Greenville, NC Bidding for a Bowl Game in 2020
Appearing on a radio show in Greenville, NC last week, Arthur Rich announced that Greenville, North Carolina is bidding for a new college football bowl game in 2020. Rich is the co-founder of the Bar-B-Q Bowl, which, if selected, will be played at Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium, home of the East Carolina Pirates. Rich believes that upcoming improvements and renovations to Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium make this bowl game a possibility. College football insider Brett McMurphy reported this week that the NCAA is considering adding three bowl games for the 2020 season. Chicago and Myrtle Beach are “near locks” for hosting two of the three new games, and Greenville, NC and Charleston, SC are vying for the third location.
According to Rich, the application to become the host for a new bowl game won’t be available until July 1, 2018. It takes a total of six months to complete, but Rich hopes to have the process completed by Labor Day. The winning location will be announced in the spring of 2019. Rich also added that Greenville, NC is the furthest along in the bidding process. While there are no corporate sponsors now, Rich hopes the bowl will generate money for Eastern North Carolina charities such as Habitat for Humanity.
Rich said on the radio that he hopes that the bowl will generate 250 jobs, and bring six to eight million dollars to Greenville, NC. Rich also confirmed on the radio that he has been in negotiation with the Sun Belt, MAC, and C-USA conferences, and has also been speaking with the AAC. As part of the Bar-B-Q Bowl festivities, Rich hope to have a Bar-B-Q cooking competition surrounding the bowl game, as well as a parade and maybe a concert.
A college football game in Eastern North Carolina definitely sounds like a far-fetched idea. However, with the right matchup of regional teams – perhaps Old Dominion (C-USA) vs Appalachian State (Sun Belt) – the game could generate some local interest and a good crowd. Throw in a Eastern North Carolina Bar-B-Q competition, and it should make it even more of a success!
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