COLLEGE STATION, Texas – The destination for the first bowl game of the Jimbo Fisher era at Texas A&M will be the TaxSlayer Gator Bowl at TIAA Bank Field in Jacksonville, Fla., where the No. 19-ranked Aggies will face off against North Carolina State of the Atlantic Coast Conference on New Year’s Eve. Kickoff for the game is slated for 7:30 p.m. ET / 6:30 p.m. CT and the game will be televised by ESPN.
"We are very excited to be facing a very good North Carolina State team in a New Year’s Eve bowl game," Texas A&M Head Football Coach Jimbo Fisher said. "The Gator Bowl is a first-class event run by a first-class organization and the city is a great destination. I’m certain the 12th Man will enjoy its time in Florida."
Texas A&M Director of Athletics Scott Woodward said, “We are proud and excited to continue the 2018 season in the TaxSlayer Gator Bowl. It is one of college football's most prestigious postseason games, and is run by an experienced, first-class organization. On behalf of Coach Fisher, our team, and our fans, we are looking forward to the chance to visit Jacksonville to take on the North Carolina State Wolfpack. NC State has an excellent football team and the game should be an exciting challenge on a national venue in a great setting.”
It will be the first-ever meeting between Texas A&M and NC State on the gridiron. It will be Texas A&M’s second appearance in the Gator Bowl. Paul “Bear” Bryant’s final game as the Aggies’ head coach was a 3-0 loss to Tennessee in the 1957 Gator Bowl on Dec. 28, 1957.
“North Carolina State has a very good team and we are looking forward to the challenge. We will have our work cut out for us,” Fisher said.
Texas A&M Season Notables:
· Texas A&M finished the 2018 regular season with an 8-4 overall record and as the runner-up in the rugged SEC West with a 5-3 conference record.
· It was the Aggies’ highest conference finish since joining the elite league in 2012.
· Texas A&M enters the bowl game with a three-game winning streak.
· The Aggies faced nine bowl-eligible teams in 2018 and posted a 5-4 record in those matchups.
· Texas A&M was 2-2 against teams ranked in the Associated Press Top 25 with wins over then-No. 13 Kentucky and then-No. 8 LSU.
· The Aggies also had a win over UAB, which was ranked No. 25 in the Amway Coaches Poll at the time and went on to win the Conference USA Championship Game.
Texas A&M Bowl Game Notables:
· Texas A&M's invitation to the 2018 TaxSlayer Gator Bowl marks the 40th bowl game in program history.
· The Aggies’ 40 bowl game appearances rank as the 18th-most among college football programs.
· Texas A&M’s 17 bowl victories rank as the 21st-most among FBS programs.
· It is the 10th straight season with a bowl game appearance for the Aggies, which is a school record (Next longest streak is five seasons – 1989-93 and 1997-2001).
· The Aggies’ 10-year streak of bowl appearances is the 10th-longest among FBS programs.
· The 10-year streak is the longest of any FBS school in the state of Texas (Next longest is the University of Houston with six straight).
· Jimbo Fisher’s postseason record as a head coach is 5-2 (all at Florida State).
For general and ticket information, go to Texas A&M’s “Bowl Central” site at: 12thMan.com/gatorbowl.