Heisman trophy candidate Lamar Jackson wasn’t playing like himself all day, and Virginia’s defense had been playing a good enough for the potential upset. But, Virginia’s final touchdown and risky try for a two point conversion left Jackson a good chunk of time to get the win.
Jackson threw to Jaylen Smith with a 29 yard touchdown pass and again for a two point conversion to win 32-25, saving Louisville from an enormous upset.
Until the last play, the Cavaliers defense was playing to the best of their ability and actually stopping Jackson. Jackson went 24 for 41 with 361 passing yards and four TD with one pick. For the first time this season he was held without a running touchdown and was sacked five times.
Virginia was in the lead for most of the game before Louisville scored 17 straight points to take a 24-17 lead midway through the 4th quarter.
Virginia marched 75 yards in 14 plays for a touchdown, converting on two fourth downs. On the second fourth down, Benkert, Virginia’s QB, completed a 30 yard pass to Keeon Johnson. For the first time all day, the Virginia QB looked calm when he threw to Doni Dowling with a touchdown pass on the next play.
The next play the Cavaliers tried their luck going for two and converted going up 25-24 late in the fourth quarter.
After Louisville got the ball back, Jackson led his team 75 yards to a touchdown.
“You can cover his guys all you want, but he’s faster than everyone on the field,” Kiser, who had a team-high 14 tackles and two sacks, said of Jackson with a laugh. “We did our best, but I mean at the end of the day, he can outrun everyone.”