San Diego’s two college football bowl games had an estimated economic impact of $30.7 million in December, up $2 million from the prior year, the San Diego Bowl Game Association has announced.

The study conducted by the San Diego State University Center for Hospitality and Tourism Research set the Holiday Bowl’s impact at $23.9 million. Nearly 25,000 fans from outside San Diego traveled to the game between Arizona State and Texas Tech, resulting in 26,566 paid hotel room nights, according to the report.

Holiday Bowl 2012. Photo credit: HolidayBowl.com

The impact of the Poinsettia Bowl, in which Northern Illinois took on Utah State, was $6.9 million, according to the report. The game drew nearly 8,400 people to San Diego County, for 8,495 paid hotel room nights.

“Year after year, our two bowl games provide a tremendous boost to the San Diego region, during the slowest time of the year for the tourism effort here,” said Bill Geppert, San Diego Bowl Games Association past president. “We are proud that our year-round efforts culminate in a positive outlook for our hometown.”

The association said the games have generated nearly $700 million in economic impact for the region since the first Holiday Bowl in 1978.

This December, the Poinsettia Bowl will match a Mountain West school against Navy, if the Midshipmen are bowl-eligible.

The Holiday will begin a contract with the Big Ten, which will send a team face an entrant from the Pac-12.

Dates for the contests have not been finalized.

 – City News Service