Blair Walsh had a 47-yard field goal blocked in the 3rd overtime as the no. 17 Michigan State Spartans beat the no. 16 Georgia Bulldogs 33-30 in the 2012 Outback Bowl.
Georgia led the game 16-0 at halftime, but two third quarter interceptions by Aaron Murray led to 14 points for the Spartans. Late in the fourth, Murray hit Tavarres King for a 12-yard TD and then a two-point conversion to Brandon Boykin to take a 27-20 lead.
After an interception by Georgia’s Jonathan Jenkins with 3:56 remaining, the Bulldogs managed to gain only six yards plus another 10 on penalties. A Drew Butler punt gave the Spartans the ball at their own 15 with 1:55 remaining.
Michigan State quickly drove 84 yards to the Georgia one-yard line and then scored on their fourth play which sent the game to overtime.
In the first overtime, the Spartans got the ball first but turned it over with an interception on third down. On Georgia’s possession, Murray threw one pass and then, inexplicably, downed the ball at the 25. Blair Walsh missed the 42-yard kick.
The second overtime featured successful field goals by both teams, 47-yards by Walsh and 35-yards by Dan Conroy of MSU.
In the 3rd and final overtime, Conroy’ 28-yard field goal gave Michigan State the 33-30 victory after Walsh’s 47-yard attempt was blocked.
Poor clock management late and questionable overtime decisions by the coaches led to Georgia’s second straight bowl defeat. It is the first time the Dawgs have loss back-to-back bowl games since the 1982-83 seasons.
Aaron Murray finished the game 20-of-32 for 288 yards, two touchdowns and 2 interceptions. Ken Malcome led the Dawgs in rushing with 51 yards, but it was a lackluster effort on the ground overall.
The two bright spots for Georgia were Tavarres King and Brandon Boykin. King caught six passes for a school-record 205 yards and one touchdown. Boykin was everywhere, recording a safety, 92-yard punt return touchdown and a 13-yard touchdown reception.
Georgia finishes the 2011 season 10-4 overall (7-1 SEC).