Sun Bowl Stadium

Sun Bowl Stadium

 Sun Bowl Drive, El Paso, Texas, United States. When teams from the ACC and Pac-12 meet on the field on December 26, 2015, it will mark the 82nd edition of one of the oldest traditions in college football history, the Hyundai Sun Bowl.Since the first Sun Bowl played on January 1, 1935, as a fundraising event for a local service club, the game has grown into El Paso’s number one national attraction. With its picturesque stadium nestled between two mountains it has become a piece of the Southwest and a lesson in history.Ara Parseghian played here and so did Merlin Olsen. Through the years, the Sun Bowl has hosted some of the greats of the game – Tony Dorsett, Barry Sanders, Don Maynard, James Lofton, Carson Palmer, LaDainian Tomlinson and more recently Jonathan Stewart, Toby Gerhart, Ryan Broyles, Victor Butler and Joey Harrington.For the last 81 years, the Sun Bowl has featured the color and pageantry that is college football. Seven of the top 10 winningest programs of all-time have participated in the Sun Bowl and 30 college programs that have won national championships in the past have appeared as well. Through the years, 38 Sun Bowls have been decided by a touchdown or less, including five of the last 10 games. Through its first 81 years, the Hyundai Sun Bowl has featured 78 different programs, more than any other bowl in the nation.The gridiron generals have loomed large on the sideline. Sammy Baugh was here, but so was Tom Osborne, Barry Switzer, Bob Devaney, Grant Teaff and Don Nehlen. Hall of Famers from across the nation have been to Far West Texas in late December and early January. Alabama’s Nick Saban has been here and so has Texas’ Mack Brown.The Sun Bowl has also produced some exciting and somewhat strange moments as well. Who can forget the infamous “Fog Bowl” of 1974, when a freak winter storm the night before the game left frost on the field? The morning warmth of the sun created a rising steam from the field during the first half, thus giving it its name – “The Fog Bowl.”In 2006, Oregon State’s two-point conversion with 23 seconds left proved to be the deciding moment. It will forever live in Sun Bowl lore. In 2009 we saw Oklahoma and Stanford in a see-saw battle, which the Sooners won thanks to the play of Ryan Broyles. The speedy wideout became the first player in Sun Bowl history to be named the C.M. Hendricks Most Valuable Player and the John H. Folmer Most Valuable Special Teams Player. There are moments that capture the nation’s imagination and the Sun Bowl has had a few.There was the time Lee Corso and Buddy (Burt) Reynolds played in the same Florida State backfield in 1955. Or there was the time that No. 17 George Washington in 1957 upset Texas Western (now UTEP). Then there were the eight times that the Sun Bowl has eclipsed 50,000 fans – Texas vs. North Carolina (50,612); Michigan State vs. USC (50,562); Arizona vs. Georgia Tech (50,203); Maryland vs. Tennessee (50,126); Arizona State vs. Purdue (51,288); Northwestern vs. UCLA (50,426); Stanford vs. Oklahoma (53,713) and Notre Dame vs. Miami (54,021), which established a new stadium record. www.sunbowl.org An amazing place to throw some disc and fly. The next best thing to playing Ultimate on this luscious field was filming my favorite El Pasoan's!

Pat Clifford

451 15/03/2015 1,965
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