to 2002 under the name Crucial.com, which sold computer memory upgrades from Micron. The bowl game then briefly had no sponsor for the January 2004 game. In December 2004, the name was changed to the MPC Computers Bowl. MPC Computers, which is also based in Idaho, was formerly MicronPC, the computer manufacturing division of Micron, but was later split off as a separate company. In April 2007, it was announced that the bowl will again be called the Humanitarian Bowl. In May 2007, Boise-based Roady's Truck Stops was announced as the new sponsor, thus renaming the game the Roady's Humanitarian Bowl. On May 25, 2010, uDrove, a maker of applications for the transportation industry, became the sponsor of the Humanitarian Bowl, signing a four-year agreement to replace Roady's. On August 3, 2011, the Idaho Potato Commission (IPC) signed a six-year naming rights deal to sponsor the bowl, renaming it the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl. In December 2017, IPC announced that they would be sponsoring the bowl for an additional five years.
The game is the longest running cold weather bowl game currently in operation. The payout is $750,000, but teams are required to provide a corporate sponsor, purchase a minimum number of tickets, and stay at a selected hotel for a minimum stay. Because of this, 7–4 UCLA declined an invitation to the 2001 Humanitarian Bowl.
From 2008 through 2012, bowl organizers, in conjunction with the Truckload Carriers Association, featured a "Highway Angel of the Year" to game attendees. Highway Angels are truck drivers who performed a heroic feat to save the life of another motorist.
|2008||Leonard T. Roach||Roach pulled a driver from a water-filled ditch near South Bend, Indiana, even though the wind chill factor was −20 °F (−29 °C).|
|2009||Michael Hunt||Hunt used his truck to push away a vehicle (and its driver) from a fiery collision near Spring Lake, North Carolina, which had already claimed the life of the other driver.|
|2010||Shawn L. Hubbard||While driving his truck near Diamond Bar, California, Hubbard came upon a fiery car crash in which the driver was deceased, but the passenger was still alive and trapped in the burning car. Hubbard freed the passenger and pulled him from the vehicle just moments before it was completely engulfed in flames.|
|2011||Marcus Beam||While driving near Benson, North Carolina, Beam observed a speeding car strike another vehicle, causing the second car to overturn and roll down an embankment. While other motorists watched without offering help, Beam freed the female driver from the wreckage, and pulled two small children from the mangled vehicle as well.|
|2012||Kenny Cass||While driving in Portland, Oregon, Cass witnessed a pick-up truck rear-end a 53' tractor trailer and become wedged up to its windshield under the trailer. Cass made the scene safe by placing emergency triangles on the road, freed the pick-up truck driver from his vehicle while smoke billowed from beneath the truck and tended to the drivers wounds until emergency personnel arrived 20 minutes later.|
From 1997 through 2014, the bowl named an MVP from each team; since 2015, a single MVP has been named.
|Year||Winning team MVP||Losing team MVP|
|1997||Chad Plummer||Cincinnati||QB||Steve Smith||Utah State||WR|
|1998||John Welsh||Idaho||QB||Lee Roberts||Southern Miss||QB|
|1999||Brock Forsey||Boise State||RB||Chris Redman||Louisville||QB|
|2000||Bart Hendricks||Boise State||QB||Chris Porter||UTEP||RB|
|2001||Woodrow Dantzler||Clemson||QB||Delwyn Daigre||Louisiana Tech||WR|
|2002||Bobby Hammer||Boise State||DT||Anthony Forrest||Iowa State||DB|
|Jan. 2004||P. J. Daniels||Georgia Tech||RB||Cort Moffitt||Tulsa||P|
|Dec. 2004||Paul Pinegar||Fresno State||QB||Marques Hagans||Virginia||QB|
|2005||Matt Ryan||Boston College||QB||Jared Zabransky||Boise State||QB|
|2006||Kirby Freeman||Miami (FL)||QB||Jeff Rowe||Nevada||QB|
|2007||Tom Brandstater||Fresno State||QB||Jonathan Dwyer||Georgia Tech||RB|
|2008||Da'Rel Scott||Maryland||RB||Colin Kaepernick||Nevada||QB|
|2009||DeMaundray Woolridge||Idaho||RB||Freddie Barnes||Bowling Green||WR|
|2010||Chandler Harnish||Northern Illinois||QB||Ryan Colburn||Fresno State||QB|
|2011||LaVon Brazill||Ohio||WR||Michael Smith||Utah State||RB|
|2012||Kerwynn Williams||Utah State||RB||Bernard Reedy||Toledo||WR|
|2013||Adam Muema||San Diego State||RB||Branden Oliver||Buffalo||RB|
|2014||Shayne Davern||Air Force||RB||Corey Davis||Western Michigan||WR|
Boise State, the game's host school, is tied with Idaho for most wins with three, and Fresno State has won twice. Boise State and Utah State have made the most appearances, four each; the Broncos last played 13 years ago, in 2005. Idaho was a member of a different conference for each of its three appearances (Big West in 1998, WAC in 2009, and Sun Belt in 2016).
Of the current 12 members of Mountain West, eight have appeared in the bowl—Air Force, Boise State, Colorado State, Fresno State, Nevada, San Diego State, Utah State, and Wyoming—either as members of Mountain West or the WAC. The four that have yet to play are Hawaii, New Mexico, San Jose State, and UNLV.
The below tables are updated through the December 2018 edition (22 games, 44 total appearances).
- Teams with multiple appearances
- Teams with a single appearance
Won: Air Force, Akron, Boston College, BYU, Cincinnati, Clemson, Maryland, Miami, Northern Illinois, Ohio, San Diego State, Wyoming
Lost: Bowling Green, Buffalo, Central Michigan, Colorado State, Iowa State, Louisiana Tech, Louisville, Southern Miss, Toledo, Tulsa, UTEP, Virginia
Appearances by conferenceEdit
Updated through the December 2018 edition (22 games, 44 total appearances).
|Conference||Record||Appearances by season|
|WAC||13||5||8||0.385||2002, 2004, 2007, 2009, 2012||2000, 2001, 2003*, 2005, 2006, 2008, 2010, 2011|
|MAC||9||3||6||0.333||2010, 2011, 2015||2009, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2017, 2018|
|ACC||7||5||2||0.714||2001, 2003*, 2005, 2006, 2008||2004, 2007|
|Mountain West||5||3||2||0.600||2013, 2014, 2017||2015, 2016|
|Big West||4||3||1||0.750||1998, 1999, 2000||1997|
- Games marked with an asterisk (*) were played in January of the following calendar year.
- Independent appearances: BYU (2018)
|Team||Performance vs. Opponent||Year|
|Most points scored, one team||61, Idaho vs. Colorado State||2016|
|Most points scored, both teams||111, Idaho (61) vs. Colorado State (50)||2016|
|Most points scored, losing team||50, Colorado State vs. Idaho||2016|
|Fewest points allowed||10, Georgia Tech vs. Tulsa||Jan. 2004|
|Largest margin of victory||42, Georgia Tech vs. Tulsa||Jan. 2004|
|Smallest margin of victory||1, three occurrences||2006, 2009, 2011|
|First downs||30, Idaho vs. Colorado State||2016|
|Rushing yards||371, Georgia Tech vs. Tulsa||Jan. 2004|
|Passing yards||445, Colorado State vs. Idaho||2016|
|Total yards||606, Idaho vs. Colorado State||2016|
|Fewest yards allowed|
|Fewest rushing yards allowed||-56, Georgia Tech vs. Tulsa||Jan. 2004|
|Fewest passing yards allowed|
|Points scored||18, many times (last: Chandler Harnish, Northern Illinois)||2010|
|Passing touchdowns||5, twice (last: Nick Stevens, Colorado State)||2016|
|Rushing yards||307, P. J. Daniels, Georgia Tech||2004|
|Passing yards||445, Nick Stevens, Colorado State||2016|
|Receiving Yards||265, Olabisi Johnson, Colorado State||2016|
|Long Plays||Record, Player, Team vs. Opponent||Year|
|Touchdown run||77, Bart Hendricks, Boise State vs. UTEP||2000|
|Touchdown pass||78, Sam Shields, Miami (FL) vs. Nevada||2006|
|Kickoff return||99, Torrey Smith, Maryland vs. Nevada||2008|
|Punt return||92, Quinton Jones, Boise State vs. Boston College||2005|
|Interception return||80, Shanaurd Harts, Boise State vs. Louisville||1999|
|Fumble return||60, Dexter Walker, Air Force vs. Western Michigan||2014|
|Field goal||51, Michael Cklamovski, Northern Illinois vs. Fresno State||2010|
- "ESPN Events Reveals 2019-20 Bowl Season Slate". ESPN (Press release). May 23, 2019. Retrieved May 24, 2019.
- "Boise planning to push bowl game to NCAA". Lewiston Morning Tribune. (Idaho). April 19, 1997. p. 2B.
- "Famous Idaho Potato Bowl will be Mountain West partner in 2013 - SB Nation Denver". Denver.sbnation.com. Retrieved December 8, 2014.
- "Boise, Meridian, Nampa, Caldwell news by Idaho Statesman". Idahostatesman.com. Retrieved December 8, 2014.
- "Humanitarian bowl teams up with Idaho-based truck stop chain - College Football - ESPN". Sports.espn.go.com. May 30, 2007. Retrieved December 8, 2014.
-  Archived May 30, 2010, at the Wayback Machine
-  Archived November 25, 2011, at the Wayback Machine
- Vanderhorst, Daniel (December 29, 2017). "IPC to sponsor Potato Bowl five more years". thepacker.com. Retrieved January 1, 2018.
- "UCLA Addresses Bowl Situation - Statement from UCLA athletic director Peter Dalis". Archived from the original on July 19, 2012. Retrieved October 15, 2007.
- "ESPN will Broadcast Heroic Trucking Story to Millions of Non-Trucking Viewers". Truckload.org. December 19, 2008. Retrieved May 19, 2017.
- "Selfless Truck Driver to Be Honored as "2009 Highway Angel of the Year"". Truckload.org. December 14, 2009. Retrieved May 19, 2017.
- "TCA's Highway Angel of the Year to Share Moment in Spotlight with Motorist He Saved". Truckload.org. November 16, 2010. Retrieved May 19, 2017.
- "Marcus Beam to Receive 2011 Highway Angel of the Year Trophy at the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl in Boise, Idaho". Truckload.org. December 14, 2011. Retrieved May 19, 2017.
- "Truckload Carriers Association Selects Highway Angel of the Year". Truckload.org. December 3, 2012. Retrieved May 19, 2017.