Found January 01, 2013 on
Fox Sports Florida:
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) -- Behind huge interceptions early and late, No. 21 Northwestern beat Mississippi State 34-20 in the Gator Bowl on Tuesday and snapped college football's longest postseason losing streak.
The Wildcats (10-3) won their first bowl game since 1949, snapping a nine-game losing streak that was tied for the longest in NCAA history. They also celebrated double-digit victories for the first time since the 1995 Rose Bowl season.
Quentin Williams returned an interception 29 yards for a touchdown on the third play of the game and Nick Vanhoose set up a late touchdown with a 39-yard interception return. Those plays were the difference in a back-and-forth game that featured more interceptions (seven) than touchdowns (six).
In between, Northwestern's two-quarterback system kept the Bulldogs (8-4) off balance most of the day.
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Just getting to a bowl game no longer matters to Northwestern.
The 21st-ranked Wildcats want to win one and end a decades-long losing streak.
Northwestern (9-3) hasn't won a bowl since it beat California in the 1949 Rose Bowl. The Wildcats have dropped nine in a row since, matching the longest streak in NCAA history.
They get a chance to stop that skid when they face Mississippi...
The Northwestern Wildcats spent so much time celebrating on the field that coach Pat Fitzgerald finally had to order them into the locker room.
He had something special waiting for them - a stuffed monkey.
It was the same one that went with them to the Meineke Car Care Bowl last season and had become a symbol of the program's decades-long, bowl losing streak.
When the Northwestern Wildcats look to end their bowl game drought tomorrow (you might have heard a thing or two about it in the local media) they’ll do so with these new helmets on. Expect to see a lot of running with Venric Mark and Kain Colter at the Gator Bowl vs. Mississippi State, MSU has a cornerback named Johnathan Banks who will be a top 15 pick in the NFL Draft.
The collegiate career of Northwestern defensive tackle Brian Arnfelt has seen battles for playing time, then a fight through injuries. However, he will cap off his fifth season with the Wildcats playing in the Gator Bowl. For Arnfelt, it completes a long fight, which has earned him plenty of respect.
Northwestern defensive tackle Brian Arnfelt met with the assembled media in Jacksonville to preview Tuesday's Gator Bowl game. PurpleWildcats offers an exclusive video interview with the Wildcats' senior captain.
The Wildcats of Northwestern, coming off one of the more successful seasons in recent memory, get the pleasure of opening up a barrage of New Year’s Day bowl games that feature Big Ten squads. NU will square off with Mississippi State in the Taxslayer.com Gator Bowl. The game will air on ESPN at noon E.T.
Here is how our staff sees things shaking out:
Andy Coppens (Co-managing...
Northwestern guard Brian Mulroe joined teammates and his head coach to preview Tuesday's Gator Bowl game. PurpleWildcats offers a video interview with the senior captain as he looks to the contest in Jacksonville.
Quentin Williams was one of the heroes for Northwestern in its elusive Gator Bowl victory. The senior defensive end discusses what the win means to the Northwestern football program. PurpleWildcats offers video of the interview.
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Behind huge interceptions early and late, No. 21 Northwestern beat Mississippi State 34-20 in the Gator Bowl on Tuesday and snapped college football's longest postseason losing streak.
The Wildcats (10-3) won their first bowl game since 1949, snapping a nine-game losing streak that was tied for the longest in NCAA history. They also celebrated double-digit...