2012 BBVA Compass Bowl

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The 2012 BBVA Compass Bowl was played on Saturday, January 7, 2012, with the SMU Mustangs (7-5) of Conference USA defeating the Pitt Panthers (6-6) of the Big East by a score of 28-6.

This was the 6th Birmingham Bowl at Legion Field, and the second of four named for primary sponsor BBVA Compass.

Southern Methodist rolled to a 21-0 first quarter lead and held on to give coach June Jones his 100th victory. The Mustangs defense allowed Pitt only 10 yards on the ground. The MVP of the game was SMU receiver Darius Johnson who had seven catches for 120 yards, including a 50-yard touchdown strike. SMU freshman running back Jared Williams suffered a fractured leg in the fourth quarter.

Both schools are changing conferences in 2012, with Pitt moving to the Atlantic Coast Conference and SMU to the Big East. The matchup was given some extra intrigue from Arizona State University, which had hired Jones to fill their head coaching vacancy before rescinding their offer and giving it to Pitt coach Todd Graham. The Panthers were coached in the game by former defensive coordinator Keith Patterson.

The announced attendance for the game was 29,726, with both schools returning a large portion of their 10,000-seat allotments and free passes handed out to local schools, scout groups, and veterans.

Former Florida State University football coach Bobby Bowden delivered the keynote at the FCA breakfast on Thursday January 5, after which the teams toured Children's Hospital and the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute. In the evening, the teams were treated to a performance by Roy Wood Jr at the Comedy Club Stardome. On Friday January 6 Vince Papal delivered the keynote for the Monday Morning Quarterback Club luncheon, where Al Del Greco was presented with the Golden Flake Legend of Birmingham Award. The street festival and pep rally that afternoon featured country singer David Nail. After the pep rally the teams were treated to Dreamland BBQ and bowling at Vestavia Bowl.

Birmingham Bowl
Site: Legion Field
Names: Papajohns.com Bowl (2006-2010), BBVA Compass Bowl (2011-2014), Birmingham Bowl (2015)
By year: 2006, 2007, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, Jan. 2015, Dec. 2015

References

  • Solomon, Jon (November 29, 2011) "SEC won't be in Birmingham's BBVA Compass Bowl, could be replaced by C-USA." The Birmingham News
  • Solomon, Jon (January 5, 2012 "Low Pitt and SMU ticket sales equal more free BBVA Compass Bowl tickets." The Birmingham News
  • MacDonald, John A. (January 6, 2012) "BBVA Compass Bowl fans party on Birmingham streets waiting for game." The Birmingham News
  • Segrest, Doug (January 7, 2012) "BBVA Compass Bowl: SMU's Darius Johnson leads Mustangs past Pitt." The Birmingham News