On Oct. 12, the UCLA Bruins were 4-0, while the Virginia Tech Hokies sat at 5-1. Both teams had BCS aspirations, but each school would go on to lose their next two conference games and will now meet for the first time ever in the Sun Bowl.
The Bruins (9-3) are a much more balanced team than the 8-4 Hokies. UCLA is No. 37 in total offense and No. 56 in total defense. The Hokies, meanwhile, are No. 4 in total defense but No. 98 in total offense.
The biggest storyline in this game will center around a pair of big, talented and athletic quarterbacks.
UCLA's Brett Hundley had a fantastic freshman season in 2012. He completed 67 percent of his passes and tossed 29 touchdowns. He also ran for nine scores. This season, Hundley's overall numbers were down a bit, but he did take better care of the football. He threw for 22 touchdowns and nine interceptions this season. He also led the Bruins in rushing.
Logan Thomas—the Hokies' 6'6", 255-pound signal-caller—is one of the more polarizing players in all of college football. Thomas was outstanding as a first-year starter in 2011, but he has been up and down over the past two seasons. Turnovers have been a big problem for the senior. He led the Hokies in rushing last season and finished second on the team this year. He has 53 career touchdown passes and 24 touchdown runs.