Auburn drops Outback Bowl in overtime to Wisconsin, 34-31
TAMPA, Fla. (WHNT) — Auburn played it to the end, and then some, but it wasn’t enough to beat Wisconsin and Melvin Gordon in the Outback Bowl on Thursday.
The Badgers won 34-31 in overtime when they made a field goal on their first possession, and Auburn missed a 45-yard try when it got the ball.
Gordon rushed for 251 yards and three touchdowns, though Auburn had the lead with eight seconds left in regulation. Wisconsin tied the game a second later on a field goal, and won it in the first overtime period.
The end of the game was like the rest of the game, a see-saw affair that featured big runs and good plays.
Auburn quarterback Nick Marshall picked one good play, and then another, in two drives near the end that gave the Tigers two leads. That’s when Auburn found the proper balance between the run and the pass.
The Tigers answered two Wisconsin leads with decisive drives. Cameron Artis-Payne scored on a 2-yard run with 2:55 remaining. Before that, the Tigers had taken the lead a drive that saw Artis-Payne rip off a 21-yard run, Corey Grant run for 21, too, and Marshall throw a 21-yard touchdown pass to C.J. Uzomah.
Marshall came through after that, too.
He led the Tigers to the Wisconsin 7, and, on fourth down, his pass to Sammie Coates may have been a TD had it not been for pass interference. It didn’t matter. Artis-Payne scored on the next play.
Auburn finished the season with a 8-5 record. Wisconsin finished at 11-3.
The Tigers led at the half, but n Gordon carried four times for 55 yards, including the final 25, on the first series of the second half to tie Auburn at 14-all.
On fourth-and-1, Gordon broke loose for a 53-yard touchdown run to give Wisconsin a 21-17 lead with 20 seconds left in the third quarter.
But Auburn mixed it up on the Badgers from there, with Artis-Payne ripping off a 21-yard run, with Corey Grant doing the same, and with Marshall throwing a 21-yard touchdown pass to Uzomah for a 24-21 lead with 11:21 left in the fourth quarter.
Auburn regained the lead on a career-long 51-yard field goal by Daniel Carlson.
Wisconsin scored on its first series on a 7-yard pass from Joel Stave to Corey Clement, but the Tigers tied the game on a 2-yard touchdown run with 2:16 left in the first quarter, and went ahead on a Marshall 66-yard TD pass to Ricardo Louis.
Those plays, and interceptions by Trovon Reed and Jermaine Whitehead, had Auburn ahead 14-7 at the half.
The first half was more of the same for Marshall, who threw for a single-game school record of 456 yards against Alabama in the previous game, then threw for 131 more in the first half against Wisconsin.
Auburn hit halftime with those 131 yards passing and 46 yards rushing.
Courtesy Auburn Athletics