Skip to content

‘Ruffin’ Texas Tech survives the Alamo

‘Ruffin’ Texas Tech survives the Alamo

Posted: Monday, January 4, 2010 5:40 pm
By: By The Associated Press

SAN ANTONIO (AP) — Ruffin McNeill and Texas Tech closed out a difficult week with a game Mike Leach would’ve loved.
Finally, the Red Raiders could unwind a little.
With everyone still talking about their fired coach, the Red Raiders blocked out the distractions and rallied to beat Michigan State 41-31 in a shootout at the Alamo Bowl on Saturday night after a week that left Texas Tech in turmoil.
The Red Raiders (9-4) fired Leach on Wednesday amid allegations he mistreated Adam James. The wide receiver, son of ESPN analyst Craig James, got a hostile reception all night from the crowd, who booed the sophomore so loud that it drowned out the marching band at halftime.
Michigan State (6-7) took a 28-27 lead into the fourth quarter, and appeared to get a break when Tech quarterback Taylor Potts left the game with an injury after throwing for an Alamo Bowl-record 372 yards and two touchdowns.
But this was still a Leach-built team.
And in his offense, quarterbacks thrive.
Trailing 31-27, backup Steven Sheffield marched Texas Tech downfield in eight plays, the last an 11-yard touchdown pass to Detron Lewis to put the Red Raiders ahead. Baron Batch tacked on a 25-yard touchdown run to put it away.
Cotton Bowl
Mississippi 21, Okla. St. 7
ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — Dexter McCluster gave Mississippi fans a finale to remember, rushing for 182 yards and two touchdowns, including the go-ahead two-yard run on a direct snap with 4:03 left as the Rebels beat No. 21 Oklahoma State 21-7 in the Cotton Bowl.
McCluster also had an 86-yard TD run in the second quarter after the senior had already become the first Southeastern Conference player with 1,000 yards rushing and 500 yards receiving in the same season.
Ole Miss (9-4) had five turnovers in the game, but Oklahoma State had six in the fourth quarter, and seven overall.
The Rebels failed to capitalize on Kendrick Lewis’ two interceptions, but McCluster scored after a fumble to break a 7-7 tie. Patrick Trahan picked up another fumble and returned it 36 yards for a touchdown less than a minute later, then intercepted a deflected fourth-down pass by Oklahoma State’s Zac Robinson on the next drive.
The Cowboys (9-4) missed a chance for their first 10-win season since 1988.
Liberty Bowl
Ark. 20, E. Carolina 17
MEMPHIS (AP) — Alex Tejada kicked a 37-yard field goal in overtime after East Carolina’s Ben Hartman missed two field goal attempts late in regulation and another in the extra session.
Hartman missed from 39 yards with 1:03 remaining and from the same distance on the final play, then missed from 35 in overtime. Tejada, who has struggled with kicks in pressure situations himself, made his attempt to end the game.
Arkansas won despite going 0-of-13 on third down. Bowl
UConn 20, S. Carolina 7
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — Andre Dixon ru-shed for 126 yards and a touchdown and resilient Connecticut ended a trying season with a victory.
The Huskies (8-5) are 3-1 in bowl games since moving up to Division I-A (now FBS) in 2002.
They won their final three regular-season games and overcame the October stabbing death of cornerback Jasper Howard to reach a bowl.
Upon made the most of the trip. The nation’s 95th-rated pass defense throttled South Carolina (7-6) and quarterback Stephen Garcia while relying on Dixon’s 33 carries to control the ball.
Dixon was the Most Valuable Player and joined teammate Jordan Todman as 1,000-yard rushers, the first time two UConn backs have surpassed that mark in a season.
Garcia completed just 16-of-38 passes for 129 yards while gaining 56 yards on 15 carries.
International Bowl
S. Florida 27, N. Illinois 3
TORONTO (AP) — Mike Ford ran for a career-high 207 yards and scored one touchdown, and B.J. Daniels threw two scoring passes to A.J. Love.
Carlton Mitchell caught six passes for 94 yards for the Bulls, who won back-to-back bowls for the first time. South Florida beat Memphis 41-14 in last year’s St. Petersburg Bowl, part of a streak of five straight bowl appearances.
South Florida scored 24 unanswered points in the second half after the teams traded field goals in a dreary first half.
Ford had just one carry in the first half, an 18-yard gain in the second quarter. He broke out in the third, rushing 12 times for 106 yards, then capped his day with a 24-yard scoring run in the final quarter.


Leave a Comment