MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) -- Matt Reagan connected on a 32-yard field goal in the third overtime Saturday as Memphis defeated SMU 55-52.
Memphis (7-5, 6-2 Conference USA) would get its chance to win the game by stopping SMU on fourth-and-goal from the 2 on the first possession of the third overtime. Corey Mills knocked SMU quarterback Justin Mills out of bounds as Willis tried to sweep around the right side.
That set the stage for the winning kick by Reagan, who missed a 32-yarder at the end of regulation to send the game into overtime. On that kick with 31 seconds left in regulation, holder Brett Toney bobbled the snap, helping send the kick wide.
Memphis quarterback Martin Hankins threw for 336 yards and four touchdowns on the day, including a 6-yarder to Greg Hinds in the second overtime. Carlos Singleton caught three touchdown passes from Hankins as the Tigers won five of their final six games on the season, and qualified for their fourth bowl in five years.
SMU (1-11, 0-8) lost its 10th straight, the final game for coach Phil Bennett, who was told a month ago he would not return to the job.
Willis led the Mustangs, completing 35-of-48 passes for 375 yards and four touchdowns, three of them to Emmanuel Sanders. Willis also ran for 114 yards on 23 carries and had a 48-yard touchdown run in the third period.