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Tim Hyland

Surprise, Surprise: 'Champions Bowl' Awarded to New Orleans

By November 7, 2012

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In the end, it just made sense.

Though the SEC and Big 12 made a show of putting their new bowl game--a game known popularly as "The Champions Bowl"--out for bid, all along it seemed that there was just one location that actually made sense. That location, of course, was New Orleans, home of the Louisiana Superdome and the Sugar Bowl.

And so it surprised absolutely nobody on Tuesday night when the two leagues announced that they had awarded the game to the Crescent City. The first edition of the new bowl game, which will in theory (but very likely not in practice) pit the champions of the SEC against the Big 12, will take place on January 1, 2015.

If either the SEC champion or Big 12 champion is tied up playing in one of the new college football national semifinals at that point, the conferences will send back-up teams to take their place.

Oh, and there's this: The game won't be called "The Champions Bowl" any longer. It will just be called the Sugar Bowl.

In announcing New Orleans as the host, Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby said there had been "tremendous excitement" about the game since it was first announced.

Said Bowlsby: "That excitement is reflected in the bids received to host this game. There were great cities, attractive destinations, and impressive venues to consider. Now Big 12 fans can look forward to a New Year's tradition and coming to New Orleans to support their team. We are thrilled about our long-term association with our SEC colleagues and to be in partnership with the Allstate Sugar Bowl."

Photo: Getty Images

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