Independence Bowl Foundation
The Shreveport-Bossier City Sports Foundation took over the operations of the Independence Bowl in 1980, and since that time, the Independence Bowl has enjoyed its greatest years.
Now known as the Independence Bowl Foundation, this organization consists of a number of volunteer committees, which carry out all functions of the Foundation, drawing upon its more than 475 members.
Also made up from the Foundation membership is a group of committees which put on the Independence Bowl.
Each year, a newly appointed Bowl Chairman and Vice-Chairman, along with the Executive Director and her staff, oversee the various committees, working closely with each committee chairperson to see that this 39-year-old bowl is a success.
In 1995, under the leadership of the Sports Foundation, the Independence Bowl entered into an agreement with the Southeastern Conference. Then in 1998, bowl officials reached an agreement with the Big 12, closing in both sides of the Independence Bowl for the first time in the game’s then 22-year history. The Independence Bowl recently reached agreements with both the Big 12 and SEC, extending their partnerships through 2009.
In 2010, officials with the AdvoCare V100 Independence Bowl announced new partnerships with the Atlantic Coast Conference and Mountain West Conference, matching up the 7th pick from the ACC against the 3rd pick from the MWC.
In the summer of 2012, Independence Bowl officials announced a renewed partnership with the SEC, matching up the 10th pick of the SEC with the 7th pick from the ACC in 2012 and 2013. The Independence Bowl extended it's primary partnerships with the SEC and ACC through the 2019 season, and also signed secondary agreements with Conference USA and the American Athletic Conference through 2019.
Past Title Sponsors
Poulan/Weed Eater announced in the Spring of 1997 that it would no longer be the title sponsor after an eight year relationship. Independence Bowl officials set out on a ten-month search for a new title sponsor. This search came to a successful end when Sanford signed on through the year 2000.
On January 10, 2001, MainStay, a wholly-owned subsidiary of New York Life, signed on as the newest title sponsor of the post-season game. That agreement extended through 2003.
In 2009, AdvoCare took over as the game's fifth title sponsor, a partnership which lasted for five years.
Hall of Honor
The Independence Bowl Foundation also hosted the Hall of Honor Induction Banquet and Golf Classic. This event honors new additions to the Hall of Honor.
Inductees are former players and coaches who participated in the Independence Bowl and went on to achieve personal and professional success both on and off the field. Inductees include such greats as Bruce Smith and Brett Favre, and most recently Coaches Frank Beamer of Virginia Tech and David Cutcliffe of Ole Miss, former LSU standout Eddie Kennison, and former Louisville and Chicago Bears standout Otis Wilson.
The 2006 Class of Inductees included former LSU head coach Gerry DiNardo, former LSU All-American and World Champion Pittsburgh Steeler, Alan Faneca (presently with the NY Jets), and former Ole Miss and New Orleans Saints standout Deuce McAllister. In 2008 the Hall was expanded to include coaches Nick Saban and Terry Hoeppner, and former LSU quarterback Herb Tyler.
The Independence Bowl is now 39-years strong and the Independence Bowl Foundation is one of the reasons for that successful endurance.
In 2001, City of Shreveport completed a $32 million renovation project on Independence Stadium, including a new scoreboard and DiamondVision screen.
The only area of the stadium which had not been addressed prior to the 2002 game was the press box. Once again the Foundation made the commitment to renovate the Independence Stadium press box, and in just over two months a complete transformation had taken place, bringing the facility into the 21st century.
For more information about the Independence Bowl Foundation call 318-221-0712 or toll free 888-414-BOWL.