News With Commentary by TSL Staff

Monday, December 1, 2003
by Will Stewart,

Hokies Headed to the Insight Bowl

Virginia Tech announced Sunday that they have received an invitation to the Insight Bowl in Phoenix Arizona, to be played on December 26th at 8:30 p.m. (ESPN). California newspapers are reporting today that the opponent will be California out of the PAC-10, though the invitation to Cal has not been officially extended.

The matchup pits two teams headed in opposite directions against each other. VT (8-4, 4-3 Big East) has lost four of their last six and struggled to a win over Temple in that stretch, but California (7-6, 5-3 PAC 10) has won four of their last five.

Tech's invitation to the Insight Bowl (the bowl dropped the ".com" from its name last year) comes as a result of ACC bowl bid dominoes falling last week, plus Big East and ACC action on the field over the weekend. The ACC's top four bowl bids were handed out last week, leaving the Continental Tire Bowl and the Humanitarian Bowl to pick from Virginia and Georgia Tech.

Virginia beat Virginia Tech and Georgia Tech lost to Georgia last weekend, dropping GT to 6-6 and elevating UVa to 7-5. The Tire Bowl felt compelled to take Virginia, and due to not wanting a VT/UVA rematch, Pittsburgh, who lost to Miami Saturday, was extended an invitation. This dropped VT to the Insight Bowl.

Cal has an offense that has gelled recently and features three talented, explosive players: QB Aaron Rodgers (2,509 yards, 17 TDs, 5 INTs), tailback Adimchinobe Echemandu (1,161 yards, 12 TDs), and wide receiver Geoff McArthur (85 catches, 1,504 yards, 10 TDs). Cals' biggest victory came Sept. 27, a 34-31 triple-overtime triumph over once-beaten and likely championship game participant USC.

The Insight Bowl has a payout of $750,000 and is played at Bank One Ballpark in Phoenix (capacity 42,915). This will be the 15th Insight Bowl. The bowl game was first formed as the Copper Bowl in 1989 and is under the direction of the Arizona Sports Foundation, which also operates the Fiesta Bowl. will update its Links Page later today with bowl game info, links to Cal web sites, etc.

USA Today's California web page
Insight Bowl Official Web Site


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