For the first time ever, Eastern Michigan will participate in consecutive bowl games, and it won’t have to travel far this December to do so. The Eagles will have to trek about 40 minutes down I-94 to battle the Pittburgh Panthers in the Quick Lane Bowl. The game is held at Ford Field, the home of the Detroit Lions and the MAC Championship Game.
Under head coach Chris Creighton, Eastern Michigan (6-6) will go bowling for the third time in four seasons after failing to appear in a bowl game from 1987-2016. The Eagles are still searching for their first bowl win since 1987 after losing a heartbreaker to Georgia Southern on a last-second field goal in the 2018 Camellia Bowl. Eastern Michigan’s current senior class is the first in the school’s history to participate in three bowl games.
Eastern Michigan already defeated a Power Five opponent this season, downing Illinois on a game-winning field goal on September 14. The Eagles’ lost to Kentucky in Lexington, also in September, so Pitt will serve as the third Power Five team to challenge Creighton’s program this year.
Pitt (7-5) lost its final two games of the season after having a shot at winning the ACC Coastal. The Panthers notably upset UCF on Week 4 and nearly defeated Penn State on Week 2. Pitt has ended up on the losing side in four consecutive bowl games. Its last bowl victory occurred in the same venue in 2013, defeating that year’s MAC champion Bowling Green, 30-27.
The 2019 Quick Lane Bowl kicks off on December 26 at 8 p.m. ET. ESPN will broadcast the game on its main network.