BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (AP) - The Western Kentucky Hilltoppers have been motivated since being snubbed at the end of last season.
As 1 of 72 teams eligible for a bowl, Western Kentucky was the one team with a winning record at 7-1 not to receive a bid. Instead, they stayed home and poured their energy into offseason workouts.
Coach Willie Taggart says they didn't win the Sun Belt Conference or get to the bowl game they wanted. He says that's motivation by itself.
Taggart enters his third season at his alma mater with much of that team back this season. He has 16 starters, including nine on offense, but he has to replace running back Bobby Rainey, who ran for 1,695 yards with 13 touchdowns rushing.
Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.