The Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl is an annual postseason college football bowl game that was inaugurated in 2003 as PlainsCapital Fort Worth Bowl reflecting the sponsorship of PlainsCapital Bank. In 2005, the game was without corporate sponsorship. In 2006, Fort Worth based Bell Helicopter Textron took over sponsorship, and thus it became officially known as the Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl; Alltel was originally to assume the title sponsorship of the game with its wireless division, but the deal fell through. The contest is one of six bowls produced by ESPN Regional Television and has been televised annually on ESPN since its inception. Armed Forces Insurance is the official Insurance Partner of the Armed Forces Bowl and has sponsored the Great American Patriot Award, presented at halftime at the Bowl, since 2008.
The game is traditionally played in the 44,008-seat Amon G. Carter Stadium on the campus of Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, Texas, featuring a team from Mountain West Conference and a team from Conference USA. In addition, both of the D-I independent military academies are eligible to participate if either the MWC or C-USA cannot provide a bowl-eligible team. On April 27, 2011 it was announced that if Brigham Young University becomes bowl eligible and not playing in a BCS game, it was also eligible to participate.