South Carolina, Georgia pick up bowl wins, Miss. State falls

NORTHWESTERN, 34, MISSISSIPPI STATE 20

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) -- Behind huge interceptions early and late, No. 21 Northwestern beat Mississippi State 34-20 in the Gator Bowl on Tuesday and snapped college football's longest postseason losing streak.

The Wildcats (10-3) won their first bowl game since 1949, snapping a nine-game losing streak that was tied for the longest in NCAA history. They also celebrated double-digit victories for the first time since the 1995 Rose Bowl season.

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).

In between, Northwestern's two-quarterback system kept the Bulldogs (8-4) off balance most of the day.

SOUTH CAROLINA 33, MICHIGAN 28

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) -- Dylan Thompson came off the bench to throw a 32-yard touchdown pass with 11 seconds remaining Tuesday, giving No. 11 South Carolina a 33-28 victory over No. 19 Michigan in the Outback Bowl.

Thompson replaced Connor Shaw during the winning drive, covering the final 43 yards after the Gamecocks' starter 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 against Clemson with a left foot sprain. Thompson led the Gamecocks (11-2) to a victory over their archrival and threw for 117 yards and two TDs as a backup Tuesday.

Gardner threw for 214 yards in his fifth start for Michigan (8-5) since Denard Robinson injured his right elbow in late October. Robinson took some snaps at quarterback, but lined up mostly at running back and rushed for 100 yards on 23 carries.

GEORGIA 45, NEBRASKA 31

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) -- Aaron Murray threw five touchdown passes to set a Georgia bowl record, including two in the fourth quarter, as the sixth-ranked Bulldogs beat No. 23 Nebraska 45-31 in the Capital One Bowl on Tuesday.

Murray shook 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.

Georgia (12-2) reached 12 wins for the third time in school history.

Nebraska (10-4) lost its third consecutive bowl game, and finished the two season with two straight woeful defensive performances. The Cornhuskers lost the Big Ten championship game 70-31.

The Cornhuskers led 24-23 at the half, but committed two of their three turnovers in the final 30 minutes.


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