by Photo courtesy of San Diego State University

San Diego State announced today it has accepted an invitation to play in the Hawaii Bowl Dec. 24 to face Middle Tennessee State in a matchup of 7-5 teams.

This will be the 12th time in 13 seasons the Aztecs will be playing in a bowl. They withdrew from consideration in the shortened 2020 COVID season.

San Diego State coach Brady Hoke said at his regularly scheduled Monday news conference he was excited to have his team play in Hawaii.
"I haven't been to Hawaii in a while. The only times I've been is for football games,  so why not keep the streak going?'' Hoke said. "Playing Middle Tennessee State, they're a good football team offensively. They will play with some tempo.''

Hoke said his team will spend "about six days'' in Hawaii and "come right back'' to San Diego the evening of the game.

This will be the first edition of the Hawaii Bowl to be played at the Clarence T.C. Ching Athletics Complex on the campus of the University of Hawaii. The game was played at Aloha Stadium from 2002-19. The game was canceled in 2020 because of the coronavirus pandemic. The 2021 edition of the game was canceled after Hawaii withdrew due to injuries and COVID 19 issues.

The Aztecs lost to Air Force, 13-3, Saturday to end a three-game winning streak. The Blue Raiders have won four of their last five, including a 33-28 victory over Florida International Saturday.

The Hawaii Bowl will be the first matchup between San Diego State and Middle Tennessee State.

The Aztecs have a 7-8 record in bowl games in the Division I era, including a 38-24 victory over UTSA in the 2021 Frisco Bowl and a 42-7 victory over Cincinnati in the 2015 Hawaii Bowl.

The Blue Raiders have a 3-6 record in bowl games in the Division I era, including a 31-24 victory over Toledo in the 2021 Bahamas Bowl and a 52-35 loss to Hawaii in the 2016 Hawaii Bowl.

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