Allen and Wisconsin push back Arizona state at Las Vegas Bowl
By the associated press
LAS VEGAS (AP) – Braelon Allen ran 159 yards and Wisconsin emptied the final at 9:57 am with an 18-game drive that sealed a 20-13 victory over Arizona State at the Las Vegas Bowl on Thursday night.
Allen, the 17-year-old real freshman from Fond Du Lac, Wisconsin, had 101 yards at halftime for his eighth 100-yard game of the season.
Graham Mertz finished 11 of 15 for 137 yards and a touchdown to senior tight end Jake Ferguson, who caught three passes for 33 yards in his last game for Wisconsin (9-4).
The Badgers started 1-3 with Big Ten losses to ranked opponents Penn State and Michigan, but responded with a seven-game winning streak to claim a 20th consecutive bowl offer.
Hanging on to a seven-point lead, they took over at their own 3 with just under 10 minutes left and traveled 90 yards to miss time in the opening bowl game at Allegiant Stadium, home of the NFL Las Vegas Raiders.
Arizona State quarterback Jayden Daniels totaled 199 yards and threw an interception for the Sun Devils (8-5), who have been 3-6 in balls since 2011.
The Sun Devils were limited to 219 total yards, including 102 in the first half. Wisconsin came in with the best defense in the country, allowing 240.8 yards per game.
Arizona State has made the playoffs every full season under the direction of head coach Herm Edwards; the Sun Devils have only played four games in 2020 due to the pandemic.
HARD BADGER DEFENSE
Arizona State has allowed just 21 sacks this season, averaging 1.75 per game. Daniels has been sacked four times, a season high, and Wisconsin limited the Sun Devils to 60 rushing yards on 33 carries.
Second-year linebacker Nick Herbig had two sacks and finished with nine, a season-high for the team.
THE VALIANT EFFORT OF DANIELS
The Sun Devils quarterback tried everything to rally his team in the second half. Daniels, who completed 11 of 21 passes for 159 yards, completed two near-miraculous liftoffs; one to Ricky Pearsall for 38 yards which led to Daniyel Ngata’s 5-yard touchdown in the third quarter, and a 35-yard completion to Jaylin Conyers in the 3rd and 18th.
Arizona State failed to score after this play.
Wisconsin: Welcomes Illinois when the 2022 season opens on September 3.
State of Arizona: Welcomes northern Arizona on September 1.
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