Tar Heels, Tigers mark end of eras in Independence Bowl

Monday’s Independence Bowl marks the end of one and era and the beginning of another for both North Carolina and Missouri.

It will be the Tar Heels’ final game under interim coach Everett Withers, as former Southern Mississippi coach Larry Fedora will take over after the bowl game. North Carolina won five of its first six games under Withers but stumbled down the stretch, losing four of its last six. Withers announced that he’ll be joining Urban Meyer’s staff at Ohio State after the bowl game.

For Missouri, it will be its final game as a member of the Big 12 Conference. Missouri’s parting gift from the league – the Tigers are headed to the Southeastern Conference along with Texas A&M next season – was being passed over in the Big 12’s bowl pecking order and relegated to a third trip to Shreveport, La., since 2003.

The Tigers lost to Arkansas 27-14 in 2003 and rallied for a 38-31 win over South Carolina in 2005. North Carolina is playing in the Independence Bowl for the first time.

Both teams boast sophomore quarterbacks who put up big numbers, and they could be relied upon to carry the load, because both defenses are tough against the run. North Carolina’s Bryn Renner has passed for 2,769 yards and 23 touchdowns, which ties Chris Keldorf’s school record. Missouri’s James Franklin has been a catalyst for the Tigers’ balanced offense with 2,733 passing yards and 839 rushing yards and 33 total touchdowns.

The Tigers (7-5, 5-4 Big 12) closed the regular season with three straight wins to land in a bowl game for a school-record seventh consecutive season. The Tigers haven’t won their last four games of the season since 1965. The late-season success helped make up for a tumultuous stretch in which leading rusher Henry Josey was lost for the season with two torn ligaments and a torn tendon in his left knee and head coach Gary Pinkel was suspended for one game after pleading guilty to a drunk driving charge. Losing Josey proved to be a speed bump for the nation’s No. 12 offense (473.2 yards per game) but the defense was up to the task down the stretch, shutting down Texas in a 17-5 home win and stifling Kansas in a 24-10 win in Kansas City to end the regular season.

The Tar Heels (7-5, 3-5 ACC) are playing in a bowl game for the fourth consecutive season, their longest streak since going to seven straight bowl games from 1992-98. Giovani Bernard has rushed for a North Carolina freshman record 1,222 yards, becoming the first Tar Heel to top 1,000 rushing yards since 1997. With 13 rushing touchdowns, he needs one more to tie the school’s freshman record.

The Tar Heels got some good news when leading receiver Dwight Jones was reinstated to the team. Jones was originally declared ineligible after allowing his name and image to be used to promote a party in his hometown of Burlington, N.C. Jones hauled in a school-record 79 passes for 1,119 this season with 11 going for touchdowns. Bernard and Jones are the first duo in school history to eclipse 1,000 yards rushing and receiving in the same season.

The teams have met only twice, with Missouri winning both meetings in 1973 and 1976. The Tigers won the first contest 27-14 in Chapel Hill and won 24-3 at home three years later. North Carolina has not played a Big 12 opponent since a 52-21 home loss to Texas in 2002, and the Tar Heels haven’t beaten a current Big 12 team since a 20-0 win over Kansas in 1986.

TV: 5 p.m., ESPN2

Comments

comments

Hoops: Panthers flip script on Seahawks in rematch

Hoops: Panthers flip script on Seahawks in rematchA leaky roof at the Myrtle Beach High gymnasium forced [more]

All-County Golf: Anderson follows Knaffle's footsteps

All-County Golf: Anderson follows Knaffle's footstepsSelecting the MyHorryNews All-County Girls Golfer of the Year should [more]

All-County XC: CF's Mohr, NMB's Spickler lead pack

All-County XC: CF's Mohr, NMB's Spickler lead packRunning is more than a hobby for Michael Mohr; it’s [more]

Hoops: Unbeaten Conway secures sweep of Wilson

Hoops: Unbeaten Conway secures sweep of WilsonThe Conway High boys basketball team proved that last month's [more]

Change is name of game for North-South All-Stars

Change is name of game for North-South All-Stars The wholesale changes to the 2018 South Carolina football season [more]

Hoops: Saints fall despite double-double from Green

Hoops: Saints fall despite double-double from GreenThe Christian Academy of Myrtle Beach boys basketball team suffered [more]

Hoops: Tigers, Sharks post big wins over county rivals

Hoops: Tigers, Sharks post big wins over county rivalsThe Conway High boys remained undefeated on the season with [more]

Chants on break for finals week after loss to Terriers

Chants on break for finals week after loss to TerriersSophomore Tre Brown had a career and team-high 24 points, [more]

CAC swimmers post hot times at Snowflake Invite

CAC swimmers post hot times at Snowflake InviteThe Coastal Aquatic Club (CAC) spent the weekend in Rock [more]

Knox's triple-double lifts Seahawks past Panthers

Knox's triple-double lifts Seahawks past Panthers Myrtle Beach High sophomore Emorie Knox hit a major milestone [more]

CAC's Steele captures gold at Winter Junior Nationals

CAC's Steele captures gold at Winter Junior NationalsCarolina Forest senior and Coastal Aquatic Club standout Taylor Steele [more]

SEAHAWKS STORM PAST GREER FOR STATE TITLE

SEAHAWKS STORM PAST GREER FOR STATE TITLE Over the summer, the Myrtle Beach players were gathered inside [more]

Green Sea Floyds captures first state championship

Green Sea Floyds captures first state championshipFacing fourth down and a sneaker, Green Sea Floyds coach [more]

Hoops: Sharks beat buzzer, Warriors on late foul shots

Hoops: Sharks beat buzzer, Warriors on late foul shotsThe St. James High boys basketball team won a thriller [more]

Schools send football team to state with Seahawk Walk

Schools send football team to state with Seahawk WalkThe Myrtle Beach High football team received a hero's send-off [more]

Hoops: Myrtle Beach boys double up rival Socastee

Hoops: Myrtle Beach boys double up rival SocasteeThe Myrtle Beach High boys basketball team doubled up rival [more]

Seahawks' strange season takes a final twist to state

Seahawks' strange season takes a final twist to stateMickey Wilson has led his team to state championship games [more]

Hoops: NMB boys, CF girls fall short in comeback bids

Hoops: NMB boys, CF girls fall short in comeback bidsWhat appeared to be a pair of lopsided affairs turned [more]

MB's shot at state crown moved to Friday afternoon

MB's shot at state crown moved to Friday afternoonGame time has been moved up a day for the [more]

Socastee product Renfrow titled nation's top walk-on

Socastee product Renfrow titled nation's top walk-onThe Burlsworth Foundation announced Monday that wide receiver Hunter Renfrow [more]

Sun Belt puts 5 in bowls after inaugural title game

Sun Belt puts 5 in bowls after inaugural title gameAfter a thrilling 30-19 win by Appalachian State over Louisiana [more]

Gamecocks get close bowl trip to Charlotte vs. Cavs

Gamecocks get close bowl trip to Charlotte vs. CavsSouth Carolina football fans won't have to travel far to [more]

No. 2 Tigers in high Cotton for bowl game against Irish

No. 2 Tigers in high Cotton for bowl game against IrishThe College Football Playoff and the Goodyear Cotton Bowl announced [more]

Hoops: Conway wins; NMB gives female coach first win

Hoops: Conway wins; NMB gives female coach first winThe Conway High boys basketball team came down from its [more]

Seahawks flip the script on No. 1 Hartsville in rematch

Seahawks flip the script on No. 1 Hartsville in rematch Myrtle Beach exorcised its biggest demon from the 2018 regular [more]

Hoops: Panthers flip script on Seahawks in rematch

Hoops: Panthers flip script on Seahawks in rematchA leaky roof at the Myrtle Beach High gymnasium forced [more]

All-County Golf: Anderson follows Knaffle's footsteps

All-County Golf: Anderson follows Knaffle's footstepsSelecting the MyHorryNews All-County Girls Golfer of the Year should [more]

Comments are closed.

© 2018 Grand Strand Sports Report · RSS
Myrtle Beach Web Design
Kayaking in Myrtle Beach