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ALL AMERICAN BOWL : Gray Leads Texas Tech Over Duke

December 29, 1989|From Associated Press

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — James Gray, major college football's fifth-leading rusher this season, ran for a record 280 yards and scored four touchdowns Thursday night, leading Texas Tech to a 49-21 victory over Duke in the All American Bowl.

The victory gave No. 24 Tech a 9-3 record, while No. 20 Duke fell to 8-4 in what could be Coach Steve Spurrier's final game with the Blue Devils.

The Charlotte (N.C.) Observer, quoting sources close to the Duke athletic department, is reporting today that Spurrier has already informed Duke Athletic Director Tom Butters that he will take the coaching job at Florida, where he won the Heisman Trophy in 1966.

After the game, Spurrier would not confirm if he is leaving Duke. "I'm not important tonight," he said. "Tonight belongs to the players."

It mostly belonged to Tech's Gray, who gained 1,509 yards for the Red Raiders and scored from two, 54, 18 and 16 yards.

His 280 yards, in 33 carries, was a personal high, eclipsing 234 yards against Arizona in the Raiders' opening game. He also surpassed the All American Bowl record of 276 by Texas A&M's Curtis Dickey against Iowa State in 1978.

Gray's first three touchdowns and a 36-yard pass play from Jamie Gill to Travis Price gave Tech a 28-0 lead.

Duke's Dave Brown then threw scoring passes of 30 yards to Bud Zuberer and 25 yards to Dave Colonna to make it 28-14 at halftime.

Tech's Brian Dubiski intercepted Billy Ray's pass at his 31 on Duke's first possession, and Tech moved 69 yards to Gray's two-yard fourth-down touchdown run.

Gill set up his scoring pass to Price with completions of 19 yards to Anthony Lynn and 17 to Price.

Early in the second period, Tech's Stephon Weatherspoon knocked the ball away from Chris Brown. Dubiski recovered at the Duke 46 and Gray ran 54 yards off right tackle on the next play.

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