For the first time in nine years, Penn State Coach Joe Paterno won't be celebrating New Year's Day coaching on the sidelines at a bowl game.
The 15th-ranked Nittany Lions (9-3, 5-3 Big Ten) on Wednesday accepted a bid to the Alamo Bowl in San Antonio on Dec. 28. They will play a still-to-be-determined team from the Big 12, with Oklahoma, Texas A&M and Texas as possible opponents.
It is the 30th time in 34 seasons that the Nittany Lions have gone to a bowl under Paterno, breaking the mark of 29 appearances set by the late Paul "Bear" Bryant. Paterno is also the all-time leader in victories in bowl games with 19, the last one coming this past Jan. 1 after defeating Kentucky 26-14 in the Outback Bowl.
But Penn State's first appearance in the Alamo Bowl also ends the school's eight-year streak of appearing in a New Year's Day bowl game.
"I haven't thought of that really," Paterno said about the streak. "Obviously it's a little disappointing to not end up in the Bowl Championship Series. But I don't think anyone has given it much thought."
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