- Sports & Recreation
- American Football
By Bucky Dent, The Sports Xchange December 30, 2013 6:57 PM
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Bo knows homecomings. Mississippi quarterback Bo Wallace, a product of nearby Pulaski, Tenn., accounted for all three of his team's touchdowns Monday as the Rebels held off Georgia Tech for a 25-17 win in the Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl at LP Field. Wallace completed 22 of 32 passes for 256 yards with one scoring pass and an interception. He added 86 yards and two touchdowns on 13 carries for Ole Miss (8-5), which won its second consecutive bowl game under second-year coach Hugh Freeze. The Yellow Jackets (7-6) pulled within 23-17 with two scores in a 67-second span early in the fourth quarter. Placekicker Harrison Butker converted a 38-yard field goal with 14:43 remaining, followed by Wallace's only mistake, an interception by cornerback D.J. White. Georgia Tech quarterback Vad Lee heaved a 72-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Darren Waller, who sped past falling nickel back Tony Conner, and the Yellow Jackets were back in the game. The Rebels' defense then came up with a huge play when linebacker Serderius Bryant forced a fumble from wide receiver Corey Dennis at the Jackets 3-yard line on an ill-fated reverse. The ball bounced into the end zone, where Georgia Tech right tackle Ray Beno fell on it for a safety with 4:22 remaining. By the time Georgia Tech regained possession, it had just 37 seconds to go 80 yards with no timeouts. Cornerback Senquez Golson intercepted a Lee pass at the Jackets 37-yard line with 25 seconds left to end it. Both teams ripped off 15-play touchdown drives to start the game. Ole Miss won the coin toss, took the ball and went 75 yards in less than five minutes. Wallace ran the last 17 on a quarterback draw for a 7-0 lead. Georgia Tech then went 74 yards, overcoming a 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty on A-back Robert Godhigh. He covered the final 8 yards around left end for a 7-7 tie. The Rebels established a 13-7 lead with 7:59 left in the second quarter when Wallace and wide receiver Donte Moncrief (six receptions, 113 yards) hooked up on a 28-yard scoring strike. Moncrief tightroped the right sideline over the last 10 yards, breaking the goal line's plane just before falling out of bounds. Ole Miss expanded the lead in the third quarter. Wallace kept the ball on a read-option and went 10 yards up the middle for his second rushing score and a 20-7 advantage with 8:13 remaining. The touchdown occurred five plays after rover Trae Elston recovered Lee's fumble at the Jackets 44. Rebels kicker Andrew Ritter, who had an extra point blocked and clanked a 29-yard field goal off the crossbar in the second quarter, extended the lead to 23-7 with a 29-yard field goal at the three-minute mark late in the third quarter. Georgia Tech was outgained 477-298. Lee completed only five of 17 passes for 147 yards. NOTES: Mississippi played an Atlantic Coast Conference team for the first time since meeting Wake Forest in 2008, when the Rebels lost 30-28. ... Rebels defensive coordinator Dave Wommack filled the same position at Georgia Tech from 2008-09, the first two years that Paul Johnson coached the Yellow Jackets. ... Georgia Tech averaged 311.8 rushing yards per game this year, good for sixth in the Football Bowl Subdivision. The Yellow Jackets led the nation in rushing since Johnson was hired.