Cal will face Texas in the Holiday Bowl on Dec. 28 at San Diego's Qualcomm Stadium, giving the Bears a chance to exact some revenge for Old Blues.
For many, there is still resentment from 2004 when Texas jumped Cal in the final BCS standings to earn the Rose Bowl berth. Cal's consolation prize that year was the Holiday Bowl.
"I don't remember much about it except for feeling like there was a great opportunity there," Cal coach Jeff Tedford said in a release. "We all felt like we were going to the Rose Bowl. However it unfolded, we were left scratching our heads as to how that happened. But that was a long time ago."
Tedford and Bears players were attending their team banquet Sunday and were unavailable for further comment.
Cal, which hasn't been to a Rose Bowl since 1959, seemed destined to end that drought in 2004. The Bears, led by quarterback Aaron Rodgers, were 10-1 and ranked No. 4, with only a 23-17 loss to No. 1 USC.
Cal closed the regular season with a 26-16 road win at Southern Miss, taking a knee at the end of the game rather than running up the score. The less than impressive win cost Cal some votes in the national polls and when the final BCS standings were released, Texas jumped Cal to move from No. 5 to No. 4. There was some feeling that open lobbying by Texas coach Mack Brown played a role in that.
Tedford apparently doesn't hold any grudges toward Brown. Both coaches refer to each other as friends.
Tedford said, "We've had chances to visit and hang out. I would call Mack a friend."
Cal returns to a bowl game for the eighth time in nine years. The Bears will be making their third appearance in the Holiday Bowl and first since 2006, when they beat Texas A&M 45-10. In 2004, Cal lost 45-31 to Texas Tech.
This will be the fifth meeting between Cal (7-5) and Texas (7-5) and first since 1970. Cal is 0-4 in the series.
Tickets in the Cal rooting section for donors and season-ticket holders are available through Tuesday at Calbears.com/bowl. Tickets are available for student season-ticket holders beginning at 9 a.m. Tuesday. General student tickets are available at 9 a.m. Wednesday. Any remaining tickets go on sale to the general public Dec. 12 at 9 a.m. at Calbears.com or the Cal ticket office.