Sugar Bowl headed to Georgia Dome

Updated: October 5, 2005, 7:48 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

The Sugar Bowl is heading to the Georgia Dome on Jan. 2, ESPN has confirmed.

The game was forced out of New Orleans for the first time because of Hurricane Katrina.

The official announcement is expected Friday morning.

Despite the Sugar Bowl's hopes that the game could be played in Baton Rouge, Louisiana's capital does not have enough hotel rooms to accommodate the tens of thousands of people the game attracts. Sugar Bowl officials were hoping New Orleans could provide the space needed, but recovery efforts have not moved fast enough to make that possible.

The Superdome has hosted the Sugar Bowl since 1975. Before that, it was played at Tulane Stadium, starting in 1935.

Atlanta had already given Sugar Bowl officials the OK to use the Georgia Dome, which hosts the Southeastern Conference championship game in December.

The SEC has a long relationship with the Sugar Bowl, having sent its champion there for decades.

The Peach Bowl will be played in the Georgia Dome on Dec. 30, and the Falcons have an NFL game scheduled there Sunday, Jan. 1, but Atlanta officials have said they can accommodate all three games.

Sugar Bowl officials stressed last month that the move is temporary and they expect to have the game back in New Orleans next season.

One of four Bowl Championship Series games along with the Rose, Orange and Fiesta bowls, the Sugar Bowl is slated to host the national championship game after the 2007 season.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.