Popeyes Bahamas Bowl To Reach Over 110 Million Viewers

Over 110 million eyes are expected to be on The Bahamas come Christmas Eve as college football teams the Western Kentucky University (WSU) Hilltoppers and the Central Michigan University (CMU) Chippewas faceoff in the first ever Popeyes Bahamas Bowl at the Thomas A. Robinson National Stadium.

The Hilltoppers are under the Conference USA, while the Chippewas come under the Mid-American Conference (MAC).

The teams collectively will bring over 200 football players and their fans to the shores of The Bahamas and ESPN will bring sole live coverage of the game on that day.

This is the first time since 1937 that a bowl game has been played outside of North America.

American fast food franchise Popeyes is the primary sponsor of the game.

President of Popeyes Bahamas Bowl Britton Banowsky said one of the objectives of hosting Popeyes Bahamas Bowl is to enhance football in The Bahamas.

“We know that there are a lot of Bahamians who love football and they watch it on TV. It has the potential to be the largest event of anything that has ever happened in The Bahamas and so that is a lot of pressure for us but it is also a great opportunity. This game is going to project really well internationally,” he said.

Deputy Director General in the Ministry of Tourism Ellison ‘Tommy’ Thompson said this game is important for The Bahamas.

“One of the areas that we are really looking to promote is sports tourism and we see these great events as a catalyst to get more people to the islands of The Bahamas and the fact that you have an in-store promotion in Popeyes’ 1,800 stores – this is a marketer’s dream come true,” he said.

Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture Dr. Daniel Johnson also expressed his excitement over the highly-anticipated game.

“It is a major way to expose The Bahamas. It is our hope that this is enhanced over the next five years as a major, major event in The Bahamas every December,” he said.

Meanwhile the coaches of the respective teams say they are geared up and ready to go.

Jeff Brohm, WKU’s head coach, said he believes there couldn’t have been a better destination than The Bahamas to play.

“We’re so happy that we get an opportunity to play the game and experience The Bahamas. When we get here it will be about five days before the game. We will practice early in the morning and then in the afternoon they will have free time to experience everything that The Bahamas has to offer,” he said.

“My thing is once they will see that I know many of them will want to come back.”

Dan Enos, head coach of CMU had similar sentiments.

“We feel it is an once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. To play in a bowl game is a great opportunity but to come to a bowl game but to come to such a wonderful destination is a great privilege not only for the players but for their families and fans also,” he said.

“We are going to try and let our players have a great experience. Obviously, we need to practice but there will be time every day for them to see The Bahamas and we think that this is not just a game but also an educational opportunity for them.”

The teams will also hold a sporting clinic and courtesy call with the Ranfurly Children’s Home, while they are in The Bahamas.

The game itself, which is being dubbed the largest collegiate game to ever take place in The Bahamas, will begin at noon.

The first 5,000 attendees of Popeyes Bahamas Bowl will get a taste of a new chicken flavor being offered by Popeyes.

Entertainment at half time includes special performances from the Valley Boys and the Bahamas All-Star band.

Media Contact: Kendea Smith, 397-2786, ksmith@bahamas.com