Ridder, No. 23 Cincinnati romp over Boston College, 38-6

Sports

Cincinnati quarterback Desmond Ridder (9) carries the ball for a touchdown against Boston College during the first half of the Birmingham Bowl NCAA college football game Thursday, Jan. 2, 2020, in Birmingham, Ala. (AP Photo/Butch Dill)

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — Desmond Ridder ran for 105 yards and three touchdowns and threw a scoring pass to lead No. 23 Cincinnati to a 38-6 victory over Boston College on Thursday in the weather-delayed Birmingham Bowl.

The Bearcats (11-3) reached 11 wins for the second straight season and fourth in program history, bouncing back from two straight losses to No. 15 Memphis.

The Eagles (6-7) were outgained 459-164 in total yards to finish a turbulent postseason. Coach Steve Addazio was fired after seven seasons and star tailback A.J. Dillon declared for the NFL draft and skipped the bowl game.

Dillon was clearly missed. Wide receivers coach Rich Gunnell led the team through the bowl game, while newly hired Jeff Hafley was on hand as a spectator after finishing his duties as Ohio State’s co-defensive coordinator.

The game was interrupted by a weather delay of about 1 1/2 hours midway through the first quarter.

Boston College got its only points on special teams. Mike Palmer blocked a field goal and Brandon Sebastian scooped it up and returned it 67 yards in the third quarter.

Ridder had two 13-yard scoring runs and a 14-yarder, setting a Cincinnati bowl record for rushing and total TDs. He had 21 carries and also passed for 95 yards with an 8-yard score to Malick Mbodj before leaving the game early in the fourth quarter.

Michael Warren Jr. also had 105 yards on 21 carries.

THE TAKEAWAY

Boston College: Couldn’t generate any consistent offense and clearly missed Dillon. Other than two big plays in the first half, the Eagles produced just 32 yards on 27 plays. David Bailey gained 28 yards on eight carries in Dillon’s place.

Cincinnati: Was dominant on both sides of the ball. The program’s only other 11-win seasons came under Brian Kelly in 2008 and 2009. The defense set up a touchdown with Ethan Tucky’s forced fumble.

DEJA VU

The weather delay likely brought back some memories for Boston College fans and players. They were part of a bowl game in Dallas last year that was canceled after a delay of similar length, also in the first quarter and also against a No. 23-ranked team, Boise State.

UP NEXT

Boston College: Already had time to start adapting to the biggest loss: Dillon. Returns most other starters to begin the Hafley era.

Cincinnati: Must replace a number of key players, including standout tight end Josiah Deguara and linebackers Perry Young and Bryan Wright. Ridder and Warren are set to return.

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