Buffs in Houston Bowl

Less than 24 hours after losing to <!--Default NodeId For Oklahoma is 369,2004--><A HREF=http://oklahoma.Scout.com>Oklahoma</A> in the Big 12 title game, the <!--Default NodeId For Colorado is 363,2004--><A HREF=http://colorado.Scout.com>Colorado</A> Buffaloes accepted an offer to play in the <!--Default For Houston is to ignore-->Houston Bowl on Dec. 29. The Buffs will face <!--Default NodeId For UTEP is 649,2004--><A HREF=http://utep.Scout.com>UTEP</A>.

While speculation earlier in the week had Colorado playing Georgia Tech in the Champs Bowl, some jostling in the BCS poll Sunday changed that scenario. Texas jumped over California in the latest BCS poll, putting the Longhorns at No. 4 and ensuring them a spot in the BCS' Rose Bowl. Fellow Big 12 team Oklahoma will play in the national title game in the Orange Bowl, giving the Big 12 two BCS bowl bids, and moving Colorado to the Houston Bowl slot.

One positive for the Buffs is that the Buffs recruit Houston, and have a handful of players on their roster from the Lone Star state.

"A lot of our players are from the Houston and Dallas areas, and it's a great opportunity for parents to be able to come to this game," head coach Gary Barnett said Sunday. "For our program and our kids, it's really a good game."

They Buffs will practice Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday before taking several days off during finals week. Barnett said the staff will finalize a practice schedule and bowl travel plans Monday. There's a strong possibility the team will travel to Houston Christmas Day.

Colorado and UTEP have never played.

"I want to send us into the offseason on a positive note," Barnett said.

Tickets on Sale Monday
Tickets for the Houston Bowl, which is set at Reliant Stadium on Dec. 29 with a 2:30 p.m. (MT) kickoff (ESPN), go on sale Monday through the CU titcket office. Ticket prices are $57. Call 303-492-8337 or visit www.cubuffs.com.

Old Friend, New Foe
Mike Price turned heads in leading UTEP to an 8-3 record this season in his first year at the WAC school. Barnett first got to know Price when Price was QB coach at Missouri in the early ‘70s while Barnett was a high school coach. Barnett helped Gregg Brandon get on Price's staff at Webber State, and scheduled a game with Price's Webber State team when he was at Fort Lewis.

Also, CU DB coach Craig Bray served on Price's staff for five years at Washington State.

Russell to miss Bowl Game
The only injury coming out of Saturday's loss to Oklahoma that will require missing the bowl game is defensive back Chris Russell, who tore a quad muscle on a punt play in the third quarter. The injury requires a six to eight week healing process.

Still Smarting
Less than a day since the 42-3 thrashing at the hands of the Sooners, the loss was still fresh in the CU head coach's mind. Asked about it, Barnett said, "I was really surprised by the way we played. There was a difference (in talent) on the field, but that shouldn't make us play the way we did."

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