NASHVILLE, Tenn. » Casey Barth kicked a 23-yard field goal in the second overtime to send North Carolina past Tennessee 30-27 in a Music City Bowl that will be remembered much more for the crazy finish of regulation than how it ended last night.
Barth kicked a 39-yard field goal after officials reviewed what had been the final play of the game and decided to penalize the Tar Heels (8-5) for having "more than 11 men" on the field. The Big Ten officiating crew also announced T.J. Yates had spiked the ball with 1 second left.
That allowed Barth to run out and kick the field goal that tied it at 20.
Tennessee (6-7) was stunned at the sudden switch that cost the Vols an apparent bowl victory to cap Derek Dooley’s first season. Tyler Bray threw a 25-yard TD in the first overtime, but Quan Sturdivant picked him off to end the Vols’ last chance in the second OT.
This is the second time this season that Tennessee has lost a game because of too many men on the field. The Vols lost to LSU on Oct. 2 when they got caught having too many defenders, giving the Tigers another chance to pull out a 16-14 win.
"It was chaos again," Dooley said.
This will hurt much more. Tennessee had the home-field advantage with LP Field painted orange from top to bottom, and the Vols’ fans had been celebrating ever since Bray’s 8-yard TD pass to Justin Hunter put them up 20-17 with 5:16 left.
But Donte Paige-Moss blocked Daniel Lincoln’s extra point, and that provided the edge North Carolina needed to force overtime with Barth’s second field goal.
Tennessee had a chance to clinch the victory when the Vols got the ball back with 1:36 left but punted it back to North Carolina with 31 seconds remaining to set up the bizarre finish.
MUSIC CITY BOWL
NORTH CAROLINA 30, TENNESSEE 27, 2OT
|N. Carolina||7 10 0 3 7 3 — 30|
|Tennessee||7 7 0 6 7 0 — 27|
NC–Draughn 58 run (Barth kick)
Tenn–Jones 29 pass from Bray (Lincoln kick),
NC–FG Barth 28
Tenn–D.Rogers 45 pass from Bray (Lincoln kick)
NC–Highsmith 39 pass from Yates (Barth kick)
Tenn–Hunter 8 pass from Bray (kick blocked)
NC–FG Barth 39
NC–Yates 1 run (Barth kick)
Tenn–Stocker 20 pass from Bray (Lincoln kick)
NC–FG Barth 23
RUSHING–North Carolina, Draughn 23-160, Harrelson 1-12, Boyd 1-7, Yates 4-(minus 28). Tennessee, Poole 11-40, Neal 9-28, Team 1-(minus 1), Jones 1-(minus 3), D.Rogers 2-(minus 7), Bray 5-(minus 30).
PASSING–North Carolina, Yates 23-39-1-234, Team 0-1-0-0. Tennessee, Bray 27-45-3-312.
RECEIVING–North Carolina, Taylor 9-85, D.Jones 5-51, Draughn 3-6, Wilson 2-17, Adams 2-8, Highsmith 1-39, Harrelson 1-28. Tennessee, Jones 9-89, Stocker 5-58, Moore 4-69, Poole 4-16, D.Rogers 1-45, Rivera 1-15, Hunter 1-8, Neal 1-7, Z.Rogers 1-5.