The Mountaineers were announced as the Big 12 team to play in the Jan. 2 Cactus Bowl opposite Pac 12 representative Arizona State. The game, held at Chase Field, home of the Arizona Diamonbacks, will kickoff at 10:15 p.m. eastern time, 8:15 p.m. local (Arizona does not observe daylight savings and thus is now on Mountain time). It is the last bowl game to be played before the Jan. 11 national championship. The Fiesta Bowl will be played on Jan. 1 at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, home of the NFL's Arizona Cardinals.
It appeared WVU had an opportunity to play in the Russel Athletic Bowl in Orlando on Dec. 29 after Baylor lost to Texas. The Bears' defeat - their third in four games - combined with what would have been West Virginia's fifth consecutive win would have put the teams at 9-3 and 8-4 respectively. But the Mountaineers' chance dissolved much like their offense after a 24-23 loss at Kansas State to end yet another season with a mediocre record. Now, instead of having a bowl game in an excellent recruiting and geogrpahic location for WVU's east coast fan base, the Mountaineers will again travel west, this time clear across the country for a match-up with the Pac-12.