- Georgia Tech players hopped happily, hugged each other and danced in place. The clock had just struck midnight on New Year's Eve, so they had two things to celebrate. Minutes earlier, the Yellow Jackets had completed a 49-34 victory over Mississippi State in the Capital One Orange Bowl. Quarterback Justin Thomas was chosen the game's outstanding player Wednesday night after he directed an offense that totaled a Capital One Orange Bowl-record 452 yards rushing. He ran for 121 yards and three touchdowns, and threw for 125 yards and a score. Synjyn Days ran for 171 yards and three scores, including a 69-yarder that defused Mississippi State's comeback bid.
No. 12 Georgia Tech (11-3, No. 10 AP) earned its first Capital One Orange Bowl victory in 63 years. The Yellow Jackets improved to 2-8 in bowl games in the past 10 seasons. "Our program took a step forward this year," Thomas said, "and we're planning to keep striving to put Georgia Tech's name on the top of the list." The victory was especially sweet for an Atlantic Coast Conference team located in the heart of Southeastern Conference country. "For a week or so we won't have to hear about the SEC," Tech coach Paul Johnson said. - AP Sports