Munchie Legaux, nation. Nation, Munchie Legaux.
The Cincinnati quarterback came of age Saturday, hitting Damon Julian with a money throw from 39 yards out with 13 seconds left to lift the Bearcats past favored Virginia Tech 27-24 in a "home" game at FedEx Field in Landover, Md.
Legaux completed 19 of 42 passes for 376 yards and three scores, with many of the fireworks coming in the fourth quarter, which began with a 13-7 Cincinnati lead and not much sign of life from either offense.
Julian's game-winning diving catch capped a wild 15 minutes. Julian had actually dropped a touchdown pass earlier in the frame that would have given the Bearcats a 10-point lead. Instead, Tony Miliano missed a 42-yard field goal try, and the Hokies marched 76 yards in the other direction to take a 17-13 lead.
Ralph David Abernathy IV answered less than a minute later with a 76-yard touchdown catch, but Logan Thomas took the Hokies on a 93-yard touchdown drive with less than a minute left, putting Virginia Tech up 24-20 and setting the stage for Legaux's dramatics.
Getting the ball with 1:49 remaining, Legaux completed 3 of 7 throws for 68 yards and rushed it himself for another 17. He threw for 166 yards in the final period.
Both teams combined for 492 yards of total offense in the fourth quarter after a quiet first three frames.
This is a huge win for Cincinnati, which is now 3-0 and remains a force to be reckoned with in the Big East race. The Bearcats had not faced much adversity through two games over four weeks, but they answered emphatically against a Hokies team that still carries lots of national luster, regardless of their earlier loss at Pitt.
Legaux in particular fired back at his critics, recovering from a four-turnover performance against FCS Delaware State by throwing just one interception and landing his team a signature September win.