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Bowl Game Roundup 1/2/11
TicketCity Bowl - Texas Tech 45, Northwestern 38

DALLAS (AP) -- Taylor Potts threw four touchdown passes and scored another on a trick play, and Eric Stephens ran 86 yards for a score to carry Texas Tech to a 45-38 victory over Northwestern in the inaugural TicketCity Bowl.

The Red Raiders (8-5) led by 22 points early in the second half, then had to sweat it out.

The Wildcats (7-6) got within a touchdown twice in the fourth quarter, with freshmen quarterbacks Evan Watkins and Kain Colter combining to lead three straight touchdown drives and Jordan Maybin returning an interception 39 yards for a score with 5:37 left.

The game wasn't decided until the final play, a heave by Watkins that was intercepted.

Northwestern remains winless in a bowl since 1949. The Wildcats have lost eight in a row, including three straight close ones the last three seasons.

Capital One Bowl - No. 15 Alabama 49, No. 7 Michigan State 7

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) -- Mark Ingram ran for two scores to break the Alabama career touchdown record, and the No. 15 Crimson Tide rolled past seventh-ranked Michigan State 49-7 in the most lopsided Capital One Bowl in history.

The 2009 Heisman Trophy winner had 59 yards rushing against the team he rooted for as a kid, Greg McElroy threw for 220 yards and one touchdown, and Alabama (10-3) pulled most of its starters in the third quarter. Ingram moved past Shaun Alexander's mark (41) with 42 career touchdowns.

The Crimson Tide found the end zone on their first four possessions, held the Spartans (11-2) to 171 total yards and sacked Kirk Cousins four times in their most dominant performance all season.

The margin of victory topped East Texas State's 33-0 victory over Tennessee Tech in the 1953 game, then known as the Tangerine Bowl. The bowl dates back to 1947.

Outback Bowl - Florida 37, Penn State 24

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) -- Urban Meyer closed out a highly successful run at Florida that included a pair of national championships by leading the Gators back from a second-half deficit to beat Joe Paterno and Penn State 37-24 in the Outback Bowl.

Omarius Hines and Mike Gillislee ran for touchdowns, Chas Henry kicked three second-half field goals, and Ahmad Black scored on an 80-yard interception return to help Florida (8-5) send Meyer out on a winning note.

The 46-year-old coach resigned last month because of health concerns and to spend more time with his family.

In the week leading up to the game, the legendary Paterno repeatedly shrugged off rumors that the Outback Bowl could be the 84-year-old's last for Penn State (7-6).

Gator Bowl - No. 21 Mississippi State 52, Michigan 14

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) -- Chris Relf threw three touchdown passes, Vick Ballard ran for three scores and No. 21 Mississippi State overwhelmed Michigan 52-14 in the Gator Bowl.

The 38-point drubbing was the worst bowl loss in Michigan's storied history and may have sealed the fate of Wolverines coach Rich Rodriguez. His three-year tenure has been tainted by consecutive losing seasons, NCAA sanctions and late-season slides.

Michigan (7-6) was out of this game early, done in again by a defense that made a middle-of-the-pack Southeastern Conference offense look like a juggernaut.

Relf and Ballard posed problems all day. Relf completed 18 of 23 passes for 281 yards, and added 49 yards on the ground. Ballard ran for 77 yards. The Bulldogs (9-4) finished with 485 yards and punted twice.

Rose Bowl - No. 3 TCU 21, No. 4 Wisconsin 19

PASADENA, Calif. (AP) -- Andy Dalton threw a touchdown pass and ran for a score, linebacker Tank Carder swatted down a 2-point conversion pass attempt with 2 minutes to play, and No. 3 TCU completed a perfect season with its first Rose Bowl victory, 21-19 over fourth-ranked Wisconsin on Saturday.

Bart Johnson caught an early TD pass and recovered a late onside kick for the Mountain West champion Horned Frogs (13-0), who followed up their second straight unbeaten regular season by busting the BCS in dramatic fashion.

Dalton passed for 219 yards for TCU, which won't win the national title after Auburn and Oregon meet in the BCS championship game in nine days.

These ferocious Frogs still proved they can play with anybody on college football's biggest stages.

Montee Ball rushed for 132 yards and a late score for the Big Ten co-champion Badgers (11-2), whose loss capped a nightmare New Year's Day for their conference.

Fiesta Bowl - No. 9 Oklahoma 48, No. 25 Connecticut 20

GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) -- Connecticut did not squelch the belief of many that it did not deserve to be in a BCS game.

The Huskies of the much-maligned Big East stayed with heavily favored Oklahoma for awhile, but could not slow, let alone stop, Landry Jones and the rest of the Sooners' offense in a 48-20 Fiesta Bowl loss Saturday night.

Connecticut gave up a season-high 524 yards, 429 of them on Jones' passing. The Huskies (8-5) did not get a touchdown from their offense. Their two TDs came on Dwayne Gratz's 46-yard interception return and Robbie Frey's 95-yard kickoff return.

Oklahoma started with a 14-0 first quarter and ended with a 14-0 fourth quarter. In between, it was a 20-20 tie but that's not what will be remembered, especially by critics who feel the Big East no longer deserves an automatic BCS berth.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
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