Pittsburgh 30, Bowling Green 27

Date - Thursday, December 26, 2013 6:00 PM
Location - Ford Field
Attendance - 26259

Final Scoring Summary

Final 1 2 3 4 T
Pittsburgh 7 10 3 10 30
Bowling Green 3 7 10 7 27

Recap


Pittsburgh 30, Bowling Green 27: James Conner ran for a career-high 229 yards and Chris Blewitt hit the go-ahead 39-yard field goal with 1:17 remaining as the Panthers outlasted the Falcons in the Little Caesars Pizza Bowl at Ford Field in Detroit.

Conner broke Tony Dorsett’s 37-year-old school record for rushing yards in a bowl game while fellow freshman Tyler Boyd added eight catches for a personal-best 173 yards and returned a punt for a score for Pittsburgh (7-6). The Panthers outgained Bowling Green 487-289 to snap a two-game bowl losing streak.

Matt Johnson threw for 272 yards and two touchdown tosses for Bowling Green (10-4), which saw its five-game winning streak snapped at the same site the Falcons upset No. 23 Northern Illinois 20 days earlier to win the MAC Championship. BooBoo Gates notched his third career kickoff return for a touchdown.

Conner broke off eight runs of at least 10 yards – the first of which was a 15-yard TD in the first quarter – as his score and Boyd’s punt return bookended 17 straight points from the Panthers. Alex Bayer’s 29-yard catch-and-run on a short pass from Johnson cut the deficit to 17-10 with 1:28 left before the break and Gates tied it up when he returned the opening kickoff of the second half 94 yards.

Bowling Green’s Tyler Tate and Blewitt exchanged field goals to close the third quarter before backup quarterback Chad Voytik completed a 98-yard drive with a 5-yard run to give the Panthers a 27-20 advantage. Johnson’s 15-yard scoring strike to Ryan Burbrink knotted it up for the third time, but Conner rushed five times for 32 yards on Pittsburgh’s final drive to surpass Dorsett's record (202 in the Sugar Bowl on Jan. 1, 1977) and set up Blewitt for his decisive kick.

GAME NOTEBOOK: Boyd, who finished the season with 85 receptions (a school record for a freshman), broke Larry Fitzgerald’s first-year mark for receiving yards with 1,174. … Bowling Green, which entered Thursday as the 24th-ranked offense in FBS, was held below 343 total yards for the first time this season. … Pittsburgh QB Tom Savage did not return after suffering a rib injury late in the second quarter.

SCORING
Scoring Summary
1st Quarter - 4:26
Bowling Green   FG  Bowling Green 3 - Pittsburgh 0
1st Quarter - 0:58
Pittsburgh   TD  Bowling Green 3 - Pittsburgh 7
2nd Quarter - 8:29
Pittsburgh   FG  Bowling Green 3 - Pittsburgh 10
2nd Quarter - 6:43
Pittsburgh   TD  Bowling Green 3 - Pittsburgh 17
2nd Quarter - 1:28
Bowling Green   TD  Bowling Green 10 - Pittsburgh 17
3rd Quarter - 14:49
Bowling Green   TD  Bowling Green 17 - Pittsburgh 17
3rd Quarter - 9:52
Bowling Green   FG  Bowling Green 20 - Pittsburgh 17
3rd Quarter - 5:59
Pittsburgh   FG  Bowling Green 20 - Pittsburgh 20
4th Quarter - 9:31
Pittsburgh   TD  Bowling Green 20 - Pittsburgh 27
4th Quarter - 4:42
Bowling Green   TD  Bowling Green 27 - Pittsburgh 27
4th Quarter - 1:17
Pittsburgh   FG  Bowling Green 27 - Pittsburgh 30
TEAMS

Team Records

  Pittsburgh Bowling Green
W/L 7 - 6 - 0 10 - 4 - 0
Conference 3 - 5 - 0 8 - 1 - 0

Team Stats

  Pittsburgh Bowling Green
Score 30 27
First Downs 21 18
3rd Down Efficiency 3-for-12
25%
5-for-15
33%
4th Down Efficiency 1-for-1
100%
1-for-2
50%
Total Yards 487 289
Rushing
Rushes-Net Yards 39-255 34-10
Average/Rush 6.5 0.3
Passing
Comp-Att 13-22 21-33
Passing Yards 232 279
Average/Pass Play 9.7 7.0
Penalties-Yards 4-50 4-36
Fumbles-Lost 0-0 1-0
Interceptions Thrown 0 0
Time of Possession 28:50 31:10

PLAYER STATS

Pittsburgh (7 - 6)
Passing
  COMP/ATT YDS TD INT
T. Savage 8/13 124 0 0
C. Voytik 5/9 108 0 0
Bowling Green (10 - 4)
Passing
  COMP/ATT YDS TD INT
M. Johnson 20/32 272 2 0
H. Jackson 1/1 7 0 0
Rushing
  ATT YDS AVG TD
J. Conner 26 229 8.8 1
C. Voytik 2 24 12.0 1
J. Parrish 1 2 2.0 0
I. Bennett 5 2 0.4 0
T. Savage 4 0 0.0 0
Rushing
  ATT YDS AVG TD
T. Greene 18 39 2.2 0
F. Coppet 5 2 0.4 0
M. Johnson 11 -31 -2.8 0
Receiving
  REC YDS AVG TD
T. Boyd 8 173 21.6 0
J. Holtz 2 21 10.5 0
M. Garner 1 20 20.0 0
C. Wuestner 1 13 13.0 0
I. Bennett 1 5 5.0 0
Receiving
  REC YDS AVG TD
S. Joplin 6 86 14.3 0
H. Jackson 5 78 15.6 0
A. Bayer 3 57 19.0 1
R. Burbrink 3 44 14.7 1
R. Moore 2 12 6.0 0
T. Greene 2 10 5.0 0
M. Johnson 0 -8 0.0 0