No. 21 Houston faces SEC's Auburn in Birmingham Bowl

No. 21 Houston (11-2, American) vs Auburn (6-6, SEC), Dec. 28, 12 p.m. ET

LOCATION: Birmingham, Alabama

TOP PLAYERS

Auburn: CB Roger McCreary is a potential first-round NFL draft pick. McCreary has 49 tackles, two interceptions and 14 pass breakups. Houston: RB Alton McCaskill the AAC’s rookie of the year, led all true freshmen with 16 rushing touchdowns, second-most in program history. He has run for 883 yards and also caught 17 passes.

NOTABLE

Auburn: The Tigers, led by first-year coach Bryan Harsin, have lost four straight games and blown double-digit leads in three of them. But they took No. 1 Alabama to four overtimes in the regular-season finale before losing 24-22.

Houston: Won 11 straight regular-season games after falling to Texas Tech in the opener. Fell to playoff-bound Cincinnati 35-20 in the AAC championship game.

LAST TIME

Auburn 7, Houston 0. (Oct. 27, 1973).

BOWL HISTORY

Auburn: Making 46th bowl appearance and second in the Birmingham Bowl, having beating Memphis 31-10 in 2015. The Tigers made their ninth consecutive bowl game, tying the program’s longest streak set from 1982-90.

Houston: Making 29th bowl appearance and 14th in the last 17 seasons. Played in the Birmingham Bowl, then the BBVA Compass Bowl, in January 2014, losing 41-24 to Vanderbilt.

___

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