Bortles Lifts Central Florida Past Ball State in Beef 'O' Brady's Bowl
St. Petersburg, FL
Sophomore quarterback Blake Bortles threw a career-high three touchdown heaves and ran for another as UCF clinched its second straight bowl win, routing Ball State, 38-17, in the Beef 'O' Brady's Bowl Friday at Tropicana Field.
Bortles completed 22 of 33 passes for 272 yards and rushed nine times for a career-high 80 yards to earn MVP honors and give George O'Leary a fourth bowl victory in his 200th game as a collegiate head coach.
Bortles ended the year with 3,059 passing yards, marking the first time that a UCF quarterback produced at least 3,000 passing yards in a year since Ryan Schneider in 2002.
He also had 10 games this year with at least two TD passes, becoming the first playmaker in Knights' history to accomplish that feat in a season.
Senior running back Latavius Murray ran 21 times for 71 yards and a score and also caught two of Bortles' touchdown passes.
Murray completed his collegiate career ranked second all-time with 44 overall touchdowns, third with 37 rushing touchdowns, sixth with 2,424 rushing yards and eighth with 453 attempts.
True freshman Breshad Perriman tied a personal-best with five receptions while setting a career-high with 90 yards while Troy Davis had 1.5 sacks, putting him a tie for 10th on the UCF all-time list with 18.5.
Keith Wenning hit 22 of 34 passes for 218 yards and two touchdowns to sophomore wide receiver Willie Snead, who finished with 78 yards on seven catches.
Murray opened the game with a seven-yard touchdown catch from Bortles and added a two-yard scoring run but the extra point was blocked for a 13-0 Knights lead in the first period.
In the second period, Wenning found Snead for a seven-yard touchdown Bortles ran for a six-yard score and converted two points for a 21-7 advantage. Then, Murray added another touchdown catch for a 28-7 cushion at the break.
Steven Schott buried a 45-yard field goal in the third period to trim the gap to 28-10 but Bortles found JJ Worton for a seven-yard touchdown pass for a 35-10 lead.
In the fourth period, Shawn Moffitt kicked a 25-yard field goal for a 38-10 lead before Wenning threw his second touchdown pass to Snead for the final count.
Beef 'O' Brady's Bowl Recap: UCF 38 Ball State 17
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