- No. 18 Louisville (10-2, 5-2) will face No. 4 Florida (11-1, 7-1) in the 2013 Allstate Sugar Bowl on Wednesday, Jan. 2, 2013, at Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, La. The Cardinals will be making their first appearance in the Sugar Bowl and their second BCS appearance in school history, while Florida is making the trip to a BCS game for the seventh time in school history. Louisville defeated Wake Forest 24-13 in the 2007 Orange Bowl in the school’s last BCS appearance. The Gators are 5-1 in BCS bowls and are making their first appearance in the BCS since a 51-24 victory over Cincinnati in the 2010 Sugar Bowl. The Gators are making their ninth appearance in the Sugar Bowl.
- The Cardinals clinched their BIG EAST title and a trip to the Sugar Bowl with a 20-17 victory at Rutgers. Redshirt freshman John Wallace booted a 29-yard field goal with 1:41 remaining in the game to give the Cardinals their 10th win of the year. The Gators closed the regular season with an impressive 37-26 win at Florida State.
- The game will be televised on ESPN with Sean McDonough on play-by-play, Chris Spielman as the color commentator and Quint Kessenich as the sideline reporter. Paul Rogers, Joe Tronzo and Doug Ormay will handle the action on the Louisville Radio Network.
Louisville Head Coach Charlie Strong
Louisville head coach Charlie Strong (Central Arkansas ‘83) is in his third season with the Cardinals. Named the school’s 21st head coach on Dec. 9, 2009 Strong has compiled a 24-14 record at Louisville while leading the Cardinals to back-to-back BIG EAST titles and three-straight bowl games. Strong led the Cardinals to consecutive 7-6 records in 2010 and 2011 before his 10-2 season this year. Strong came to Louisville after 14 years at Florida where he won a pair of national titles in 2006 and 2008. He had four different stints with the Gators. He served on the staff from 2003-09; 1991-94; 1988-89; and 1983. He was the defensive coordinator at Florida from 2003-09.
Florida Head Coach Will Muschamp
Florida head coach Will Muschamp (Georgia ‘94) is 18-7 in his second season as head coach at Florida. He guided the Gators to a 7-6 mark in his first year and 11-1 in 2012. Muschamp came to UF after being the coach-in-waiting and defensive coordinator at the University of Texas since November 2008. He owns 16 years of coaching experience with him, including 12 years in the SEC, eight as a coach and four as a player at Georgia. Muschamp has also served as defensive coordinator at Auburn (2006-07) and LSU (2002-04); he was LSU’s linebackers coach in 2001) and was a finalist for the 2007 Broyles Award as the nation’s top assistant coach.
This will be the third meeting between the Cardinals and Gators and the first in a bowl game. Florida is 2-0 all-time against Louisville in the series that dates back to 1980. Florida defeated Louisville 13-0 in Gainesville in
1980 and 31-17 at Florida in 1992.