Nix leads No. 15 Oregon to Holiday Bowl win vs. Tar Heels

Dec 28, 2022, 6:59 AM | Updated: 9:01 pm
Oregon quarterback Bo Nix (10) passes during the first half of the Holiday Bowl NCAA college footba...

Oregon quarterback Bo Nix (10) passes during the first half of the Holiday Bowl NCAA college football game against North Carolina Wednesday, Dec. 28, 2022, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Denis Poroy)

(AP Photo/Denis Poroy)

              North Carolina quarterback Drake Maye (10) passes during the first half of the Holiday Bowl NCAA college football game against Oregon Wednesday, Dec. 28, 2022, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Denis Poroy)
            
              North Carolina wide receiver Andre Greene Jr. (1) makes a touchdown catch over Oregon defensive back Trikweze Bridges (11), left, and Oregon linebacker Jabril McNeill (17) during the first half of the Holiday Bowl NCAA college football game Wednesday, Dec. 28, 2022, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Denis Poroy)
            
              Oregon running back Noah Whittington (22) tries to break the tackle of North Carolina defensive back Lejond Cavazos (6) during the first half of the Holiday Bowl NCAA college football game Wednesday, Dec. 28, 2022, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Denis Poroy)
            
              Oregon quarterback Bo Nix (10) passes during the first half of the Holiday Bowl NCAA college football game against North Carolina Wednesday, Dec. 28, 2022, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Denis Poroy)

SAN DIEGO (AP) — 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 with one second left before Drake Maye’s desperation heave into the end zone fell incomplete.

The Ducks finished 10-3 thanks to Nix, who came up big late in the fourth quarter after being held in check much of the second half. He 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.

Maye, the ACC Offensive Player of the Year, was 18 of 35 for 206 yards and three scores.

The Tar Heels took a 21-14 lead on Maye’s 49-yard TD pass to Kobe Paysour just before halftime that was set up by an incredible interception by linebacker Power Echols. Echols’ jaw-dropping interception and 40-yard return gave the Tar Heels the ball at the Oregon 49.

With the score tied at 14 and Oregon driving late in the second quarter, Nix threw behind Terrance Ferguson and the ball bounced off the right calf of linebacker Cedric Gray toward Echols, who tipped it up with his right foot before bending over and grabbing it and taking off to the Oregon 49.

Maye then hit Paysour at about the 28 and he outraced the defense into the end zone, where he bowed to the crowd after giving the Tar Heels a 21-14 lead 26 seconds before halftime.

Maye also threw touchdown passes of 6 yards to Andrew Greene Jr. and 14 yards to Bryson Nesbit.

Oregon’s Bucky Irving had touchdown runs of 2 and 66 yards — the third-longest in Holiday Bowl history — in the first half.

THE TAKEAWAY

Oregon: The thrilling win was a nice finish for the Ducks, whose once-promising season fizzled out in November when they lost two of three after winning eight straight.

North Carolina: The Tar Heels ended with four straight losses, including a 29-point defeat against Clemson in the ACC title game.

UP NEXT

Oregon: Nix announced last week that he’ll return for his fifth season of eligibility. “There’s nothing like being an Oregon Duck. For 2023, I’m back,” he said in a video.

North Carolina: Maye recently batted down rumors that he had been offered a $5 million name, image and likeness deal to transfer. Maye had a breakout season that has made him a top prospect for the 2024 NFL draft.

___

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

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Kansas State forward Keyontae Johnson (11) shoots under pressure from Kansas forward K.J. Adams Jr....
Associated Press

Keyontae Johnson at No. 5 K-State to face ex-Gator teammates

MANHATTAN, Kan. (AP) — There are still a handful of players left at Florida who remember the exact moment, during a timeout against rival Florida State more than two years ago, that Keyontae Johnson collapsed to the floor and time seemed to stand still. Johnson was loaded onto a stretcher, taken to the hospital and […]
1 day ago
FILE - Ireland head coach Andy Farrell watches his players warm-up ahead of the rugby international...
Associated Press

6 Nations: France, Ireland set for duel under Netflix glare

Rugby’s oldest championship is getting a modern twist with the Netflix streaming service being given a behind-the-scenes look at the 2023 Six Nations for a docuseries released next year. It should help to broaden the sport’s appeal, driving more interest in the United States especially ahead of the country hosting a Rugby World Cup for […]
1 day ago
FILE - Oklahoma City Thunder's Chet Holmgren (7) drives against Houston Rockets' Jabari Smith II du...
Associated Press

Analysis: It may be time to re-think NBA All-Star voting

It’s reasonable to think Chet Holmgren will be an NBA All-Star one day. He was a highly recruited high school player whose one year at Gonzaga was stellar enough for Oklahoma City to make him the No. 2 pick in last year’s draft. He’s an obvious talent, an enormous talent. And it’s terrible that Holmgren […]
1 day ago
Ludvig Aberg of Sweden tees off on the 8th hole during his first round on Day Two of the Dubai Dese...
Associated Press

McIlroy and Reed both 6-under after 1st round in Dubai

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Rory McIlroy and Patrick Reed produced big first-round finishes at the Dubai Desert Classic on Friday in what could lead to an intriguing showdown as the competition heads to a Monday conclusion. LIV Golf series players Richard Bland and Ian Poulter were tied atop the leaderboard at 8-under overall […]
1 day ago
Novak Djokovic, left, of Serbia is congratulated by Tommy Paul of the U.S. after their semifinal at...
Associated Press

Paul says Djokovic thwarted his Australian Open gameplan

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — Tommy Paul went into his first career Grand Slam semifinal with a specific game plan to confront Novak Djokovic at the Australian Open. Makes sense, right? Have to approach that sort of match with a way you think will help you win. And then, Paul explained, it all fell apart rather […]
1 day ago
Iowa guard Kate Martin, center, celebrates with forward Monika Czinano, fourth from right, and Cait...
Associated Press

Big Ten’s depth poses strong challenge for women’s title run

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (AP) — It took four days for the No. 2 Ohio State women to go from unbeaten to second place in the Big Ten. If the Buckeyes don’t find a fix quickly, coach Kevin McGuff knows the slide could accelerate. Here, in perhaps the top women’s basketball conference as February looms, nothing is […]
1 day ago
Nix leads No. 15 Oregon to Holiday Bowl win vs. Tar Heels