“We took off the pads today after a good physical practice yesterday, and the energy was very good,” said A-State interim head coach John Thompson. “We can really see some things that are starting to come together on both sides of the ball where our guys are understanding the Ball State offense and defense. I thought this was maybe our best practice so far.”
The Sun Belt Conference champion Red Wolves will make their third consecutive appearance in the GoDaddy Bowl, facing a 10-win Ball State team from the Mid-American Conference in an ESPN-televised game at 8 p.m. on Jan. 5 at Mobile, Ala.’s Ladd-Peebles Stadium.
Arkansas State, winners in four of its last five regular-season games, will carry a 7-5 overall record into the contest, including a 5-2 league record that gave it a share of the Sun Belt Conference title with Louisiana-Lafayette.
The Red Wolves have won three consecutive Sun Belt championships and hold a 1-1 record in the last two GoDaddy Bowl games, including a 17-13 victory over then-ranked No. 25 Kent State in 2013.
This year’s game will mark the third consecutive year A-State has played an opponent that won at least 10 regular-season games, facing a Ball State squad that holds a 10-2 record and finished runner-up in the MAC’s West Division with a 7-1 league mark.
A-State will practice in Jonesboro again tomorrow at 11:15 a.m., and the team will depart from Centennial Bank Stadium for Mobile on Jan. 1 at noon.
Arkansas State fans are encouraged to help send the three-time defending Sun Belt Conference champion Red Wolves off on New Year’s Day as they depart for Mobile, Ala., to play Ball State in the 2014 GoDaddy Bowl.
The team will be leaving Centennial Bank Stadium at noon on Wednesday, Jan. 1, and Red Wolves fans are asked to gather near the A-State Football Facility beginning at 11:30 a.m. to cheer on the players and coaches as they load the buses to depart for the trip. Fans are also encouraged to line Red Wolf Boulevard all the way to Highway 63, create signs, wear A-State apparel and honk their horns to send off the Red Wolves.
The Arkansas State Athletics Department has partnered with Centennial Bank to provide a special promotion for those planning to attend the official “send off.” Centennial Bank will provide signs for the first 100 fans that stop by their main branch at the corner of Highland and Red Wolf Boulevard between noon-5 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 31.
The team’s flight is expected to arrive in Mobile at approximately 3:30 p.m. on Jan. 1, and the Red Wolves’ official team hotel is the Renaissance Riverview Plaza. A press conference scheduled for 6:30 p.m. that night with both team’s head coaches and key players will be held prior to the GoDaddy Bowl’s Great Southern Wood Team Welcome Reception at Ladd-Peebles Stadium.
The GoDaddy Bowl will host a southern-style shrimp boil immediately followed by a Game Show Night, presented by “The Big Game Show,” to welcome the coaches and players of each Bowl team, administration, both conference commissioners and their support staff, local and national media representatives, local and national corporate sponsors, Mobile City officials, and invited guests.
The Red Wolves will play Mid-American Conference member Ball State in the GoDaddy Bowl, set for an 8 p.m. kickoff on Jan. 5. Bowl tickets are only $45 per ticket when purchased through the A-State?Ticket Office.
Fans can go to AStateRedWolves.com and click on ‘Bowl Game Central’ (astateredwolves.com/bowlgame) to order tickets. The A-State Ticket Office, located at the Convocation Center’s lower red entrance, is also taking walk-up or telephone (870-972-2781) orders.