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November 16, 2013
AUBURN | Ricardo Louis scored on a deflected 73-yard pass on fourth and 18 with 25 seconds left to lift No. 7 Auburn to a stunning 43-38 victory over No. 25 Georgia on Saturday night.
The Tigers (10-1, 6-1 Southeastern Conference) had blown a 27-7 lead but pulled out one more huge play to continue the biggest turnaround in major college football. From 3-9 last year, they can win the SEC West with a victory in two weeks against No. 1 Alabama.
Aaron Murray, who had engineered the comeback with three fourth-quarter touchdowns, could only stare helplessly from the bench. A win could have kept the Bulldogs alive in the SEC East.
Murray led Georgia (6-4, 4-3) all the way to Auburn's 20 but his final two passes fell incomplete as time ran out. Dee Ford hit him on the last pass as Murray ran toward the line before trying to throw.
Some Auburn players climbed into the stands to celebrate with students, and most fans stayed put to celebrate the victory.
It only came after Murray gave the Tigers a big scare. He had plowed into Ryan Smith at the goal line for a 5-yard touchdown with 1:49 left.
Auburn challenged the final TD, but replay officials upheld the call on the field.
That left the Tigers starting at their own 22 with 1:45 left. They managed one first down but Jordan Jenkins sacked Marshall to set up fourth and 18.
Marshall then produced the biggest play of his career against the Bulldogs, where he played as a freshman defensive back. He was dismissed from the team in February 2012 for violating team rules and returned to the SEC after a season in junior college.
He finished 15-of-26 passing for 229 yards after attempting only 15 passes combined in the past two games thanks to a steamrolling running game. Marshall also ran 19 times for 89 yards.