The Holiday Bowl had its beginnings as a way to get the Western Athletic Conference an automatic bowl bid after the Fiesta Bowl ended its association with the WAC when Arizona and Arizona State left the conference. Now, the bowl matches the third-place team in the Pac-12 with the fifth-place team in the Big 12.

There are unusual ancillary events associated with the Holiday Bowl. For example, the Wiener Nationals, which is the national championship in dachshund racing. Fans going to the game can also enjoy the Big Bay Balloon Parade.

Memorable moments

• In 1980, BYU came back from 20 points down to defeat Southern Methodist on a hail mary. Surrounded by SMU players, BYU tight end Clay Brown somehow got his hands on the ball to tie the game. Kurt Gunther kicked the extra point with no time left on the clock to give the Cougars a 46-45 victory in what has been known as "The Miracle Bowl."

• The 1984 game actually decided the national championship. BYU was ranked No. 1, and thanks to the WAC's contract with the Holiday Bowl, the nation's top team was committed. BYU defeated Michigan 24-17.

• In 2004, fourth-ranked Cal missed a spot in the BCS by .0129 points. Not only did it miss the BCS, it got beat in the Holiday Bowl by No. 23 Texas Tech 45-31.

• In 2012, No. 17 UCLA was relegated to the Holiday Bowl after it lost the Pac-10 championship game. The Bruins' consolation prize? A 49-19 defeat at the hands of unranked Baylor.

HOLIDAY BOWL RESULTS
YEARWINNERSCORELOSERSCORE
1978Navy23BYU16
1979Indiana38BYU37
1980BYU46SMU45
1981BYU38Washington State36
1982Ohio State47BYU17
1983BYU21Missouri17
1984BYU24Michigan17
1985Arkansas18Arizona State17
1986Iowa39San Diego State38
1987Iowa20Wyoming19
1988Oklahoma State62Wyoming14
1989Penn State50BYU39
1990Texas A&M65BYU14
1991BYU13Iowa13
1992Hawaii27Illinois17
1993Ohio State28BYU21
1994Michigan24Colorado State14
1995Kansas State54Colorado State21
1996Colorado33Washington21
1997Colorado State35Missouri24
1998Arizona23Nebraska20
1999Kansas State24Washington20
2000Oregon35Texas30
2001Texas47Washington43
2002Kansas State34Arizona State27
2003Washington State28Texas20
2004Texas Tech45California31
2005Oklahoma17Oregon14
2006California45Texas A&M10
2007Texas52Arizona State34
2008Oregon42Oklahoma State31
2009Nebraska33Arizona0
2010Washington19Nebraska7
2011Texas21California10
2012Baylor49UCLA26
2013Texas Tech37Arizona State23