FIU Athletics made the following announcement on Sunday, November 25:
For the second consecutive season, FIU will be going bowling as the Panthers face Toledo from the Mid-American Conference in the Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl at 12:30 p.m. on Dec. 21 at Thomas A. Robinson National Stadium.
The game will be televised on ESPN and broadcast on the Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl Radio Network. Tickets to the 2018 Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl can be purchased through the FIU ticket office on Monday, beginning at 10 a.m. For those wishing to purchase tickets online, go to FIUSports.com, call 305-FIU-Game or click here. All U.S. citizens who wish to attend the game must have a valid U.S. Passport. Please check FIUSports.com early next week for travel packages.
Fans wishing to purchase rooms at the host resort for the Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl, the Atlantis Bahamas, can do so by clicking the Bowl Travel tab at MakersWantedBahamasBowl.com.
“On behalf of our Board of Trustees, I congratulate our team, Coach Davis and his staff on a successful season and our second consecutive bowl game,” said FIU President Mark B. Rosenberg. “We are proud of you and look forward to cheering you on in the Bahamas.”
The early invitation allows both FIU and Toledo additional time to prepare to play in an international destination, including obtaining passports for those who still need them to travel to the Bahamas as well as giving extra time for fans to make their travel plans to Nassau for bowl week.
“We are excited to accept a bid to the Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl,” Executive Director of Sports Entertainment Pete Garcia said. “We are looking forward to our team participating in this prestigious bowl. The bowl game allows us to recognize our football team for their hard work and successful season. We look forward to seeing Panther Nation in Nassau, Bahamas.”
FIU finished the regular season 8-4 overall, tying the program record for wins in a year for the second-straight season. The bowl berth will mark FIU’s fourth in program history, with the first two coming in 2010 and 2011 and the most recent pair coming under the tenure of head coach Butch Davis.
“We’re thrilled for our team to play in the Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl – which is our second-consecutive bowl game – and get a chance to enjoy the Bahamian culture,” head coach Butch Davis said. “The Atlantis resort is one of the best facilities in the world and we’re excited to enjoy their hospitality. Toledo is a very good football program and our kids are excited for the challenge. Hopefully, this provides our team with an opportunity to cap the season on a high note.”
This will be the fourth all-time meeting between FIU and Toledo, and the first between the schools since the 2010 Little Caesars Pizza Bowl in Detroit, where FIU won 34-32. FIU leads the series over Toledo, 2-1. The Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl series between Conference USA and the MAC is tied, 2-2.
Toledo (7-5, 5-3 in Mid-American Conference play) will be led to its’ 18th all-time bowl appearance by head coach Jason Candle, who is in his third full season (28-12) as a college head coach (all at Toledo). The 2018 Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl will be the fifth-straight bowl game for the Rockets, and the eighth in the last nine seasons. This will be the fourth bowl game for the Rockets under Candle’s direction, as he was named head coach prior to the 2015 Boca Raton Bowl, and in all three full seasons as Toledo’s head coach.
The Rockets come into the Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl on a two-game win streak and victories in four of their final five games.