IRVING, Texas (OrlandoSportsFoundation.com) – Orlando Sports Foundation CEO and AutoNation Cure Bowl Executive Director Alan Gooch attended the Conference USA Kickoff at the Star in Irvine, Texas and caught up with 2017 bowl representative Western Kentucky.
The Hilltoppers are preparing for the 2018 campaign and were selected to finish fifth in the C-USA East Division.
Last year, WKU posted a 6-6 mark during the regular season to earn an at-large bid to the AutoNation Cure Bowl, where it fell to Sun Belt member Georgia State in an exciting battle, 27-17.
Adversity was present for the Hilltoppers throughout the season. Assistant coach Geoff Dartt was diagnosed and treated for brain cancer during the season.
“For our players and team to go to a bowl game that represented something more significant than the game, certainly meant a lot,” said WKU head coach Mike Sanford. “There are countless stories about breast cancer, which is what the Cure Bowl stands for and is a great cause.”
The bowl’s cause was also important to coach Sanford, who had a grandmother that fought breast cancer and has been a survivor for almost 25 years.
In addition to the cause, WKU was thankful for the opportunity to stay at Universal Orlando and participate in all the events surrounding bowl week.
“It was a light out location for us,” coach Sanford said. “Our team was able to stay at the Loews Portofino Bay right at Universal City Walk and next to the theme parks [Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure]. Our players had a blast and really, bowl games are a reward for their hard work. There was just so much to do and it was all packed into an incredible week.”
The next event for Orlando Sports Foundation is Scout School on Aug. 23. It’s been 10 years since the inaugural Strike Out Breast Cancer event, so be sure to register and join us on Aug. 26 for an afternoon of food and fun at Boardwalk Bowl.