Jon Johnson File Photo/Gila Herald: The Eastern Arizona College Gila Monsters will travel to Perkinston, Miss. to play Jones College in the Mississippi Bowl on Sunday, Dec. 2.
By Jon Johnson
THATCHER – After becoming Western States Football League Champions by knocking off perennial powerhouse Snow College on Nov. 17, 24-17 the Eastern Arizona College Gila Monsters earned an invitation to play in the Mississippi Bowl on Sunday, Dec. 2, starting at 2 p.m. in A.L. May Memorial Stadium, at Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College in Perkinston, Miss. It is the 11th annual Mississippi Bowl.
The No. 7 Gila Monsters (9-2) will do battle with the No. 5 Jones College Bobcats (9-2), of Ellisville, Miss. This is the only NJCAA bowl game to feature two top-10 teams.
Tickets to the game can be purchased here with adult tickets going for $10, student $7 and chairs with a back for $20.
EAC hopes to fare better than previous WSFL teams have in Mississippi bowl games as Arizona Western lost twice to East Mississippi in 2009 and 2017. Both times East Mississippi just squeaked out a win by 3 points.
Jones lost to No. 1 East Mississippi last weekend, 19-14. According to a post on the Mississippi Bowl website, the Bobcats won the South Division title and average 377.6 yards per game in team offense.
Conversely, the Gila Monsters have the third-ranked defense in the country at 268.8 yards, according to the post.
This will be the first Mississippi Bowl game appearance for both EAC and Jones and maybe the final game for the Gila Monsters as the college debates continuing the football program. With Maricopa schools and Pima Community College not playing football next year, the only teams currently left in the conference are EAC, Arizona Western, and Snow. You can read more about the football situation here from a report early this year.
EAC will have a symposium regarding the future of football Dec. 6 at the Gerald L. Hoopes Activity Center, starting at 5 p.m.