Sun Bowl off for first time since 1935 inception

The Tony the Tiger Sun Bowl, which has been played every year since its inception in 1935, has been canceled because of the coronavirus pandemic, Sun Bowl executive director Bernie Olivas announced Tuesday.

The game was scheduled for the Sun Bowl in El Paso, Texas, on Dec. 31.

El Paso has been dealing with a COVID-19 surge for several weeks. The county brought in the National Guard to help with its mobile morgues.

"While it is a very sad decision to make, it was not a hard decision based on the current situation in El Paso and the nation regarding the Covid-19 pandemic," Olivas said in a statement. "The safety and well-being of everybody involved must be our priority, and our board unanimously approved the cancelation of the 2020 Tony the Tiger Sun Bowl."

The Sun Bowl, played in each of the previous 86 seasons, is tied for the second-longest consecutively played postseason bowl game, behind only the Rose Bowl Game Presented by Northwestern Mutual, which has been played annually since 1916.

The Sun Bowl is the ninth bowl game canceled because of COVID-19; the Bahamas, Celebration, Fenway, Hawaii, Holiday, Motor City, Pinstripe and Redbox bowls are the others.

The Sun Bowl pits teams from the ACC and Pac-12. The ACC has now lost four bowl games that it had tie-ins with (Fenway, Holiday, Pinstripe and Sun); the Pac-12 has lost three (Holiday, Redbox and Sun).