One Player, One Contributor and a Founder to be Honored this December

LAS VEGAS (Sept. 29, 2016) – The Las Vegas Bowl will help commemorate reaching the 25-year milestone by inducting a
class of three individuals into its Hall of Fame this December. The group, which was announced Thursday by the bowl’s Executive Director John Saccenti, will be made up of Marshawn Lynch (Player), Brent Musburger (Contributor) and Rob Dondero (Founding Father).

The Hall of Fame inductees will be honored at the annual Kickoff Luncheon on Dec. 16 as well as at the game the following afternoon. The 25th edition of the Las Vegas Bowl, which is owned by ESPN Events, a division of ESPN, will be played Saturday, Dec. 17, 2016, at 12:30 p.m. PT (3:30 p.m. ET) at Sam Boyd Stadium and be televised live on ABC.

Tickets for Las Vegas XXV, which will feature the top choice from the Mountain West against the sixth pick from the Pac-12 Conference, range in price from $35-$250, depending on location. Visit to purchase or for more information. Last year’s edition saw No. 22 Utah defeat BYU 35-28 in front of a crowd of 42,213, which marked the eighth sellout in the last 11 years.

Dondero (R&R Partners, Inc., executive) helped make the game a reality a quarter-century ago and then see tremendous growth under his current leadership as president of the bowl’s committee; Lynch (California running back) was named Most Valuable Player in his 2005 appearance; and legendary broadcaster Musburger is a longtime supporter of the event while calling six editions of the bowl for ESPN and ABC.

“The 25th year is a special milestone for our game to reach and we have a special class of inductees to help us celebrate,” said Saccenti. “Rob Dondero has been here from the start and helped the bowl become the annual must-see event each December. Marshawn Lynch is one of the most accomplished players in our bowl’s history and Brent Musburger is a giant in the business who has been a proponent of this city and this bowl game for a long time.”

The Las Vegas Bowl Hall of Fame welcomes a class every five years but there is no time requirement to be eligible for induction. While there is no minimum or maximum amount of honorees in a class, inductees fall under the following categories: Player, Coach, Founding Father or Contributor.

The inaugural class featured Steven Jackson (Oregon State running back), Anthony Calvillo (Utah State quarterback), John Robinson (UNLV head coach) and Rossi Ralenkotter (founding father).

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ESPN Events 

ESPN Events, a division of ESPN, owns and operates a large portfolio of collegiate sporting events worldwide. The roster includes three Labor Day weekend college football games; 13 college bowl games, 10 college basketball events and two college award shows, which accounts for approximately 250-plus hours of programming, reaches almost 64 million viewers and attracts over 700,000 attendees each year. With satellite offices in Albuquerque, Birmingham, Boca Raton, Boise, Dallas-Fort Worth, Honolulu, Las Vegas, Montgomery and St. Petersburg, ESPN Events builds relationships with conferences, schools and local communities, as well as providing unique experiences for teams and fans.

ESPN Events also manages the Big 12 Corporate Partner Program.

Collegiate Football

AdvoCare Texas Kickoff (Houston); AdvoCare V100 Texas Bowl (Houston);Air Force Reserve Celebration Bowl (Atlanta); Birmingham Bowl (Alabama);Boca Raton Bowl (Florida); Camping World Kickoff (Orlando, Fla.); Famous Idaho Potato Bowl (Boise); Gildan New Mexico Bowl (Albuquerque); Hawai’i Bowl (Honolulu); Las Vegas Bowl (Nevada); Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl (Dallas-Fort Worth); MEAC/SWAC Challenge (Orlando, Fla.); Popeyes Bahamas Bowl (Nassau); Raycom Media Camellia Bowl (Montgomery, Ala.);St. Petersburg Bowl (Florida); The Home Depot College Football Awards(Atlanta) and Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas Bowl (Dallas-Fort Worth)

Collegiate Basketball

AdvoCare Invitational (Walt Disney World Resort near Orlando, Fla.); Armed Forces Classic (Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Honolulu); DIRECTV Wooden Legacy (Orange County, Calif.); College Basketball Awards Presented by Wendy’s (Los Angeles); Gildan Charleston Classic (South Carolina); Hawaiian Airlines Diamond Head Classic (Honolulu); Jimmy V Men’s  Classic presented by Corona (New York City); Jimmy V Women’s Classic presented by Corona (Uncasville, Conn.); NIT Season Tip-Off(Brooklyn, N.Y.); Puerto Rico Tip-Off (San Juan) and State Farm Champions Classic (New York City)

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Las Vegas Bowl Media Contact: Mark Wallington at 702-528-6291 or



Running Back, University of California

Las Vegas Bowl XIV (Dec. 22, 2005)

A native of the Bay Area, Lynch helped hometown Cal to a 35-28 victory over BYU in the 2005 Las Vegas Bowl while turning in one of the top offensive performances in the event’s history … Earned MVP honors after carrying the ball 24 times for 194 yards and three touchdowns vs. the Cougars … Also caught two passes for 27 yards … The 194 yards is the third-most in a Las Vegas Bowl and he is one of just six players to rush for at least three TDs in a game, which is one short of the bowl’s record of four set by two players … Opened the scoring with a three-yard run, gave Cal a 14-7 lead with a 23-yard scoring jaunt and then opened the scoring in the third quarter with a 35-yard touchdown … The following season he was a first team All-America selection and the 2006 Pac-10 Offensive Player of the Year … Selected in the first round (12th Overall) of the 2007 NFL Draft by the Buffalo Bills … Played nine total seasons in the NFL, including 2010-15 for the Seattle Seahawks … A five-time NFL Pro Bowl honoree (2008, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014) who twice led the NFL in touchdowns (2013, 2014) … Won Super Bowl XLVIII with the Seahawks when he finished with 39 yards and a rushing TD in the blowout victory over the Denver Broncos … Retired after rushing for 9,112 yards and 74 touchdowns as a pro.


Play-By-Play Announcer, ESPN & ABC

Las Vegas Bowls X, XV, XIX, XXI, XXIII, XXIV

One of the most recognized and prominent voices in the history of sports television … Serves as a host and play-by-play commentator for multiple sports across ESPN and ABC … Has called six Las Vegas Bowls, which is the second-most for any play-by-play announcer … Primarily works college football and basketball game telecasts, highlighted by SEC Network beginning in 2014 and on ESPN’s Big 12 Big Monday college basketball games since the 2009-10 season … Previously called the Little League World Series from 2000-11 … Joined ABC in May 1990 after 15 years as CBS Sports’ primary host and play-by-play commentator, appearing on The NFL Today, the NCAA Final Four, tennis’ U.S. Open, the NBA and the Masters … Also hosted Super Bowl XXV’s pre-game and halftime shows as well as the 1991 Pan Am Games from Cuba … Has also been heard on ESPN Radio since 1992 … The Billings, Montana, native attended Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism before joining the Chicago American … His broadcast career began in 1968 as sports director at WBBM-TV in Chicago before moving to Los Angeles as co-anchor of the nightly news at KNXT-TV.


Founding Father

Born and raised in Las Vegas, Dondero would become one of his hometown’s biggest champions and currently serves as Executive Vice President of R&R Partners, Inc. … With a decades-long track record in the tourism industry, Dondero has had a hand in marketing world-class sporting events through his R&R Events division, including helping bring a college bowl game to town by securing the slot from the defunct California Raisin Bowl and moving the game to Southern Nevada in 1992 … Helped the game grow into a major economic boost for Southern Nevada each December while featuring teams from the Pac-12 Conference and Mountain West … Longtime President of the Las Vegas Bowl Committee.