San Diego To Host Two Bowl Games

Arizona State will take on Texas in Pacific Life Holiday Bowl Dec. 27, while Utah will face Navy in the San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl Dec. 20, both at Qualcomm Stadium, organizers announced Sunday.

The Holiday Bowl matches the second-place team from the Pacific-10 against a team from the Big 12 conference. Arizona State (10-2) was the conference co-champion, but lost out on the Rose Bowl berth because of its 44-24 loss to USC Nov. 22 gave the Trojans the advantage on the tiebreaker.

"We are tremendously excited to be playing in the Pacific Life Holiday Bowl," Sun Devils coach Dennis Erickson said. "Our players will receive a positive bowl experience in San Diego."

Texas was 9-3 in the regular season and finished second in the Big 12 South Division.

"We're looking forward to getting out to San Diego and preparing for another great Pacific Life Holiday Bowl," Longhorns coach Mack Brown said. "There's great weather, wonderful events and most importantly friendly, helpful and enthusiastic folks around all of the time. It will be a great experience for our guys."

Arizona State will be making its third appearance in the Holiday Bowl and Texas its fourth. The Sun Devils lost to Arkansas, 18-17, in 1985, and to Kansas State, 34-27, in 2002. The Longhorns defeated Washington, 47-43, in 2001, and lost to Oregon, 35-30, in 2000 and to Washington State, 28-20, in 2003.

This will be the first game between the two schools.

The Poinsettia Bowl matches a team from the Mountain West Conference against an at-large opponent.

Utah tied for third in the conference with a 5-3 record in conference play and was 8-4 overall, including a seven-game winning streak that was snapped with a 17-10 loss to Brigham Young in its regular-season finale Nov. 24.

"We're excited for the opportunity to play in the Poinsettia Bowl," Utah coach Kyle Whittingham said. "We have several players, as well as a large alumni base, from the Southern California area. It's also a great destination for our fans from Utah. We always have a large fan contingent at our regular season games in Qualcomm Stadium and we anticipate an even bigger turnout for the bowl game."

Navy accepted a Poinsettia Bowl berth April 11 and qualified for the game by winning its sixth game Nov. 10.

The Midshipmen will enter the Poinsettia Bowl with an 8-4 record and four-game winning streak, that began with a 46-44 triple-overtime victory over Notre Dame Nov. 3, that ended an NCAA-record 43-game losing streak to the Fighting Irish.

Navy defeated Colorado State, 51-30, in the inaugural Poinsettia Bowl in 2005.

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