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On Christmas Day the Oregon State Beavers arrive ahead of the 90th Tony the Tiger Sun Bowl

EL PASO, Texas (KVIA) -- Is there a better Christmas gift than both the No. 19 Oregon State Beavers and the No. 16 Notre Dame Fighting Irish now being in the Sun City ahead of the 2023 Tony the Tiger Sun Bowl?

Just four days until the 90th edition of the game, the Beavers flew into the Sun City and got the traditional Sun Bowl welcome - a Mariachi band, Folklorico dancers and Tony the Tiger himself greeting players and coaches.

"It's awesome we can sense the hospitality already and we're excited for this week, it couldn't come here soon enough," interim head coach Kefense Hynson said. "We're ready to go play football, go prepare for the next couple of days and enjoy El Paso."

They Beavers will be led by Hynson who usually operates as the wide receivers coach. It's quite a strange coaching setup - Jonathan Smith left the program at the end of the season to go to Michigan State, the Beavers then announced that the Defensive Coordinator Trent Bray will take over head coaching duties. Bray travelled into town with the team on Monday but Hynson will have all of the coaching duties for Friday's game.

"It's been a lot of learning, a bit of a learning curve but I knew all the players already so that part was easy," Hynson said. "But a lot of learning but it's been a good experience."

Both the Beavers and Fighting Irish enjoyed a Christmas dinner at Cattleman's steakhouse.

Notre Dame began practice on Monday here in the Sun City. Oregon State will begin on Tuesday and both teams will open the practice to the media.

The game has been touted as one of the best bowl game matchups this season but the two teams will look incredibly different to what they have all season long. Both the Beavers and Fighting Irish have a plethora of opt-outs including their star quarterbacks and running backs.

The 90th Tony the Tiger Sun Bowl kicks off on Friday at 12 p.m. MT from Sun Bowl Stadium.

Article Topic Follows: Sports

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Rachel Phillips


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