The freshman linebacker picked off a pass late in the first quarter to set up the game’s first touchdown. He also halted a late Wisconsin drive with a fourth-quarter interception in the end zone.
The junior receiver hauled in a 39-yard touchdown pass for USC’s first score, threw a 9-yard touchdown pass to quarterback Connor Shaw off a reverse in the second quarter, and caught a 22-yard touchdown pass in the third quarter. He also an amazing 22-yard juggling catch on fourth down to help kept one scoring drive going.
The senior quarterback capped his career by throwing for 312 yards and three touchdowns and rushing for 47 yards and one touchdown -- while catching the first pass of his career, a 9-yard touchdown reception.
With Wisconsin on the USC 26-yard line in the fourth quarter with a 4th-and-1 and trailing by three points, the defense stuffed Melvin Gordon on a great tackle by spur Sharrod Golightly.
The sophomore receiver caught six passes for 112 yards, including one spectacular 49-yard leaping grab.
The sophomore linebacker led the defense with nine tackles, had an interception and recovered a fumble.
Three in a row
Three straight bowl wins have capped three straight 11 win-seasons and what will soon be three straight Top 10 final national rankings.
The Sunshine State did not live up to its promise. Rain fell on and off throughout the week in supposedly sunny Florida, and that also was the case during the game at Citrus Bowl Stadium.
Vic Hampton and Sharrod Golightly
The junior cornerback and junior spur did not start due to a team rule violation.
Blame it on the rain. Blame it on a lack of interest. But there were a whole lot of empty seats among the smallest Capital One Bowl crowd since 1989.
The run defense
USC defenders gave up 159 yards on the ground in the first half and 293 on the game.
The Gamecocks had a bad snap that led to a missed PAT, and the kickoff coverage team allowed a 91-yard touchdown return.
- Neil White