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I-Bowl Teams Announced

The Missouri Tigers will face the North Carolina Tar Heels in the 2011 AdvoCare V100 Independence Bowl on Monday, Dec. 26 at 4 p.m. on ESPN2 at Independence Stadium, it was announced on Sunday.The AdvoCare V100 Independence Bowl, the nation’s 11th-oldest bowl game, is celebrating its 36th anniversary this year.  The I-Bowl is the only game being played on Dec. 26, marking the fourth year in a row that it is the lone bowl of the day. This is the first matchup between the ACC and Big 12 in I-Bowl history.

Rob Stone, Danny Kanell, and Allison Williams will call the game on ESPN2. Sports USA, the I-Bowl’s national radio partner, will broadcast its seventh game this year and KEEL 710 AM will carry the game locally.

Missouri and North Carolina meeting for the third time but have not played since 1976 as the Tigers lead the all-time series 2-0. Missouri is making its third appearance in the I-Bowl, losing 27-14 to Arkansas in 2003 and beating South Carolina, 38-31, in 2005 in the bowl’s 30th anniversary game. The Tigers are bowling for the sixth-straight year. North Carolina is making its debut in Shreveport and is in a bowl game for the fourth-straight season.

 “It is a pleasure to announce that the University of North Carolina will square off with the University of Missouri in the 2011 AdvoCare V100 Independence Bowl on Dec. 26,” said 2011 Bowl Chairman Fred Sexton, Jr.

“We have a nice, long-standing relationship with Missouri and we are proud to welcome North Carolina to Shreveport for the first time. Both schools have excellent reputations athletically and academically,” said Sexton, Jr.

Missouri (7-5, 5-4 Big 12) enters the game on a three-game winning streak and has won five of its last seven games. The Tigers, led by 11th-year head coach Gary Pinkel, will play their final game as a member of the Big 12 in Shreveport before heading to the SEC next season. Missouri has three wins over teams heading to bowl games this year and lost three games by a total of 17 points, including an overtime loss on the road to Arizona State and a three-point loss to Baylor.

The game will mark Missouri’s seventh-consecutive bowl game, a school record, and eighth bowl appearance in the last nine seasons as well as its 29th overall bowl appearance.

“We’re very pleased to accept an invitation to play in the 2011 Independence Bowl,” said MU Head Coach Gary Pinkel. “We obviously have a history with this game, and we know first-hand how great of an experience they provide. This is also a nice fit for our program from a recruiting standpoint. We look forward to working hard over the next few weeks to prepare for what should be a great game and a great trip for our program,” he said.

“We are excited to be playing in our seventh-straight bowl game, and we’re pleased to be playing in the Independence Bowl,” said Director of Athletics Mike Alden. “Reaching the post-season does so much for your program, and having a chance to play in an area where we’re looking to expand our presence is a big plus. We’ve developed great friendships with the staff and look forward to renewing those,” he said.

North Carolina (7-5, 3-5 ACC) beat Duke in its regular-season finale at home to clinch a winning season. The Tar Heels opened the season with five wins in six games under interim head coach Everett Withers. North Carolina is making its 29th appearance in a bowl game.

“The team and the coaching staff are to be congratulated for making a fourth consecutive bowl game and our first Independence Bowl,” said UNC Athletic Director Bubba Cunningham.  “We look forward to representing the ACC in the matchup with Missouri and competing for our eighth win of the season.”

“I’m excited for our players, especially this group of seniors, to advance to a bowl game for the fourth straight season,” said Withers.  “Despite some challenging circumstances, this team continued to work hard and prepare each week for the next game.  We now have a chance to win eight games for the fourth-straight year and win our second-consecutive bowl game.” 

Tickets to this year’s game are available at area Super 1 Foods grocery stores for $37. All Super 1 Foods tickets are for south endzone seating. Military tickets can be purchased in person by military personnel at the Bowl Office for a special discounted price of $32 for south end zone and $42 for sideline bench seats. Those wishing to donate tickets to the military can do so at those same prices. Military discounted tickets are also available for purchase at Barksdale Air Force Base in the Tickets and Attractions Department and on base at Fort Polk.

Tickets are still available for the 2011 AdvoCare V100 Independence Bowl as well as the United Healthcare “Big Game Show” Team Welcome Party on Thursday, Dec. 22 at Riverview Hall. Tickets are $30 and gives fans a unique chance to watch the teams perform in several game show activities. Food will be provided at the event and is included with each ticket. The “Citizens National Bank FCA Breakfast” will be held on Friday, Dec. 23 at 7:30 a.m. at the Bossier Civic Center and tickets are just $5.

Lee Michaels Fine Jewelry on Youree Drive is giving fans who attend the game a chance to win two pieces of jewelry, and everyone is eligible to win. Anyone who purchases a ticket to the game and is simply in their seat at the time of the giveaway is eligible. The drawings will occur during the first and the third quarter. A pair of 1 carat total weight diamond earrings as well as a 2 carat diamond bracelet will be given away.

Fans are encouraged to arrive early on gameday for the FREE MetroPCS Fan Fest that will be held at Fair Grounds Field from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and will feature food, fun, and music by Windstorm. The FREE AT&T Pep Rally and Parade will be held on the midway of the State Fairgrounds at 1:30 p.m.

Shuttles will run from Mall St. Vincent and Pierre Bossier Mall to Independence Stadium and back on gameday. A $5 round-trip charge will apply but all fans 12 and under can ride for free. Security will be provided. The shuttle drop-off location on gameday will be Fair Grounds Field from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. for the FREE MetroPCS Fan Fest. Then at 1 p.m., the shuttle will begin dropping riders off at its normal location at Greenwood Road. The postgame pick-up location, as it has been in past years, will be the location at Greenwood Road. PA announcements and signage will remind shuttle riders of postgame pick-up location.

Tickets can be purchased by calling the Bowl Office at (318) 221-0712 or toll free at 888-414-BOWL (2695) from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, or at www.independencebowl.org. Tickets can also be purchased in person at the Bowl office located at 401 Market Street, Suite 120 on the main floor of the American Tower in downtown Shreveport. Prices are $47 for sideline bench seating and $37 for south end zone seating.

The AdvoCare V100 Independence Bowl is offering several new ticket packages this year. The “ALL-IN Zone” costs $60 and includes one south end zone ticket and an all-inclusive food package consisting of hot dogs, hamburgers, soft drinks, bottled water, and chips.

The “Six Pack Special” costs $310 and includes six Sideline Bench seats, six shuttle tickets, six beers (redeemed at game), and six commemorative koozies also redeemed at the game. The “Bench Warmer 4-Pack” includes four Sideline bench seats, one Silver Lot parking pass, and four tickets to the “Big Game Show” Team Welcome Party and costs just $250, a savings of over $90.

The “Johnny’s Catfish and Seafood Family Fun Pack” includes four south end zone tickets, four hot dogs, four soft drinks, and a Blue Lot parking pass for $175. The ticket package also includes a “Johnny’s Catfish Family Pack,” which is a $20 value included in the price. This saves fans more than $35 off of the regular price.

The Touchdown Club costs $380 and is a ticket package specially designed for larger groups. This package includes 10 south end zone tickets and 10 shuttle tickets.

The Independence Bowl also offers a wonderful ticket donation program, the Super 1 Foods Kid’s Corner Youth Ticket Initiative. The Super 1 Foods Kid’s Corner Youth Ticket Initiative allows businesses and individuals the opportunity to donate 25 or more tickets to an area non-profit organization of their choice, such as the YMCA, Volunteers of America, or Boys and Girls Club. This program is also a great way for youth groups to sit together at the AdvoCare V100 Independence Bowl in a fun and safe environment.

Information on becoming a member of the Independence Bowl Foundation or a corporate sponsor of the bowl is also available at the Bowl Office located on the ground floor of the American Tower in downtown Shreveport at 401 Market Street, Suite 120. Those interested may also contact the Bowl Office at 318.221.0712 or toll free at 888.414.BOWL (2695) or visit the bowl’s official website at www.independencebowl.org.

Stay with 710 KEEL for more from these two teams.

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