No. 23 South Florida meets Texas Tech in Birmingham Bowl

Birmingham Bowl: Live updates, score, analysis for Texas Tech-South Florida (December 23, 2017)

Shimonek and the Red Raiders were far from finished and retook the lead, 34-31, on a 8-play, 85-yard drive that was capped with a 25-yard touchdown pass from Shimonek to T.J. Vasher with 1:31 left in the game.

The Red Raiders set up two touchdowns in the third quarter off fumble recoveries, taking a 24-17 lead.

Key Play: Flower's 26-yard touchdown pass to McCants that gave South Florida the victory.

Then South Florida marches down the field, but had to settle for a 25 yard field goal by Emilio Nadelman.

No. 23 South Florida (9-2) vs. Texas Tech (6-6), at Birmingham, Alabama, 9 a.m. TV: ESPN Line: South Florida by 2 1/2.

PENALTIES GALORE: Both teams were penalized 10 times, with Texas Tech flagged for 107 yards and South Florida for 100.

On offense for Texas Tech, it should be another lethal passing attack led by former Iowa transfer Nic Shimonek. He also had 14 carries for 106 yards and a rushing score and became the all-time American Athletic Conference leader in career total offense.

Shimonek, who had led a fourth-quarter comeback in the regular-season finale against Texas, completed 32 of 59 passes for 416 yards.

Texas Tech's offense couldn't move the ball on their next possession when a first down would have wrapped up the first half.

But Flowers returned to his usual self in the second half. And in the end, it was too much for Texas Tech.

USF would tie the score at ten with 51 seconds remaining in the second quarter, as McCants caught the first of his two touchdown receptions.

On the last play of the game, Shimonek throws up a Hail Mary but it's 15-yards short of the end zone.

South Florida: The Bulls must replace Flowers, plus leading receiver Valdes-Scantling and tailback D'Ernest Johnson on offense and eight starters on defense.

A litany of mistakes hampered the Red Raiders throughout the game in all phases of the special teams.

This entire game was one final showing from one of the best quarterbacks of the past few seasons in college football. The defense helped preserve the lead with a pair of fourth down stops, including a goal line stand. Quentin Yontz stuffed Darius Tice from inside the 1 early in the fourth, but Flowers wound up getting the ball back across midfield.

But South Florida scored 28 points in the second half and finished the game with 561 total yards.

He threw for three touchdowns and was intercepted twice on deflected balls. On the Bulls' game-winning drive, Flowers was responsible for all 80 yards, including 13-yard and 21-yard runs.

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