Jacksonville Sports Day

USF: Bulls Set NCAA Scoring Record in 34-28 Win at Tulane

NEW ORLEANS – Undefeated USF set a new NCAA record with its 24th consecutive 30-plus point scoring game in a 34-28 win in front of a couple thousand Bulls fans at Tulane on Saturday night.

Off to the best start in program history, USF (7-0, 4-0) jumped to a 34-7 lead and reached the milestone in quick-strike fashion with five scoring drives in three minutes or less.

“It’s great to win the game, but we’ve just got to finish,” said USF coach Charlie Strong. “We gave up 14 points on defense there in the fourth quarter, but you’re on the road and you knew we’d get their best… We’ve just got to know how to finish and do a better job of just putting people away.”

Explosive plays helped USF grab the AP Poll era record (since 1936) of 30-plus point games, previously set by Oregon (23 games, 2011-12).

Ranked No. 16/13 nationally, USF rushed for more than 300 yards for the fifth time this season, totaling 378 yards with two 100-yard rushers. The Bulls finished with 505 total yards and extended its school-record winning streak to 12 games, which is the longest active streak in the nation.

Darius Tice ran for a career-high 141 yards and a touchdown on just 13 carries. Tice averaged 10.8 yards per attempt and his 30-yard run helped USF seal the game on the final drive.

Quinton Flowers posted his 12th-career 100-yard rushing game with 138 yards and a touchdown on 13 carries. Flowers’ three-touchdown night included a 38-yard scoring pass to Darnell Salomon and a 28-yarder to Marquez Valdes-Scantling. Flowers posted 265 total yards on the night.

USF increased its nation-leading interception total to 16 with a pick by Devin Abraham in the second quarter. Auggie Sanchez made a team-high nine tackles and totaled two of USF’s 10 tackles for loss. Senior defensive tackle Deadrin Senat added eight tackles.

Seniors shined on both sides of the ball before USF did something no team had done yet this season – score on its opening drive against Tulane.

Sanchez made four tackles on the game-opening drive and his first tackle for loss stalled Tulane at its own 49. Flowers took over from there, completing three of four passes on USF’s opening 85-yard drive he capped off with a highlight-reel touchdown run. Dancing left and right at the line, Flowers made numerous defenders miss during his 21-yard scamper midway through the first quarter.

The Bulls’ defense continued to step up in the second quarter with Abraham’s interception and Sanchez’s fourth-down stop on consecutive drives before USF broke off another big run. Tice exploded up the middle for a 45-yard score that extended the lead to 13-0 with 5:18 left in the half.

USF headed to halftime with a 20-7 lead thanks to Flowers’ 38-yard TD connection with Salomon with just 42 seconds remaining. USF went 61 yards in just 35 seconds on the drive and had the ball for only 8:43 in the opening half. The USF defense had eight tackles for loss at the half.

USF needed just 50 seconds to score on the first drive of the second half that ended with a 28-yard TD catch by Valdes-Scantling.

D’Ernest Johnson helped USF make NCAA history with his 2-yard touchdown run on fourth-and-goal that put the Bulls past the 30-point mark midway through the third quarter.

Tulane (3-4, 1-2) cut the USF lead to 34-28 with 2:45 to go before the Bulls recovered an on-side kick and ran out the clock thanks to Tice’s 30-yard run on third-and-3 at the Tulane 39.

USF returns to Raymond James Stadium to host Houston on Saturday, Oct. 28 at 3:45 p.m. The Bulls’ Salute to Service game will be televised on ESPNU.

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