"San Jose State has had a fantastic season and we're happy to extend this invitation," said Jeff Siembieda, Executive Director of the New Mexico Bowl.
"We feel we have a terrific match-up for our inaugural game. We look forward to the Spartans and their great fans coming to the Land of Enchantment for what promises to be a great football game and festive Bowl Week. They are a program on the up-swing that has made tremendous strides. We congratulate Dick Tomey, Tom Bowen, and everyone involved with San Jose State."
Added Tom Bowen, San Jose State Director of Athletics: "We are very excited to be selected and are honored to be a part of this inaugural event."
With their 28-13 victory over Idaho on Saturday, the Spartans increased their record to 7-4 overall and 4-3 within the WAC. This season's record marks the first time in six years the resurgent San Jose State program has qualified for the post-season and this will be the first time since 1990 the Spartans will play in a Bowl Game. In the team's last bowl appearance, San JoseState defeated Central Michigan 48-24 in the California Raisin Bowl.
San Jose State becomes the third WAC team to accept a Bowl Invitation so far this season, joining Hawai'i, who will play in the Sheraton Hawai'i Bowl in Honolulu on December 24-- which will air on ESPN at 8:00 PM ET-- and the University of Nevada, who will travel to Boise, Idaho for the MPC Computers Bowl on December 31.
While this will be the first post-season meeting between the Spartans and the Lobos, the two teams have met 15 times before, with San Jose holding a 10-4-1 series edge. The Spartans won the last meeting between the two teams 37-20 in San Jose in 1998.
Tickets for the inaugural New Mexico Bowl are now on sale. The game will be played on Saturday, Dec. 23 and be televised by ESPN at 2:30 p.m. MT, live from the University of New Mexico's University Stadium in Albuquerque. Football fans who want to be a part of this historic event can purchase tickets at the University of New Mexico box office or online at www.newmexicobowl.com.
The New Mexico Bowl is a newly created NCAA certified college football bowl game owned and operated by ESPN Regional Television (ERT). ERT markets and owns four other bowl games -- the Sheraton Hawai‘i Bowl, Pioneer PureVision Las Vegas Bowl, the Bell Helicopter Armed Forces Bowl and the PapaJohns.com Bowl.