Bryce Young’s resolution to choose in to the Sugar Bowl solely enhanced his probabilities of cashing in as a professional.
Younger handed for 321 yards and 5 touchdowns in a sport that different high NFL prospects may need skipped, and No. 5 Alabama responded to an early two-score deficit with 35 straight factors to defeat Eleventh-ranked Kansas State 45-20 on Saturday.
“For me it was nearly doing every little thing I can to assist the staff,” Young said. “We had delight in how we performed and the way we ready — us wanting to complete, us eager to push ourselves and maintain one another accountable.”
Whereas quite a lot of pro-bound faculty stars sat out bowl video games that weren’t a part of the Faculty Soccer Playoff, the Crimson Tide and Wildcats had their finest prospects on the sphere for the Sugar Bowl they usually made quite a lot of memorable performs — from Younger’s pivotal passes to Kansas State operating again Deuce Vaughn’s 88-yard landing run to interceptions by Alabama’s Jordan Battle and Brian Department.
“These guys despatched a message to all people that you just create worth for your self by enjoying soccer,” Alabama coach Nick Saban stated. “It speaks volumes of your character if you select to be part of your staff and you’ll be counted on to be a part of your staff, whatever the circumstances.”
With the sport in hand within the fourth quarter, Young was ceremoniously substituted out, elevating his proper hand to Alabama followers who loudly rose to their toes because the 2021 Heisman Trophy winner trotted to the sideline.
Kansas State coach Chris Klieman requested a member of Alabama’s workers to thank Younger for taking part in.
“That’s what faculty soccer is about. I used to be completely satisfied Bryce performed,” Klieman stated. “That was actually good for school soccer and actually good for youths to see.”
Jermaine Burton caught three passes for 87 yards and a touchdown for Alabama (11-2). Tide operating again Jahmyr Gibbs had 142 yards from scrimmage — 76 dashing and 66 receiving. Younger’s different touchdowns went to Isaiah Bond (6 yards), Cameron Latu (1 yard), Ja’Corey Brooks (32 yards) and Kobe Prentice (47 yards). Jase McClelland added a 17-yard scoring run.
“We had just a little little bit of a style in our mouth that if we had a dominant efficiency, it will present people who we most likely did need to perform a little higher than we did when it comes to the playoff image,” Saban stated. “However I’m most proud that there was a staff on the market that cared.”
Kansas State (10-4) entered its first Sugar Bowl on a four-game successful streak and was using excessive after knocking off No. 3 TCU — a CFP staff — within the Massive 12 title sport.
Though Battle’s leaping interception of Will Howard ended Okay-State’s opening drive on the Alabama 21, the Wildcats scored the Sugar Bowl’s first 10 factors, surging in entrance on Ty Zentner’s 41-yard subject aim and Vaughn’s future.
Alabama was on the point of punting a 3rd time when Younger, on third and 10, stepped up in a collapsing pocket and flicked a brief go to Gibbs, who was slicing throughout the center and turned up subject for 60 yards. Younger stepped up similarly to keep away from strain on his landing go to Bond quickly after.
Younger threw excessive to Burton for 47 yards to setup his scoring go to Latu that put Alabama in entrance for good.
Kansas State drove to the Alabama 2 late within the first half — converting two fourth-downs alongside the way in which — solely to fail on fourth-and-goal when Howard threw out of attain of tight finish Ben Sinnott, who was breaking open after Will Anderson fell whereas attempting to cowl him.
“I might have carried out it once more,” Klieman stated. “I’m by no means going to second-guess myself.”
Younger wanted simply 51 seconds to provide one other touchdown, finishing passes of 12, 28 and 22 yards earlier than hitting Burton from 12 yards out to make it 21-10 at halftime.
“That was an enormous swing within the sport,” Saban stated.
Kansas State paid for an additional danger when its onside kick to open the second half was recovered by Alabama, which scored shortly after on Younger’s strike to Ja’Corey Brooks within the nook of the tip zone.
“We got here right here to win, man,” Klieman stated. “We didn’t come right here to attempt to hold this factor shut.”
Kansas State: Howard completed 18-of-35 passing for 210 yards. Vaughn rushed for 133 yards on 22 carries. Jordan Schippers had a late 1-yard TD run.
Alabama: The Tide upended the narrative that it doesn’t rise up for low-stakes bowl video games, having misplaced by two touchdowns in every of its earlier two Sugar Bowls that weren’t a part of the BCS or CFP. Alabama has now received 10 Sugar Bowls in 17 appearances.
Kansas State: Opens its 2023 marketing campaign at residence towards Southeast Missouri on Sept. 2.
Alabama: Hosts Center Tennessee on Sept. 2 to start its 2023 season.