Thursday, both coaches from Georgia Tech and Utah arrived in El Paso to discuss the upcoming Hyundai Sun Bowl with the media.
"Well I think that we are really excited to be here, we have heard so many great things about the game and El Paso in general, and for us, to come to a different part of the country, have a chance to experience this, we are really looking forward to it. Utah is historically good on defense. They've always been good. Who knows? People are going to talk about that but the game will more than likely come down to the other side. Their offense against our defense. That's usually the way it works," said Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson.
Utah Coach Kyle Whittingham added, "We are eleated for the opportunity to come to the Sun Bowl. As we were looking at all the positioning of everybody, and what we thought was going to happen, and when it finally did happen for real, we were excited. We are excited that we get the chance to play in the post season. This is actually our second trip to the Sun Bowl. The other back in 1939 when the University of Utah was here last. So we are excited to be the second University of Utah team to represent in the Sun Bowl. "
The game will pit the Yellow Jackets and Utes on Saturday, Dec. 31 at noon (MST) at Sun Bowl Stadium. The game will be broadcast for the 44th consecutive year on CBS.
“We’re tremendously excited about a great matchup between two great programs from outstanding conferences,” said Mike Rogers, Sun Bowl Association president. “Georgia Tech defeated ACC champion Clemson earlier this season while Utah comes to El Paso having won five of their last seven games.”
The 2011 Hyundai Sun Bowl will mark the second meeting between these two teams. The only other meeting was in the 2005 Emerald Bowl when Utah defeated a 13th-ranked Georgia Tech, 38-10.
“This matchup provides El Paso the opportunity to see two great scoring offenses with very contrasting styles of play,” Sun Bowl executive director Bernie Olivas said. “This game has a potential to be a high-scoring affair.
Georgia Tech (8-4, 5-3 ACC) finished second in the Atlantic Coast Conference Coastal Division and is making its second appearance in the Hyundai Sun Bowl. The Yellow Jackets defeated Texas Tech, 17-9, on Dec. 19, 1970.
"Our team is excited for the opportunity to play in the Hyundai Sun Bowl," Georgia Tech head coach Paul Johnson said. "Our players worked hard this season and we're excited to have another game to play.
"We will face a very good Utah team that played its best football down the stretch. Coach (Kyle) Whittingham and his staff do a very good job and they will be very prepared."
This is the Yellow Jackets’ 15th consecutive bowl appearance, tied for the fourth-longest active streak among FBS schools, and will play in their 40th bowl game overall (22-17) tying for the 12th most nationally.
Utah (7-5, 4-5 Pac-12), is also making their second appearance in the Hyundai Sun Bowl. The Utes shut out New Mexico, 26-0, on New Year’s Day in 1939. It marks the 10th bowl in 11 years for the Utes and the seventh under head coach Kyle Whittingham and the program’s 17th appearance in a bowl game.
“We’re excited about the opportunity to represent the Pac-12 Conference in the Sun Bowl,” said Utah head coach Kyle Whittingham. “This is a longstanding and prestigious bowl game and we are looking forward to playing in El Paso. A Utah team has not played in this bowl in over 70 years so there should be a lot of intrigue and interest from our fan base and around the country.
“We’re proud that yet another Utah senior class will be playing in its fourth postseason game and that is a testament to the commitment our players bring to the program year in and year out.”
The 78th Annual Hyundai Sun Bowl is scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 31 at noon (MST). CBS Sports will broadcast the game for the 44th consecutive year, which is the longest running partnership between a network and a bowl game. Ticket prices for the game are $17, $22, $32, $42, $52 and $62. Tickets can be purchased at the Sun Bowl Association office (915-533-4416, 800-915-BOWL or email), online at www.ticketmaster.com  or at any TicketMaster outlet.