Oregon players celebrate their win over North Carolina in the Holiday Bowl NCAA college football game Wednesday, Dec. 28, 2022, in San Diego. Valley News/David Canales photo

SAN DIEGO — Bo Nix threw a 6-yard touchdown pass to Chase Cota on fourth down with 19 seconds left and Camden Lewis’ PAT bounced off the left upright and went through to give No. 15 Oregon a wild 28-27 victory against North Carolina in the Holiday Bowl on Wednesday night at Petco Park.

Cota caught the ball at about the 1 and got it across the goal line as he was being tackled by Don Chapman. The play was upheld on review. Lewis then banked in the PAT.

North Carolina (9-5) got the ball to the Oregon 42 yard line with one second left before Drake Maye’s desperation heave into the end zone fell incomplete. Maye, the ACC Offensive Player of the Year, was 18 of 35 for 206 yards and three scores.

The Ducks finished 10-3 thanks to Nix, who threw a 6-yard TD pass to Troy Franklin with 6:58 to go to pull the Ducks to 24-21.

The Tar Heels took a 27-21 lead with 2:34 to go on Noah Burnette’s 44-yard field goal, his second of the quarter.

Nix then moved the Ducks 79 yards in eight plays for the win, with the drive being aided by a pass interference call.

Nix was 23 of 30 for 205 yards and two touchdowns, with one interception. Oregon’s Bucky Irving had touchdown runs of 2 and 66 yards. Oregon’s roster also included two Temecula natives, Micah Roth (#35) and Steven Jones (#74).

Oregon’s inside linebacker, Micah Roth (35), a 2017 graduate of Calvary Murrieta, bares down on North Carolina’s QB Drake Maye (10) during the 2022 Holiday Bowl at Petco Park Wednesday, Dec. 28. Valley News/David Canales photo

Roth, listed at 6’2″ and 223 lbs., is a senior (inside linebacker) who transferred to Oregon in 2021 after playing his first three years at Division II Azusa Pacific University. Last season Roth played in all 14 games in his first season with the Ducks. He made four total tackles, including two solo, played 80 total snaps, with 64 on special teams and 16 on defense.

In high school, Roth played at Calvary Murrieta (2017 graduate) where he was an All-CIF standout on both sides of the ball and totaled 334 career tackles and 14 interceptions while rushing for 3,837 yards, finishing with 1,455 receiving yards over four seasons.

Jones, listed at 6’5″ and 340 lbs., is a junior (offensive lineman) who graduated from Chaparral High School in 2018. He was a four-star recruit and top 300 prospect in the class by ESPN, Rivals and 247Sports, and one of the top offensive guards in the state of California. Named first-team All-Southwestern League as a senior, Jones helped open holes for a Chaparral offense that averaged 205.7 rushing yards per game and surpassed 200 yards six times.

Steven Jones (74), a junior offensive lineman for Oregon, and 2018 graduate of Chaparral High School, helps open up a running lane against North Carolina in the 2022 Holiday Bowl at Petco Park Wednesday, Dec. 28. Valley News/David Canales photo

Last season, Jones Started all 13 games he played for the Ducks, missing one due to injury. He started four games at right tackle before starting the final nine at right guard and was a key contributor on an Oregon offense that ranked in the top 25 nationally with 202.26 rushing yards per game and tied for sixth with 36 rushing touchdowns.

Hailing from just down the I-15, Jaden Navarrette of Norco is also listed on the roster, but is a redshirt freshman this season. Last season, Navarrette played in one game utilizing a redshirt status, making his collegiate debut against Stony Brook (Sept. 18), playing two defensive snaps. As a true freshman in 2020 he did not see any game action during the pandemic-shortened 2020 season.

Other bowl game results…



MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — KJ Jefferson passed to Rashod Dubinion for a 2-point conversion in the third OT and Arkansas held off a furious second-half rally by Kansas.

The Jayhawks had rallied from 25 points down in the second half to force overtime, but a failed on a 2-point conversion pass from Jason Bean to Lawrence Arnold ended a four-and-a-half hour bowl marathon.

Arkansas (7-6) celebrated the win prematurely in the second overtime after stopping Kanas quarterback Jalon Daniels just shy of the goal line on a 2-point conversion try. But a targeting call on Arkansas’ Quincey McAdoo gave the Jayhawks another try and they converted.

Jefferson passed for 287 yards and two touchdowns and rushed for 130 yards and two more scores to lead the Razorbacks.

Arkansas gained 394 of its 681 total yards on the ground. Rashod Dubinion added 112 yards for the Razorbacks.

Kansas (6-7) played in its first bowl game since 2008, but was unable to stop a late-season streak in which they lost seven of their last eight games. Daniels passed for 544 yards and five touchdowns. He set Liberty Bowl records for passing yards, touchdown passes, completions (37) and total TDs scored (6).



HOUSTON (AP) — Tyler Shough threw for 242 yards and a touchdown and ran for two more scores as Texas Tech took advantage of three early turnovers to build a big lead and held on to beat Ole Miss.

Shough, who finished with a career-high 111 yards rushing, accounted for three TDs in the first two quarters to help the Red Raiders (8-5) to a 26-7 halftime lead.

Ole Miss quarterback Jaxson Dart had 361 yards passing with two TD throws and a scoring run. But, he threw two of his three interceptions and lost a fumble in the first half to put the Rebels in a huge hole.

The victory gives Texas Tech its first eight-win season since 2013 and caps a successful debut for first-year coach Joey McGuire, who was given a new six-year, $26.6 million contract earlier Wednesday.

The loss continues a terrible stretch for Ole Miss (8-5), which dropped its final four games, and five of its last six, after opening the season 7-0.

The Rebels finished with 197 yards rushing, led by freshman Quinshon Judkins, who had 91. Judkins finishes the season with 1,567 yards rushing, which is the second-most by a freshman in SEC history behind Hershel Walker, who had 1,616.


DUKE 30, UCF 13

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — Riley Leonard ran for two touchdowns and threw for 173 yards as Duke wrapped up an impressive first season under Mike Elko.

The Blue Devils (9-4) have won four consecutive bowl games, although this was their first appearance in one since 2018. Jordan Moore ran for a touchdown in the first quarter, and then Duke took control in the second.

UCF (9-5) lost three of its final four games this season. John Rhys Plumlee managed only 28 yards passing in the first half and 182 for the game.

Duke went winless in Atlantic Coast Conference play last year, but Elko turned the team around quickly, winning ACC coach of the year honors. The Blue Devils reached nine wins in a season for the seventh time and first since 2014.

Article contributions made by the Associated Press. AP college football: https://apnews.com/hub/college-football and https://twitter.com/ap_top25. Sign up for the AP’s college football newsletter: https://tinyurl.com/mrxhe6f2

JP Raineri
JP Raineri

JP is an award-winning multimedia journalist, and head of the Sports Department for the Valley News. Over his time in the Temecula Valley, JP, a former Southwestern League head baseball coach, was also an on-air radio personality at Q103.3, KATY 101.3, Hot 103.9, and was a television host for the Outdoor Channel. When not covering local, or national sports, JP also serves as an Associate Baseball Scout with NSR.