The best bowl game of the 2012-13 season might end up being the first. It's going to be difficult to top the drama of the New Mexico Bowl, with Arizona pulling off a nearly impossible victory in the final minute for one of the best bowl finishes in recent memory.
Arizona trailed 21-0 in the first quarter, and 45-28 to start the fourth quarter. The Wildcats trailed by 13 with less than a minute to go. And yet Arizona somehow got a stunning 49-48 comeback win against Nevada to kick off the bowl season with a bang.
Arizona's start was awful, with defensive problems, a key turnover on a kickoff and even a fight on the sideline among teammates in the first quarter. But there wasn't much defense from either side in this game, so the Wildcats stormed back to tie the game in the second quarter.
Nevada took back control of the game with two unanswered touchdowns in the third quarter, and when Arizona punted from its own 9-yard line with a little more than six minutes left, the game seemed over. Nevada, which had a bowl record 39 first downs in the game, drove deep in Arizona territory and kicked a field goal with 1:48 left to take a 48-35 lead.
Arizona needed a miracle at that point, and got one.
Neither defense offered much resistance, with the teams picking up 1,234 combined yards, and Arizona moved 75 yards in 1:06 to score a touchdown to pull within six points. Two questionable pass interference penalties were worth 28 yards. Nevada will bemoan those calls for a long time.
Even with that touchdown, Arizona needed an onside kick and a touchdown drive and had just 42 seconds. The Wildcats got the onside, and then Arizona quarterback Matt Scott moved his team downfield remarkably fast. Completions of 28 and 21 yards on Arizona's first two plays set up a 2-yard touchdown on the third play, and the Wildcats had 19 seconds to spare. The extra point gave Arizona the game-winning point.
It was the first time the Wildcats held the lead the entire game.
- - -
Got a tip for Dr. Saturday? Email us at email@example.com . You can also connect with us via Twitter @YahooDrSaturday and be sure to "Like" Dr. Saturday on Facebook for football conversations and stuff you won't see on the blog.
Fantasy football advice on Yahoo Sports:
Other popular content on the Yahoo! network:
• NFL to observe moment of silence prior to Week 15 games
• Phillies bolster pitching with veterans Mike Adams and John Lannan
• Kevin Garnett, Kevin McHale reunite and share a long and needed hug
• Y! Travel: The best new bars in 10 U.S. cities
- American Football
- Sports & Recreation
- Arizona territory