(A recent Pinstripe Bowl at Yankee Stadium – Photo by Jason Schott)
The 2018 New Era Pinstripe Bowl will feature two of the most marquee names in college football, as Miami will take on Wisconsin.
The Pinstripe Bowl will take place at Yankee Stadium on Thursday, December 27, with kickoff scheduled for 5:15 p.m.
Wisconsin finished the regular season with a 7-5 record (5-4, Big Ten), and will be making its first appearance in the New Era Pinstripe Bowl and at Yankee Stadium.
Miami finished the regular season with a record of 7-5 (4-4, ACC). The Hurricanes will be making their sixth consecutive bowl game appearance and first appearance in both the New Era Pinstripe Bowl and at the current Yankee Stadium. The Hurricanes played once at the original Yankee Stadium, in the 1962 Gotham Bowl, losing to Nebraska, 36-34.
Wisconsin head coach Paul Chryst, in his fourth year at the helm, has guided the Badgers to their 17th consecutive bowl game appearance, the longest active streak in the Big Ten and fifth-longest active streak in the FBS. Under Chryst’s leadership, Wisconsin is 3-0 in bowl games.
Averaging 268.4 rushing yards per game, Wisconsin sports the Big Ten’s top running attack and ranks seventh nationally. Sophomore running back Jonathan Taylor leads the nation with 1,989 rushing yards this season and is tops in the Big Ten with 15 rushing touchdowns. Taylor, a First Team All-Big Ten selection and a native of New Jersey, was named the Big Ten’s Running Back of the Year and is a finalist for the Doak Walker Award. Blocking for Taylor, the Wisconsin offensive line was named a finalist for the annual Joe Moore Award, which honors the top offensive line unit in the country. Senior guard Michael Deiter (named the Big Ten’s Rimington-Pace Offensive Lineman of the Year), sophomore center Tyler Biadasz, sophomore tackle David Edwards and senior guard Beau Benzschawel were all tabbed as First Team All-Big Ten honorees. Junior quarterback Alex Hornibrook, a three-year starter, has thrown for 1,532 yards and 13 touchdowns in eight starts this season.
On the defensive side of the ball, the Badgers are led by first-team All-Big Ten senior linebacker T.J. Edwards and third-team All-Big Ten senior linebacker Ryan Connelly. Edwards leads the team with 104 total tackles this season and has added 10.5 tackles for a loss, three sacks and two interceptions. Additionally, the senior is the Big Ten’s active leader with 358 career tackles. Connelly has tallied 89 total tackles, 10 tackles for a loss and three sacks this season.
“We are very excited to be selected for the Pinstripe Bowl,” said Wisconsin Director of Athletics Barry Alvarez. “The Yankees are a first class organization that exemplifies tradition and success and it is truly an honor to be associated with them.
“We have a very large contingent of dedicated fans and alumni in the New York area and look forward to being able to connect with them. It is a once in a lifetime opportunity for our players to spend the holiday season in New York City. I am sure it will be an experience they never forget.”
Head coach Mark Richt is in his third season at Miami, having guided his alma mater to having a defense that is ranked first nationally, allowing just 140.8 yards per game, while the entire unit ranks second in total defense (268.3 yards per game). Strong up front, Miami boasts two of the conference’s top-four players in tackles for a loss, while the team is first in the nation with an average of 10.5 tackles for a loss. Second-team All-ACC senior defensive tackle Gerald Willis III leads the conference with 18 tackles for a loss, along with 59 total tackles and four sacks. Junior defensive end Joe Jackson leads the team with nine sacks, while tallying 14.5 tackles for a loss and 47 total tackles. Additionally, standout junior linebacker Shaq Quarterman has garnered first-team All-ACC honors with 76 total tackles, 13 tackles for a loss, six sacks, one interception, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery. Senior safety Jaquan Johnson anchors the Miami secondary and earned All-ACC second team honors, while sophomore cornerback Trajan Bandy, who leads the team with three interceptions, was tabbed for the All-ACC third team.
Miami sports a balanced attack on the offensive side of the ball, with the team rushing for 2,368 yards and passing for 2,127 yards. Junior running back Travis Homer set a career high with 969 rushing yards, adding four touchdowns while being selected to the All-ACC second team. Freshman tight end Brevin Jordan also earned All-ACC second team honors with 30 catches for 275 yards and four touchdowns.
“We are excited to accept a bid to the New Era Pinstripe Bowl for the first time in our history,” said Blake James, Director of Athletics for the University of Miami. “Visiting New York and playing a game in a storied venue like Yankee Stadium is a unique and memorable opportunity for both our student-athletes and our fan base.”
“We are thrilled to welcome the student-athletes, staff and families of the University of Wisconsin and University of Miami to the 2018 New Era Pinstripe Bowl,” said Mark Holtzman, Executive Director of the New Era Pinstripe Bowl. “The historic stage of Yankee Stadium will provide the perfect showcase for these two fantastic teams, and New York City during the holiday season will offer an unforgettable backdrop for everyone taking part. We are excited to add to the legacy of the New Era Pinstripe Bowl with this premier matchup.”
This year’s game will be nationally televised by ESPN and broadcast by ESPN Radio.
Special events, promotions and community outreach will take place throughout New Era Pinstripe Bowlweek to once again create an unforgettable experience for fans, families, students and staff. Scheduled visits to noteworthy New York City landmarks will include One World Observatory, the 9/11 Memorial, the New York Stock Exchange, Radio City Music Hall and more.
In addition, a special trophy tour will also see the George M. Steinbrenner III Trophy visit the campuses of both the University of Wisconsin and University of Miami.