NEW ORLEANS -- Tulane will meet the 5-4 Arkansas Razorbacks Dec. 27 in the Hall of Fame Game at Birmingham, Ala., bowl officials announced Saturday.
Tulane, which lost last year in the Liberty Bowl, received the invitation before its 21-16 win over Memphis State, but the invitation was contingent on a victory.
The surprise Arkansas invitation was announced after the game by bowl officials.
'Our team played hard all year,' said Green Wave coach Vince Gibson, who said the Green Wave was flat against Memphis State. 'Tonight should not take away from that. We were deserving of a bowl.'
The appearance marks the first time in the history of Tulane football that the Green Wave has appeared in a bowl game two consecutive years.
Arkansas coach Lou Holtz said he was delighted to receive the bid.
'Everyone I've talked to that has been there has nothing but good things to say about the bowl and the people who run it,' Holtz said. 'Our season has not been what I would like for it to have been, but I do think we're a good team and we plan to take a very good Arkansas team to Birmingham.'
It will be the eighth straight bowl game for a Holtz-coached team, including four while he coached at North Carolina State.
An Arkansas spokesman said the Hogs had no idea they were in the running for the Hall of Fame Bowl until after they had squeaked past Texas Tech, 27-24, on a last-second field goal.