The Sun Bowl is one of the oldest bowl games in college football, dating back to 1935. The first-ever game involved the El Paso All-Stars taking on Ranger, which was apparently a university in Texas. With a ton of history and strong conference ties to the Pac-12 and ACC, the game tends to be a good one on New Year's Eve.
Interestingly enough, the Sun Bowl is one of only two bowls not shown on ESPN's networks -- you can catch it on CBS.
Date and time, ET: Tuesday, Dec. 31, 2013, at 2 p.m. ET
TV channel: CBS
Location: El Paso, Texas
Stadium: Sun Bowl Stadium; 51,500 capacity
Tickets: Find available seats here.
Last year's score: Georgia Tech 21 - USC 7
Last year's attendance: 47,922
Last year's TV rating: 2.7 Nielsen
Last year's payout for each school: Approximately $2.1 million
Team with the most all-time appearances: Texas Tech; nine
Team with the most all-time wins: UTEP; five
UCLA (9-3, 6-3 Pac-12)
The Bruins didn’t make a return trip to the Pac-12 title game in 2013, but the season was nonetheless a successful one for second-year coach Jim Mora Jr., who can lead UCLA to its first 10-win season since 2005.
UCLA benefited once again from a strong year from quarterback Brett Hundley, who threw for 2,845 yards during the regular season and ran for 587 more; he accounted for 31 touchdowns. The stability he’s brought to the QB position is one reason why Mora has quickly been able to turn a program stuck in neutral into a conference contender.
Last bowl game: 2012 Holiday Bowl vs. Baylor, 49-26 loss
Last year without a bowl: 2010
All-time bowl record: 14-17-1
Head coach's bowl record: Jim Mora, 0-1
Virginia Tech (8-4, 5-3 ACC)
Virginia Tech ended up winning more games, but this season ended feeling a bit like a repeat of 2012. There were some confusing results, because Logan Thomas’ performances were again erratic. The offense, in general, wasn’t very good. The difference for this Hokies team was the defense, which proved to be one of the nation’s best.
That defense, which allowed a paltry 4.3 yards per play during the regular season, is what makes the Hokies a tough out even if Thomas isn’t having a great day. Tech may need to rely a bit more heavily on Thomas now that leading rusher Trey Edmunds has been sidelined by a broken leg, so who knows how that’s gonna go.
Last bowl game: 2012 Russell Athletic Bowl vs. Rutgers, 13-10 win
Last year without a bowl: 1992
All-time bowl record: 10-16
Head coach's bowl record: Frank Beamer, 9-11