by CFP Staff
December 28, 2012
Baylor grabbed a 35-7 lead in the first half and never looked back as it dominated UCLA en route to a 49-26 Holiday Bowl win on Thursday night (December 27) in San Diego.
The third straight loss sent the Bruins to a 9-5 finish in Jim Mora's first season as head coach. Back-to-back losses to Stanford to end the regular season and in the PAC-12 title game preceded the bowl whipping.
UCLA failed to gain any offensive momentum throughout the game and saw several drives into Baylor territory end on downs. A meaningless 34-yard touchdown pass on the final play of the game helped UCLA make the final score looking slightly more respectable, but that touchdown proved to be a gift after replays showed the receiver was clearly a yard short of scoring when his knee hit the turf.
Baylor rolled up 494 yards of offense as senior QB Nick Florence shined with an efficient 10-of-13 passing performance for 188 yards and and 2 touchdowns. He added 37 yards rushing and another TD.
Baylor's running game did most of the damage on this evening with Lache Seastrunk rambling for 138 yards that included a 43-yard TD run in the 2nd quarter to put the Bears ahead 35-7. Glasco Martin had 3 touchdowns and 98 yards.
Johnathan Franklin was held to 34 yards on 14 carries for UCLA and was kept out of the end zone. Brett Hundely had to fire 50 pass attempts and he threw 3 TD passes with no picks on a 26-of-50 night.
UCLA scored on just one of its first seven drives as it was forced to punt five times and turned the ball over on downs at the Baylor 24 on another.
Meanwhile, Baylor found the endzone on 5 of its first 7 drives. Remarkably, the Bears lost the turnover battle with 3 fumbles to no giveaways by the Bruins.
Baylor ended the season on a 4-game winning streak against some of the Big Twelve's best teams - Kansas State, Texas Tech, Oklahoma State and UCLA.
The Bears improved their all-time bowl record to 10-9 with their second straight bowl win, while the Bruins fell to 14-17-1 with their second consecutive bowl loss.
The Congrove Computer Rankings at CollegeFootballPoll.com had forecasted a 7.78-point Baylor victory.