SMU coach June Jones felt and looked right at home when he walked into Aloha Stadium.
Dressed in slacks and flip flops, he strolled down a corridor where portraits of Hawaii's biggest stars hung on the wall, most of them players that Jones coached during an eight-year tenure that made him so popular in paradise that some suggested he run for governor.
Never mind that Fresno State is favored by nearly two touchdowns against SMU on Christmas Eve. Jones has ample reason to feel the Hawaii Bowl is a home game.
Jones will be coaching for the 75th time in Aloha Stadium when his Mustangs (6-6) face Fresno State (9-3) on Christmas Eve. He hasn't lost in this stadium since Oregon State beat Hawaii on Dec. 2, 2006.
Junior Cody Vaz will start at quarterback for No. 15 Oregon State in the Alamo Bowl against Texas. Coach Mike Riley had to choose between Vaz and sophomore Sean Mannion.
Mannion has thrown for 2,446 yards, 15 touchdowns and 13 interceptions in nine games. Vaz has thrown for 1,286 yards, 11 touchdowns and one interception in six games. Mannion started the first four games, but sustained an injury. Vaz took over and became the team's starter. But Vaz sprained his ankle, and Mannion started the final three games.
UCLA safety Tevin McDonald will not play in the Bridgepoint Education Holiday Bowl after violating a team policy, coach Jim Mora said. McDonald tested positive for marijuana, according to a person familiar with the situation. Under UCLA policy, a player is suspended for one game after testing positive for a third time. A fourth positive test can result in a player's scholarship being revoked. McDonald did not travel with the team to San Diego on Friday.