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Now the Ticket City Bowl gets a relatively high-profile matchup between the Nittany Lions, who usually draw large postseason crowds, and the Cougars and star quarterback Case Keenum playing in their home state.

“Our goal from the start was to bring major college postseason football back to historic Cotton Bowl Stadium, and with this extraordinary matchup … we believe we have accomplished that objective,” Starr said in a statement.

Both schools have seemingly tentative coaching situations. Sumlin has been mentioned as a top candidate for high-profile openings, including Texas A&M, which fired Mike Sherman last week.

“No, I didn’t talk to anybody today,” Sumlin said to one of several questions about potential vacancies.

Bradley, Paterno’s longtime defensive coordinator, has said he’s interested in keeping the Penn State job permanently. The search has been called “wide open,” and internal candidates have not been ruled out.

Bradley said in an interview Sunday night on ESPN that he wasn’t worrying about the search: “I’ve been asked to do the job by the university, and I’m going to do that job until I’ve been told otherwise.”

Former Steelers coach Bill Cowher has been mentioned as a potential candidate. The NFL analyst for CBS declined comment Sunday to the AP through a network spokeswoman, who referred to Cowher’s on-air comments Oct. 30 about other coaching vacancies.

“I am here to say to you today, I do not plan on coaching next year,” Cowher said, according to a CBS transcript.

Another rumored candidate, Mississippi State coach Dan Mullen said in a statement through his school Friday that he had not been contacted by Penn State, and he was “very happy” with the progress of the Bulldogs program.

Mullen was Urban Meyer’s offensive coordinator at Florida before coming to Mississippi State. Meyer is the incoming coach at Ohio State, Penn State’s Big Ten rival.


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