ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – With the New Mexico Bowl less than 10 days away, there are still plenty of questions on where the bowl stands. Over the years attendance has been so-so, and for the second year in a row, the bowl will be played without a title sponsor.
It’s been a rough couple months for the folks organizing the New Mexico
Bowl. Wednesday they had a press luncheon where KRQE News 13 was able to ask some of the hot button questions surrounding the bowl.
“The model is to have a title sponsor. We don’t have one this year and we’re going on as the New Mexico Bowl and we’re in a good place,” New Mexico Bowl Executive Director Jeff Siembieda said.
Even though Siembieda is optimistic about where the bowl stands, they will have to move forward without a title sponsor this year. Back in October, ESPN cut ties with the Albuquerque film production company, “Dreamhouse Productions.” While we don’t know what went wrong, the split came after reports questioning the company’s background.
KRQE News 13 also asked Siembieda numerous times how many people were projected to be in the stands for the upcoming game. He said he didn’t know the exact numbers, but said he would get back to us.
While he admitted it’s a concern, he says the bowl game is about much more.
“There’s a lot of metrics of success. Not just one is going to determine how the game is doing. You look at how the student-athletes are treated. How does it rate on television and how did the local economy do? And did we fill hotels, retail outlets and restaurants? You pretty much check all of those boxes,” Siembieda said.
Last year’s game between North Texas and Utah State had almost 1 million viewers, one of the lowest-rated bowl games of the season. It drew a little more than 25,000 fans, which was slightly lower than the year before.
KRQE News 13 reached out to Siembieda again for ticket sales, but all of those calls went unanswered. The 14th New Mexico Bowl is set for Saturday, Dec. 21. Central Michigan is playing San Diego State.