DURHAM, N.C. – Duke University will play in its fifth bowl game in the past six seasons by meeting Northern Illinois University in the Quick Lane Bowl on Tuesday, December 26 in Detroit, Mich.
Kickoff at Ford Field is set for 5:15 p.m., and the game will be televised live nationally on ESPN. The meeting on the gridiron between the Blue Devils (6-6) and the Huskies (8-4) will mark the first in series history.
Blue Devil fans are encouraged to purchase tickets from the Duke allotment on GoDuke.com.
“We are honored and delighted to be chosen to participate in the Quick Lane Bowl,” Duke head coach David Cutcliffe said. “I could not be happier for a group of young men who had their backs against the wall heading into the final two weeks of the season, fought through that adversity, and now will reap the benefits of their hard work and commitment to this program.
“Obviously we are at the end of the semester, so we’ll handle our academic business with exams, and then we’ll get back to the practice field to prepare for a very well-coached Northern Illinois team,” Cutcliffe continued. “Congratulations to Coach Carey and the entire Huskie team on a terrific season; we have great respect for what the Northern Illinois program stands for. At Duke, we take great pride in representing the Atlantic Coast Conference, and we’ll embrace the challenge of competing against an excellent Mid-American Conference squad.
“And lastly, special thanks to Brad Michaels, Danny Jaroshewich and the entire Quick Lane Bowl staff for this event. We know the experience our student-athletes will have will be incredible.”
Cutcliffe, who is 5-4 all-time as a head coach in bowl games, will participate in the 27th bowl game of his coaching career.
Offensively, the Blue Devils are led by redshirt sophomore quarterback Daniel Jones, junior wideout T.J. Rahming and the one-two backfield punch of redshirt freshman Brittain Brown and senior Shaun Wilson. Jones has thrown for 2,439 yards and 12 touchdowns while rushing for an additional six scores while Rahming, an honorable mention All-ACC pick, leads Duke with 61 receptions for 733 yards and one touchdown. Wilson and Brown have combined for 1,403 ground yards and 11 touchdowns, running behind an offensive front anchored by third team All-ACC center Austin Davis and fellow redshirt senior tackles Gabe Brandner and Evan Lisle.
On defense, a pair of first team All-ACC selections in cornerback Mark Gilbert and linebacker Joe Giles-Harris spearhead a unit which ranks third in the league in total defense and fourth in scoring defense. Gilbert has amassed 31 tackles, six interceptions and 13 pass breakups while Giles-Harris leads Duke with 117 total tackles while pacing all ACC linebackers with 15.0 tackles for loss. Redshirt senior Mike Ramsay has enjoyed his finest season as a Blue Devil with 42 tackles, 9.5 tackles for loss, 5.5 sacks and eight quarterback pressures and earned third team All-ACC honors for his efforts.
The Blue Devils secured bowl eligibility with victories over Georgia Tech and Wake Forest in the final two weeks of the regular season, overcoming double digit deficits in both contests. In the 43-20 victory over the Yellow Jackets, Brown rushed for 116 yards as Duke amassed 319 yards of ground production and scored the game’s final 30 points. One week later, the Blue Devils outscored the Demon Deacons by a 28-6 count over the final 33 minutes of the game for a 31-23 triumph as Jones threw for a career-high 346 yards and two touchdowns while adding the game-winning score with a one-yard plunge early in the fourth period.
With an all-time record of 4-8, Duke will make its 13th bowl game appearance. The Blue Devils also have appeared in the Rose Bowl (1938 & 1941 seasons), Sugar Bowl (1944), Orange Bowl (1954 & 1957), Cotton Bowl (1960), All American Bowl (1989), Hall of Fame Bowl (1994), Belk Bowl (2012) Chick-fil-A Bowl (2013), Hyundai Sun Bowl (2014) and Pinstripe Bowl (2015).
Duke – All-Time Bowl Results
Rose Bowl – January 2, 1939 – Southern California 7, Duke 3
Rose Bowl – January 1, 1942 – Oregon State 20, Duke 16
Sugar Bowl – January 1, 1945 – Duke 29, Alabama 26
Orange Bowl – January 1, 1955 – Duke 34, Nebraska 7
Orange Bowl – January 1, 1958 – Oklahoma 48, Duke 21
Cotton Bowl – January 2, 1961 – Duke 7, Arkansas 6
All American Bowl – December 28, 1989 – Texas Tech 49, Duke 21
Hall of Fame Bowl – January 2, 1995 – Wisconsin 34, Duke 20
Belk Bowl – December 27, 2012 – Cincinnati 48, Duke 34
Chick-fil-A Bowl – December 31, 2013 – Texas A&M 52, Duke 48
Hyundai Sun Bowl – December 27, 2014 – Arizona State 36, Duke 31
Pinstripe Bowl – December 26, 2015 – Duke 44, Indiana 41 (OT)