SAN DIEGO — The 1986 Holiday Bowl will be played Tuesday, Dec. 30 at 6 p.m., marking the first time in the game's nine-year history that it will be played after Christmas.
James C. Schmidt, incoming Holiday Bowl president, said the change was made for two reasons: More teams would be available after Christmas and out-of-town fans would tend to stay longer.
"There are a number of teams that couldn't come before because their final exams didn't end until a few days before Christmas," Schmidt said. "By doing this, we eliminate that problem. In addition, we feel fans supporting the invited teams will be able to travel more conveniently after Christmas and also will stay longer in San Diego. This will be beneficial to tourism at a time when occupancy is typically lower at most San Diego area hotels."
Arkansas played Arizona State three days before Christmas in last year's Holiday Bowl. Arkansas had fewer than 2,000 fans attend and Arizona State had an estimated 5,000.