- Graham Watson at Dr. Saturday4 hrs ago
The sound of stunned silence was even noticeable during the television broadcast.
The nearly sold out crowd at the Camellia Bowl in Montgomery, Ala., most of whom were there to watch South Alabama play in its first-ever bowl game, had just seen the Jaguars take the lead late in the fourth quarter against Bowling Green only to give it right back on a 78-yard bomb that ultimately sealed the game.
Bowling Green, which led almost the entire game, escaped with a 33-28 win in the most exciting bowl game on the inaugural day of the 2014-15 bowl season.
With 1:20 remaining, South Alabama running back Terrance Timmons scampered three yards to give the Jaguars a 28-27 lead, its first lead of the game.
But the moment lasted all of two plays as Bowling Green quarterback James Knapke found receiver Roger Lewis on a 78-yard bomb down the middle of the field. Lewis broke one tackle before heading into the end zone.
South Alabama threw an interception and then ran into Bowling Green’s punter on the ensuing possession to end the game.
Knapke’s heroics weren’t exactly unforeseen.
- Graham Watson at Dr. Saturday5 hrs ago
As the Camellia Bowl between South Alabama and Bowling Green got close in the fourth quarter, things also turned unexpectedly bloody.
South Alabama coach Joey Jones was trying to stop tight end Ryan Onkaa, who was falling out of bounds. However, Onkaa did a partial somersault and kicked his coach in the face not once, but twice.
Jones emerged bleeding with what announcers speculated was a bloody nose. He was seen multiple times with a towel trying to clean the blood from his face.
But he never took a moment away from the sidelines and continued to coach even through medical attention.
That play alone — and the trading of touchdowns in a hectic fourth quarter — made the Camellia Bowl the best game of the opening day of bowls.
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- Graham Watson at Dr. Saturday7 hrs ago
Dave Baldwin’s chances of being hired as Colorado State’s next coach went out the window Saturday when the former offensive coordinator turned interim head coach told media he and the rest of the CSU staff had been handed termination papers.
“That’s the profession,” Baldwin said. “… You deal with it. Life is never fair, and you deal with it. We’re going to deal with it.”
Baldwin was one of several names in the mix for the Rams head coaching vacancy that was opened when Jim McElwain left for Florida. The termination papers don’t mean Baldwin or any other members of Colorado State’s staff can’t or won’t be hired to stay at Colorado State.
- Graham Watson at Dr. Saturday8 hrs ago
Quietly, Air Force capped one of the best seasons in program history following a 38-24 win against Western Michigan in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl.
The win was the team’s first bowl win since 2010 and the first 10-win season for the Falcons since they won 12 in 1998.
Air Force took the lead in this game early in the second quarter and never relinquished it. The Falcons option offense gained chunks of yardage led by Shayne Davern, who had 12 carries for 101 yards and two touchdowns.
The Air Force defense kept Western Michigan’s high-powered attack mostly in check. Running back Jarvion Franklin, who came into the game with nearly 1,500 yards, was bottled up and held to just 26 yards on 12 carries. It tied his second-lowest output of the year.
While the Western Michigan ground game was quiet, quarterback Zach Terrell did have some success in the air with star receiver Corey Davis, who eight catches for 176 yards and three touchdowns, including a 51-yard score late in the game.
Terrell, finished with 297 passing yards and three touchdowns.
- Graham Watson at Dr. Saturday9 hrs ago
Mississippi State coach Dan Mullen took a little time away from his Capital One Orange Bowl preparation to have a staff Christmas party.
A party, at which, he wore the greatest National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation-themed sweater ever.
Merry Christmas from the staff party. pic.twitter.com/dYRYlVOWmD
Some of you might remember a segment on College GameDay earlier in the season where coaches read mean tweets about themselves. One of those tweets said, “Cousin Eddie (from Christmas Vacation) is a fictional version of Dan Mullen.”
Of course, Mullen responded with, “Merry Christmas, (expletive) full.”
And, as you already noticed, the line on Mullen’s sweater.
I really hope Mullen got this sweater just to troll the person on Twitter. That would just add to the lore.
Well played, Dan Mullen. Well played.
For more Mississippi State news, visit BulldogBlitz.com.
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- Graham Watson at Dr. Saturday10 hrs ago
For one game, Utah showed flashes of the team coach Kyle Whittingham hopes he has in the future.
The Utes defeated Colorado State 45-10 in the Royal Purple Las Vegas Bowl, a surprising score considering the Utes offense had been pretty cold for most of the season.
But it scored a Las Vegas Bowl record 24 points in the first quarter and the defense, which has been steady all season, never gave Colorado State a chance to find rhythm and get back into the contest.
The 45 points were the most the Utes had scored in a game since scoring 59 against Fresno State on Sept. 6. They also scored 56 in the season opener against FCS opponent Idaho State.
Most of Utah offensive struggles stemmed from incinsistent quarterback play, but Travis Wilson was steady, especially while running the read option, something he hadn’t done a lot of because of past head injuries. But he accounted for 91 rushing yards and three rushing touchdowns — more rushing touchdowns that he had the rest of the season combined — in his best rushing game of the season.
- Nick Bromberg at Dr. Saturday12 hrs ago
If you missed Utah State's 21-6 win over UTEP in the New Mexico, we hate to break it to you, but you didn't miss much.
UTEP was overmatched, both on defense and on offense, and when Utah State went up 7-3 on a 48-yard touchdown run by quarterback Kent Myers, the Aggie lead was insurmountable.
Myers, Utah's fourth quarterback this season, wasn't incredibly effective as a passer, finishing 5-12 for 68 yards with 70 on the ground. But he didn't need to be, thanks to the strength of Utah State's defense. And because of that defense, Utah State now has its second 10-win season in program history, a remarkable feat given the quarterback stat listed above.
The Miners struggled both rushing the football and attempting to pass it. Running back Aaron Jones compiled 25 carries, but they went for 88 yards, less than four yards a carry, as he struggled to find space on the edges against Utah State's defense. Quarterback Jameill Showers had barely more than 100 yards until a final garbage-time drive and his end-game total of 126 included a scramble-and-chuck it 53-yard completion to Ian Hamilton in the first quarter.
- Sam Cooper at Dr. Saturday15 hrs ago
Louisiana-Lafayette’s offense got out to fast start and put up 10 points on its first two possessions. That was all ULL’s defense would need in a 16-3 win over Nevada.
The Ragin’ Cajuns held a Wolf Pack offense that averaged 413 yards and 31 points per game to just 214 yards and three points en route to a fourth straight New Orleans Bowl victory Saturday at the Superdome.
In his final game with the program, ULL senior quarterback Terrance Broadway completed 26-of-31 passes for 227 yards and a score while running backs Elijah McGuire and Alonzo Harris combined for 169 yards rushing on 29 carries.
Broadway completed his first 14 passes of the game and helped the Cajuns jump out to a 10-0 lead. ULL’s first drive was an effective mix of run and pass that culminated in a 17-yard touchdown pass from Broadway to C.J. Bates.
After forcing a Nevada three-and-out on the Wolf Pack’s first possession, ULL added on to its lead with a 46-yard field goal from Hunter Stover, the first of his three field goals on the day.
- Nick Bromberg at Dr. Saturday1 day ago
The Hawaii athletic department has asked the state of Hawaii for $6 million over two years to cover anticipated budget shortfalls.
The school made the request on Thursday. From Hawaii News Now:
"We do need additional support for athletics,” UH Manoa Chancellor Robert Bley-Vroman told the State House Higher Education Committee Thursday.
UH asked lawmakers for two years worth of two mandatory expenses: $3.4 million for the gender equity costs of women's sports and $2.6 million to help cover the travel costs of its opponents, as required in its agreements with the two athletic conferences to which UH belongs.
"I'm trying to think of a way that we can make athletics somehow sustainable. And I think it will require a partnership between us, the legislature, more external support," Bley-Vroman said.
Hawaii's athletic department isn't new to financial issues. The department has a predicted $3.5 million budget shortfall for this year and has operated in the black just three of the last 15 years.
- Sam Cooper at Dr. Saturday1 day ago
To boost a defense that allowed 59 points in the Big Ten Championship, Wisconsin will look toward a player who played primarily on offense this season.
According to the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, quarterback Tanner McEvoy was working with the first-team defense at linebacker and safety during practice on Thursday. McEvoy, who saw action in 11 games as a running quarterback this season, said he’d play both offense and defense when the Badgers take on Auburn in the Outback Bowl.
“I’ll be going both ways,” McEvoy said. “At the end of practice I had my normal QB package.”
After transferring to Wisconsin last season, McEvoy played safety in 11 games for the Badgers and made three starts. At 6-foot-6 and 222 pounds, McEvoy showed great athleticism and made 27 tackles with one interception.
McEvoy said he returned to the defensive side on Tuesday in efforts to match up with the speed of Auburn’s high-powered offense, which put up 489.2 yards and 35.8 points per game this season. To accomodate the change, McEvoy will change his jersey number from No. 5 to No. 11 or 14 since he shares No. 5 with cornerback Darius Hillary.