The ringing of the cowbells from Mississippi State fans that made the trip to South Florida from “Stark Vegas” and elsewhere could be heard all night, but it was the Georgia Tech faithful who rang in the New Year with a victory in the 2014 Capital One Orange Bowl.
See photos from the 2014 Capital One Orange Bowl
As the clock struck midnight, ushering in the year 2015, the Yellow Jackets of Georgia Tech were on stage hoisting the Capital One Orange Bowl trophy amid a back drop of fireworks and fanfare, minutes after concluding the 2014 season with a 49-34 win over Mississippi State.
As the two teams took center stage on New Year’s Eve, Georgia Tech would prove fairly quickly that they belonged. Dak Prescott threw an interception on the first drive of the game, leading to a 3-yard Synjyn Days touchdown to put the Yellow Jackets up 7-0 early in the contest. Later in the first, it was the arm of quarterback Justin Thomas, rather than his legs, putting Georgia Tech up 14-0 with a 41-yard touchdown pass to Darren Waller.
Mississippi State was not lacking in big plays itself, and kept the game close throughout. The aforementioned momentum was in large part due to the miraculous 42-yard Hail Mary that Mississippi State converted to end the half. Fred Ross caught the tipped pass from Dak Prescott in the end zone to bring the score within one at halftime, 21-20. The touchdown capped off a 20-point second quarter that also featured a Dak Prescott rushing touchdown and a pair of Evan Sobiesk field goals.
However, in a game of runs, Georgia Tech struck next. Days’ scintillating touchdown run was the first of three straight Georgia Tech touchdowns that eventually put the Yellow Jackets up 42-20 entering the fourth quarter. Despite two more touchdown passes from Dak Prescott and a Capital One Orange Bowl record 453 passing yards, the Ramblin’ Wreck offense was too much as their own record setting performance, 452 team rushing yards, carried them to the win.
SCORE BY QUARTERS
GT: Days 3-yard run (Butker kick); GT: Waller 41-yard pass from Thomas (Butker kick); MSU: Sobiesk 32-yard field goal; MSU: Prescott 5-yard run (Sobiesk kick); MSU: Sobiesk 30-yard field goal; GT: Thomas 13-yard run (Butker kick); MSU: Ross 42-yard pass from Prescott (Sobiesk kick); GT: Days 69-yard run (Butker kick); GT: Thomas 32-yard run (Butker kick); GT: Thomas 15-yard run (Butker kick); MSU: Wilson 7-yard pass from Prescott (Sobiesk kick); GT: Days 4-yard run (Butker kick); MSU: Wilson 12-yard pass from Prescott (Sobiesk kick)
MOP: Justin Thomas
Mississippi State Head Coach: Dan Mullen
Georgia Tech Head Coach: Paul Johnson