The 22nd-ranked Northwestern Wildcats used a furious third quarter rally to overtake the 17th-ranked Utah Utes, 31-20. Led by a defense that forced timely turnovers and 2018 SDCCU Holiday Bowl Offensive MVP Clayton Thorson, the Wildcats scored 28 unanswered points in the third stanza. DraftNasty’s Corey Chavous takes us inside the game with this photo collage.
Utah’s Army representative flies into the stadium on parachute
The Frog-X parachute team came into the stadium with a focus on entertaining the crowd.
Northwestern’s military representation flying into the field lands on the field 4
This member of the Frog-X parachute team represented the Northwestern Wildcats and landed on the field effortlessly to the delight of the crowd.
Navy holding up the American Flag during the National Anthem Center of the Field
The Navy held up the American flag to give the fans in the stands a full-sized view.
Utah shows respect to each other in the pregame
The Utes' team unity was evident during the pregame.
22 Hansen working pass rush counter with 30 Barton in the pregame
Utah All-Pac-12 linebacker Chase Hansen, pictured, would have been huge for the Utes in this game but did not play due to an undisclosed injury. The player he's doing drills with -Utes captain and LB Cody Barton- finished his 2018 campaign with 116 tackles, four quarterback sacks, 10.5 tackles for losses and six pass break-ups.
18 Thorson just gets rid of the ball as 30 Barton arrives on the blitz 2
Despite Barton's presence most of the night (8 tackles, 1/2 sack, 1/2 TFL), Northwestern QB Clayton Thorson was still able to get this pass off early in the game versus the blitz.
15 Shelley takes a shot from the EZ, 6 Shyne in PP, 7 Whillock blitzing
Utah freshman quarterback Jason Shelley once again started for an injured Tyler Huntley. Shelley passed for 302 yards (60%), 2 TDs and 2 INTs.
4 Green dives to the ball with 41 McGee closing in for the cover
Utah running back TJ Green couldn't quite get to this pass on the sidelines in the first quarter of Monday's action.
97 Gay kicks the FG as 94 Oxley nearly blocks it
Utah placekicker Matt Gay (No. 97 pictured) -the 2017 Lou Groza Award winner- nearly had this kick blocked by Northwestern DL Ben Oxley (No. 94 pictured). Gay had three kicks blocked in 2018.
6 Anae final copy of forced fumble
Utah's Bradlee Anae (No. 6 pictured) forces a fumble versus Northwestern running back Isaiah Bowser (No. 25 picutred) in the fourth quarter. He finished 2018 with 51 tackles, eight quarterback sacks, 15.5 tackles for losses, two forced fumbles and three pass break-ups.
6 Shyne in the Wildcat as 50 Umana about to snap, 42 Fisher focused
The Utes tried to put Armand Shyne in the Wildcat near the goal line, but Northwestern linebacker Paddy Fisher was on his game most of the night.
42 Fisher with form tackle of 22 Brumfield in the fourth quarter
Fisher (No. 42 pictured tackling Devin Brumfield in the fourth quarter) finished second on the Wildcats in tackles this year (117). In the Holiday Bowl, he had 13 tackles, 1/2 tackle for loss and one forced fumble.
18 Thorson releases for this third quarter TD
The Wildcats were down 20-3 at halftime before a furious third quarter rally featured 28 unanswered points. Northwestern quarterback Clayton Thorson (No. 18 pictured) threw this third quarter pass to offensive lineman Trey Klock (No. 39 pictured) to put the Wildcats up 24-20.
Everyone happy for 39 Klock III after he scores a TD in the Holiday Bowl
What a moment for the senior Klock, who battled injuries as a former offensive lineman for the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets.
Northwestern WR Riley Lees scores the TD
Northwestern's Riley Lees (No. 19 pictured) is sort of a jack of all trades for the Wildcats. The team's starting punt returner also lines up in the Wildcat and scored on an eight-yard touchdown late in the third quarter to put the team up 31-20.
18 Thorson injured late in the game after big hit by 13 Blair
Despite getting banged up late in the fourth quarter after a huge hit on the sidelines by Utah safety Marquise Blair, the game was a redemption for Thorson (No. 18 pictured). He was injured (torn ACL) in last year's 2017 Music City Bowl.
Fitzgerald’s fourth quarter Gatorade bath
Pat Fitzgerald enjoyed the Gatorade bath late in the fourth quarter.
Pace and Thorson MVPs
Sophomore safety JR Pace was named the 2018 Holiday Bowl Defensive MVP (7 tackles, 1/2 TFL, 34-yard fumble return, one interception and one pass break-up). Thorson was named the 2018 Holiday Bowl Offensive MVP after completing 21-of-30 passes for 241 yards, two touchdowns and one interception.
Fitzgerald and Clayton Thorson celebrate the 2018 Holiday Bowl Trophy
Pat Fitzgerald held up the Holiday Bowl trophy in style as his senior quarterback Clayton Thorson approved.
Pat Fitzgerald kisses the Holiday Bowl Trophy in the rain
Northwestern HC Pat Fitzgerald kissed the Holiday Bowl trophy after the game.
Led by redshirt junior quarterback Jarrett Stidham’s six touchdowns (5 PASS, 1 RUSH), the Auburn Tigers overtook the Purdue Boilermakers 63-14 in Friday’s 2018 Franklin Mortgage Music City Bowl. DraftNasty’s Corey Chavous gives a peek at some of the images from Nashville.
National Anthem shot Oak Ridge Boys 5-time Grammy Award winners
The Oak Ridge Boys, five-time Grammy Award winners, performed a stirring National Anthem for the fans.
21 Monday SMOKES 4 Moore in kickoff coverage
Tigers freshman defensive back Smoke Monday (No. 21 pictured) earned his first name on this big second quarter hit in kickoff coverage.
89 Hopkins extends for the catch in the first quarter
Junior tight end Brycen Hopkins (No. 89 pictured) averaged 17.1 yards per catch on his 34 receptions (2 TDs) in 2018..
12 Dean mistimes leap on ball intended for 7 Zico
Purdue senior wide receiver Isaac Zico was unable to re-establish his feet in-bounds on this second quarter potential touchdown reception versus Auburn junior cornerback Jamel Dean (No. 12 pictured).
5 Schwartz reaches the ball over the GL for the TD after he gets the score
Freshman wide receiver Anthony Schwartz, who averaged over seven yards per carry in 2018, scored his seventh touchdown of the year in the second quarter.
5 Schwartz looking at camera after he scores a TD
The Pembroke Pines, Florida native then showed off his guns to the crowd.
4 Moore crosses the paint for TD in first quarter
Purdue freshman All-American Rondale Moore (No. 4 pictured) scored his second rushing touchdown of the season in the second quarter. Moore finished the season with 114 receptions for 1,258 yards and 12 receiving touchdowns.
Fly over the top of the stadium got everything going
Prior to the game the mood was set with a flyover that preceded a star-studded National Anthem.
1 Bryant scores the TD in scecond quarter to put Auburn up 42-7
Auburn defensive end Big Kat Bryant (No. 1 pictured) returned an interception 20 yards for a touchdown in the second quarter.
4 Igbinoghene WR-DB knocks 8 Jones off his feet
Auburn CB-WR Noah Igbinoghene (No. 4 pictured) averaged 28.7 yards per kickoff return in 2018, but he also proved to be a physical presence. He finished the season with 50 tackles.
33 Britt takes down 8 Jones late in fourth
Sophomore linebacker K.J. Britt (No. 33 pictured) could be a factor for Auburn as well in the near future. His tracking speed was on display in the fourth quarter when he tracked down Purdue's Markell Jones.
13 Gatewood MESH POINT with 37 Tolbert as 50 Irvin leads around for QB counter
Freshman offensive lineman Jalil Irvin (No. 50 pictured) pulls around on a quarterback zone read counter in the fourth quarter.
13 Gatewood running in the open field
The future could be bright for the Tigers with the potential of freshman quarterback Joey Gatewood (No. 13 pictured). The former four-star recruit rushed for 28 yards in his first extended action of the season.
8 Stidham in the pocket good shot again
Auburn quarterback Jarrett Stidham stood tall in the pocket most of the afternoon.
8 Stidham holds up MVP trophy
The story of the day was Stidham. The former Baylor Bears signal-caller accounted for 43 touchdowns (36 passing, seven rushing) over the last two seasons. He won 18 of his 26 career starts for the Tigers.
Auburn holds up the Music City Bowl trophy after the game
Auburn seniors Ryan Davis (No. 23 pictured), Darrell Williams (No. 49 pictured), Chase Cramer (No. 45 pictured) and Deshaun Davis (holding up trophy) celebrate the 2018 Music City Bowl championship on the podium with their teammates.
Temple got off to a strong start in the 2018 Walk-On’s Independence Bowl, but the Duke Blue Devils took off in the second half to pull away from the Owls 56-27. DraftNasty’s Corey Chavous goes inside the action with his photo gallery from Thursday’s action.
13 Isaiah Wright KR-WR Temple
Temple's Isaiah Wright (No. 13 pictured) is one of the nation's best all-purpose players. He's averaged 25.9 yards per kickoff return (2 TDs) and 11.9 yards per punt return (3 TDs) in his career.
14 Yancy finishes the catch in front of 27 Neal
Brodrick Yancy (No. 14 pictured) finishes the catch in front of Damani Neal (No. 27 pictured).
17 Jones reading the mesh point with 25 Jackson
Duke redshirt junior quarterback Daniel Jones did a fine job of reading the mesh point with running back Deon Jackson most of the afternoon.
17 Jones trying to throw over the top of 95 Dan Archibong getting his hands up as 98 Hogan rushes from the backside
Jones (No. 17 pictured) often had to throw in a cloudy pocket. He just gets this pass over the top of No. 95 Dan Archibong as No. 98 Jimmy Hogan rushed from the backside
18 Harris QB sneak getting low behind his OL
Duke backup QB Quentin Harris gets low on this quarterback sneak in the second quarter.
21 Gardner trying to stay in-bounds
Temple RB Jager Gardner did his best to stay in-bounds on this second quarter run down the left sidelines. He was replacing Owls star running back Ryquell Armstead, who sat out the Independence Bowl.
23 Young IV FITS up on 22 Jennings
Duke freshman safety Lummie Young IV (No. 23 pictured) fits up to tackle Temple RB Jeremy Jennings.
25 Jackson returning KO IN FOCUS 8
Duke RB Deon Jackson nearly broke this kickoff return in the first half of Thursday's game.
25 Jackson UPSIDE DOWN
Despite his success, Jackson got caught up in some precarious positions due to Temple's defensive pursuit.
28 Thomas and 99 Booth-Lloyd CRUNCH 25 Jackson
Jyquis Thomas (No. 28 pictured) and Freddie Booth-Lloyd (No. 99 pictured) combined to crunch Jackson.
28 Thomas with perfect fit on 25 Jackson in the hole
Thomas came back later to land a perfect fit on Jackson in the hole.
51 Dimukeje about to close in for the sack on 15 Russo
Duke DE Victor Dimukeje (No. 51 pictured) tries to close in for the sack on Temple quarterback Anthony Russo in the third quarter.
17 Jones long TD pass to 3 Rahming in the game in Independence Bowl
Jones' career-long 85-yard touchdown pass to senior WR T.J. Rahming (No. 3 pictured) in the third quarter represented a career-long for Rahming as well.
17 Jones INT to 32 Walls in the fourth quarter
Duke QB Daniel Jones is picked off by Temple safety Benny Walls in the fourth quarter of Thursday's action. Despite his outstanding game, Jones made a couple of mistakes throwing into coverage.
70 Fair blocking vs 32 Hill coming inside
Temple LG Jovahn Fair (No. 70 seen blocking versus Duke LB No. 32 Brandon Hill) has been a consistent force for the Owls the last two seasons.
77 Robinson tries to cut 59 Hornbuckle on the edge
Temple LT Jaelin Robinson, a bonafide NFL prospect, tries to cut Duke DE Tre Hornbuckle (No. 59 pictured) on the edge.
86 Drew Jordan forces a fumble vs 4 Ritrovato in fourth quarter of the game
Duke sophomore DE Drew Jordan (No. 86 pictured) forced his first fumble of the season versus Temple RB Rob Ritrovato in the fourth quarter.
Temple players disappointed on the sidelines during blowout loss
Temple players were disappointed on the sidelines during the end of a game that started off with a halftime lead.
Duke players holding up trophy Independence Bowl
Duke players hold up the 2018 Walk-On's Independence Bowl trophy at the end of their 29-point victory.