For the second time in as many years, the Baylor Bears' offense showed it can hang with anyone, but this time, their defense showed up too. The Bears beat the UCLA Bruins, 49-26, to win the 2012 Holiday Bowl.
A year after the Bears beat the Washington Huskies, 67-56, in the Alamo Bowl, the offense again came out on fire, putting up 35 points in the first half. Baylor jumped out to an early 14-0 lead in the first quarter thanks to a four-yard touchdown run by Glasco Martin and a eight-yard touchdown pass from Nick Florence to Antwan Goodley.
The second quarter looked a lot like the first as Florence and the Bears running game took turns beating up the UCLA defense. First, Florence hit Tevin Reese for a 55-yard touchdown pass to give the Bears a 21-0 lead. UCLA quarterback Brett Hundley hit Joseph Fauria for a 22-yard score to pull the Bruins within seven before Martin broke loose for a 26-yard touchdown score to make it 28-7 Bears. Running back Lache Seastrunk added a 43-yard touchdown run before the half ended to make it 35-7. The Bruins added a field goal just before the half to make it 35-10.
During the second quarter, Florence broke the Baylor's single season passing yards record set by Robert Griffin III just last year. Griffin III finished last season with 4,293 yards passing; Florence's 188 yards through the air gave him 4,309 for the year.
Hundley and the Bruins looked like they might get back in to the game in the third quarter when they held the Bears scoreless for almost the entire quarter before allowing Martin to get in the end zone for the third time in the game. Hundley hit Shaquelle Evans for a 24-yard touchdown pass to make it 42-19 early in the fourth quarter before Florence ran the ball in to make it 49-19.
Florence wasn't the only quarterback to set a school record Thursday night. Hundley set the Bruins' single season passing record during the third quarter of the game, finishing with 3,740 yards passing.