2003 Mazda Tangerine Bowl Recap
NC State 56, Kansas 26
The Philip Rivers era came to a close at NC State as the outgoing senior led the Wolfpack over Kansas on 37-of-45 passing at the 2003 Mazda Tangerine Bowl. Rivers, the ACC’s career passing and total offense leader, created Tangerine Bowl best’s of five touchdowns and 475 yards passing to help bring down Kansas, 56-26.
The effort served as Rivers’ fifth 400-yard game during the season, and seventh total, paving the way for his third straight bowl MVP honor.
The Wolfpack amassed 653 yards, including 30 plays of at least 10 yards. NC State marched 64, 68 and 97 yards on its first three possessions to build a 21-7 lead. Rivers led an 88-yard drive in the third quarter, then broke the game open by taking advantage of a blocked punt to put the Wolfpack up 42-17.
Richard Washington scored on receptions of 45 and 14 yards, and Jerricho Cotchery had 13 catches for 171 yards and one TD. McLendon got into the end zone three times, scoring on a 3-yard reception and runs of 1 and 26 yards.
The Wolfpack defense closed out the season in dominating fashion, surrendering only 463 yards after allowing 417.5 yards and just shy of 30 points during each contest in the regular season.
NCSU - Washington 45-yard pass from Rivers (Kiker kick), 13:58 in 1st