Home for The Holidays: First Responder Bowl Homecoming For Several Aggies

Dec 13, 2022, 4:31 PM | Updated: 4:48 pm


Byron Vaughns celebrates making a play against UConn at Maverik Stadium on Saturday, August 27, 2022.

LOGAN, Utah – 13 players and four Utah State coaches have a little bit extra on the line as the Aggies prepare for the First Responder Bowl against Memphis.

The SERVPRO First Responders Bowl is scheduled to take place on Tuesday, December 27 in Dallas, TX. Kickoff is scheduled for 1:15 p.m. (MST).

“Excited to get the news to be going to Dallas… and love the matchup against Memphis,” Anderson said following the bowl announcement.

RELATED: Alfred Edwards Leads Nine Aggies Receiving All-Conference Honors

“There are a lot of positives about this particular game for us and this matchup. But mainly (excited) about the opportunity itself, to be bowl eligible two years in a row and to add to a wonderful bowl history here at Utah State over the last 15 years. And the possibility to get win number seven.”

Logan, By Way Of Texas

The Aggies will be in Texas over the Christmas holiday, giving several members of their traveling party an opportunity to be close to home for the holidays.

Offensively quarterbacks Logan Bonner (Rowlett, TX), Levi Williams (Canyon Lake, TX) & Bishop Davenport (Spring, TX) are joined by running backs Calvin Tyler Jr. (Beaumont, TX), Robert Briggs (Bellville, TX), and Bailee Davenport (Spring, TX). Transfer portal running back John Gentry is from Houston, TX.

RELATED: Utah State Football In Heyday Of Unflattering Bowl History

Defensive tackles Tavian Coleman (Humble , TX) and Poukesi Vakauta (Euless, TX) are joined by defensive end Byron Vaughns (Fort Worth, TX). Defensive backs Ajani Carter (Houston, TX), Jaden Smith (Richmond, TX) and inside linebacker Josh Williams each call the Lone Star State home.

USU head coach Blake Anderson played his college football with Sam Houston State and spoke of the chance to see family over the holidays.

“My mom doesn’t travel very well anymore. My brother is ill is not in a position of travel. So for me personally, it’s an opportunity to get to see them during the holidays. So there’s a lot of a lot of pluses.”

RELATED: Utah State Football Completes 2023 Schedule

Defensive coordinator Ephraim Banda, running backs coach Chuckie Keeton, and defensive analyst Ethan Morris each have ties to Texas as well.

“You start talking about the holidays and the opportunity to have a ton of your family  for a lot of these guys are actually from that area,” Anderson said. “Just a super cool feeling to be able to go home and finish up the season.”

First Responder Bowl vs. Memphis Tigers

The Aggies are 3-4 all-time against Memphis. This will be the first meeting between these two programs since 1977 when USU lost 31-26 in Memphis. This will be the second neutral sight meeting as Utah State defeated Memphis 28-14 in a game played in Salt Lake City, UT in 1967.

RELATED: Utah State To Face Memphis In First Responder Bowl

Every Utah State football game can be heard on the KSL Sports Zone with Scott Garrard and former Aggie quarterback Kevin White on the call.

Coverage of Utah State University Athletics from KSL Sports can be found here. 

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Home for The Holidays: First Responder Bowl Homecoming For Several Aggies