As expected, the Big Ten has added another West Coast presence to its future bowl rotation.
In a press release sent out Monday, the conference announced that it has reached a six-year agreement with the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl. The San-Francisco-based (for now) game will pit the Big Ten against its Rose Bowl rival the Pac-12.
The agreement runs from the end of the 2014 season through the 2019 season. The game, which had been played at AT&T Park since its inception in 2002, will move to the San Francisco 49ers’ new Santa Clara in the first-year of the agreement.
“The opportunity for the Big Ten Conference to play an annual bowl game in a world-class city like San Francisco, in a state-of-the-art, new NFL stadium, and in an area rich in football tradition appealed to our Directors of Athletics and head coaches,” B1G commissioner Jim Delany said in a statement.
Not only will the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl pit the Big Ten against the Pac-12, it will feature a higher-quality member of the latter league.
Previously, the Fight Hunger game settled for the No. 6 choice from the Pac-12. Starting with the 2014 game, that bowl will have the No. 4 choice from that conference, behind the Rose/Playoff Group, Alamo and Holiday bowls.
A Pac-12 team has played in this postseason game six of the past seven years.
“We are delighted to continue the Pac-12’s relationship with the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl and thrilled to build on our postseason partnership with the Big Ten Conference in the Bay Area,” Delany’s Pac-12 counterpart, Larry Scott, said in a statement.
“Having the opportunity to showcase the two conferences with a quality match-up in the San Francisco 49ers new state-of-the-art stadium is a win-win for our teams and fans.”
In addition to the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl, it’s expected the Holiday Bowl will announce a similar agreement with the Big Ten later today. That bowl would also feature a Big Ten-Pac-12 matchup.
The Big Ten had previously announced a new arrangement with the Pinstripe Bowl. An announcement on the ACC partnering with that bowl is expected to be made Tuesday.