Las Vegas Bowl History

Las Vegas Bowl History

Mountain West and Pac-12 have met head-to-head a total of 13 times in Las Vegas, with Mountain West winning seven of those face-offs. Nine of the current Pac-12 conference members (all but Colorado, Stanford, and Washington State) and 10 of the current 12 Mountain West teams (all but Hawai’i and San Jose State) have appeared in the Bowl.

For 10 consecutive seasons, the Las Vegas Bowl has seen crowds of more than 32,000 people, including sellouts for eight of the last 11 years. The largest crowd to ever witness a team sporting event in the state of Nevada actually took place on December 21, 2006 as BYU defeated Oregon at the Bowl.

In its first 24 years, the Bowl has attracted more than 400,000 out-of-town visitors and put nearly $300 million in non-gaming revenue into the economy.

The Bowl’s highest rated telecast occurred when Utah conquered USC on Christmas Day 2001 with a household TV rating of 4.7. Boise State’s thrilling 28-26 victory over first-time visitor Washington earned a rating of 3.3 on ESPN, making it the second highest rated telecast for the Bowl in nearly a decade and third-highest overall.

The 2015 Las Vegas Bowl featured the Utes of the University of Utah and the Cougars from BYU. For the third consecutive year, ABC broadcasted the game for a 12:30pm PT kickoff. The Utes jumped out to an early 35-0 lead and held BYU to a final score of 35-28.

The Cougars of the University of Houston and the Aztecs of San Diego University faced off in the 2016 Bowl game. ABC broadcasted the event for the fourth consecutive year at 12:30pm PT. The Cougars started with an early 10-0 lead, but the Aztecs came out victorious with a 34-10 victory. SDSU RB Donnel Pumphrey became the all-time rushing leader of the NCAA with a 15-yard rush during the 4th quarter of the game.

The inaugural class of the Las Vegas Bowl Hall of Fame was inducted in 2011 to help commemorate the Bowl’s 20-year milestone. This class included NFL star and former Oregon State RB Steven Jackson, CFL record-holder and former Utah State QB Anthony Calvillo, former NFL and UNLV Coach John Robinson, and Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (LVCVA) President and one of the game’s founding fathers, Rossi Ralenkotter. The second class was honored in December 2016.