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Buffalo Bulls accept invitation to 2019 Bahamas Bowl, will play Charlotte

They’re set to face bowl game debutantes Charlotte.

Buffalo v Miami Ohio Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images

The Buffalo Bulls (7-5, 5-3 MAC) have been selected to participate in the 2019 edition of the Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl as the Mid-American Conference representative, as first reported by Stadium’s college football reporter Brett McMurphy, and later confirmed by the universities and bowl game committee.

The Bulls are set to face the Charlotte 49ers (7-5, 5-3 Conference USA,) who will be making their bowl debut as a member of the Football Bowl Subdivision. Charlotte joined the FBS ranks in 2015, after two years of play as a FCS independent.

For the Bulls, this will be their second-straight bowl game appearance (2018 Dollar General Bowl) and their third time being bowl-eligible in four years (left home with a 6-6 record in 2017.)

“On behalf of our President, Dr. Satish Tripathi, I’m honored and very excited to accept a bowl invitation from the Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl,” Buffalo athletic director Mark Alnutt said, via press release on Sunday afternoon. “I’m proud of the season our football program, under the guidance of head coach Lance Leipold, has had which afforded us the ability to play a very important 13th game. The Bahamas Bowl provides a destination that will definitely create memorable moments for our student-athletes, coaches, staff and our fans. We look forward to making the trip south and sharing this first-class experience with a very good Charlotte program.”

The Bahamas Bowl, played at Thomas Robinson Stadium in Nassau, is scheduled to be played on Friday, December 20, at 2 p.m. Eastern and will be aired nationally on ESPN. The game, moved from its previous Christmas Eve-adjacent date, will be the opening game of the bowl schedule as a part of the celebration of college football’s 150th anniversary.

“We are extremely excited to earn an invitation to the Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl,” Buffalo head coach Lance Leipold said, via press release on Sunday afternoon. “Our past conference participants have raved about the experience and hospitality and our program is thrilled for this opportunity. Coach [Chris] Healy and his staff have done a tremendous job at Charlotte and we are looking forward to the challenge of playing his team.”

With their appearance in the Bahamas Bowl, Buffalo will become the second team at the FBS level to participate in both of the modern international bowl games (including the now-defunct International Bowl in Toronto, Ontario), joining fellow MAC peer Western Michigan.

Fans are encouraged by the conference and by bowl representatives to visit to make their travel plans.