Rockets, Falcons Ready For Battle of I-75
Old and familiar foes meet once again when the Rockets host the Falcons this Saturday (7:00 p.m. - ESPN3). But the 77th renewal of the Battle of I-75 has a new twist: for the first time since the rivalry began in 1919, Bowling Green will serve as Toledo's home opener. It is also the earliest in the season the two schools have met and just the second time the game has been played in September.
No matter the date, this rivalry stacks up as one of the country's best. Just 25 miles separate the two schools, who will be playing for the Battle of I-75 Trophy for the first time (the rivalry was given that new title last year but the trophy was not completed in time for the game).
Toledo is coming off a thrilling 34-31 victory over Wyoming. Junior quarterback Terrance Owens threw for 300 yards and four touchdowns, adding a career-high 74 yards on the ground. The Rocket defense stopped Wyoming on downs with just 42 seconds remaining to preserve the victory.
Bowling Green (1-1) is coming off a 21-13 victory over Idaho last week. The Falcons are led by junior quarterback Matt Schilz, who completed 24-of-35 passes for 283 yards vs. the Vandals.
Back Story on the Bowling Green Game
- This will be the 77th meeting between the two schools, with BGSU holding a 39-33-4 edge in the series. Toledo has won the last two games, including a 28-21 road victory last year.
- The Battle of I-75 Trophy will make its debut this year. It replaces the previous Peace Pipe Trophy that was retired following the 2010 season in deference to Native-American culture. The I-75 trophy was slated to begin last year, but was not completed in time for the game. The Rockets claimed the trophy and hold current possession of it in their trophy case.
- Toledo's coaching staff has two connections to Bowling Green. Head coach Matt Campbell served as a graduate assistant there in 2003-04 and then returned as an assistant in 2007-08. Assistant coach Stan Watson was a Falcon GA in 2008 and assistant coach in 2009-11.
- After employing both of his quarterbacks equally in the Arizona game, head coach Matt Campbell went all the way with junior Terrance Owens in Toledo's win over Wyoming. Owens and senior Austin Dantin each played in seven series in the season-opening loss at Arizona. Campbell said the two players are still competing in practice this week.