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Utah State football: Aggies await word on Potato Bowl opponent

Published November 25, 2012 11:46 pm

USU football • Mid-American Conference team likely to face Utah State in Boise, Idaho.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Logan • Now that Utah State has accepted an invitation to the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl, the next destination for the Aggies is clear.

What isn't clear is whom No. 20 Utah State will face on Dec. 15.

It will almost certainly be a team from the Mid-American Conference, but that won't be settled until next Friday, which means the Aggies may not know who they will play for another week.

"A lot of what happens will depend on what happens with bowls close to the Midwest," said Kevin McDonald, executive director of the Potato Bowl. "A lot of those schools want to play somewhere close to home so they can get fans out to their games."

If McDonald had a choice, he would like either Kent State or Northern Illinois. The Golden Flashes are 11-1, ranked 18th in the nation, winners of 10 consecutive games and posting a winning season for the first time since 2001. In other words, Kent State is enjoying the same kind of dream season as USU.

Northern Illinois is ranked 19th and has won a school-record 11 games this season. Those two will face off for the MAC title on Friday night.

"We would love to have either of those two," McDonald said. "We also like Toledo and Bowling Green. There are a number of good options out there. We feel like we are going to have a great matchup."

The Aggies lost last year's Potato Bowl to Ohio. Going back and winning — not just showing up and participating — will be a big emphasis this season.

With a win over Idaho on Saturday, Utah State is 10-2, a school-record number of victories. The Aggies are nationally ranked for the first time in over 30 years and have won the Western Athletic Conference title for the first time ever.

"We definitely want to go up there and play well," senior cornerback Will Davis said. "We're excited about the opportunity. We're going to have our fans behind us and we really had a bad taste in our mouth from last season. We definitely want to make amends for that."

tjones@sltrib.comon twitter: @tjonessltrib —

Famous Idaho Potato Bowl

P Utah State vs. TBA

At Boise, Idaho

Dec. 15, 2:30 p.m.

TV • ESPN