Jacksonville Sports Day

BOWL NEWS: Cure Bowl Features a Bayou Battle Between Louisiana and Tulane

ORLANDO – The Orlando Sports Foundation (OSF) announced that the fourth-annual AutoNation Cure Bowl benefiting the Breast Cancer Research Foundation (BCRF) will be between the Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns and Tulane Green Wave.

Kickoff for the Bayou Battle for a Cure is set for 1:30 p.m. on CBS Sports Network on Dec. 15 at Camping World Stadium.

“We are excited to welcome the Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns and the Tulane Green Wave to the 2018 AutoNation Cure Bowl,” AutoNation Cure Bowl Executive Director Alan Gooch said. “We are looking forward to this Bayou Battle coming to Orlando. The last time these two in-state rivals played was an epic four overtime clash. We are excited that our Bowl Week will have a Louisiana flare.”

Louisiana and Tulane played a grueling four overtime game in 2016, where the Green Wave earned a 44-39 victory on Sept. 24. Tulane holds a 22-4 all-time mark with the series going back to 1911.

The Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns captured the west division of the Sun Belt with a 31-28 road victory against ULM on Nov. 24. Louisiana played in the inaugural Sun Belt Championship Game, but dropped a tough 30-19 decision at Appalachian State on Dec. 1. Louisiana is making its eighth bowl appearance and the first outside the Pelican State since the 1944 Oil Boil in Houston, Texas.

The Ragin’ Cajuns registered non-conference victories against Grambling and New Mexico State before topping Texas State, Arkansas State, Georgia State, South Alabama and ULM.
Sophomore Running Back Trey Ragas has eclipsed the 1,000 yard mark and has tallied 1,167 yards. He is the fifth running back in program history to accomplish the feat.

QB Andre Nunez is 174-for-270 for 2,136 yards with 19 touchdowns. A team high 10 touchdowns have been caught by junior wide receiver Ja’Marcus Bradley, who has totaled 557 yards on 38 receptions.

“Our Louisiana Football program could not be more excited for this opportunity to play in the AutoNation Cure Bowl. We look forward to the challenge Tulane presents. We’re not finished playing football, and we’re not finished being represented by this outstanding class of seniors. Most importantly, the Cure Bowl stands for more than just football. This is an opportunity for the Ragin’ Cajuns to stand up in the fight against cancer. It’s an honor for our program to be involved in this initiative, and we look forward to doing all we can during our time at the Cure Bowl,” said Head Coach Billy Napier

Tulane Green Wave finished with a 5-3 record in the American Athletic Conference and earned a share of the West Division championship. The Green Wave won four of its final five games of the season to earn its bowl eligibility, defeating Tulsa, USF, East Carolina and Navy to finish the regular season at 6-6.

Tulane enters the Cure Bowl playing in its first bowl game since the 2013 R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl, where it played the Ragin’ Cajuns. This will be Tulane’s 12th all-time bowl game, and the team holds a 4-7 record in bowl games lifetime. It is the first time Tulane has played in a bowl game outside the state of Louisiana since 2002, when it took part in the Hawaii Bowl.

Junior running back Darius Bradwell has amassed 1,000 yards on 166 carries, while scoring a team-high nine touchdowns. Junior wide receiver Darnell Mooney has made 47 receptions for 987 yards and eight touchdowns. Senior QB Justin McMillan went 18-for-29 for 291 yards and three touchdowns in the bowl-clinching victory against Navy. He has totaled 1,159 yards and nine touchdowns in eight games played.

Tulane’s 2018 regular-season slate was the 29th-toughest schedule at the FBS level based on FBS opponent winning percentage. Tulane’s 2018 opponents had a combined winning percentage of .580 and won 76 combined games.

“This will truly be an outstanding opportunity for our young men to compete in a first-class bowl game,” head coach Willie Fritz said. “Orlando is a fantastic city, has a wonderful stadium and our opponent will provide a tremendous challenge. We look forward to our week in Orlando,” said Head Coach Willie Fritz.

The AutoNation Cure Bowl directly supports BCRF, who has received a total of $3.55 million donation from the first three games put on by the OSF. Local researcher Dr. Annette Khaled at the UCF College of Medicine has been vetted by BCRF and received $1.1 million from the funds donated.

Tickets start at $25 and are currently on sale at CureBowl.com. Ticket holders will also have access to the AutoNation Pregame Tailgate and Concert, featuring the platinum recording artist Andy Grammer. The gates open for the pregame tailgate at 10:30 a.m. with Andy Grammer taking the stage at 11:30 a.m. for a 75-minute set.

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