For the second time in school history, the University of Cincinnati football team has recorded back-to-back seasons with at least 11 wins.
The Bearcats beat the Boston College Eagles, 38-6, Thursday afternoon in the TicketSmarter Birmingham Bowl at Legion Field.
It's also the first time since 2011 and 2012 that UC (11-3) has won bowl games in back-to-back seasons.
After each team exchanged two punts to begin the game, the game was delayed for an hour and a half due to heavy rain and lightning strikes.
"There was no way that I was going to leave Birmingham without those seniors and the guys in the locker-room having an opportunity to go out there and put their hard work on display for one another," UC head coach Luke Fickell said. "If we had to stay here until midnight, we would've stayed here till midnight."
UC came out aggressive on both sides of the ball following the delay.
Redshirt sophomore quarterback Desmond Ridder ran for 87 yards in the first-half and two touchdowns. He finished with three rushing touchdowns and four overall, which are both UC bowl game records.
Ridder's night ended with 105 rushing yards on 21 carries. He also threw for 95 yards on 14 of 24 completions.
For his efforts, Ridder was named the MVP of the Birmingham Bowl.
"With the last two losses to Memphis, it was really big to come in here and start fast," Ridder said.
Junior wide receiver Malick Mbodj hauled in his first career touchdown reception on a 8-yard pass from Ridder in the third quarter.
Junior running back Michael Warren rushed for at least 100 yards for the seventh time this season. Like Ridder, Warren finished with 105 yards on 21 carries.
UC's defense gave up 164 yards and only allowed Boston College to enter the red-zone once.
With the rainy weather, the Bearcats' focused on pounding the ball, as 343 of their 459 total yards were rushing.
Getting the start:
Junior Ethan Tucky started at defensive end, as usual starter Michael Pitts didn't play due to a shoulder injury. Tucky, who transferred to UC from Boston College after the 2016 season, recorded three tackles, a sack and a forced fumble.
Redshirt sophomore James Hudson earned his first career start for UC at left tackle. The Michigan transfer was denied an immediate eligibility waiver by the NCAA in May 2019. Darius Harper started at right tackle to accommodate Hudson.