Dec. 8, 2002
The SEGA Sports Las Vegas Bowl announced today that UCLA (4-4/7-5) of the Pac-10 Conference has accepted a bid to play in the post-season showcase. The Bruins will face the University of New Mexico (5-2/7-6) on Christmas Day in a game that will be televised live on ESPN beginning at 1:30 p.m. (PT).
"We are thrilled to have the opportunity to host a team with the history and tradition of UCLA," said Tina Kunzer-Murphy, SEGA Sports Las Vegas Bowl executive director. "The Bruins are certainly an attractive team on a local and national level, and we're excited about the prospects for Christmas Day. We anticipate the arrival of the teams and fans for the pageantry and camaraderie of the bowl experience under the lights of Las Vegas."
UCLA - making their 24th bowl appearance - finished the year winning three of its last five games. The Bruins will make their fourth bowl appearance under the guidance of head coach Bob Toledo. UCLA's last bowl appearance was the 2000 Sun Bowl.
"I think playing in the SEGA Sports Las Vegas Bowl will be an enjoyable experience for our players," said Toledo. "I have spoken to coaches who have played there and they all had great things to say. We are looking forward to what we feel will be a great time and a nice reward for our players, especially the seniors.
"I am also looking forward to playing against Rocky Long, who was on my staff my first two years at UCLA and who has done a great job at New Mexico."
"We are excited to be going to Las Vegas," said Dan Guerrero, UCLA director of athletics. "We have heard great things regarding the hospitality of the bowl committee and the city and I feel this is a bowl game that our players and our fans will enjoy. We hope that the proximity to Los Angeles will encourage our fans to come cheer for the Bruins and experience the Christmas holiday in a unique environment."
When UCLA and the University of New Mexico arrive for the SEGA Sports Las Vegas Bowl, the players, coaches, administrators and fans will be able to enjoy a complete bowl experience. As part of Bowl Week, the teams will enjoy events at some of the city's most exciting attractions. The event line-up includes a Welcome Reception at the ESPN Zone, the Kickoff Luncheon at the MGM Grand, Show Night in Las Vegas at Blue Man Group, and the Pep Rally and Buffet Bowl at the Golden Nugget/Fremont Street Experience. These activities will be set against the backdrop of Las Vegas, a world-renowned event and resort destination that attracted more than 35 million visitors in 2001.
The 40,000-seat Sam Boyd Stadium will serve as the venue for the SEGA Sports Las Vegas Bowl. Tickets are available now at $10, $30, $50 and $100 and can be reserved by calling the UCLA Central Ticket Office at 310/UCLA-WIN. Additional information about the game can be viewed via at the official SEGA Sports Las Vegas Bowl Web site at www.lvbowl.com.