LAS VEGAS (AP) -The Las Vegas Bowl is switching to the Saturday before Christmas after three years of playing on the Thursday before the holiday.
The 16th annual bowl game, pitting a top pick from the Mountain West Conference against the fourth- or fifth-place team from the Pac-10, will be played at 5 p.m. Dec. 22 at Sam Boyd Stadium, executive director Tina Kunzer-Murphy said on Monday.
``We've had tremendous success the last three years playing on Thursday, but we think the Saturday before Christmas is the perfect date for this year's game,'' Kunzer-Murphy said in a statement. ``It gives fans the chance to enjoy Las Vegas on a weekend and then get home for the holidays in plenty of time.''
The bowl, sponsored by Pioneer PureVision, is owned and operated by ESPN Regional Television. It was re-certified by the NCAA last week during annual meetings in San Francisco. It will be broadcast on ESPN and ESPNHD.
The game was played on Saturdays from 1997-99. Last Dec. 21, BYU defeated Oregon 38-8, before a sellout crowd of 44,615.

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