49ers heading to Bahamas for bowl debut

Pack your bags, and with it your tropical t-shirts.

In its bowl debut, the UNC Charlotte 49ers football squad has accepted an invitation to the Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl on December 20th.

The 49ers, who ended the season on a five-game winning streak, will face Buffalo (7-5).

"We are ecstatic to accept an invitation to play in the Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl," said 49ers head coach Will Healy. "It means so much to me that this group, especially our outstanding seniors — our Gold Standard — will have a chance to play together one more time. To do it in paradise? We couldn't ask for anything more. Nothing will ever change the fact that this team was the first to go to a bowl game in Charlotte Football history. That's incredible, and I am so proud of everyone who worked so hard to make this a reality."

It will be the first matchup between the schools. Most other bowl matchups will be revealed on Dec. 8. There are 40 bowl games for 78 FBS teams, including the College Football Playoff.

The Atlantis Bahamas will be the host resort and the game will be played at 15,000-seat Thomas A. Robinson National Stadium.

"We are extremely excited for our university, our team and our fans to accept an invitation to the Makers Wanted Bahamas Bowl," said 49ers Director of Athletics Mike Hill. "We couldn't imagine a better setting for our first-ever bowl game. This team has demonstrated incredible resilience and earned this opportunity. Niner Nation can't wait to head to the Bahamas!"

The 49ers went 7-5 this season under first-year head coach Will Healy. "As proud as we are to be in this position after five consecutive wins, we aren't satisfied," Healy added. "We've been saying for weeks that our goal is to win a bowl game, not just to qualify for one."