2022-23 Cheez-It Citrus Bowl Week Recap

There’s no question which city woke up feelin’ the cheeziest this past holiday season as Orlando played host to both the Cheez-It Bowl (Florida State vs. Oklahoma on Dec. 29) and Cheez-It Citrus Bowl (LSU vs. Purdue on Jan. 2).

Before Team Arrivals

In preparation for double the Cheez-It bowl games, we brought back a familiar face while adding some extra hands to our “Cheez Operations” team. Relive the magic of bowl season and take a stroll down memory lane.

Day 1 – December 27

Both Purdue and LSU arrived in Orlando on the afternoon of Dec. 27 marking the official start of our bowl festivities in town.

The Boilermakers and Tigers closed out their first evening in the City Beautiful with some fun, food, relaxation and fresh cuts at their welcome parties!

Day 2 – December 28

As LSU and Purdue got themselves acquainted in the Sunshine State, the players took to Universal Orlando for some evening fun after a day of practices.

Day 3 – December 30

Players from both teams started their day at Fun Spot America where they spent the morning enjoying rides and attractions with children from the local community. Fun was had by everyone…well, almost everyone.

From go-karts and bumper cars to the 300-foot free fall of the sky coaster, these student-athletes and kids were ready for everything Fun Spot America had to offer!

Day 4 – December 31

The final day of 2022 was a relatively light one for the teams. Several players and coaches — including Super Bowl Champion Drew Brees — met with the media in the morning at the Player/Coordinator Press Conference before heading out to practice.

Later in the day, our communications staff and volunteers hosted our media contingent covering LSU and Purdue for a little get-together to watch the CFP Semifinals and ring in the New Year!

Day 5 – January 1

The penultimate day of bowl week began bright and early with the head coaches press conference. LSU head coach Brian Kelly and Purdue interim head coach Brian Brohm spoke with the media for the final time heading into tomorrow’s matchup.

In the afternoon, both fan bases piled into Pointe Orlando for the official Cheez-It Citrus Bowl Pep Rally where they heard from their head coaches and watched performances from the pep bands, cheerleaders and mascots.

Game Day – January 2

Fans from both schools wasted no time finding their energy on game day with FanFest getting the party started at 9 a.m.

Just four days removed from the Cheez-It Bowl, Camping World Stadium was decked out for the Citrus Bowl including new exterior signage along the stadium and a fresh coat of paint on the turf.

The most notable story surrounding pregame was none other than Ched-Z’s arrival. The six-foot-tall Cheez-It Citrus Bowl mascot entertained fans throughout the game from his celebratory ways and whimsical sideline antics.

The No. 17 LSU Tigers entered the contest coming off of back-to-back conference losses and had only one goal in mind — ending the season on a positive note. To put it simply, they did just that.

The Tigers wasted no time against a shorthanded Boilermaker squad, jumping out to a 35-0 lead at the half and 49-0 heading into the final quarter. LSU put on a clinic on both sides of the ball, breaking numerous Citrus Bowl records including points scored, total yards, margin of victory and longest interception return.

Of course, the icing on the cake was Cheez-It crackers on the head (of LSU head coach Brian Kelly).

Thank you to all members, volunteers and attendees who made this bowl season one for the record books!


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