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Texas Longhorns to play Arkansas Razorbacks in the Texas Bowl

The expected destination, but not the expected opponent.

Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

The bowl selection process didn't used to be like this, but with the College Football Playoff and the SEC putting a group of teams into a pool, the Texas Longhorns had to wait to find out that their opponent in the Advocare V100 Texas Bowl in Houston at NRG Stadium will be the Arkansas Razorbacks.

ESPN will televise the contest at 8 p.m. CT on December 29. The Horns had accepted the bid to Houston nearly two hours before.

In some ways, the match up represents a disappointment -- Arkansas has been playing better of late, but has mostly been struggling in the last two years in SEC play. Playing, and beating, teams like LSU or Texas A&M would have been much more significant for Longhorns recruiting purposes, especially a contest against the Aggies.

But avoiding those types of losses for schools is exactly why the SEC has chosen to pool teams. Some reports suggested that LSU didn't want to play Louisville in the Belk Bowl and Texas A&M may not have been willing to play Texas, either.

In all, it was a wild afternoon, as a report from an East Carolina site had Arkansas playing the Pirates in Birmingham, sparking a brief few minutes on Twitter where it looked like a Texas-Texas A&M match up might actually happen.

And so the Longhorns will travel to Houston to go against head coach Bret Bielema's power run game.

Arkansas went 6-6 on the season with a 2-6 record in conference play, although two of those wins -- over LSU and Ole Miss -- came in the last three games.

Texas leads the all-time series 56-21, having won the last match up 52-10 in 2008.

Fans hoping to purchase tickets for the game may have to move quickly, as the Texas Bowl announced on Sunday afternoon that there are only about 10,000 tickets remaining.