Published on NewsOK Modified: December 30, 2013 at 2:15 pm •  Published: December 30, 2013
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SUN BOWL

Virginia Tech (8-4) vs. No. 17 UCLA (9-3), 2 p.m. EST, Tuesday, Sun Bowl Stadium, El Paso, Texas (CBS)

Line: UCLA by 7.

Series: First meeting.

WHAT'S AT STAKE

UCLA is seeking its first 10-win season since the 2005 campaign and hasn't won a bowl game since the 2009 season. Bruins head coach Jim Mora already has set a program record for most victories by a head coach in his first two seasons, but he's looking to push that number to 19. Virginia Tech has never won a game against a Pac-12 team (0-3).

The Hokies are making their second trip to the Sun Bowl in program history, but their last trip to El Paso was in 1947. Virginia Tech head coach Frank Beamer has his team in a bowl game for the 21st consecutive year. He's one of four coaches in FBS history to go to 20 consecutive bowls. Beamer also is No. 6 all-time in victories among FBS coaches (266).

KEY MATCHUP

Virginia Tech's defensive line against UCLA's offensive line. The Bruins start three freshmen on their offensive line: Scott Quessenberry (5 starts) at left guard, Alex Redmond (9 starts) at right guard and Caleb Benenoch (8 starts) at right tackle. They line up against a Hokies defense that is No. 8 in the nation in rushing defense and No. 5 in sacks. Tech's 4-2-5 defense features ends James Gayle and J.R. Collins and tackles Derrick Hopkins and Luther Maddy, the lone junior among three seniors. The foursome has a combined 139 career starts, led by Hopkins' 39.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Virginia Tech: Senior QB Logan Thomas has a school-record 24 career rushing TDs and is tough to bring down at 6-foot-6, 254 pounds. Thomas has started a school-record 39 consecutive games, and this season he passed for 2,861 yards and 16 TDs. He also rushed for 295 yards and 4 TDs. Senior CB Kyle Fuller is a second-team All-American (2 INTs) and his brother, freshman CB Kendall Fuller (6 INTs), was named ACC Defensive Rookie of the Year.



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