|San Diego County Credit Union Holiday Bowl|
|Location||San Diego, California|
|Previous stadiums||San Diego Stadium|
|Conference tie-ins||Pac-12 (1997–present)|
|Previous conference tie-ins||WAC (1978–97)|
Big 12 (1995–2013)
Big Ten (1991–94; 2014–2020)
Holiday Bowl (1978–85)
Sea World Holiday Bowl (1986–90)
Thrifty Car Rental Holiday Bowl (1991–94)
Plymouth Holiday Bowl (1995–97)
Culligan Holiday Bowl (1998–2001)
Pacific Life Holiday Bowl (2002–09)
Bridgepoint Education Holiday Bowl (2010–12)
National University Holiday Bowl (2013–14)
National Funding Holiday Bowl (2015–16)
|Iowa vs. USC (Iowa 49–24)|
|(December 28, 2021)|
The Holiday Bowl is a post-season NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision college football bowl game that has been played annually since 1978. San Diego County Credit Union has been the game's title sponsor since 2017, and the bowl has been officially known as the San Diego County Credit Union Holiday Bowl.
The game will move to Petco Park in San Diego starting in the 2021 season, under a five-year arrangement. Until then, the site of the game was uncertain for 2021 and it had been assumed that Aztec Stadium, a new stadium under construction for the San Diego State Aztecs football, would host in 2022 and thereafter. Petco Park, which was built for baseball, will be reconfigured to accommodate a football field. San Diego Stadium, which had hosted the game from the beginning until the 2019 edition, was demolished beginning in the autumn of 2020.
The Holiday Bowl was founded to give the Western Athletic Conference an automatic bowl bid after the Fiesta Bowl, which previously had a tie in with the conference, ended its association with the WAC following the departure of Arizona and Arizona State (the latter of which served as the game's host) to join the Pacific-8 Conference in the summer of 1978. The Holiday Bowl inherited the Fiesta Bowl's former WAC ties and gave the conference's champion its automatic bid. For the first several editions, the WAC champion played an at-large team in the Holiday Bowl. From 1991 through 1994, the Big Ten Conference was given the second bid, provided it had enough bowl-eligible teams.
Beginning in 1995, the Big Eight Conference replaced the Big Ten and remained tied with the bowl through as the conference expanded to become the Big 12 the following year. The WAC's automatic bid was split, with first choice given to the Cotton Bowl Classic in Dallas, and a team from the Pacific-10 Conference was added as the alternate pick (meaning that, if the WAC champion played in the Cotton Bowl, a Pac-10 team would play in the Holiday Bowl). The WAC ended its association with the Holiday Bowl after 1997, and the game became a matchup between the Big 12 and Pac-10.
From 1998 to 2009, the matchup featured the #2 Pac-12 team playing the #3 Big 12 team, but the Alamo Bowl outbid the Holiday Bowl to feature that matchup beginning in 2010. Holiday Bowl Executive Director Bruce Binkowski stated that average ticket prices for the Holiday Bowl would have had to have been increased from $60 to $100 to match the Alamo Bowl's offer of a $3 million payout (the Holiday Bowl was only offering $2.35 million). The now-Pac-12 and Big 12 retained their contracts with the Holiday Bowl, however, and the 2010–2013 matchups pitted the #3 Pac-12 team against the #5 Big 12 team.
Starting with the 2014 game, the Big Ten signed a six-year contract to return after a 20-year absence to the Holiday Bowl, regaining the slot they held from 1991 to 1994. With this agreement, the Holiday Bowl featured the #3 Pac-12 team and the #4 Big Ten team. In 2019, the bowl announced plans to host a Pac-12 team and an ACC team during the 2020 through 2025 games.
Since 2017, the sponsor has been San Diego County Credit Union, which formerly sponsored San Diego's other bowl game, the now-defunct Poinsettia Bowl. In 2015 and 2016, the title sponsor was National Funding, a San Diego-based alternative lender. Previous sponsors have included SeaWorld, Thrifty Car Rental, Chrysler Corporation (through its Plymouth brand), Culligan, Pacific Life, Bridgepoint Education and National University.
On October 22, 2020, organizers canceled the 2020 edition of the bowl, citing complications from the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States. Had the game been played, there was some talk of moving the game to either the University of San Diego, San Diego Mesa College, or to Southwestern College.
For the first seven games, BYU represented the WAC as its champion. In the inaugural 1978 game, the Navy Midshipmen came in with an 8–3 record and a Commander-in-Chief's Trophy and then capped their season with a 23–16 comeback victory over the highly favored Cougars. BYU has played in a total of 11 Holiday Bowls, more than any other team. The 1980 game was known as "The Miracle Bowl" as BYU erased a 20-point SMU lead in the last two minutes of the game, tying the score on the last play of the game—a 60-yard pass from All-American quarterback Jim McMahon to tight end Clay Brown as time expired. BYU kicker Kurt Gunther added the game-winning extra point.
The 1983 game between BYU and Missouri had its own dramatic ending, as BYU rallied behind All-American quarterback Steve Young. With just 23 seconds left, Young gave a handoff to Eddie Stinnett. Stinnett then turned around and passed it back to Steve Young, who caught it and ran in for a touchdown, giving BYU a 21–17 win. Young achieved a rare feat in college football: one touchdown pass, one touchdown run, and one touchdown reception all in a single game. For his efforts, he was named offensive MVP.
One year later, BYU, led by their longtime coach, LaVell Edwards, secured the national championship in the Holiday Bowl by defeating the Michigan Wolverines, coached by Bo Schembechler, 24–17. Because of the WAC's contract with the Holiday Bowl, BYU, top-ranked and the only undefeated team in Division I-A going into that season's bowls, was obligated to play in the mid-tier Holiday Bowl against a mediocre (6–5) Michigan squad. Again, the Holiday Bowl came down to the final few plays. BYU drove the length of the field and scored on a pass from injured All-American quarterback Robbie Bosco to Kelly Smith with 1:23 remaining. Marv Allen, who also played in the very first Holiday Bowl as a redshirt freshman in 1978, sealed the victory with an interception.
Rankings are based on the AP Poll prior to the game being played.
|Date Played||Winning team||Losing team||Attnd.||Notes|
|December 22, 1978||Navy||23||BYU||16||52,500||notes|
|December 21, 1979||Indiana||38||#9 BYU||37||52,500||notes|
|December 19, 1980||#14 BYU||46||#19 SMU||45||50,200||notes|
|December 18, 1981||#14 BYU||38||#20 Washington State||36||52,419||notes|
|December 17, 1982||#17 Ohio State||47||BYU||17||52,533||notes|
|December 23, 1983||#9 BYU||21||Missouri||17||51,480||notes|
|December 21, 1984||#1 BYU||24||Michigan||17||61,243||notes|
|December 22, 1985||#14 Arkansas||18||Arizona State||17||60,641||notes|
|December 30, 1986||#19 Iowa||39||San Diego State||38||59,473||notes|
|December 30, 1987||#18 Iowa||20||Wyoming||19||61,892||notes|
|December 30, 1988||#12 Oklahoma State||62||#15 Wyoming||14||60,641||notes|
|December 29, 1989||#18 Penn State||50||#19 BYU||39||61,113||notes|
|December 29, 1990||Texas A&M||65||#13 BYU||14||61,441||notes|
|December 30, 1991||BYU||13||#7 Iowa||13||60,646||notes|
|December 30, 1992||Hawaii||27||Illinois||17||44,457||notes|
|December 30, 1993||#11 Ohio State||28||BYU||21||52,108||notes|
|December 30, 1994||#20 Michigan||24||#10 Colorado State||14||59,453||notes|
|December 29, 1995||#10 Kansas State||54||Colorado State||21||51,051||notes|
|December 30, 1996||#8 Colorado||33||#13 Washington||21||54,749||notes|
|December 29, 1997||#18 Colorado State||35||#19 Missouri||24||50,761||notes|
|December 30, 1998||#5 Arizona||23||#14 Nebraska||20||65,354||notes|
|December 29, 1999||#7 Kansas State||24||Washington||20||57,118||notes|
|December 29, 2000||#8 Oregon||35||#12 Texas||30||63,278||notes|
|December 28, 2001||#9 Texas||47||#21 Washington||43||60,548||notes|
|December 27, 2002||#6 Kansas State||34||Arizona State||27||58,717||notes|
|December 30, 2003||#15 Washington State||28||#5 Texas||20||61,102||notes|
|December 30, 2004||#23 Texas Tech||45||#4 California||31||63,711||notes|
|December 29, 2005||Oklahoma||17||#6 Oregon||14||65,416||notes|
|December 28, 2006||#20 California||45||#21 Texas A&M||10||62,395||notes|
|December 27, 2007||#17 Texas||52||#12 Arizona State||34||64,020||notes|
|December 30, 2008||#15 Oregon||42||#13 Oklahoma State||31||59,106||notes|
|December 30, 2009||#20 Nebraska||33||#22 Arizona||0||64,607||notes|
|December 30, 2010||Washington||19||#17 Nebraska||7||57,921||notes|
|December 28, 2011||Texas||21||California||10||56,313||notes|
|December 27, 2012||Baylor||49||#17 UCLA||26||55,507||notes|
|December 30, 2013||Texas Tech||37||#16 Arizona State||23||52,930||notes|
|December 27, 2014||#24 USC||45||#25 Nebraska||42||55,789||notes|
|December 30, 2015||#23 Wisconsin||23||USC||21||48,329||notes|
|December 27, 2016||Minnesota||17||Washington State||12||48,704||notes|
|December 28, 2017||#19 Michigan State||42||#21 Washington State||17||47,092||notes|
|December 31, 2018||Northwestern||31||#20 Utah||20||47,007||notes|
|December 27, 2019||#19 Iowa||49||#22 USC||24||50,123||notes|
|2020||Cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic|
The bowl names offensive and defensive MVPs; in some instances, co-MVPs have been named, or two offensive MVPs in lieu of a defensive MVP.
|Game||Offensive MVP||Defensive MVP|
|1978||Phil McConkey||Navy||WR||Tom Enlow||BYU||LB|
|1979||Marc Wilson||BYU||QB||Tim Wilbur||Indiana||CB|
|1981||Jim McMahon||BYU||QB||Kyle Whittingham||BYU||LB|
|1982||Tim Spencer||Ohio State||RB||Garcia Lane||Ohio State||CB|
|1983||Steve Young||BYU||QB||Bobby Bell||Missouri||DE|
|1984||Robbie Bosco||BYU||QB||Leon White||BYU||LB|
|1985||Bobby Joe Edmonds||Arkansas||RB||Greg Battle||Arizona State||LB|
San Diego State
|Richard Brown||San Diego State||LB|
|1987||Craig Burnett||Wyoming||QB||Anthony Wright||Iowa||CB|
|1988||Barry Sanders||Oklahoma State||RB||Sim Drain||Oklahoma State||LB|
|1990||Bucky Richardson||Texas A&M||QB||William Thomas||Texas A&M||LB|
|1991||Ty Detmer||BYU||QB||Josh Arnold
|1992||Michael Carter||Hawaii||QB||Junior Tagoai||Hawaii||DT|
|Lorenzo Styles||Ohio State||LB|
|1995||Brian Kavanagh||Kansas State||QB||Mario Smith||Kansas State||DB|
|1996||Koy Detmer||Colorado||QB||Nick Ziegler||Colorado||DE|
|1998||Keith Smith||Arizona||QB||Mike Rucker||Nebraska||DE|
|1999||Jonathan Beasley||Kansas State||QB||Darren Howard||Kansas State||DE|
|2000||Joey Harrington||Oregon||QB||Rashad Bauman||Oregon||DB|
|2002||Ell Roberson||Kansas State||QB||Terrell Suggs||Arizona State||DE|
|2003||Sammy Moore||Washington State||WR||Kyle Basler||Washington State||P|
|2004||Sonny Cumbie||Texas Tech||QB||Vincent Meeks||Texas Tech||DB|
|2005||Rhett Bomar||Oklahoma||QB||C. J. Ah You
|2007||Colt McCoy||Texas||QB||Brian Orakpo||Texas||DE|
|2008||Jeremiah Masoli||Oregon||QB||Jairus Byrd||Oregon||DB|
|2009||Niles Paul||Nebraska||WR||Matt O'Hanlon||Nebraska||DB|
|2010||Chris Polk||Washington||RB||Mason Foster||Washington||LB|
|2011||David Ash||Texas||QB||Keenan Robinson||Texas||LB|
|2012||Lache Seastrunk||Baylor||RB||Chris McAllister||Baylor||DE|
|2013||Davis Webb||Texas Tech||QB||Will Smith||Texas Tech||LB|
|2014||Cody Kessler||USC||QB||Leonard Williams||USC||DE|
|2015||Joel Stave||Wisconsin||QB||Jack Cichy||Wisconsin||LB|
|2016||Rodney Smith||Minnesota||RB||Blake Cashman||Minnesota||LB|
|2017||Brian Lewerke||Michigan State||QB||Chris Frey||Michigan State||LB|
|2018||Clayton Thorson||Northwestern||QB||JR Pace||Northwestern||S|
|2019||Ihmir Smith-Marsette||Iowa||WR||A. J. Epenesa||Iowa||DE|
Updated through the December 2019 edition (42 games, 84 total appearances).
- Teams with multiple appearances
- Teams with a single appearance
- With Utah's appearance in the 2018 Holiday Bowl, every Pac-12 school except Stanford and Oregon State has appeared in the game (Colorado appeared while a member of the Big 12).
- Iowa State, TCU, Kansas, and West Virginia are the only current or former Big 12 members that have not played in the bowl.
Appearances by conference
Updated through the December 2019 edition (42 games, 84 total appearances).
|Conference||Record||Appearances by season|
|Pac-12||25||7||18||0||.280||1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2008, 2010, 2014||1981, 1985, 1996, 1999, 2001, 2002, 2004, 2005, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019|
|Big 12||18||11||7||0||.611||1996, 1999, 2001, 2002, 2004, 2005, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2012, 2013||1997, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2008, 2010|
|WAC||18||6||11||1||.361||1980, 1981, 1983, 1984, 1992, 1997||1978, 1979, 1982, 1986, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1993, 1994, 1995||1991|
|Big Ten||15||11||3||1||.767||1979, 1982, 1986, 1987, 1993, 1994, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019||1984, 1992, 2014||1991|
|Big Eight||3||2||1||0||.667||1988, 1995||1983|
- Pac-12 record includes appearances when the conference was known as the Pac-10 (before 2011).
- Conferences that are defunct or no longer active in FBS are marked in italics.
- Independent appearances: Navy (1978), Penn State (1989)
|Team||Record, Team vs. Opponent||Year|
|Most points scored (one team)||65, Texas A&M vs. BYU||1990|
|Most points scored (losing team)||45, SMU vs. BYU||1980|
|Most points scored (both teams)||91, BYU vs. SMU||1980|
|Fewest points allowed||0, Nebraska vs. Arizona||2009|
|Largest margin of victory||51, Texas A&M vs. BYU||1990|
|Total yards||698, Oklahoma State vs. Wyoming||1988|
|Rushing yards||393, SMU vs. BYU||1980|
|Passing yards||576, BYU vs. Penn State||1989|
|First downs||35, BYU vs. Penn State||1989|
|Fewest yards allowed||109, Nebraska vs. Arizona||2009|
|Fewest rushing yards allowed||–12, Texas A&M vs. BYU||1990|
|Fewest passing yards allowed||46, Nebraska vs. Arizona||2009|
|Individual||Record, Player, Team vs. Opponent||Year|
|Touchdowns (all-purpose)||5, Barry Sanders, Oklahoma State vs. Wyoming||1988|
|Rushing yards||235, Raymont Harris, Ohio State vs. BYU||1993|
|Rushing touchdowns||5, Barry Sanders, Oklahoma State vs. Wyoming||1988|
|Passing yards||576, Ty Detmer, BYU vs. Penn State||1989|
|Passing touchdowns||4, by several players—most recent:
Davis Webb, Texas Tech vs. Arizona State
|Receiving yards||168, Dez Bryant, Oklahoma State vs. Oregon||2008|
|Receiving touchdowns||3, Clay Brown, BYU vs. SMU||1980|
|Tackles||18 (total), Garland Rivers, Michigan vs. BYU
17 (solo), same
|Sacks||4, Bobby Bell, Missouri vs. BYU||1983|
|Interceptions||2, by several players—most recent:
Brandon Foster, Texas vs. Arizona State
|Long Plays||Record, Player, Team vs. Opponent||Year|
|Touchdown run||76, Jeremiah Johnson, Oregon vs. Oklahoma State||2008|
|Touchdown pass||76, Koy Detmer to Rae Carruth, Colorado vs. Washington||1996|
|Kickoff return||98, shared by:
Adoree' Jackson, USC vs. Nebraska
Ihmir Smith-Marsette, Iowa vs. USC
|Punt return||85, Darran Hall, Colorado State vs. Missouri||1997|
|Interception return||48, Vincent Meeks, Texas Tech vs. California||2004|
|Fumble return||82, Jared McGee, Northwestern vs. Utah||2018|
|Punt||64, shared by:
Justin Tucker, Texas vs. California
Sam Foltz, Nebraska vs. USC
|Field goal||51, Ray Tarasi, Penn State vs. BYU||1989|
- "2019 Bowl Schedule". collegefootballpoll.com. Retrieved December 13, 2019.
- Kenney, Kirk (June 23, 2021). "Holiday Bowl headed downtown to Petco Park". The San Diego Union-Tribune.
- Gonzales, Bradley (2021-02-04). "Reflections on the demolition of SDCCU Stadium". The Daily Aztec. Retrieved 2021-10-12.
- Staff • •, NBC 7. "WATCH: Final Piece of San Diego Stadium Torn Down". NBC 7 San Diego. Retrieved 2021-10-12.
- "Holiday Bowl drops down in the pecking order".
- Tim Griffin (August 28, 2008). "Valero Alamo Bowl, Pacific-10 Conference agree on deal starting in 2010 season". Retrieved 2009-08-31.
- Kenney, Kirk (August 15, 2019). "Holiday Bowl gets ACC to come out to the West Coast". The San Diego Union-Tribune.
- De Crecenzo, Sarah (March 9, 2017). "S.D. County Credit Union to Sponsor Holiday Bowl". San Diego Business Journal. Retrieved 10 March 2017.
- De Crecenzo, Sarah (October 27, 2016). "National Funding Will Be Title Sponsor of Holiday Bowl". San Diego Business Journal. Retrieved 31 October 2016.
- "2020 Holiday Bowl, Parade Cancelled". nbcsandiego.com. October 22, 2020. Retrieved October 23, 2020.
- Pickman, Ben (October 22, 2020). "2020 Holiday Bowl Canceled Amid COVID-19 Pandemic". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved November 27, 2020.
- "San Diego County Credit Union Holiday Bowl" (PDF). Bowl/All Star Game Records. NCAA. 2020. p. 10. Retrieved January 3, 2021 – via NCAA.org.
- "Holiday Bowl Media Guide" (PDF). 2019. Retrieved December 27, 2019. Cite journal requires
- "Champs Again: Northwestern Wins 2018 Holiday Bowl". nusports.com. December 31, 2018. Retrieved March 26, 2020.
McGee picked up the loose ball and returned it 82 yards for a touchdown to make it 20-17. It was the longest fumble recovery in Holiday Bowl history
- Kelly, Doug (ed.). "2019–20 Football Bowl Association Media Guide" (PDF). footballbowlassociation.com: 89–90. Retrieved January 3, 2020.
- Posner, Jay (June 15, 2017). "Holiday Bowl moving from ESPN to FS1". San Diego Union-Tribune. Retrieved June 17, 2017.
- "First Holiday Bowl at Petco Park set for Dec. 28 in prime time on Fox". San Diego Union-Tribune. Retrieved 26 June 2021.