17th Annual Cactus Bowl - Fiesta Bowl | Fiesta Bowl

On a night when Tony Soprano spent the majority of the game on the sidelines, it was somewhat ironic there was a shootout on the field. Not a real shootout, of course, but a wild display of offense in Arizona State’s 45-40 win over Rutgers in the final Cactus Bowl at Chase Field.

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James Gandolfini, who plays the New Jersey gangster Tony Soprano on the hit series “The Sopranos,” served as an honorary captain for his alma mater Rutgers, while talk show host Jimmy Kimmel was the honorary captain for the Sun Devils.

Neither “captain” could have done much for the defenses, as the two teams combined for 1,211 yards, setting a bowl game record that broke the previous NCAA mark of 1,158 yards by Hawaii and Houston in the 2003 Hawaii Bowl.

It was just the second-ever bowl appearance in Rutgers’ history and first since the 1978 Garden State Bowl. But the Scarlet Knights didn’t come out tentative, as they jumped out to a 24-10 lead in the second quarter.

The Sun Devils gained some momentum just before halftime on a 1-yard touchdown pass from Rudy Carpenter to Zach Miller to cut the lead to 24-17 and tied the game on their first possession in the second half on a 1-yard touchdown run by Rudy Burgess.

After the teams exchanged leads in the third quarter, Arizona State took the lead for good in the fourth quarter on 42-yard touchdown pass from Carpenter to Matt Miller

Carpenter, a red-shirt freshman, completed 23-of-35 passes for 467 yards and four touchdowns to earn offensive player of the game honors in a game that featured plenty of offensive stars.

Rutgers senior quarterback Ryan Hart also had a big game, throwing for 374 yards and three touchdowns, while freshman Ray Rice had 108 yards rushing on 20 attempts.

  • Stadium:

    Chase Field

  • Attendance:


  • Offensive Player of the Game:

    Rudy Carpenter, Arizona State

  • Defensive Player of the Game:

    Jamar Williams, Arizona State

  • Sportsmanship Award:

    Ryan Neill, Rutgers

  • Head Coaches:

    Dirk Koetter, Arizona State - Greg Schiano, Rutgers

  • Weather:

    Roof Closed (Clear outside)

Quarter Scores

Arizona State710141445


33First Downs24
467Passing Yards374
103Return Yards103

How They Scored

07Clark Harris 1-yard pass from Ryan Hart (Jeremy Ito kick)
77Matt Miller 43-yard pass from Rudy Carpenter (Jesse Ainsworth kick)
714Brian Leonard 31-yard pass from Ryan Hart (Jeremy Ito kick)
717Jeremy Ito 25-yard field goal
1017Jesse Ainsworth 20-yard field goal
1024Brian Leonard 3-yard run (Jeremy Ito kick)
1724Zach Miller 1-yard pass from Rudy Carpenter (Jesse Ainsworth kick)
2424Rudy Burgess 1-yard run (Jesse Ainsworth kick)
2427Jeremy Ito 23-yard field goal
3127Terry Richardson 22-yard pass from Rudy Carpenter (Jesse Ainsworth kick)
3130Jeremy Ito 52-yard field goal
3133Jeremy Ito 48-yard field goal
3933Matt Miller 42-yard pass from Rudy Carpenter (Brent Miller pass from Rudy Carpenter)
4533Rudy Burgess 4-yard run (run failed)
4540Tres Moses 29-yard pass from Ryan Hart (Jeremy Ito kick)

Individual Statistics

ASURudy Burgess 17-102, Keegan Herring 19-79, Rudy Carpenter 6-31, Preston Jones 1-7.
RURay Rice 20-108, Brian Leonard 10-46, Willie Foster 1-7.
ASURudy Carpenter 35-23-0.
RURyan Hart 38-24-1.
ASUMatt Miller 5-135, Derek Hagen 5-97, Rudy Burgess 4-68, Zach Miller 4-43, Jamaal Lewis 2-62, Terry Richardson 2-46, Brent Miller 1-16.
RUTres Moses 7-113, Brian Leonard 6-98, Clark Harris 6-85, Willie Foster 2-21, Ray Rice 1-26, Shawn Tucker 1-24, Tiquan Underwood 1-7.