The 2012-2013 Bowl Blitz Invitational presented by STAT BOX STORIES continues with the Sheraton Hawai’I Bowl, which features the Fresno State Bulldogs (9-3, 7-1 MWC) against the SMU Mustangs (6-6, 5-3 C-USA). MVPGamerz.com owner Kevin Vaughn (aka Romo_Timex9) took control of the Southern Methodist University team on their Hawai’i trip looking to emerge victorious in the role of underdog.
Early Miscues Doom Bulldogs as SMU makes the most of their Hawai’i Bowl Vacation
Honolulu, H.I. – Going into the 2012 Sheraton Hawai’i Bowl, the Fresno State Bulldogs of the Mountain West Conference were nearly two touchdown favorites over Conference USA foe SMU. When the first quarter came to a close, a suddenly-prolific SMU offense—and a defense which forced two interceptions by Fresno State QB #4—had the Mustangs ahead by three touchdowns. It was a start which made the end result inevitable for a SMU upset victory.
Fresno State’s first points of the game came early in the second quarter on a 30-yard field goal, but SMU quickly responded with a 41-yard touchdown pass to take a 28-3 lead at halftime. Even though the Bulldogs scored the only points of the third quarter on a 2-yard quarterback run, an 18-point deficit remained going into the final quarter.
SMU’s offense managed only a field goal in the fourth quarter after an explosive first half, but the 31 points proved more than enough when Fresno State could manage no more than another 30-yard touchdown pass late in the game to make the end result more respectable. In the end, it was SMU who finished two touchdowns up, defying the odds makers who gave them little chance of victory at Aloha Stadium.
SMU QB #11 threw for 262 yards and 3 touchdowns to only a single interception in the victory, while Fresno State QB #4 reversed those statistics with a one touchdown, three interception performance. With two SMU turnovers, that battle was closer than the final score would lead one to believe.
Player of the Game: SMU LOLB #44, who recorded 8 total tackles, 4 tackles for loss, 3 quarterback sacks, and also forced a fumble in a stout defensive effort for the Mustangs.
It was over when… SMU jumped out to a 21-0 lead in the first quarter which would prove to be too much to overcome. Fresno State would try to make it interesting late in the third quarter by scoring one of its two touchdowns of the second half, but SMU would seal the deal with its third interception of the night by CB #21.
Game Ball goes to… SMU WR #3, who racked up 291 all-purpose yards and a touchdown for the game.
Stat of the Game: 2. Fresno State QB #4 threw two interceptions in the first quarter, killing his team’s offensive drives and ultimately their hope to emerge victorious in this Bowl Game as SMU jumped ahead to a 21-0 lead.
Statistical Tidbits: SMU LOLB #44’s three quarterback sacks tied the Hawai’i Bowl record with Tulsa’s defender in the 2010 game. … SMU CB #21’s incredible three interception performance surpassed the previous Hawai’i Bowl game record of two interceptions by Tulsa in 2010. … Each team rushed 23 times, but Fresno State managed only 18 yards compared to SMU’s 50 yards rushing. Both teams did score on the ground, however. … The Bulldogs converted only two of ten 3rd Down Attempts, while SMU went 50% with 6 conversions on 12 attempts.