2008 Poinsettia - Profiles, History & More
Boise State RB Ian Johnson
Boise State RB Ian Johnson
Posted Dec 19, 2008

Player profiles, team history, the breakout players, the best bowl moments and more for the 2008 San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl.

2008 Poinsettia Bowl Profiles

Boise State (12-0) vs. TCU (10-2)

Dec. 23, 8:00 p.m. ET, ESPN

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By Richard Cirminiello

Poinsettia Bowl History
2007 - Utah 35 ... Navy 32
2006TCU 37 ... Northern Illinois 7

2005 Navy 51 ... Colorado State 30

Best Horned Frog Bowl Moment: Generations before the current Frogs were even out of diapers, TCU was winning Southwest and national titles in the 1930s with All-Americans, such as Sammy Baugh and Davey O’Brien. O’Brien’s 1938 TCU team capped off a perfect season with a 15-7 Sugar Bowl victory over then- No. 5 Carnegie Tech.

Best Bronco Bowl Moment: Is there really any debate? Boise State arguably delivered the most memorable and thrilling performance in bowl history in the 2007 Fiesta Bowl, a 43-42 upset of Oklahoma in overtime. A frequent participant in the local Humanitarian Bowl, the Broncos took their inventive brand of football on the road, winning on a Statue of Liberty two-pointer that’ll forever be a part of sports lore.

The Last Time You'll See ...

TCU: LB Jason Phillips. Pegged as a fullback when he arrived from Waller (Tex.) High School, Phillips will go down as one of the best linebackers to ever play in Fort Worth. A four-time All-Mountain West selection and the heart and soul of this defense, he’s a relentless run stopper with more than 300 tackles on the résumé.  

Boise State: RB Ian Johnson. Yeah, Johnson sort of peaked as a sophomore, capping a 1,700-yard season with a few unforgettable moments in the 2007 Fiesta Bowl. However, even with a steady decline in production and more carries for Jeremy Avery, he’s still an iconoclastic figure in these parts and an irreplaceable team leader. Johnson will be counted on to pick up some tough yards against a TCU D that leads the nation against the run.

Breakout Player ...

TCU: WR Jimmy Young. Sure, Young has already broken out with 54 catches for 926 yards and five touchdowns, but he still takes a backseat on a team dominated by its defense. That could change next year, when a big chunk of that D will be applying for NFL jobs. Young has good size to go along with the deep speed to get behind the last line of defense.

Boise State: S George Iloka. Iloka is raw, but he also has the combination of size, speed, and athletic ability that’s off the charts for a safety. At 6-3 and 202 pounds, the true freshman gets tremendous elevation on jump balls and can go stride-for-stride with most receivers in the WAC. He’s laid the foundation for a tremendous future in Boise with 55 tackles, five tackles for loss, four picks, and 10 passes defended.

Best Non-Game Event
For fans during bowl week, the San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl will be staging the first ever march through the historical Gaslamp district of the city.  Both bands and spirit squads will march from each end of the historic downtown area and meet in the middle for the Battle of the Bands.  For the players, the annual Grand Prix is very popular. Helmets will be strapped on the players—and coaches—and a grand prix-style karting race will be staged.

Player Gift Package
Players will receive a Tommy Hilfiger watch, an 8 gig iPOD touch, a Best Buy certificate, and a hooded sweatshirt from Sports Tek

Charitable Component
The Make-A-Wish Foundation of San Diego is the primary beneficiary of the Poinsettia Bowl. One dollar per ticket goes to the charity, and Wish Kids serve in roles, such as Honorary Captains, flipping the coin, getting the tee after kickoff, and participating in the National Anthem. The bowl also brings 600 wish representatives, including kids and families, to the game gratis. They all participate in a pregame show parade honoring the charity. 

How Success is Measured
There are many benchmarks by which the bowl committee measures success.  First, it aims to provide a considerable economic impact on the San Diego region. The more fans that travel to San Diego for each game the better. Second, it wants to see large crowds at each game. Third, it expects those fans to enjoy not only the game, but the entire experience, including pregame and halftime shows, and non-game entertainment. And finally, it’s important to the committee that the student-athletes have enjoyable bowl week experiences that will provide memories to last a lifetime. The Poinsettia Bowl staff puts a lot of energy into providing them with a first-class San Diego bowl week.

MVP of the Bowl
There are so many people that play invaluable roles in the production of the game, it’s impossible to choose a single person. The bowl is fortunate to have a dedicated and loyal volunteer corps. It has 30 active board members, 120 committee members, and several hundred other volunteers. It's because of these selfless people that the bowl is so highly regarded throughout college football. The committee believes it has the hardest working corps of volunteers among the postseason games.

Impact to the Community
The mission of the bowl game is to generate tourism, exposure, economic benefit, and civic pride for San Diego and it's citizens by presenting the nation's most entertaining bowl games and festivals of events.  The impact the game has on the San Diego community is considerable. Last year, for example, the games—the Holiday and Poinsettia Bowls—generated an economic benefit of more than $40 million. San Diegans are enthusiastic about both games.

Role of Volunteers
There are only nine individuals who are paid to put on two games in San Diego, the Poinsettia and Holiday Bowl. They rely heavily on volunteers to make these games and festivities function on a year-round basis.  They produce, sell, and market their calendar of events, such as outrigger canoe races, 3-on-3 basketball tournament, golf tournament, wiener dog races, hole-in-one tournament, and more. They truly will play a role in every function associated with the organization. 


TCU Bowl History (10-13-1)
2007 Texas TCU 20, Houston 13
2006 Poinsettia TCU 37, No Illinois 7
2005 Houston TCU 27, Iowa State 24
2003 Fort Worth Boise St 34, TCU 31
2002 Liberty TCU 17, Colorado St 3
2001 Galleryfurniture Texas A&M 28, TCU 9
2000 Mobile Alabama So Miss 28, TCU 21
1999 Mobile Alabama TCU 28, East Carolina 14
1998 Sun TCU 28, USC 19
1994 Independence Virginia 20, TCU 10
1984 Bluebonnet West Virginia 31, TCU 14
1965 Sun UTEP 13, TCU 12
1959 Bluebonnet Clemson 23, TCU 7
1958 Cotton TCU 0, Air Force 0
1956 Cotton TCU 28, Syracuse 27
1955 Cotton Mississippi 14, TCU 13
1951 Cotton Kentucky 20, TCU 7
1947 Delta Mississippi 13, TCU 9
1944 Cotton Oklahoma State 34, TCU 0
1941 Orange Georgia 40, TCU 26
1938 Sugar TCU 15, Carnegie Mellon 7
1936 Cotton TCU 16, Marquette 6
1935 Sugar TCU 3, LSU 2
1920 Fort Worth Classic Centre 63, TCU 7
Boise State Bowl History (6-3)
2007 Hawaii East Carolina 41, Boise State 38
2006 Fiesta Boise State 43, Oklahoma 42 OT
2005 MPC Computers Boston College 27, Boise State 21
2004 Liberty Louisville 44, Boise State 40
2003 Fort Worth Boise State 34, TCU 31
2002 Humanitarian Boise State 34, Iowa State 16
2000 Humanitarian Boise State 38, Texas-El Paso 23
1999 Humanitarian Boise State 34, Louisville 31
1971 Camellia Boise State 32, Chico State 28