Minnesota Makes Return Trip to Insight Bowl

Minnesota (7-5, 3-5 Big Ten) has accepted an invitation to play Kansas (7-5, 4-4 Big 12) in the 20th annual Insight Bowl on Dec. 31 at Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe, Ariz. The game is scheduled for a 5 p.m. (CST) kickoff and will be televised nationally by the NFL Network. It is the second trip to the Insight Bowl in the last three years. The Gophers lost to Texas Tech in the 2006 game.

Minnesota's invitation to play in the 2008 Insight Bowl marks the Golden Gophers' eighth bowl berth in the last 10 seasons and the program's 13th postseason bowl game overall. It will also be the second Insight Bowl appearance for the Gophers, who faced Texas Tech in the 2006 game.

"We are thrilled to have the opportunity to showcase our football program in the Insight Bowl and I am pleased to accept the invitation on behalf of the University of Minnesota," Minnesota athletic director Joel Maturi said. "The state of Arizona is an outstanding bowl destination for our fans and the hospitality that was extended to our program during our visit in 2006 was exceptional. I encourage our alumni, fans and students to come with us to Tempe and experience what will be an outstanding matchup between two of the nation's top conferences."

The Minnesota Athletics Ticket Office will begin accepting orders for its allotment of 10,500 tickets beginning at 9 a.m. Monday. All tickets for the game are priced at $55 and football season ticket holders will have until Dec. 12 at 5 p.m. to place orders for priority seating.

The easiest method for ordering tickets is online at www.gophersports.com by clicking on the Buy Tickets tab and selecting "Insight Bowl Tickets." Ticket orders may also be submitted in person at the Athletics Ticket Office in Mariucci Arena from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, and over the phone by calling the Athletics Ticket Office at (612) 624-8080 inside the metro area or 1-800-U-GOPHER outside the metro area.

To ensure seating in the Minnesota section at Sun Devil Stadium, Gopher fans must make their ticket arrangements through the University's Athletics Ticket Office or online at www.gophersports.com.

The University of Minnesota Athletics Department and the University of Minnesota Alumni Association are also sponsoring the official bowl tour for Gopher fans. The custom tour has been designed by Creative Charters and includes air, hotel and appropriate ground transportation. Additional optional activities will also be organized by the University of Minnesota Alumni Association and offered during the tour.

Information on official travel packages is available online at both www.alumni.umn.edu/bowl and www.GopherBowl.com.

Led by the All-Big Ten passing duo of sophomore quarterback Adam Weber and wide receiver Eric Decker, no program in the country enjoyed a bigger turnaround during the 2008 college football season than Minnesota as the Gophers recorded a six-game improvement from 2007 under second-year head coach Tim Brewster.

"We are excited to be selected as the Big Ten's representative in the Insight Bowl and we are looking forward to playing one of the nation's best teams in Kansas on Dec. 31st in Sun Devil Stadium," Brewster said. "I could not be more proud of what our team has accomplished this season and I am thrilled that all their hard work is being rewarded with an opportunity to play in a tremendous event like the Insight Bowl."

Kansas, which knocked off Virginia Tech in the Orange Bowl last season, will be playing in back-to-back bowl games for the first time in school history. The Jayhawks are led by record-setting junior quarterback Todd Reesing and locked up their berth in the Insight Bowl with a 40-37 victory over Big 12 North Division Champion Missouri in their regular-season finale.

The 2008 Insight Bowl will be the seventh meeting all-time between Minnesota and Kansas in a series that dates all the way back to 1893. The two teams have split their previous six games, but have not met on the gridiron since 1973, when the Jayhawks defeated the Gophers 34-19 in Lawrence, Kan.

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