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Las Vegas Bowl moves to earlier date on bowl schedule

Updated May 26, 2022 - 4:50 pm

The Las Vegas Bowl is again moving on the bowl schedule.

The bowl game, which is now played at Allegiant Stadium, announced it will be played on Dec. 17 at 4:30 p.m., moving back to the first Saturday of bowl season.

ABC (KSNV-13) will televise the game nationally, the last leg of a tripleheader on the network. It was part of the bowl schedule revealed Thursday.

Last year’s game — in which Wisconsin beat Arizona State 20-13 — was played on Dec. 30, and Las Vegas Bowl executive director John Saccenti said it was a challenge to stage such an event that close to New Year’s Eve. The announced crowd of 32,515 was well below bowl organizers’ expectations.

“Las Vegas pre-Christmas is a much different city than Las Vegas post-Christmas,” Las Vegas Bowl executive director John Saccenti said. “It was easier to navigate the city (pre-Christmas). We had better room rates at our resorts.

”The whole reason the bowl was originally designed and brought on board was to drive tourism the week before Christmas.”

The game was played on the first Saturday of bowl season for decades when it was at Sam Boyd Stadium. The move to Allegiant and the affiliations with the Pac-12 Conference, the Big 12 Conference and the SEC originally allowed the game to be played closer to Jan. 1.

This year’s game will be one of seven bowl games scheduled for Dec. 17. The bowl will feature a matchup of Pac-12 and Southeastern Conference teams, the first preassigned game between the leagues since 1989.

Bill Bradley can be reached at bbradley@reviewjournal.com and 702-387-2909. Follow @billbradleyLV on Twitter.

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Las Vegas handicapper Bruce Marshall is editor of The Gold Sheet (Goldsheet.com). He provides the Review-Journal with college football tech notes and trends.