Dec. 3, 2008
ATLANTA (Dec. 3, 2008) – With the first selection in the ACC after the BCS, the Chick-fil-A Bowl today officially extended an invitation to the No. 15 Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets (9-3, 5-3) making them the Atlantic Coast Conference representative in the 41st annual Chick-fil-A Bowl Dec. 31 at 7:30 p.m. in Atlanta.
The invitation was accepted by Director of Athletics Dan Radakovich and head coach Paul Johnson today at a press conference on the Georgia Tech campus. This marks Georgia Tech’s third selection to the Chick-fil-A Bowl where the Yellow Jackets last appeared in 2000.
“With Georgia Tech at number 15 in the BCS, we’re getting the highest-ranked team in the ACC and a program that’s coming into our game on a real high note after a great win over their in-state rivals. We couldn’t be happier,” said Gary Stokan, Chick-fil-A Bowl president. “Coach Johnson has done an incredible job this season as ACC Coach of the Year and with impact players like unanimous All ACC First Team selection Jonathan Dwyer, this team is playing great football and will represent the ACC well in the Chick-fil-A Bowl.”
Georgia Tech’s opponent from the Southeastern Conference is scheduled to be announced Sunday, December 7. The combined team payouts to the ACC and SEC teams this year will be $6.01 million, giving the Chick-fil-A Bowl the third-highest team payout in the country after the BCS bowls.
“We are honored and excited to accept this opportunity to play in the Chick-fil-A Bowl as it will allow us to compete in one of America’s premier bowl games in an unopposed national television slot on New Year’s Eve,” said Dan Radakovich, Georgia Tech Director of Athletics. “More importantly, we are looking forward to giving our fans and alumni, as well as the city of Atlanta, the chance to enjoy the new look and feel of Georgia Tech football.”
“It’s only fitting that the ACC’s hottest team along with the league’s coach and player of the year get to cap off this amazing season right here at home,” Radakovich said. “We know that our fans will respond by filling the city and Dome with excitement on New Year’s Eve.”
“I think the Chick-fil-A bowl is an excellent opportunity for us to play in a big-time bowl game, against a high-quality opponent, head coach Paul Johnson said. “I know our players and coaching staff are excited and we look forward to playing a very skilled, athletic and well-coached SEC team. I also think this game will be well-received by our fans, who I know will help fill the Georgia Dome on New Year’s Eve.”
Chick-fil-A Bowl officials expect Georgia Tech to sell through their entire ticket allotment which will leave the Bowl with fewer than 1,000 tickets for the Dec. 31 Chick-fil-A Bowl. The remaining tickets will be available on the Bowl’s Web site at www.Chick-fil-ABowl.com.
The Chick-fil-A Bowl will be broadcast nationally by ESPN Dec. 31 at 7:30 p.m.
About the Chick-fil-A Bowl:
The Chick-fil-A Bowl is the ninth-oldest bowl game in the country and hosts the longest-running rivalry series between the ACC and SEC. In the last 16 years, the ACC and SEC are tied at 8-8 with only one point separating the two conferences in total points (SEC: 323, ACC: 322). Ten of the last 16 games have been decided by a touchdown or less. The Chick-fil-A Bowl has disbursed more than $84 million in its 40-year history, ranking it 8th among all bowl games in cumulative payout. The Bowl also leads all other bowl games in charitable contributions, giving more than $1 million to organizations in need in 2007 alone. Included in the Chick-fil-A Bowl’s family of events are the Chick-fil-A College Kickoff, the country’s premier season kickoff game which matched #24 Alabama and #9 Clemson on Aug. 30; the Chick-fil-A Bowl Alma Mater at Reynolds Plantation, a head coach and celebrity golf tournament that generates $350,000 in scholarship for universities across the country and will be broadcast nationally by CBS on Dec. 25 at 2 p.m. (ET); and the Chick-fil-A Bowl Duck ‘N’ Dodge charity dodgeball tournament played each April.