Having secured the Conference USA championship Friday, the University of Texas at San Antonio Roadrunners will face off against the San Diego State University Aztecs in the Tropical Smoothie Cafe Frisco Bowl on Tuesday, Dec. 21, UTSA announced Sunday.
Closing out a historic football season for the Roadrunners, UTSA will be aiming to secure its first bowl victory. It will be UTSA’s second straight and third overall bowl appearance in program history. Kickoff is set for 6:30 p.m at Toyota Stadium in the Dallas suburb of Frisco, and the game will be nationally televised by ESPN.
UTSA head coach Jeff Traylor told reporters Sunday that he and the players are excited to be playing in Texas, as it could mean a big fan turnout for the game.
“We’re excited about the momentum we have right now. … We’re just excited,” Traylor said. “We have a lot of players on our roster from that area, and it’s just good to be close to home.”
The bowl will close out the 12-1 season UTSA secured with a 49-41 victory over the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers in the Conference USA championship Friday night in front of 41,148 fans at the Alamodome. UTSA opened its 2021 season with 11 consecutive wins, has been ranked as high as No. 15 in the College Football Playoff (CFP) rankings, and succeeded in capturing the program’s first conference championship.
“These guys have done a lot of firsts this year,” Traylor said. “So I challenge them … somebody’s gotta be the first team to win a bowl game in the history of the school. Why not us?”
An Independence Bowl representative had said before the lineups were announced Sunday that it was hoping for a UTSA-Brigham Young University matchup. Traylor, asked if he would have liked to see UTSA placed in a higher-profile bowl game, said all he and the UTSA players can do is “control the controllables.”
“We have no control over that,” he said. “We’ll just go where they tell us to play, play where we’re supposed to play. We’re gonna try to follow our culture.”
Having entered the weekend at No. 19 in the CFP rankings, San Diego State is coming off of an 11-2 season. The Aztecs dropped to No. 24 after losing to Utah State 46-13 in the Mountain West Conference championship game Saturday in Carson, California.
Frisco Bowl Executive Director Sean Johnson said Frisco is looking forward to hosting the two teams and welcoming their fans.
“We are excited to have two outstanding teams participate in the 2021 Tropical Smoothie Cafe Frisco Bowl,” he said in a press release posted by UTSA.
A link for UTSA fans to purchase bowl tickets will be available soon, UTSA stated in the release.