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SAN FRANCISCO — The BYU Cougars will meet the Washington Huskies in the 2013 Fight Hunger Bowl game, it was announced today by Bowl Executive Director and co-founder Gary Cavalli.
The two teams, both sporting 8-4 season records, will square off on Friday, December 27 at AT&T Park in downtown San Francisco. The game is scheduled for a 6:30 p.m. PST/9:30 p.m. EST kickoff and will be shown to a national audience by ESPN. This year's kickoff marks a return to prime time for the first time since Nevada played Boston College in the 2010 postseason.
"What an exciting opportunity for the Cougars to travel to the great city of San Francisco for the Fight Hunger Bowl and to play Washington from the Pac-12," said BYU athletics director Tom Holmoe. "Our coaches, players and fans will love the holiday season in San Francisco. It's great to be able to add to the wonderful bowl tradition that is long associated with BYU football."
The teams have split eight previous meetings. Their last contest was in 2010 with BYU earning a 23-17 victory at LaVell Edwards Stadium. This will be the first time the two programs have met in a bowl game.
BYU's arduous schedule was highlighted by home victories over nationally ranked Texas and Boise State. The 37-20 home triumph Oct. 25 over Broncos elevated the Cougars to bowl eligibility for the ninth straight season. BYU put together a five-game winning streak midseason that featured wins over bowl-bound teams in Boise State, Middle Tennesse, Georgia Tech, Utah State and Houston. The Cougars completed their regular season with a come-from-behind victory at Nevada Nov. 30.
"We are looking forward to the opportunity to play the University of Washington in the Fight Hunger Bowl in San Francisco," said BYU head coach Bronco Mendenhall. "I'm proud of our team. We are excited to be in the postseason for the ninth straight year with a chance to grow our program facing an outstanding football program."
Washington also finished 8-4 after negotiating its way through what's arguably the most difficult conference schedule in college football, the Pac-12. Highlights included a season-opening victory over Boise State that christened the newly-renovated Husky Stadium; a four-game win streak to begin the campaign; and four victories in their last five contests. Washington concluded the season by throttling Oregon State 69-27 on the road and followed up with an Apple Cup victory over Washington State 27-17. The 8-4 finish was Washington's best since 2001.
"We're very excited to have been selected to play in the Fight Hunger Bowl. The game will be a new experience for our program and the many Husky fans in the Bay Area, and I am confident it will be a great one. Interim coach Marques Tuiasosopo will have the team ready to compete against a great opponent," said Washington Director of Athletics Scott Woodward.
"I'm humbled and so honored," Marques Tuiasosopo said when named Huskies interim coach. "It's a great and incredible honor to lead my alma mater in this game. We still have a lot to play for."
This year's contest will be the finale at AT&T Park, the Bowl's home since its 2002 inception. Beginning in 2014, the game will be played at Levi's Stadium, the soon-to-be-completed, state-of-the-art stadium in Santa Clara, CA that will house the NFL's San Francisco 49ers.