Georgia St. earns 1st bowl win
ORLANDO, Fla. — Conner Manning threw for 276 yards and a touchdown to lead Georgia State a 27-17 victory over Western Kentucky in the Cure Bowl on Saturday.
The Panthers (7-5) finished with a winning record with the first bowl win in Georgia State’s eight- year football history.
Manning threw a 42-yard TD pass to Roger Carter, Demarcus Kirk scored on a 26-yard run, and Kyler Neal finished a 16-play drive consuming nine minutes of the fourth quarter with a 1-yard TD run that put Georgia State up 27-10.
Mike White tossed TD passes of 54 and 4 yards to Deon Yelder, finishing with 351 yards — the senior’s eighth consecutive 300-yard game passing — for Western Kentucky (6-7). Yelder had five receptions for 112 yards for the Hilltoppers.
Georgia State star Penny Hart, the Sun Belt Conference leading receiver, did not start and played sparingly because of an ankle injury. His lone reception — for 27 yards midway through the third quarter — came on the play before Manning threw his TD pass to Carter.
NEW ORLEANS — Brandon Silvers passed for four touchdowns and ran for another, Troy produced five turnovers and the Trojans beat North Texas 50- 30 in the New Orleans Bowl on Saturday.
Josh Anderson, filling in for injured starter Jordan Chunn, rushed for 113 yards and two touchdowns, and Silvers also scored on a short run to help Troy (11-2) win for the 21st time in two seasons.
Silvers passed for 306 yards. Two of his TD passes went to Damion Willis, who had 136 yards and two TDs receiving on a New Orleans Bowl-record-tying 11 catches.
Mason Fine passed for 303 yards and three touchdowns for North Texas ( 9- 5), but was intercepted twice and fumbled twice. He finished with Mean Green single-season records of 4,052 yards and 31 TDs passing.
Troy largely dominated the second half after its own turnover trouble gave North Texas hope at halftime.
The Trojans were threatening to take a three-touchdown lead in the second quarter when a bad snap sailed over Silvers’ head and linebacker Colton McDonald scooped it for a 56yard fumble return to make it 22-13. Fine later connected from 13 yards with Michael Lawrence for a diving catch on the edge of the end zone, making it 22-20.
UNT opened the second half with the ball, but Fine’s short pass was deflected backward to linebacker Hunter Reese, who intercepted it to give the Trojans the ball on the North Texas 27. That set up Silvers’ keeper to make it 29-20.
Troy widened the lead when Silvers rifled a pass deep down the middle to Tevaris McCormick for a 59yard TD. McCormick’s 107 yards on five catches.
ATLANTA — Lamar Raynard scored on a 1- yard sneak with 38 seconds left and unbeaten North Carolina A&T won its second Celebration Bowl in three years, defeating Grambling State 21-14 on Saturday.
N. C. A& T ( 12- 0) won its fourth Historically Black College and University national championship. The Aggies claimed titles in 1990 and 1999 in addition to 2015, when they defeated Alcorn State 41-34 in the first Celebration Bowl.
Raynard, one of four finalists for the Black College Hall of Fame player of the year, completed 23 of 43 passes for 225 yards and a touchdown and had 17 yards on eight carries.
The junior quarterback drove the Aggies 56 yards in seven plays for the winning touchdown, shaking off nearly throwing his third interception.
Grambling ( 11- 2) challenged, but the pass was ruled incomplete.
Grambling was trying for a second straight HBCU national title as the Tigers edged North Carolina Central 10-9 last year.
Grambling quarterback DeVante Kincade, also a fi- nalist for player of the year, completed 19 of 36 passes for 225 yards and two touchdowns while also scrambling for 93 yards on the ground.
Franklin McCain III ended a Grambling drive following the second- half kickoff with an interception at the goal line and N.C. A&T marched down the field to go ahead 14-7 on Marquell Cartwright’s 30-yard run.
Grambling tied it early in the fourth quarter as Martez Carter teamed with Kincade on a 29-yard TD pass to cap an 80-yard drive.
N. C. A& T’s Lyndemian Brooks recovered a fumble at the Grambling 8 in the fourth quarter, but the Aggies came up empty when Cartwright tried to punch it in from a yard out on fourth down and was stopped by defensive end Brandon Varner.
Grambling went six plays on its final drive of the game but Kincade’s pass over the middle was incomplete as time expired.
LAS VEGAS — Cedrick Wilson caught 10 passes for 221 yards and a touchdown, Kekaula Kaniho returned an interception 53 yards for a score and No. 25 Boise State beat Oregon 38-28 in the Las Vegas Bowl on Saturday.
Brett Rypien threw for 362 yards and two touchdown passes — with two interceptions — to help the Broncos ( 11- 3) break a three- game losing streak against Power 5 opposition. Ryan Wolpin rushed for two touchdowns.
Troy Dye and Tyree Robinson each scored a defensive touchdown, and Justin Herbert was 26 of 36 passing for 233 yards with two touchdowns and two inter- ceptions for the Ducks (7-6) in new head coach Mario Cristobal’s debut.
Boise State forced four turnovers in the first half, taking a 14-0 lead in the first quarter on Wolpin’s 1-yard touchdown run and Rypien’s 26-yard scoring pass to Wilson.
Haden Hoggarth added a 39-yard field goal before an off-balance Herbert heaved a pass toward the sideline that was easily picked off and run back by Kaniho, who also had a strip-sack.
Oregon clawed back into it with two defensive touchdowns in the final minute of the first half.
Dye recovered a fumble on a botched Statue of Liberty handoff and returned it 86 yards for a touchdown with 37 seconds remaining to get the Ducks on the scoreboard.
A 65-yard reception by Wilson to set the Boise State single- season record for yards receiving got the Broncos right back in the red zone, but Robinson picked off Rypien’s pass in the end zone and took it back 100 yards on the longest interception return in school history with 7 seconds remaining to make it 24-14.
Boise State outgained Oregon 294-77 in the first half and reached Ducks’ territory on eight of 10 possessions.
After Alec Dhaenens caught a 13- yard touchdown pass from Rypien in the third quarter, the Ducks pulled back within 31-21 on a 24-yard scoring thrown from Herbert to Brendan Schooler with 10:07 remaining.
Oregon had a chance to cut it to a one-possession game but Herbert was sacked near midfield, and Boise State drove 86 yards in 11 plays capped by Wolpin’s second 1-yard touchdown run.