Ranking the 2010/2011 Bowls - Above-Average
Texas Tech QB Taylor Potts
Texas Tech QB Taylor Potts
Posted Jan 11, 2011

Ranking the 2010/2011 Bowl Season with the best to the worst bowls, here are the Above-Average. Entertaining, solid bowl games that were worth the watch

Ranking the 2010/2011 Bowls

The Above-Average

- 2010-2011 Bowl Central, Thoughts, Recaps & Scoreboard 
- Ranking the 2009/2010 Bowl Season  
- Ranking the 2008/2009 Bowl Season

- Ranking the 2010/2011 Bowl Season - The Classics 
- Ranking the 2010/2011 Bowl Season - The Excellent 
- Ranking the 2010/2011 Bowl Season - The Good  
- Ranking the 2010/2011 Bowl Season - The Mediocre 
- Ranking the 2010/2011 Bowl Season - The Duds   

The Above-Average
Entertaining, solid bowl games that were worth the watch

15. 2011 Cotton Bowl
LSU 41 … Texas A&M 24
What Happened: LSU got up early in the first quarter on a six-yard Uzoma Nwachukwu touchdown catch and a 39-yard Randy Bullock field goal, and then LSU's offense awoke and took over the game. Jordan Jefferson and Terrence Toliver hooked up three times for touchdowns from 42 yards out in the first quarter, two yards in the second, and 41 yards in the third to give the Tigers a commanding lead. Following a one-yard Jefferson touchdown run, A&M took back the lead in the second on a 14-yard Nwachukwu catch, but a 17-yard Stevan Ridley run led to 21 straight LSU points. The Aggies tried to stay in the game with a four-yard Kenric McNeal catch, but that 35-24 would be as close as they could get as LSU pulled away on Josh Jasper fourth quarter field goals from 50 and 26 yards out.
Player of the Game: LSU WR Terrence Toliver caught five passes for 112 yards and three scores.
Stat Leaders: Texas A&M – Passing: Ryan Tannehill, 22-35, 204 yds, 2 TD, 3 INT
Rushing: Cyrus Gray, 20-100 Receiving: Jeff Fuller, 7-83
LSU – Passing: Jordan Jefferson, 10-19, 158 yds, 3 TD, 1 INT
Rushing: Stevan Ridley, 24-105, 1 TD Receiving: Terrence Toliver, 5-112, 3 TD
Bowl Notes: LSU CB Tyrann Mathieu made seven tackles with a sack, two forced fumbles, a fumble recovery, and an interception. He would've scored on his pick, but it was called back on a roughing penalty. … Time of possession: LSU 37:26 – Texas A&M 22:34 … Total offense: LSU 446 – Texas A&M 373 … Turnovers: Texas A&M 4 – LSU 1 … Texas A&M LB Garrick Williams led all defenders with 15 tackles. … Texas A&M LB/DE Von Miller made nine tackles with a sack and three tackles for loss … LSU RB Spencer Ware ran ten times for 102 yards.

14. 2011 Outback Bowl
Florida 37 … Penn State 24
What Happened: Urban Meyer won his final game as the Florida head coach as his defense picked off five passes, but he had to sweat. Down six, Penn State was driving deep into the Gator territory in the final minute, but Matt McGloin threw his fifth pick of the game with Ahmad Black taking an interception 80 yards for a game-sealing score. Florida only netted 279 yards of total offense, but it got a blocked punt with Lerentee McCray going 27 yards for a score and a 14-7 first half lead. Penn State took over late in the third quarter with short scoring runs from Michael Zordich and Matt McGloin, but it was all Gators the rest of the way scoring 20 unanswered points with two of Chas Henry's field goals and off an interception, a one-yard Mike Gillislee run to put them ahead for good.
Player of the Game: Florida S Ahmad Black led the team with six tackles with two broken up passes, a tackle for loss, and two interceptions with one for a game-sealing score.
Stat Leaders: Penn State – Passing: Matt McGloin, 17-41, 211 yds, 1 TD, 5 TD
Rushing: Evan Royster, 20-98 Receiving: Derek Moye, 5-79, 1 TD
Florida – Passing: Jordan Reed, 8-13, 60 yds
Rushing: Jordan Reed, 24-68 Receiving: Chris Rainey, 3-18
Bowl Notes: Turnovers: Penn State 5 – Florida 2 … Total offense: Penn State 350 – Florida 279 … Penn State DT Devon Still made seven tackles and 3.5 tackles for loss … Florida PK Chas Henry was 3-for-3 on field goals connecting from 30, 47, and 20 yards out … Average yards per punt return: Florida 12.5 on four tries – Pen State 4.5 yards per two tries. … Florida has won five of its last six bowl games.

13. 2010 Liberty Bowl
UCF 10 … Georgia 6
What Happened: In a stunner, UCF came up with its first bowl win as a program as Nick Cattoi nailed a 22-yard field goal late in the second half and Latavius Murray ran for a ten-yard score in the fourth quarter, and then the D held on. Georgia only managed two Blair Walsh field goals from 20 and 41 yards out, but it had one last chance, but a Bruce Miller sack on Aaron Murray forced two desperation throws with a Hail Mary in the end zone getting batted down by Kemal Ishmael.
Player of the Game: UCF S Kemal Ishmael made 11 tackles with two broken up passes
Stat Leaders: Georgia – Passing: Aaron Murray, 21-38, 198 yds, 2 INT
Rushing: Washaun Ealey, 16-60 Receiving: A.J. Green, 8-77
UCF – Passing: Jeff Godfrey, 16-29, 117 yds, 2 INT
Rushing: Latavius Murray, 18-104, 1 TD Receiving: Brian Watters, 6-57
Bowl Notes: Total offense: Georgia 280 yards – UCF 241 … The two teams combined to convert 6-of-24 third down chances. … UCF DE Bruce Miller made eight tackles with 1.5 sacks and two tackles for loss. … Georgia LB/DE Justin Houston didn't register a sack, but he led the Bulldogs with ten tackles. … UCF P Blake Clingan averaged 41.7 yards per punt putting three inside the 20, and Georgia P Drew Butler averaged 42.6 yards per punt putting one inside the 20. … This is Georgia's first bowl loss in the last five tries.

12. 2010 Armed Forces Bowl
Army 16 … SMU 14
What Happened: Army forced three turnovers with Josh McNary taking a fumble 55 yards for a touchdown in the first 90 seconds to set the tone for the program's first bowl win since 1985. Malcolm Brown ran for a 13-yard score and Alex Carlton hit a 44-yard field goal for a 16-0 halftime lead. And then the Knights held on for dear life as SMU dominated the second half with Kyle Padron connecting with Aldrick Robinson from eight yards out and Darius Johnson for a 28-yard score, but Matt Szymanski missed a 47-yard kick late in the fourth that would've given the Mustangs the lead. Szymanski also missed a 35 yarder in the first quarter. Army ran out the final 4:10 with a Trent Steelman run and a 22-yard Davyd Brooks catch.
Player of the Game: Army LB Stephen Anderson made 14 tackles, a half a sack, 1.5 tackles for loss, and an interception.
Stat Leaders: SMU – Passing: Kyle Padron, 22-34, 302 yds, 2 TD, 2 INT
Rushing: Zach Line, 17-103 Receiving: Darius Johnson, 9-152, 1 TD
Army – Passing: Trent Steelman, 2-7, 30 yds
Rushing: Jared Hassin, 18-82 Receiving: Davyd Brooks, 2-30
Bowl Notes: SMU LB Taylor Reed made 12 tackles, 11 solo, and forced a fumble. … SMU outgained Army 413 yards to 229 … Turnover margin: SMU 3 – Army 0 … SMU only punted once. … Time of possession: SMU 30:41 – Army 29:19 … Conference USA is now 2-5 in the Armed Forced Bowl. … Average yards per carry: SMU 4.3 – Army 4.0 … Penalties: SMU 3 for 35 yards – Army 0

11. 2011 TicketCity Bowl
Texas Tech 45 … Northwestern 38
What Happened: Texas Tech got out to a 31-9 lead with Taylor Potts finding Austin Zouzalik for a 13-yard score and helped by a six-yard Lyle Leong touchdown grab. After an 18-yard Stefan Demos field goal got the Wildcats on the board in the second half, the Red Raiders needed one play to answer with an 86-yard Eric Stephens touchdown dash. And then Northwestern made a run as backup quarterback Kain Colter ran for his second one-yard score of the game and Evan Watkins threw two short touchdown passes and ran for a four-yard score to pull within seven. Potts led the offense on a ten play, 69-yard drive finishing with an 11-yard pass to Lyle Leong, who dove over the pylon, to get ahead by two scores with just over seven minutes to play, and the offense needed the cushion with Potts getting picked off for a 29-yard score by Jordan Maybin. Down seven, the Wildcats had one last shot but didn't go anywhere with a last gasp Hail Mary picked off by LaRon Moore.
Player of the Game: Texas Tech QB Taylor Potts completed 43-of-56 passes for 369 yards and four touchdowns with an interception and he ran twice for 19 yards and a score.
Stat Leaders: Northwestern – Passing: Evan Watkins, 10-21, 76 yds, 1 TD, 1 INT
Rushing: Kain Colter, 18-105, 2 TD Receiving: Jeremy Ebert, 3-34
Texas Tech – Passing: Taylor Potts, 43-56, 369 yds, 4 TD, 1 INT
Rushing: Eric Stephens, 14-126, 1 TD Receiving: Lyle Leong, 10-118, 2 TD
Bowl Notes: Northwestern LB Quentin Davie led all defenders with 15 tackles and two tackles for loss … Texas Tech LB Cquilin Hubert led the team with 13 tackles and a tackle for loss … Total yards: Texas Tech 552 – Northwestern 375 … Third down conversions: Texas Tech 8-of-15 – Northwestern 6-of-16 … Northwestern has lost its last eight bowl games since the 1948 Rose Bowl win over Cal … Passing yards: Texas Tech 369 – Northwestern 146.

10. 2010 Independence Bowl
Air Force 14 … Georgia Tech 7
What Happened: Zach Bell hit field goals from 42 and 41 yards away and Jared Tew ran for a three-yard score as Air Force capitalized on Georgia Tech mistakes for the stunning win. The Yellow Jackets took a 7-3 lead in the first quarter on a five-yard Anthony Allen touchdown run, but that would be it for the points with the best chance coming on a long 18-play 77-yard third quarter drive that stalled at the two with a Tevin Washington fumble. Tech punt returner Daniel McKayhan muffed two attempts with the second leading to a four play, 14-yard Air Force drive culminating in the Tew score. Tech had one last chance, but a Washington pass was intercepted by Jon Davis at the two.
Player of the Game: Air Force DE Rick Ricketts led the team with ten tackles with a sack.
Stat Leaders: Georgia Tech – Passing: Tevin Washington, 5-13, 41 yds, 1 INT
Rushing: Tevin Washington, 28-131 Receiving: Daniel McKayhan, 1-16
Air Force – Passing: Tim Jefferson, 11-23, 117 yds
Rushing: Jared Tew, 18-59, 1 TD Receiving: Chaz Demerath, 4-48
Bowl Notes: Georgia Tech's Julian Burnett led all tacklers with 13, nine solo … Turnovers: Georgia Tech 4 – Air Force 0 … Rushing yards: Georgia Tech 279 – Air Force 170 … Air Force is 3-0 in the Independence Bowl … Tech held on to the ball for 10:32 in the third quarter, Air Force had it for 10:56 in the fourth. … The two teams combined to complete 16-of-37 passes. … Total offense: Georgia Tech 320 yards – Air Force 287

9. 2010 Meineke Car Care
South Florida 31 … Clemson 26
What Happened: Clemson scored first on a 27-yard Chandler Catanzaro field goal, and then South Florida took over as B.J. Daniels threw a 25-yard touchdown pass to Demetrius Murray and found Dontavia Bogan for a 15-yard score on the way to a 17-3 lead. The Tigers rallied back late in the first half with a 44-yard field goal and a one-yard Jamie Harper run to pull within four, but the Bulls owned the second half with a two-yard Moise Plancher run and eight-yard dash from Daniels for a commanding 31-13 lead. Just when it seemed like the game was well in hand, Tiger backup QB Tajh Boyd made things interesting hooking up with Brandon Ford for a six-yard score with under two minutes to play, and after a successful onside kick, the two hooked up again for a ten-yard touchdown that appeared to broken up, but was ruled a touchdown after further review. DeAndre McDaniel came up with the onside kick for the Tigers, but he grabbed it a yard too early and USF was able to run out the clock.
Player of the Game: South Florida QB B.J. Daniels completed 20-of-27 passes for 189 yards and two touchdowns with an interception
Stat Leaders: Clemson – Passing: Kyle Parker, 13-23, 112 yds, 2 TD, 1 INT
Rushing: Jamie Harper, 20-34, 1 TD Receiving: DeAndre Hopkins, 8-94
South Florida – Passing: B.J. Daniels, 20-27, 189 yds, 2 TD, 1 INT
Rushing: Moise Plancher, 14-50, 1 TD Receiving: Lindsey Lamar, 5-40
Bowl Notes: Clemson starting QB Kyle Parker, in his final game before joining the Colorado Rockies, was knocked out of the game with broken ribs. … Clemson safety DeAndre McDaniel made 12 tackles … Top draft prospect Da'Quan Bowers made six tackles with two sacks …. USF DeDe Lattimore led the team with nine tackles with 2.5 tackles for loss with half a sack. … USF only averaged 14.2 yards per kickoff return, and Clemson only averaged 16.4. … This was USF's first bowl win over a BCS team. … This was Clemson's fourth bowl loss in the last five.

- 2010-2011 Bowl Central, Thoughts, Recaps & Scoreboard 
- Ranking the 2009/2010 Bowl Season  
- Ranking the 2008/2009 Bowl Season

- Ranking the 2010/2011 Bowl Season - The Classics 
- Ranking the 2010/2011 Bowl Season - The Excellent 
- Ranking the 2010/2011 Bowl Season - The Good  
- Ranking the 2010/2011 Bowl Season - The Mediocre 
- Ranking the 2010/2011 Bowl Season - The Duds