NC State Dominates UCF, While Blue Devils Come Up Short Against Sun Devils

Though most of the staff at InsideTheACC, are borderline superheroes, there still comes that rare occasion where someone ends up severely under the weather. That is the exact situation we’ve run into this weekend, and so with apologies to the fan bases of NC State and Duke, we are going to combine their bowl recaps into one article. It could be worse. We could have paired you with UNC.

NC State Wins In The Trop

In chronological order, NC State took the field in the Bitcoin St. Petersburg Bowl. Their opponent would be UCF, not to be confused with UFC, which would have brought much more fight to the table. NC State turned in a dominant performance leading by as many as 21 points in the 4th Quarter, before giving up a couple of garbage time scores.

After UCF opened up the scoring with a 40 yard FG by Shawn Moffitt, NC State got on the board via the halfback pass. Shadrach Thornton took the pitch and barely had enough time to set his feet and get the throw off, before being leg whipped by a defender. On the receiving end, Jaylen Samuels used every inch of his stocky frame to fight off and out-muscle the defender for the 18 yard TD pass, putting the Wolfpack on top 7-3. UCF jumped back on top quickly on a Josh Reese TD catch from Justin Holman, but that was all the noise, of any consequence, UCF would make for the rest of the game.

NC State QB Jacoby Brissett would connect with Sophomore WR Johnathan Alston for a 37 yard TD.  The Wolfpack would retake the lead and never look back. Niklas Slade would add a FG with 3:16 left in the 2nd Quarter, making the Halftime score 17-10 State. The 2nd half became the Matt Dayes show, as he scored 2 TD’s on runs of 24 yards and 15 yards. Early in the 4th Quarter, Niklas Slade added a 45 yard, 3-point cherry on top and sealed the game.

UCF Senior WR Josh Reese brought in 2 TD passes late in the game to make the score a bit more respectable, and 34-27 would be the, albeit misleading, final score. Kudos to Josh Reese. Even though the game got out of hand in the 2nd half, Reese had 3 TD receptions on the day.


Duke Continues ACC Sun Bowl Woes

Duke came into the Sun Bowl hoping to reverse the trend of poor ACC performances, as the conference had went 1-3 in the last 4 years. Cue Charlie Daniels:

The Blue Devils went down to the Sun Bowl. They were looking for a win to steal.They were in a bind, and way behind, and on the verge of being killed. Midway through the 2nd Quarter, the Sun Devils had gotten hot, and Arizona State Freshman, Demario Richard was pounding the rock.

Arizona State’s kicker had kicked not one Field Goal but two. And with a 17 point lead, they thought they’d finished the boys in Blue. Now Duke had a pretty good season, and their losses were only a few, but in the Hyundai Sun Bowl, ASU was on a roll, and Duke was almost through.

Here comes Jamison Crowder, and he might be 5-10. But up to the test, he did his best, to carry Duke to the win. Jamison tighten up your gloves, and hold that football hard, cause the Sun Devils own the scoreboard, and Duke desperately needs some yards. On a great punt return, Jamison took the ball across the goal. With his touchdown, Duke’s back in this bowl.


So in the original lyrics, Johnny wins his fiddle battle with the devil. As for Jamison Crowder and the Duke Blue Devils… Not so much. In one of the more entertaining bowl games this year, ASU and Duke went back and forth in the 4th Quarter. Ultimately the Sun Devils came out on top, thanks in massive part to Demario Richard’s 4 total touchdowns; 2 on the ground and 2 through the air. Jamison Crowder was the star for Duke. His 68 yard punt return for a TD flipped momentum and got Duke back in the game. He also threw for a touchdown, and had a 100+ yard receiving day. This was Jamison Crowder’s last game in college, but as one of the most entertaining and productive receivers in the conference, I would hope that an NFL Franchise would be willing to use a draft pick on him. He’s shown the ability to be a play-maker, and he’s earned the chance to prove himself on the next level.

Again the ACC falls in the Sun Bowl, with a score of 36-31 in favor of the Sun Devils. Let’s hope Notre Dame takes this bowl next season.

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