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     === Johnny Come Lately: A&M rallies past Duke in Chick-fil-A Bowl ===
 
 Atlanta,  GA  (SportsNetwork.com) - Johnny  Manziel might have played his last
 game  at Texas A&M, but he made it a thriller as the 20th-ranked Aggies took a
 52-48 win over No. 22 Duke in the Chick-fil-A Bowl.
 
 Trailing  by 21  points to start the  second half, Manziel guided Texas A&M on
 four  touchdown drives after the break before Toney Hurd gave the Aggies their
 only  lead of the game with a 55-yard interception return for a touchdown with
 3:33 to play.
 
 Texas  A&M's defense  then sealed  the  victory with  another interception  of
 Anthony Boone with 1:19 remaining.
 
 While it's not known if he will declare for the NFL Draft, Manziel is eligible
 to  enter it and  will make his decision known after finishing his 2013 season
 on a very positive note.
 
 Manziel  went  30-for-38 for  382 yards  and four  touchdown passes, adding 11
 carries for 73 yards and another score for the Aggies (9-4), who came into the
 game having dropped their final two games of the regular season.
 
 "All  night I  just knew  to not  quit  and that's  what I  kept stressing  to
 everybody, don't look at the scoreboard and play like it's 0-0," said Manziel.
 "We've worked hard all year and we didn't stop."
 
 Travis  Labhart caught three of Manziel's scoring passes and finished the game
 with seven catches for 76 yards.
 
 Boone  was  29-for-45 for  427  yards  with  three  touchdown passes  and  two
 interceptions,  also adding  a score on the ground for the Blue Devils (10-4),
 who  closed the  season  with two  straight losses  after  getting crushed  by
 Florida State in the ACC Championship.
 
 "The  most difficult part of the game for me was to tell our seniors goodbye,"
 said  Duke head  coach David  Cutliffe. "They  played their  hearts out  there
 today.  We  were able to move  the ball, but we  turned the ball over and they
 didn't, and that wound up being the story."
 
 Trailing  by 10 points  to start the fourth quarter, Texas A&M made it a 41-38
 game  when  Manziel capped an eight-play,  65-yard drive by taking the ball in
 himself around the left side on a 3-yard score.
 
 Boone then guided Duke on a 14-play, 75-yard march to again make it a 10-point
 game,  as he tossed a pass out to the right for David Reeves, who spun off one
 tackler and just stayed in bounds, stretching the ball over the goalline as he
 was knocked out of bounds for a 21-yard score with 6:46 to play.
 
 It  took  all of  three plays for  Manziel and  the Aggies to  again make it a
 three-point  game,  as he threw  a deep pass down  the left sideline and Derel
 Walker took it in on a 44-yard score with 5:44 to play.
 
 The  defense then gave the Aggies the lead as Hurd stepped in front of a Boone
 pass,  grabbed it away  from the receiver and went the other way for a 55-yard
 score and a 52-48 game with 3:33 to play.
 
 Boone  had plenty  of time to work with  and got the team to the Texas A&M 38,
 but Askew picked off the ball and the Aggies ran out the clock for the win.
 
 "We  had a bit of a discussion at halftime about doing your job and not trying
 to take everything in one jump," said Texas A&M head coach Kevin Sumlin. "As a
 coach  two of  the compliments  you can  get is  if your  team plays  hard and
 doesn't quit, and these guys did both of that tonight."
 
 Texas  A&M drove down  to the Duke 23 on the initial touch of the game, but an
 unsportsmanlike  conduct and false start call forced the team to try a 55-yard
 field goal, which Josh Lambo missed to give Duke the ball back at its own 37.
 
 A  16-yard run from Boone and 25-yard catch by Jamison Crowder got the ball to
 the 11, and Duke took a 7-0 lead when Josh Snead caught a toss to the left and
 took  it  into the end zone  for an 11-yard score  with 8:50 left in the first
 quarter.
 
 Texas  A&M countered with  a 45-yard field goal from Lambo to get on the board
 with  5:31  to play in  the first quarter, but  Boone found Braxton Deaver for
 completions  of 32 and  37 yards down to the Texas A&M 3, and Brandon Connette
 took it in on a quarterback keep around the left end for a 14-3 advantage with
 4:12 left in the first.
 
 The  Blue Devils' special  teams then came up with a big play, blocking a punt
 and  recovering the ball at the Texas A&M 24. On the second play of the second
 quarter,  Boone was able to stretch the ball in on an 11-yard score for a 21-3
 lead.
 
 Texas  A&M got back  on track on its next touch, needing just four plays to go
 75 yards with Manziel finding a wide open Labhart down the left side for a 23-
 yard score and a 21-10 game.
 
 Duke came right back with another score, as Boone found Crowder down the right
 sideline  and he caught it in-stride for a 59-yard score and a 28-10 lead with
 11:49 left in the half.
 
 Manziel answered with a 13-play, 75-yard match, hitting a wide open Labhart at
 the  goalline for a 9-yard score on 4th down to make it a 28-17 game with 6:45
 until halftime.
 
 The Blue Devils countered with a long drive of their own, going 75 yards in 11
 plays  and Snead taking it between blocks at the line for a 25-yard score. The
 Blue  Devils  then recovered  an onsides  kick attempt,  leading to an 18-yard
 field  goal  from Ross Martin  as time  expired to take  a 38-17 lead into the
 break.
 
 Duke began the third quarter with the ball, but Texas A&M stopped them for the
 first time and got the ball back at its own 36.
 
 Showing his athletic brilliance on a 2nd-and-7 at the Duke 19, Manziel stepped
 up  to avoid  a rush and leaped  over a defender. Stepping back, he tossed the
 ball  to his left  and Labhart took the ball in on a 19-yard score for a 38-24
 game.
 
 Martin  missed a 48-yard  field goal well to the left on the Blue Devils' next
 touch,  and the Aggies  countered with a 21-yard score from Tra Carson to make
 it a 38-31 game with 5:05 to play in the third.
 
 Duke's  next possession  saw the team get  a 20-yard field goal from Martin to
 take a 41-31 lead into the fourth quarter.
 
 
                                   Game Notes
 
 Texas A&M won its third straight bowl game and improved to 16-19 in bowl games
 ... Duke has dropped four straight bowl games and fell to 3-7 ... This was the
 first  meeting between these two schools ... Duke had 661 yards and controlled
 the  ball  for just  over 35  minutes, while  Texas A&M  totaled 541 ... Snead
 finished  the game with 104 yards on 17 carries ... Walker totaled six catches
 for 113 yards.
 
 
 
 
 01/01 02:48:23 ET

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