NEW YORK-After three consecutive nail-biter bowl games in which Duke did not come out on top, it looked like the Blue Devils would have to wait yet another season to get that elusive bowl victory.
The Blue Devils’ first postseason win since the 1961 Cotton Bowl was not always pretty, but the victory was yet another accomplishment for the players and coaches whose on-field play has changed the culture and reputation of Duke football.
In the 2012 Belk Bowl, Duke was driving with the game tied at 34 with less than two minutes left before a Josh Snead fumble was recovered by Cincinnati.
“I’ve been on the team for three bowl games with the senior classes that didn’t win,” Duke senior running back Shaquille Powell said.
The bowl win-as dramatic a victory as the three previous postseason losses-is the cherry on top on what has been a remarkable turnaround for Duke program under Cutcliffe.
Duke’s senior class had already achieved plenty, but their teammates wanted to make sure they left Durham with a bowl win.