12:00 PM ET, November 20, 2004
Wallace Wade Stadium, DURHAM, NC
DURHAM, N.C. (AP) -- Chad Scott rushed for 144 yards and scored two touchdowns to help North Carolina become bowl eligible for the first time in three years with a 40-17 victory over Duke on Saturday.
Ronnie McGill also ran for a TD and Darian Durant threw for another score for the Tar Heels (6-5, 5-3 Atlantic Coast Conference), who finished the regular season with their first two-game winning streak since 2001.
That came during a run to the Peach Bowl in coach John Bunting's first season, and the team had only five wins combined in the next two seasons. But behind Durant and Scott, the Tar Heels won four of their final six games -- including an upset of then-No. 4 Miami -- and most likely are headed to the Continental Tire Bowl in Charlotte, N.C.
Immediately after the game, North Carolina chancellor James Moeser and athletic director Dick Baddour said Bunting will receive a two-year contract extension, giving the embattled coach five more years at his alma mater.
Durant missed one series with a sprained shoulder, then returned to lead North Carolina on a 67-yard drive for the go-ahead score, a 5-yard run by Scott that made it 13-10 in the second quarter.
North Carolina also played stifling defense for the first time this season to reclaim the Victory Bell, the trophy on wheels that goes to the winner in this rivalry. The Blue Devils (2-9, 1-7) won last year for the first since 1989, when a team led by Steve Spurrier beat the Tar Heels 41-0.
Spurrier, reportedly the next coach at South Carolina, was on hand Saturday to take part in a halftime ceremony that honored that ACC championship team. He didn't answer any questions about his future.
North Carolina, allowing 465 yards a game coming in, held Duke to only 217, bettering the previous low of 335 yards the Tar Heels gave up last week against Wake Forest. Cornerback Kareen Taylor sealed the victory with a 64-yard interception return for a touchdown with about two minutes left.
The Blue Devils finished another forgettable season, with their victory over Clemson a week ago their only one over a Division I-A opponent.
They took a 10-7 lead late in the first quarter when Kenneth Stanford returned a blocked field goal 70 yards for a touchdown, then closed to 20-17 in the final minute of the half on Justin Boyle's 6-yard touchdown run.
Duke finished 1-for-13 in third-down conversions.
Scott got started on the first possession, running four times for all 56 yards. From the Blue Devils 21, he started up the middle, broke left, then outran the defense to the corner of the end zone for a 7-0 lead.
He finished the first quarter with 90 yards and reached 114 by halftime, giving him at least 100 in three of the final four games.
Team Stat Comparison
|3rd Down Conversions||9-16||1-14|
|4th Down Conversions||0-0||2-3|
|TD||13:17||CHAD SCOTT 21 YD RUN (CONNOR BARTH KICK)|
Drive info: 4 plays, 56 yards.
|FG||6:01||MATT BROOKS 51 YD FG|
Drive info: 8 plays, 20 yards.
|TD||1:38||KENNETH STANFORD 70 YD BLOCKED FG RETURN (MATT BROOKS KICK)||7||10|
|TD||9:05||CHAD SCOTT 5 YD RUN (BLOCKED XP)|
Drive info: 9 plays, 67 yards.
|TD||3:43||RONNIE MCGILL 5 YD RUN (CONNOR BARTH KICK)|
Drive info: 6 plays, 73 yards.
|TD||0:49||JUSTIN BOYLE 6 YD RUN (MATT BROOKS KICK)|
Drive info: 7 plays, 65 yards.
|TD||7:05||JARWARSKI POLLOCK 10 YD PASS FROM DARIAN DURANT (CONNOR BARTH KICK)|
Drive info: 5 plays, 70 yards.
|FG||0:15||CONNOR BARTH 25 YD FG|
Drive info: 12 plays, 66 yards.
|FG||10:47||CONNOR BARTH 41 YD FG|
Drive info: 7 plays, -1 yards.
|TD||2:06||KAREEN TAYLOR 64 YD INTERCEPTION RETURN (CONNOR BARTH KICK)||40||17|