TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Isaiah Bowser ran for 155 yards and two touchdowns, Ryan O’Keefe had 85 yards on seven receptions, and Central Florida earned Sunshine State bragging rights by beating Florida 29-17 in the Gasparilla Bowl on Thursday night.
UCF (9-4) took a 26-17 lead late in the third when Daniel Obarski made a 21-yard field goal and Mikey Keene threw a 54-yard scoring strike to O’Keefe in the span of about two minutes. Obarski then made it 29-17 on a 33-yarder with 2:41 to play.
Florida quarterback Emory Jones, playing in his final game with the Gators before entering the transfer portal, completed 14 of 36 passes for 171 yards. He also ran for 62 yards on 10 carries.
Florida was led by interim coach Greg Knox, who took over when Dan Mullen was fired before the regular-season finale against Florida State. Former Louisiana coach Billy Napier will take over for the 2022 season. Florida (6-7) finished with its first losing record since 2017.
UCF outgained Florida 436-376. O’Keefe also put up 110 rushing yards, including a 74-yard run in third quarter after which Bowser put UCF up 16-10 with a TD run 4 yards out.
FRISCO FOOTBALL CLASSIC
MIAMI (OHIO) 27, NORTH TEXAS 14
FRISCO, Texas (AP) — Brett Gabbert completed 22 of 31 passes for 228 yards and two touchdowns, Kenny Tracy scored on an 8-yard run and Graham Nicholson kicked two field goals as Miami (Ohio) beat North Texas.
Gabbert, the brother of former NFL quarterback Blaine Gabbert, threw a 5-yard scoring pass to Kenny Davis late in the second quarter and an 11-yarder to Nate Muersch early in the third quarter for Miami (7-6), which won a bowl game for the first time since the 2010 season.
Tracy’s touchdown run came late in the first quarter.
Nicholson made a 48-yard field goal on the RedHawks’ opening drive, which was one yard shy of his season-high, and a 36-yarder in the second quarter.
Austin Aune and Isaiah Johnson scored on runs of 2 yards and 1 yard for the Mean Green (6-7). Aune was 15-of-32 passing for 228 yards and two interceptions.
North Texas played without two senior starters, running back DeAndre Torrey and safety Makyle Sanders, for unstated reasons. Torrey had averaged 101.3 rushing yards per game, 41% of the 245.5-yard team average that ranked fourth in the FBS.
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