ECU to face Boston College in Military Bowl on Dec. 27

ECU Pirates

WASHINGTON – The Military Bowl Foundation on Sunday announced Boston College will play East Carolina in the 2021 Military Bowl presented by Peraton, benefiting the USO on Monday, December 27 at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium. Kickoff is at 2:30 p.m. ET and the game will be televised on ESPN.

(ECU Sports Information photo)

“We can’t wait for a great Bowl Week in Washington, D.C. and another sensational Military Bowl in Annapolis,” Military Bowl Foundation President & Executive Director Steve Beck said. “East Carolina has enjoyed a terrific season and is back in college football’s postseason. And we are excited to welcome Boston College for its first Military Bowl appearance, with a roster that features so many players with ties to this area.”

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Official Military Bowl Site

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This will be the first meeting ever between the schools.

Boston College (6-6) has 13 players from the National Capital Region. Associate head coach Aazaar Abdur-Rahim is a Washington native and founded the football program at Friendship Collegiate Academy in Northeast Washington. The Eagles had 12 players receive All-ACC honors this season, including first-team All-ACC selections offensive linemen Alec Lindstrom and Zion Johnson, who is from Bowie, Md.

East Carolina (7-5) enjoyed its most successful regular season in seven years, highlighted by a recent four-game winning streak that included a thrilling 38-35 win at Navy. East Carolina also features a high-powered offense, led by quarterback Holton Ahlers, who has passed for 3,126 yards and 18 touchdowns, while running back Keaton Mitchell has rushed for 1,131 yards and nine touchdowns. Defensively, the Pirates have surrendered just 26.3 points per game in 2021, their fewest since 2015.

This will be the Pirates’ second appearance in the Military Bowl. East Carolina lost to Maryland, 51-20, in the 2010 game, which set a Bowl attendance record with 38,062 fans.

The Pirates also have several ties to the Washington area, including six players from the region. Coach Mike Houston was honored as the DC Touchdown Club College Coach of the Year in 2017 after leading James Madison to the Football Championship Subdivision national championship.

Military Bowl tickets are on sale now. Proceeds from the Bowl benefit the USO and Patriot Point, the Military Bowl Foundation’s retreat for wounded, ill and injured service members, their families and caregivers.


From The Associated Press

East Carolina (7-5, American Athletic) vs Boston College (6-6, ACC), Dec. 27, 2:30 p.m. ET

LOCATION: Annapolis, Maryland


East Carolina: RB Keaton Mitchell is a first-team all-conference pick who led the league with 1,132 rushing yards and in all-purpose yards per game (115.83).

Boston College: OL Zion Johnson and Alex Lindstrom are first-team All-ACC blockers. Both are graduate students. Johnson is from Bowie, Maryland.


East Carolina: Coach Mike Houston has agreed to the terms of a contract running through the 2026 season. It’s the Pirates’ first winning season and bowl berth since 2014. Had a four-game win streak snapped 35-13 by playoff-bound Cincinnati in the regular-season finale.

Boston College: Dropped its last two games, 26-23 to Florida State and 41-10 to Wake Forest. The game marks a homecoming of sorts for 13 players from Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C. Associate head coach Aazaar Abdul-Rahim also is a native of Washington.


First meeting


East Carolina: Second appearance in the Military Bowl, following a 51-20 loss to Maryland in the 2010 game. First bowl game since 2014.

Boston College: Making its 29th bowl appearance, having gone 14-13 in the postseason. Lost 38-6 to Cincinnati in the Birmingham Bowl on Jan. 2, 2020.

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