North Texas and Army to face off in the Zaxby's Heart of Dallas Bowl | Heart of Dallas

North Texas and Army to face off in the Zaxby's Heart of Dallas Bowl

Team Announcement

The North Texas Mean Green and Army West Point Black Knights have officially accepted invitations to play in the 2016 Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas Bowl, Brant Ringler, the bowl’s executive director, announced Sunday.

The seventh edition of the Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas Bowl will be played Tuesday, Dec. 27 at Cotton Bowl Stadium. Kickoff is set for 11 a.m. CT (noon ET) and the contest will be televised by ESPN.

“We are excited to announce that North Texas and Army will be playing in the Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas Bowl this year,” Ringler said. “Congratulations to both the Mean Green and Black Knights for their outstanding seasons. This promises to be a thrilling matchup at historic Cotton Bowl Stadium. Fans from both programs are in for a special time in Dallas.”

North Texas (5-7, 3-5 Conference USA) is headed to a bowl game for the ninth time ever. The Mean Green will become the first school ever to participate in the Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas Bowl twice. North Texas defeated UNLV, 36-14, in the game following the 2013 season.

Seth Littrell is in his first season as the head coach of the Mean Green. He took over a team that finished the 2015 campaign with a 1-11 mark and has guided the team to just its second bowl appearance since 2005.

Army owns a 6-5 record prior to its annual showdown with Navy on Saturday. The Black Knights are headed to a bowl game for the sixth time ever. The team’s last trip came in 2010, when it played in the Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl in Fort Worth, Texas.

Jeff Monken is in his third season at Army, and has helped the team to its most wins since the squad picked up seven victories in 2010. The Black Knights won their first three games of the year, including a win at American Athletic Conference champion Temple.

The two teams faced off earlier this year, with North Texas picking up a 35-18 victory at West Point.

This year’s Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas Bowl will again be televised nationally on ESPN, and will be aired in both English and Spanish on the Heart of Dallas Bowl Radio Network.

Tickets range from $25 for a general admission seat, to $75 for a reserved lower bowl seat and $125 for a mid-field chair back seat. Tickets can be purchased through the bowl’s web site at With the Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas Bowl announcing on September 11, 2014 a new mission to honor first responders through football complimentary tickets are available to first responders and their families via signup at the bowls website - These tickets are made possible by generous underwriting from North Texas businesses and bowl corporate partners.

Owned and operated by ESPN Events, the Zaxby's Heart of Dallas Bowl has been supported by a myriad of Dallas-based corporations and organizations including the Dallas Convention and Visitors Bureau, City of Dallas, Omni Hotel Dallas and Hyatt Regency Dallas. 

The Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas Bowl is one of 13 bowl games owned and operated by ESPN Events, a division of ESPN.


Enjoying great chicken in an atmosphere where you could be yourself? That’s what childhood friends Zach McLeroy and Tony Townley wanted to achieve when they founded Zaxby’s back in the 1990s. Many years and locations later, Zaxby’s is still delivering on that promise: to serve delicious chicken fingers, wings, sandwiches and salads in a fun, offbeat atmosphere where we welcome customers as friends. As of December 2016, Zaxby’s has grown to more than 800 locations in 17 states and is headquartered in Athens, Georgia. For more information, visit or

ESPN Events 

ESPN Events, a division of ESPN, owns and operates a large portfolio of collegiate sporting events worldwide. The roster includes three Labor Day weekend college football games; FCS opening-weekend game; 13 college bowl games, 11 college basketball events and two college award shows, which accounts for approximately 250-plus hours of programming, reaches almost 64 million viewers and attracts over 700,000 attendees each year. With satellite offices in Albuquerque, Birmingham, Boca Raton, Boise, Dallas-Fort Worth, Honolulu, Las Vegas, Montgomery and St. Petersburg, ESPN Events builds relationships with conferences, schools and local communities, as well as providing unique experiences for teams and fans.

ESPN Events also manages the Big 12 Corporate Partner Program.

Collegiate Football

AdvoCare Texas Kickoff (Houston); AdvoCare V100 Texas Bowl (Houston); Air Force Reserve Celebration Bowl (Atlanta); Birmingham Bowl (Alabama); Boca Raton Bowl (Florida); Camping World Kickoff (Orlando, Fla.); Famous Idaho Potato Bowl (Boise); Gildan New Mexico Bowl (Albuquerque); Hawai’i Bowl (Honolulu); Las Vegas Bowl (Nevada); Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl (Dallas-Fort Worth); MEAC/SWAC Challenge (Baton Rouge, La.); Montgomery Kickoff Classic (Montgomery, Ala.); Popeyes Bahamas Bowl (Nassau); Raycom Media Camellia Bowl (Montgomery, Ala.); St. Petersburg Bowl (Florida); The Home Depot College Football Awards (Atlanta) and Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas Bowl (Dallas-Fort Worth)

Collegiate Basketball

AdvoCare Invitational (Walt Disney World Resort near Orlando, Fla.); College Basketball Awards Presented by Wendy’s (Los Angeles); Gildan Charleston Classic (South Carolina); Hawaiian Airlines Diamond Head Classic (Honolulu); Jimmy V Men’s  Classic presented by Corona (New York City); Jimmy V Women’s Classic presented by Corona (Uncasville, Conn.); NIT Season Tip-Off (Brooklyn, N.Y.); PK80 (Portland, Ore.); State Farm Armed Forces Classic (Honolulu); State Farm Champions Classic (New York City); Tire Pros Invitational (Orlando, Fla.) and Wooden Legacy (Orange County, Calif.)

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