After New Year’s, all the bowl games seem to pale in comparison to what we already had. The last day of multiple bowl games and good ones at that crowned Houston in the Armed Forced Bowl after a miraculous comeback, Tennessee in the Taxslayer bowl, UCLA in the Alamo Bowl and Oklahoma State won the Cactus Bowl.
Armed Forces Bowl – Pitt held a 25 points lead over Houston but managed to lose 35-34, with the Cougars scoring three touchdowns in the final 3:41 to come from 34-13 down (it was 31-6 at its epoch). The ending was ever bigger than the comeback. Instead of going for overtime and tying the game following Deontay Greenberry catching a Greg Ward Jr. touchdown pass, Houston went for two to win the game, succeeding in their two-point conversion with the same players combining to win the game.
Taxslayer Bowl – The Vols opened the game with a 28-0 run and never looked back, en route to a 45-28 win over Iowa in Jacksonville. It was the first postseason appearance for Tennessee since 2010 and their first Bowl game win since 2008, suggesting that the SEC East is back on the rise after a couple of rough years in compared to its most successful in-conference counterpart, and that Butch Jones is doing something right in Knoxville.
Alamo Bowl – No matter what happens, Kansas State will always lose big bowl games. For all the credit Bill Snyder gets on how he has raised a very successful program in a tough to recruit to spot like Manhattan, Kansas, losing each and every one of the big games his team gets to play has to stand against him at some point. We saw a rabona onside kick which rarely happens, but more than anything it was the day Paul Perkins starred in, running for 194 yards and a couple of touchdowns, including a 67-yarder to put UCLA up by 12 points in the fourth quarter and seal the deal. UCLA won 40-35.
Cactus Bowl – It wasn’t a very good season for Oklahoma State considering the standards they’ve gotten used to under Mike Gundy, but they finish the year with a win over Oklahoma in Bedlam and a bowl game victory against Washington, 30-22. Quarterback Marcus Rudolph threw for 297 yards and a pair of touchdowns as the Cowboys ran ahead for 24-0 lead and never had to worry despite the Huskies putting some points up on the board later on.