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Penn State TicketCity Bowl News and Notes

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UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Following Sunday's bowl announcement, take a look at some noteworthy news pertaining to Penn State and the TicketCity Bowl.

Top 25 Bowl Matchup


The TicketCity Bowl clash between No. 22 Penn State and No. 19 Houston is one of just four non-BCS bowl games between two Top 25 teams.  Three of the four games include Big Ten teams.  The list includes the Capital One Bowl (No. 20 Nebraska vs. No. 9 South Carolina), Outback Bowl (No. 16 Georgia vs. No. 17 Michigan State) and the Cotton Bowl (No. 6 Arkansas vs. No. 8 Kansas State).

Penn State vs. Conference USA
The Nittany Lions will be playing their 16th game against a current member of Conference USA when they meet Houston.  Penn State is 14-0-1 all-time against members of Conference USA.  The list includes East Carolina (2-0), Houston (2-0), Marshall (2-0), Rice (2-0), SMU (1-0-1), Southern Miss (2-0), Tulane (1-0) and UCF (2-0).  Penn State has not played Memphis, Tulsa, UAB or UTEP.

Houston vs. Big Ten
The Houston Cougars own a 4-8 mark against current members of the Big Ten.  Houston's most recent contest against a Big Ten team came on Sept. 6, 2003 at Michigan (L, 50-3).  The record is as follows: Illinois (1-1), Michigan (0-3), Michigan State (1-0), Minnesota (1-1), Nebraska (1-0), Ohio State (0-1) and Penn State (0-2).  Houston has never played Indiana, Iowa, Northwestern, Purdue or Wisconsin.

Lions to Wear Home Jerseys
Penn State will be the home team for the TicketCity Bowl and will be wearing blue jerseys.  The Nittany Lions will be on the west sideline of the Cotton Bowl Stadium.  Houston will be the away team clad in white jerseys.  Both teams are required to patch the TicketCity Bowl logo on their jerseys.

Kickoff the New Year
Penn State and Houston will be the first college football kickoff in 2012.  With the NFL regular season set to wrap up on Jan. 1, all of the traditional bowl games normally played on New Year's Day will kickoff on Jan. 2.  The TicketCity Bowl will be an 11:06 a.m. CT kickoff on ESPNU.

Cotton Bowl Stadium
The Cotton Bowl Stadium is second only to the Rose Bowl Stadium in hosting more collegiate bowl games than any other football stadium in history.  The Cotton Bowl hosted the first Cotton Bowl Classic on New Year's Day in 1937 between TCU and Marquette.  In 1960, the Cotton Bowl Stadium became the home field for the Dallas Cowboys, at the time an expansion team.  The Cotton Bowl has hosted anything from Elvis Presley concert (1956) to FIFA World Cup matches.  In 2008, the stadium underwent a major renovation project, including new seating, turf, facilities, concessions, restrooms, HD video boards and a new sound system.  The stadium currently has a seating capacity of 92,158.

The City of Dallas
The Nittany Lions have not played a game in Dallas since Jan. 1, 1975 at the Cotton Bowl against Baylor (W, 41-20).  Dallas is the ninth-largest city and part of the fourth-largest metropolitan area in the nation.  It covers approximately 343 square miles and has a population of 1,299,543.  DFW International Airport is the world's third busiest airport, offering nearly 1,750 flights per day.

Thursday Team Announcement Event
An official announcement of the TicketCity Bowl matchup will take place at The Owner's Box at the Omni Dallas Hotel on Thursday.  Head coaches and athletic directors of Penn State and Houston will speak at the event. will be traveling with the Penn State staff to the event to provide coverage from Dallas. 


Bowl Practice Begins Friday

The Nittany Lions are scheduled to begin practicing for the bowl game on Friday and Saturday in Happy Valley.  Teams are allowed 15 bowl practices under NCAA rules.  Friday is the final day of classes for the fall semester.  Final exams begin on Monday.

Follow Media Specialist Tony Mancuso on Twitter @GoPSUTony

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