January 02, 2009

Branding Bowl Games: Gator Bowl

The Gator Bowl, formally named Konica Minolta Gator Bowl after its present sponsor, is the sixth oldest college bowl game and was first played in 1946 between Wake Forest and South Carolina. It was in 1955 when the Gator Bowl became the first ever to be nationally televised coast-to-coast. Over the years the sponsorships, much like others bowls, have switched hands several times. Other Gator sponsorships have included Toyota, Outback, and Mazda.

I found out a great deal of information about the Gator Bowl’s history but nothing about how the actual “Gator” name came to be. Of course, we can’t forget about the University of Florida who named its mascot the “Gator” in 1911, long before the Gator Bowl came into existence. I think we can safely assume the name came from the region’s historical and continually growing alligator population.

By: Kelly Wilson

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