Miami, OK – No. 15 Butler (KS) prevailed in the final seconds of the 2018 Midwest Classic Bowl at Red Robertson Field to defeat No. 10 Northeastern Oklahoma A&M 34-30 on Sunday. With the win, the Grizzlies secured their first bowl victory since 2011.
In a matchup of the two programs with the most NJCAA football national championships in the history of the sport, Butler's Robert Hatchett intercepted a Hail Mary pass in the end zone as time expired to snap a three-game losing streak in bowl games for the Grizzlies. Hatchett completed the night with a pair of interceptions to earn defensive MVP honors.
Trailing 14-0 through the first 17:13 of the game, and 21-6 midway through the second frame, Butler's offense came alive with three consecutive touchdown runs in the span of 9:40 to take a 26-21 lead in the third quarter. Both sides traded touchdown runs in the fourth quarter, but it was Trae Self's seven-yard scamper with 4:35 left that proved to be the difference maker.
- Butler improves to 15-13 all-time in bowl game matchups, but Sunday's victory was the first postseason win in the state of Oklahoma for the Grizzlies.
- Quarterback Trae Self was named the game's offensive MVP for Butler after throwing for 133 yards and one touchdown while adding 21 yards on the ground with a rushing touchdown.
- Hunter Kier racked up 12 tackles, a forced fumble, and a fumble recovery to anchor the pass rush for the Grizzlies.
- Northeastern Oklahoma A&M's Guy Myers threw for a game-high 271 yards to seven different receivers and two touchdowns as the offense racked up 505 total yards on the day.
- Darran Williams proved to be a force on the ground for the Norsemen with 125 yards and a rushing touchdown.
- Butler and Northeastern Oklahoma A&M have each won six national championships and have combined for 31 bowl victories.
- Both sides finish the season 8-4 overall.