A busy day of bowling ends with Baylor finally winning a bowl game in an impressive offensive performance by Johnny Jefferson against North Carolina, Leonard Fournette carrying LSU to something of a consolation prize, Jared Goff helping California win a bowl game for the first time in forever and Nevada relying on running and defense to beat Colorado State.
#10 North Carolina (11-3) 38 #17 Baylor (10-3) 49 (Russell Athletic Bowl): After two big letdowns over the last two years, Baylor finally win a relatively big bowl game between two ranked teams, rushing for an incredible 645 yards, including Johnny Jefferson going for 299 yards and three touchdowns in what might be the biggest individual performance of the bowl season, while the Tar Heels, who had a great season, simply couldn’t keep up with an offense they’ve never faced the likes of before.
#20 LSU (9-3) 56 Texas Tech (7-6) 27 (Texas Bowl): LSU simply ran all over the Red Raiders with Leonard Fournette scoring four rushing touchdowns while running for 212 yards, and also catching a pass for a touchdown from Brandon Harris in a dominant display to help them get to 10 wins once again, to make it a feel good ending in a troubled season, and maybe put some momentum into Les Miles’ tenure, which seems to be stalling in recent years.
California (8-5) 55 Air Force (8-6) 36: The rebuilding under Sonny Dykes takes another step forward as the Golden Bears win a bowl game for the first time since 2008, a year after they beat Air Force in the Armed Forces Bowl. Jared Goff threw for 467 yards and six touchdowns, as California produced 586 yards of offense, while Air Force had a hard time keeping up with the pace, turning the ball over three times, not having the passing ability and quality to keep up.
Nevada (7-6) 28 Colorado State (7-6) 23 (Arizona Bowl): Nevada complete a second season with a winning record and win their first bowl game since the 2010 season, before Brian Polian took over the team. The win was all about James Butler and the running game, finishing with 189 yards and two touchdowns, aided by Elijah Mitchell returning a kickoff for a touchdown, while doing just enough on defense to keep the Rams out of the endzone.
A busy day is followed by another interesting one: Auburn play Memphis in the Birmingham Bowl, North Carolina State play Mississippi State in the Belk Bowl, Texas A&M face off against Louisville in the Music City Bowl and #25 USC face off with Wisconsin in the Holiday Bowl.