TOLEDO, OH - The battle for the Peace Pipe will be renewed for the 75th time when Bowling Green takes the 25-mile drive up I-75 to the Glass Bowl to square off with the Rockets on Wednesday, Nov. 17 (8:00 p.m. on ESPN2).
Toledo (6-4, 5-1 MAC) has more at stake than just Northwest Ohio bragging rights. The Rockets are one of five Mid-American Conference schools in the hunt for a bowl berth, so a win over the Falcons is vital for improving UT's chances to receive an invitation.
The Rockets had a three-game winning streak come to an end with a 65-30 loss to Northern Illinois in DeKalb on Nov. 9. In a showdown for first place in the MAC's West Division, NIU racked up 422 yards rushing to run away from UT. Junior RB Adonis Thomas twice brought Toledo to within 19 points in the second half with a pair of TD runs, but the Rockets could never slow down the Huskies' offense. Thomas finished with a career-high 152 yards on just 10 carries. Redshirt freshman QB Terrance Owens, subbing for an injured Austin Dantin, completed 18-of-38 passes for 186 yards and two TDs. Toledo will try to shake off the effects of the loss and get ready for a contest with its arch-rival in the Battle for the Peace Pipe.
Bowling Green (2-8, 1-5 MAC) may be better than its record. Four of its eight losses have been by three points or fewer, including a 24-21 defeat to Miami on Nov. 10. The RedHawks kicked the game-winning field goal as time expired. BGSU has a pass-oriented offense that has been able to put points on the board. Redshirt freshman QB Matt Schilz ranks 12th in the nation with 22.5 completions per game. Schilz averages 215.2 passing yards per game and has completed 60.2 percent of his passes. His favorite target is junior WR Kamar Jorden, who ranks third in the country in receptions per game (8.0), 13th in total receiving yards (920) and 14th in receiving yards per game (92.0).
Notes for the Bowling Green Game
HISTORY OF THE PEACE PIPE
Toledo and Bowling Green will battle for possession of the Peace Pipe, a tradition in the rivalry since 1980. The Peace Pipe tradition began in 1948 as a token of goodwill with the student newspaper from the winning school keeping the pipe (which, legend has it, was actually smoked at halftime by students from both schools) until the renewal of the tradition the following basketball season. Unfortunately, the tradition came to an abrupt end in 1969 when an unidentified person stole the pipe from its resting place in the offices. The thief was never caught, nor was the pipe ever recovered. The tradition was reinstated in 1980 for football with a miniature peace pipe replica resting atop a trophy created by Frank Kralik, a former UT football player, as an award for the winner of the annual gridiron battle between the Rockets and the Falcons. The Peace Pipe recently made the list of Top 100 College Football Traditions by www.LostLetterman.com.
MAC WEST DIVISION UPDATE
Following the loss at Northern Illinois on Nov. 9, Toledo is now 5-1 and in second place in the MAC West Division, a game behind Northern Illinois at 6-0. To represent the West Division at the MAC Championship Game on Dec. 3, Toledo would have to win its final two games vs. BGSU and Central Michigan, and NIU would have to lose its final two at Ball State and Eastern Michigan. Toledo and NIU could finish in a tie at 7-1 or 6-2, but the Huskies would advance to the title game due to their victory over UT. If Toledo finishes with a 7-1 league record, it would be UT's best league mark since 2004 (also 7-1). The Rockets have already clinched second place in the West, their highest finish since they were West co-champions in 2005.
- This will be the 75th meeting between Toledo and Bowling Green, with BGSU leading the series, 39-31-4. The Falcons have won three straight in the series. Toledo's last win was a 31-21 decision in 2006. UT is 18-17-2 in the Glass Bowl vs. its arch-rival.
- This is the first time that Toledo and Bowling Green will not play each other in the regular-season finale since 1999. Prior to 2000, the two schools played each other in the final regular-season game only once (1986).
- For the second straight season, Toledo will face its arch-rival without its starting quarterback. Senior Aaron Opelt missed last year's game due to injury. He was replaced by freshman Austin Dantin, who completed 23-of-38 passes for 326 yards and two TDs.
- Toledo's victory over EMU on Oct. 30 gave the Rockets six wins and makes them bowl-eligible for the first time since 2005.
- Toledo is tied for third in the nation in interceptions (16), tied for third in the nation in turnovers forced (26) and tied for ninth in turnover margin (+1.0).