Auburn to play Northwestern in Citrus Bowl

National

Auburn quarterback Bo Nix (10) eludes a tackle by LSU defensive lineman Ali Gaye (11) as he carries the ball during the second quarter of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Oct. 31, 2020, in Auburn, Ala. (AP Photo/Butch Dill)

The Auburn Tigers will play No. Northwestern in the 2021 Citrus Bowl.

The 75th edition of the game, slated for 1 p.m. New Year’s Day, will be Auburn’s sixth appearance, and the second time the two teams have played in a bowl game.

In 2010, Auburn beat Northwestern in overtime at the Outback Bowl.

The Tigers are 3-2 in five previous Citrus Bowl appearances, the most recent in 2006.

Northwestern heads into the Citrus Bowl ranked fifth nationally in scoring defense, allowing 15.5 points per game, and the pass defense has held opponents to 182.2 passing yards per game.

Offensively, quarterback Peyton Ramsey has thrown from 1,218 yards and nine touchdowns this season, along with two rushing touchdowns. Drake Anderson (256 yards and two touchdowns) and Isiah Browser (229 yards and one touchdown) lead Northwestern’s rush offense, with Kyrie McGowan (366 yards) and Ramaud Chiaokhiao-Bowman (344 yards and four touchdowns) leading the receiving offense.

For the Tigers, quarterback Bo Nix ranks in the top 25 nationally and top five in the SEC for passing yards (2,123) and has scored 18 touchdowns on the season (11 passing, seven rushing). Tank Bigsby leads the Tigers running offense, with 834 yards and five touchdowns. Seth Williams (688 yards and four touchdowns) and Anthony Schwartz (636 yards and three touchdowns) lead the passing offense.

Defensively, the Tigers have held opponents to an average of 23.7 points and 400.9 total yards per game this season. Zakoby McClain leads the team with 102 tackles; linebackers Colby Wooden (9.5 tackles for loss, four sacks) and Derick Hall (five tackles for loss and 3.5 sacks) also have had standout performances for the Tigers this season.

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