ORLANDO, Florida: Aaron Murray threw five touchdown passes to set a Georgia bowl record, including two in the fourth quarter, and the sixth-ranked Bulldogs beat No. 23 Nebraska 45-31 in the Capital One Bowl on Tuesday night.
Murray’s most valuable player performance saw him shake off a pair of first-half interceptions, including one returned for a touchdown, and passed for 427 yards — also a Bulldogs bowl record — against the nation’s top-ranked passing defense.
In other bowl games on New Year’s Day, No.11 South Carolina edged out No.19 Michigan 33-28 in the Outback Bowl, No.21 Northwestern downed Mississippi State 34-20 in the Gator Bowl to end college football’s longest postseason losing streak and Oklahoma State thrashed Purdue 58-14 in the Heart of Dallas Bowl to shake off a disappointing Big 12 finish.
Also Tuesday, No. 8 Stanford’s dominant defense shut out Wisconsin in the second half of a 20-14 victory in the 99th Rose Bowl and No.13 Florida State stifled No.16 Northern Illinois to win the Orange Bowl 31-10.
Nebraska led 24-23 at the half, but committed two of their three turnovers in the final 30 minutes. Taylor Martinez had two interceptions and two touchdown passes for the Cornhuskers and Rex Burkhead rushed for 140 yards in his final college game.
Nebraska’s offense finished with 443 total yards, but the Bulldogs defense was stingy when it needed to be. They sacked Martinez five times, with All-American linebacker Jarvis Jones notching two.
In Pasadena, California, Stepfan Taylor rushed for 89 yards and an early touchdown, Kevin Hogan passed for 123 yards and Usua Amanam made the decisive interception near midfield with 2:30 to play as the Pac-12 champion Cardinals won their first Rose Bowl since 1972.
Stanford clamped down on the Big Ten champion Badgers (8-6), who lost the Rose Bowl in heartbreaking fashion for the third consecutive season. Montee Ball rushed for 100 yards and his FBS-record 83rd touchdown, but Wisconsin managed only 82 yards after halftime.
In the Orange Bowl, senior fullback Lonnie Pryor, voted the game’s outstanding player, ran for a career-high 134 yards and two scores in only five carries for Florida State. Senior EJ Manuel threw for 291 yards.
The victory was a consolation prize for the Seminoles, who began the season with national championship hopes. They’ve won five consecutive bowl games, but the victory was their first in a BCS bowl since 2000, when they beat Virginia Tech for the national championship.
In Tampa, Florida, Dylan Thompson came off the bench to throw a 32-yard touchdown pass with 11 seconds left Tuesday, enabling South Carolina to tie a school record for victories and claim the Outback Bowl over Michigan.
Thompson replaced Connor Shaw during the winning drive, covering the final 43 yards after Shaw began the march from his own 30. Devin Gardner’s third TD pass of the game had given Michigan a 28-27 lead.
Shaw threw for 227 yards and two touchdowns after missing South Carolina’s regular season finale with a left foot sprain. Thompson led the Gamecocks to a victory over their archrival, and threw for 117 yards and two TDs.
In the Gator Bowl, the Wildcats earned their first bowl win since 1949, ending a nine-game losing streak that was tied for the longest in NCAA history.
Quentin Williams returned an interception 29 yards for a touchdown on the third play of the game and Nick Vanhoose set up a late touchdown with a 39-yard interception return. Those plays were the difference in a back-and-forth game that featured more interceptions (seven) than touchdowns (six).
Scrambler Kain Colter ran for 71 yards, making up for his two interceptions. Backup Trevor Siemian threw for 120 yards and an interception, and also ran for a score as Northwestern’s two-quarterback system kept the Bulldogs off balance most of the day.
In the Heart of Dallas Bowl, Clint Chelf threw three of Oklahoma State’s five touchdown passes and the Cowboys shook off a disappointing campaign at Purdue’s expense.
Leading 28-0 at halftime, Oklahoma State erased any lingering doubt three plays into the second half when Justin Gilbert stripped Purdue receiver O.J. Ross on a short completion. The loose ball shot straight to Daytawion Lowe, who ran 37 yards down the sideline in front of the Purdue bench for a 35-0 lead.