Tulsa defeated Central Florida, 33-27, in overtime Saturday to win its second Conference USA championship.
The Golden Hurricane (10-3, 7-1 C-USA) racked up 443 yards and 26 first downs, but two turnovers kept Central Florida (9-4, 7-1) in the game. The Knights held a 27-21 lead into the fourth quarter, until Tulsa's Trey Watts returned a punt 54 yards for a score with 6:03 remaining to tie the game. Daniel Schwarz missed the extra point, which led to the extra session.
In overtime UCF's Shawn Moffitt attempted a 38-yard field goal attempt, only to have it blocked. Needing just three points to win, the Golden Hurricane marched off 24 yards in three plays, and Alex Singleton plunged into the end zone from a yard out to give Tulsa the title.
In the regular season, Tulsa led the West Division all year, finishing two games ahead of SMU. Houston and Rice tied for third, and UTEP and Tulane tied for fifth. In the East, UCF and East Carolina tied atop the standings, but the Knights won the head-to-head tiebreaker by virtue of a 40-20 victory over the Pirates on Oct. 4. Marshall and Memphis tied for third, three games back, and UAB and Southern Miss rounded out the division.
The final C-USA standings are as follows:
Conference USA Standings
(updated 11.24.2012 at 1:42 AM CST)
|Central Florida Knights||7||1||9||4|
|East Carolina Pirates||7||1||8||4|
|Marshall Thundering Herd||4||4||5||7|
|Southern Miss. Golden Eagles||0||8||0||12|