CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Brendon Kay threw for 332 yards and a Belk Bowl-record four touchdowns, and Cincinnati capitalized on Duke’s inept play in the closing minutes to beat the Blue Devils 48-34 Thursday.
Duke appeared to have the game in hand and was driving for the go-ahead score – and its first bowl victory since 1961 – but the final 80 seconds proved disastrous. With the game tied at 34 and the Blue Devils positioning themselves for a winning field goal, running back Josh Snead fumbled at the Cincinnati 5-yard line with 1:20 left and Bearcats defensive lineman John Williams recovered.
Kay then connected with tight end Travis Kelce on an 83-yard touchdown strike down the middle with 44 seconds left for the go-ahead score.
Cincinnati (10-3) sealed it on the next series when Maalik Bomar came crashing into Duke quarterback Sean Renfree, forcing a deflection that Nick Temple returned 55 yards for a touchdown.
Renfree threw for 358 yards – another Belk Bowl record – for the Blue Devils (6-7).