HONOLULU -- The commissioner of the Western Athletic
Conference said there is a reasonable chance Honolulu will host a
college football bowl game next year, even though the Aloha Bowl
has been sent to San Francisco and the Oahu Bowl is going to
Hawaii's more than 20 years of bowl-hosting experience and
status as a sought-after destination are factors that could earn
the city the conference's backing for a bowl game, commissioner
Karl Benson said.
Hawaii lost both the Aloha Bowl and the Oahu Bowl when Aloha
Sports Inc. announced in April that it was moving the Christmastime
games to the West Coast.
The Aloha Bowl went to San Francisco and the Oahu Bowl to
Seattle for the coming season.
The NCAA has a moratorium on certifying new bowls. Possible
candidates for a move to Hawaii include the Humanitarian Bowl in
Boise, Idaho, and the Silicon Valley Bowl in San Jose, Calif. But
Benson said it's too early to speculate on which bowl the WAC might
look to move to Hawaii.
Boise State officially joins the WAC this week.
Benson made the remarks last week while in Honolulu for meetings
with University of Hawaii and Aloha Sports officials.
He said the conference already has had discussions with ESPN
about possible interest in televising a Hawaii bowl game. Last
week, ESPN and the WAC finalized a three-year agreement to televise
regular-season football and basketball games.
Any bowl played in the islands likely will include a provision
that will allow the UH to receive a berth if it meets certain
criteria, Benson said.
In recent years, the Warriors were guaranteed a berth in either
the Aloha Bowl or Oahu Bowl if they won at least seven games.