Cincinnati lands spot in Belk Bowl

Cincinnati announced on Sunday it has accepted a bid to play in the Belk Bowl, to be held Dec. 27 at Charlotte's Bank of America Stadium.

Cincinnati will play the Duke Blue Devils, who at 6-6 are making their first bowl appearance since after the 1994 season.

The Bearcats concluded their regular season with a 9-3 record and earned a share of first place in the Big East with Saturday's 34-17 win at Connecticut. Cincinnati finished 5-2 in conference play.

"Cincinnati has played very well this season and we are excited to host the co-champions of the Big East Conference," said Belk Bowl executive director Will Webb. "We feel that the Bearcats are a very strong team that should provide a good matchup in Charlotte for its opponent. We look forward to hosting Cincinnati and their fans for the 2012 Belk Bowl and all the surrounding events."

"We are pleased to accept a bid to the Belk Bowl," said Bearcats head coach Butch Jones. "We are excited by the prospect of a great number of Cincinnati fans being the team behind the team and helping us celebrate the holiday season in Charlotte."

This marks the sixth time in the last seven seasons in which Cincinnati will be heading to a bowl. The Bearcats went to BCS games in both 2008 (Orange) and 2009 (Sugar) and returned to the postseason last year with a 31-24 triumph over Vanderbilt in the Liberty Bowl.