Oh, TicketCity Bowl, we hardly knew ye.
After two seasons as the title sponsor of the Jan. 1 bowl game still being played in the Cotton Bowl (now that the actual Cotton Bowl game has moved to Jerryworld), the ticket-selling website has been replaced by "newly minted nonprofit" Heart of Dallas.
The newly monikered Heart of Dallas Bowl will seek to match up teams from the Big Ten and Big 12 this season, with both conferences announcing the partnership and name change Thursday. The game is scheduled for a noon ET kickoff New Year's Day and will air on ESPNU.
Starting with the 2013 season, the game is expected to permanently shift to pairing teams from the Big Ten and Conference USA. With the recent contraction of the Big 12, the league has eight 2012 bowl tie-ins for its 10 teams -- raising the possibility that the conference may not be able to fill all eight, and the Heart of Dallas Bowl is last in the pecking order.
Conference USA would likely be the first choice to provide a replacement in that event, or the event of the Big Ten (which has the bowl seventh in its tie-in pecking order) failing to field enough eligible teams. The MAC also has an agreement with the bowl if it still needs a team after exhausting its other options.
Texas Tech defeated Northwestern 45-38 in the game's inaugual edition, held Jan. 1, 2011. Houston thumped Penn State 30-14 in the 2012 game.
Per the announcement, the Heart of Dallas is "a newly minted nonprofit [that] exists to inspire Dallas millennials to become the next generation of influencers and philanthropists by leveraging a consistent calendar of sports and entertainment events. Proceeds from Heart of Dallas activities will be used to invest in collective impact strategies that make Dallas a better place. The organization's launch event is the Jan. 1 bowl game."
The game will also be "presented" by PlainsCapital Bank.
As titles go, it's no "Poulan Weedeater Independence Bowl" or "Famous Idaho Potato Bowl," that's for sure. But at least "Heart of Dallas Bowl" works the location of the game into its title -- no small positive for a game that since its inception has threatened to be entirely overlooked on the loaded New Year's Day schedule.
Photo via the Big 12.