Texas and Georgia to Meet in 85th Annual Allstate Sugar Bowl
NEW ORLEANS (December 2, 2018) – Texas, from the Big 12 Conference, and Georgia, from the Southeastern Conference, will be featured in the 85th annual Allstate Sugar Bowl on Tuesday, January 1, 2019, in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The game is scheduled to kick off at 7:45 p.m. (Central) and will be televised by ESPN. A limited number of Allstate Sugar Bowl tickets are available by visiting www.Ticketmaster.com or by calling 800-745-3000.
This is the third match-up of teams from the Big 12 and the SEC since a new agreement was signed by the Allstate Sugar Bowl and the two elite conferences. The Sugar Bowl will host the top available teams from each conference six times in the next eight years – in the other two seasons (2020 and 2023), the Sugar Bowl will serve as a College Football Playoff Semifinal. The agreement runs through the 2025 season.
“The Sugar Bowl Committee is pleased to again welcome two top teams to New Orleans for this year’s Allstate Sugar Bowl,” said Sugar Bowl Committee President Rod West. “For 84 years, the Sugar Bowl has taken great pride in presenting a first-rate match-up with national appeal and Texas and Georgia will certainly continue that tradition.
“We all look forward to welcoming the Longhorns and the Bulldogs, along with their passionate fan bases, for what we know will be a great week of fun activity culminating in a competitive ballgame. In the end, we will have made some new friends while showcasing the best that New Orleans has to offer in food, accommodations, music and culture.”
The Allstate Sugar Bowl is the designated destination for the champions of both the SEC and the Big 12. However, with SEC Champion Alabama and Big 12 Champion Oklahoma both qualifying for the College Football Playoff (CFP) based on their top-four national rankings, replacement teams were designated by both conferences. The SEC assigned Georgia (11-2, 7-1 SEC) as the Bulldogs own the SEC’s second-highest CFP Ranking while Texas (9-4, 7-2 Big 12) is the Big 12’s designee as the conference runner-up.
“Texas and Georgia are two of the marquee names in college football,” said Allstate Sugar Bowl CEO Paul Hoolahan. “Both programs have tremendous history and have strong traveling fan bases. With this matchup we’re to be adding another great chapter to Sugar Bowl history.”
This will be the fifth all-time meeting between Texas and Georgia. The teams first played in the 1949 Orange Bowl with Texas winning 41-28 and 35 years later, they met in the 1984 Cotton Bowl with Georgia holding on for a 10-9 victory. Now, once again 35 years later, they will meet in the Allstate Sugar Bowl. The two programs also played a home-and-home series in 1957 and 1958 with the Longhorns winning both contests: 26-7 in Atlanta in 1957 and 13-8 in Austin in 1958.
This will be the 14th Sugar Bowl meeting between teams that now make up the Big 12 and SEC. The first meeting came in the second Sugar Bowl in 1936 when TCU and Hall-of-Famer Sammy Baugh held off LSU and its own Hall-of-Fame quarterback Abe Mickal, 3-2, in a quagmire. Those teams split national championship recognition that season. The last Big 12-SEC meeting in the Sugar Bowl was the 2017 game when Oklahoma posted a 35-19 victory over Auburn. The Big 12 holds an 8-5 advantage entering this year’s game.
Texas will be making its fourth Sugar Bowl appearance with a 1-2 record. The Longhorns defeated Alabama, 27-7, in the 1948 game as Bobby Layne earned the Miller-Digby Award as the game’s Most Outstanding Player. Texas lost 39-7 to Ole Miss in the 1958 Sugar Bowl and 28-10 to Virginia Tech in the 1995 (December 31) game.
Georgia will be making its 10th Sugar Bowl appearance and its first since a 41-10 victory over Hawai’i in the 2008 game. The Bulldogs have a 4-5 all-time mark, including a 1981 victory over Notre Dame which capped an undefeated national championship season for head coach Vince Dooley’s squad.
Both Texas head coach Tom Herman and Georgia head coach Kirby Smart will be making their Sugar Bowl coaching debuts. They will be the 96th and 97th different coaches to direct teams to the annual New Orleans classic. While they have not coached in the game as head coaches, both served as coordinators in recent Sugar Bowls. The 43-year old Herman was the Ohio State offensive coordinator for the 2015 Allstate Sugar Bowl (a Playoff Semifinal) as the Buckeyes defeated Alabama, 42-35, en route to the College Football Playoff Championship. The 42-year old Smart was not only the Alabama defensive coordinator for that 2015 Sugar Bowl, but he was an assistant for Alabama in its 2009 and 2014 Allstate Sugar Bowl appearances. Smart was also the defensive coordinator for Alabama’s 21-0 victory over LSU in the 2012 Allstate BCS Championship in New Orleans.
Texas and Georgia are tied for second all-time in bowl appearances (behind Alabama’s 66) with 54. This Longhorns have an overall bowl record of 28-24-2, while the Bulldogs 30-19-3 in their 54 bowl games. Schools that are currently in the SEC have registered an all-time mark of 36-42-1 (.462) in the Sugar Bowl, while this will be the 22nd appearance in the game by a current member of the Big 12, with an overall record of 13-8 (.600).
The Allstate Sugar Bowl has established itself as one of the premier college football bowl games, having hosted 28 national champions, 93 Hall of Fame players, 49 Hall of Fame coaches and 18 Heisman Trophy winners in its 84-year history. The 85th Allstate Sugar Bowl Football Classic, featuring top teams from the Big 12 and the SEC, will be played on January 1, 2019. In addition to football, the Sugar Bowl Committee annually invests over $1.6 million into the community through the hosting and sponsorship of sporting events, awards and clinics. Through these efforts, the organization supports and honors nearly 100,000 student-athletes each year, while injecting over $2.5 billion into the local economy in the last decade.