Jan 01, 2013; Jacksonville, FL, USA; Northwestern Wildcats players celebrate after winning the game against the Mississippi State Bulldogs in the Gator Bowl at EverBank Field. Mandatory Credit: Melina Vastola-USA TODAY Sports
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) - Behind huge interceptions early and late, No. 21 Northwestern beat Mississippi State 34-20 in the Gator Bowl on Tuesday and snapped college football's longest postseason losing streak.
The Wildcats (10-3) won their first bowl game since 1949, snapping a nine-game losing streak that was tied for the longest in NCAA history. They also celebrated double-digit victories for the first time since the 1995 Rose Bowl season.
Quentin Williams returned an interception 29 yards for a touchdown on the third play of the game and Nick Vanhoose set up a late touchdown with a 39-yard interception return. Those plays were the difference in a back-and-forth game that featured more interceptions (seven) than touchdowns (six).
In between, Northwestern's two-quarterback system kept the Bulldogs (8-4) off balance most of the day.