Texas A&M tried to give away another big lead. Northwestern's Cardiac Cats tried to stage another comeback. Neither happened in the 2011 Meineke Car Care Bowl, as the Aggies countered two late Northwestern touchdowns with a field goal to ice a 33-22 victory.
The Aggies, playing little more than a week after the death of offensive lineman Joseph Villavisencio and in the last game most of fired head coach Mike Sherman's staff will caoch at A&M, led 30-7 in the fourth quarter, and were on the verge of yet another collapse in a 2011 season full of them after Northwestern scored twice in the period.
But the Aggies came out throwing on their final drive, and Ryan Tannehill — who threw for 329 yards and a touchdown on the day — found Jeff Fuller for a spectacular leaping catch that put Lou Groza Award winner Randy Bullock in position to end Northwestern's comeback attempt with a 31-yard field goal.
Fuller had seven catches for 119 yards and a touchdown, while Ryan Swope had eight catches for 105 yards.
Northwestern's Kain Colter had just 13 yards through the air, but threw the Wildcats' only passing touchdown and also scored on the ground while rushing for 65 yards. Dan Persa threw for 213 yards for the Wildcats, who failed to earn their first bowl win since 1949.