Kent State falls to Arkansas State in the GoDaddy.com Bowl

By Allen Moff | Staff Writer Published:

MOBILE, Ala. -- Kent State's first-ever bowl win will have to wait.

The Golden Flashes fell 17-13 to Sun Belt Conference champion Arkansas State (10-3) at the GoDaddy.com Bowl Sunday night at Ladd-Peebles Stadium, bringing the most successful season in program history to a close on a disappointing note.

Kent State had a chance to win the game in the final minute, driving to the Red Wolves 25-yard line with one minute left in the game. But on a fourth-and-eight play, Flashes senior quarterback Spencer Keith was tackled three yards short of the first down. Arkansas State was then able to run out the clock.

Flashes junior speedster Dri Archer finished with 77 yards rushing on nine carries and scored Kent State's lone touchdown, but did not play down the stretch after reportedly suffering a knee injury.

Kent State (11-3) finishes with a school-record 11 wins, but the season closed with a pair of tough losses -- a 44-37 double-overtime setback to Northern Illinois in the MAC Championship Game, followed by Sunday's narrow defeat.

Darrell Hazell coached his last game for the Flashes. He accepted a six-year, $12 million dollar offer to take over the Purdue football program on Dec. 5, but remained in place as Kent State's coach through Sunday's bowl game. He leaves with a 16-10 record in two seasons as coach at Kent State, after opening last season 1-6.

Paul Haynes, a former star defensive back for the Flashes, was hired about a week after Hazell took the Purdue job and will now take over the Kent State program.

The Flashes, making their first bowl appearance in 40 years, fell to 0-3 in bowl games.

They previously fell 21-18 to Tampa in the 1972 Tangerine Bowl, and 19-7 to Delaware in the 1954 Refrigerator Bowl.

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  • It was still a great season! Thank you Kent State Flashes.