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Texas Longhorns will taken on No. 11 Utah in Valero Alamo Bowl in San Antonio

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(2019 Getty Images)

TEXASThe Selection

On Sunday afternoon, the college football bowl schedule was set. It’s official. The Texas Longhorns will take on No. 11 Utah in the Valero Alamo Bowl.

The Utes, a team that arguably was one win away from a trip to the College Football Playoff, will now take on the unranked Longhorns at 6:30 p.m. central time on Dec. 31. For Longhorn fans, it might not be as sweet as the Sugar Bowl, but they have a big opportunity in front of them to change the narrative of their season.

Close to Home

The game between No. 11 Utah and Texas will take place in San Antonio, roughly an hour out of Austin. While Utah is likely to be the favorite in this game, expect the Longhorn faithful to paint the seats of the Alamodome burnt orange come gameday. Texas fans travel well in general, so expect this to be more of a home game for Texas than it will be for Utah.

In this category, Advantage: Texas.

Reactions

Coach Tom Herman didn’t hold back when he spoke about how proud he was of the team on their bowl selection.

In yesterday’s press conference, Herman exclaimed that the team is “thrilled to be the Big 12 representatives at the Alamo Bowl. Our seniors were able to close their careers at home with a win, and now they’ll have the opportunity to play their last game as Longhorns in the state of Texas in front of so many of their friends and family.”

While the 2019 season has been a bumpy ride for Horns fans, players, and coaches, Herman sounded excited. Have no doubt that he will have his team ready for Dec. 31, as he proved last year that he’s no first-timer when it comes to bowl preparation against highly ranked teams.

Sam Ehlinger also seemed pleased, as he referred to the bowl selection as a “blessing” and says that the team is “looking forward to playing in it.”

Senior defensive end Malcolm Roach also expressed his desire to take on this tough Utah squad.

“I’m very excited to play against Utah. They’re a great team that’s had a great run this year. It’s going to be a challenge, and we’re very excited to play one of the best teams in the country,” Roach said.

Ready to Roll

Herman, Ehlinger and Roach all appear to be ready to take on a team that, quite frankly, was not hoping to play in this bowl. The Utah Utes finished the season 11-2 and had a chance to be in serious consideration to be a part of those final four teams, but a loss to Oregon gave them a matchup with a hungry Texas team. Despite the flaws of the Longhorns this year, one thing is for sure, this team will come out with a fight on Dec. 31.

While Utah has been great, I don’t think I would be the only person to say that a close-to-home matchup in the final game for the Longhorn seniors will rile them up a little extra for this finale.

My Prediction:

Texas 40, Utah 37