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Defensive end Margus Hunt dominated with two sacks, two forced fumbles, and a safety, allowing SMU to beat Fresno State in the Sheraton Hawaii Bowl.
The SMU Mustangs were double-digit underdogs heading into the Sheraton Hawaii Bowl, but they dominated the Fresno State Bulldogs in a 43-10 blowout, thanks to a dominant performance by SMU defensive end Margus Hunt.
The Mustangs were in control from the very start: former Texas quarterback Garrett Gilbert had a pair of big runs including a 17-yard touchdown. When Fresno State had the ball, they had no answer for Hunt, the 6-foot-8 Estonian who won junior world championships in the shot put. Hunt repeatedly bullrushed past the right tackle to drag down quarterback Derek Carr in his final collegiate game, recording three sacks with two forced fumbles and a safety before halftime. His play continually set up SMU in great field position, allowing them to get the score to 22-0. Fresno State got to the doorstep of the goal line right before the half, but they couldn't convert on a fourth down, entering the locker room scoreless.
Carr would throw a touchdown shortly after halftime, but Gilbert responded with his only touchdown pass of the day. Taylor Reed and Hayden Greenbauer would each record pick-sixes to seal the deal, giving SMU the record for the most interceptions returned for touchdowns in a season.
SMU only went 6-6 in the regular season while the Bulldogs were 9-3 and were co-champions of the Mountain West, leading to the Mustangs being 13-point underdogs in the matchup. It's the Mustangs' second Hawaii Bowl win in four years, having previously won in 2009. June Jones was fine in a return to Hawaii, where he previously coached for nine seasons.
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