Flowers completes go-ahead TD as USF topples Red Raiders in bowl win

Flowers completes go-ahead TD as USF topples Red Raiders in bowl win

Texas Tech and South Florida were tied 10-10 at the half.

The 2017 season may not have checked off all of the goals for USF (11-2), but Charlie Strong and the Bulls have reason to celebrate at the end of the season after winning a wildly entertaining Birmingham Bowl with a 38-34 victory over Texas Tech (6-7) on Saturday afternoon. With the win, USF finished its season with a 10-2 record, reaching the 10-win mark in consecutive seasons for the first time in program history. Flowers finished the game with 311 yards through the air, 106 yards on the ground thanks to several key scrambles and five touchdowns.

South Florida converted a fourth-down on the first play of the quarter and drove as far as the Red Raiders' goal line but could not convert a fourth-and-goal attempt at the 1-yard line to tie the game. Flowers was just 4-of-14 passing for 52 yards at halftime when the game was a 10-10 defensive struggle. Texas Tech had scored with 1:31 left in the game to go up 34-31 but could not hold on to the lead.

Texas Tech received the opening kickoff, marched 67 yards in 12 plays and came away with a 26-yard field goal by Clayton Hatfield.

After a 13-yard pass from Shimonek to Tyler Carr, King rushed in a four-yard touchdown to give the lead back to the Red Raiders, 24-17, with 5:55 left in the third quarter.

Texas Tech answered with a touchdown of their own, with T.J.

From there the quarterbacks took center stage, with Flowers leading the Bulls on two touchdown drives and Shimonek leading the Red Raiders on one.

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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 went three-and-out on the ensuing drive but linebacker Kolin Hill recovered a fumble for the Red Raiders on the first play of South Florida's next possession.

In response, the Tech defense forced USF to go three-and-out by putting pressure on Flowers and making him throw it away on third and eight. Both were the best players Texas Tech had on offense against South Florida, and sparked the Red Raiders' offense whenever it stagnated.

After a goal line stance by Texas Tech early in the 4th, USF ties it up at 24-24 with a 5 yard touchdown run by Flowers.

Flowers threw a 64-yard touchdown bomb to Marquez Valdez-Scantling.

Shimonek took Texas Tech across midfield in the final seconds but his desperation pass on the run was well short of the end zone.

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