The BYU Football Team was matched up the 22nd ranked Utah Utes in the 2015 Royal Purple Las Vegas Bowl. The Las Vegas Bowl matchup renews a rivalry that was not scheduled the past two regular seasons and will pit the Cougars and Utes against each other for the 90th time in a series that began in 1922.
The Cougars have advanced to 11 straight bowl games, one of only 11 programs in the country to do so. BYU is 6-4 in its bowl games under Mendenhall, who will be leaving BYU following the game to take the head coaching position at the University of Virginia. Mendenhall has a chance to equal legendary coach LaVell Edwards’ seven bowl wins with a victory against Utah.
The BYU Team spent their first full day in Las Vegas with a practice and an opening reception at the Fremont Street Experience. They capped off the day with a ride on the High Roller which provides amazing views of the Las Vegas skyline.
Players from both BYU and Utah participated in two different service opportunities. One group visited Opportunity Village, a local not-for-profit organization serving children and adults in the southern Nevada community with intellectual disabilities, to enhance their lives and the lives of the families who love them. Players visited with members of the Opportunity Village and brought gifts, took photos and helped spread some Holiday cheer around the facility.
Another group of players helped with the Goodie Two Shoes Foundation at a local elementary school. The Foundation provides disadvantaged children and children in crisis with new shoes and socks, as well as other items deemed essential for good health and positive development. A carnival-like atmosphere surrounded the playground as children had the help of players while they selected new shoes and received gift bags and goodies. Later in the day after another bowl practice session the team got to see Zarkana by Cirque Du Soleil as part of the bowl festivities.
The Cougars arrive at Sam Boyd Stadium to get their pre-game preparations underway.