Two schools steeped in college football tradition will face one another when Iowa takes on Oklahoma in the Insight Bowl on December 30 in Tempe.
It’s a familiar trip since both schools spent their bowl season in the Valley of the Sun one year ago.
The Hawkeyes (7-5, 4-4) are making their second-straight Insight Bowl appearance. Kirk Ferenz’s squad knocked off Missouri 27-24 in last years game as they make their tenth bowl appearance since 2001. Iowa has faired well in big games, defeating four ranked opponents thanks in large part to the Big 10’s second-best red-zone defense (73.1%).
For Bob Stoops’ team, 2011 was a season of disappointment. The Sooners (9-3, 6-3) entered the year as the top-ranked team in the nation before a mid-season upset loss to Texas Tech in Norman. OU bounced back nicely beating Kansas State and Texas A&M before dropping two of their last three including an embarrassing 44-10 loss to rival Oklahoma State Saturday night in Stillwater. The Sooners high-powered offense behind junior quarterback Landry Jones scored forty or more points nine times this year and 50 or more three times.
If the past is any indication, Phoenix will be flooded with Iowa fans anxious to escape the midwest winter, but can the same be said for Sooner Nation coming off a tough regular season?
“I don’t really know,” Fiesta Bowl Executive Director Robert Shelton said Sunday. “(But) I’m confident (they) will be well-represented by their fans.”
Regardless, Shelton realizes landing a powerhouse like the Sooners is a dream situation for the bowl.
“There aren’t many programs as storied as Oklahoma.”
Kickoff is set for 7:30 Arizona time from Sun Devil Stadium with television coverage on ESPN.