For three and a half quarters of Friday's season finale at Yulman Stadium, Tulane found a way to hold off Tulsa.
It appeared as if the Green Wave was on its way to sending its about-to-be-fired coach out with a win and keep the Golden Hurricane from reaching bowl eligibility.
Then Tulsa did one Tulsa thing and Tulane, well, Tulane'd.
Down 11 midway through the fourth quarter, the Golden Hurricane used a lightning-quick scoring drive to put pressure on the Green Wave. As expected, Tulane wasn't up to the task as quarterback Jordy Joseph — playing in place of the injured Tanner Lee — threw Pick-6s on back-to-back drives.
Tulsa scored 21 unanswered points in the fourth quarter and won 45-34 in front of 22,672 fans.
With the win, the Golden Hurricane improved their record to 6-6 and secured one of the seven bowl bids in the American Athletic Conference. Tulane, on the other hand, ended its season with a 3-9 record and won't make a bowl for the 12th time in the past 13 years.
Joseph had a huge game for the Green Wave, all things considered. The redshirt senior completed 23 of his 41 passes for 343 yards and four touchdowns. Of course it's those two interceptions that will come back to haunt him.
Tulsa quarterback Dane Evans also had himself a night, throwing for 367 yards and three touchdowns. Evans threw one interception in the second quarter that Tulane capitalized on and scored on the very next play.
The Green Wave couldn't contain Keyarris Garrett, as the Golden Hurricane wide receiver caught 10 passes for 216 yards. Garrett scored once in the third quarter to bring Tulsa within three points (24-21).
With 7:40 remaining in regulation, Tulane probably thought it had the game in the bag. Andrew Hicks just scored on a 34-yard touchdown pass and the Green Wave led 34-24.
Four plays, 75 yards and 55 seconds later, the Golden Hurricane was breathing down Tulane's neck. The Green Wave couldn't handle it.
On the ensuing drive, Joseph threw the first of his two Pick-6s and Tulsa took the lead (38-34). Then Joseph drove Tulane down to the Golden Hurricane 16-yard line before Kolton Shindelar took one of his passes 89 yards the other way to seal the win.
Notes: The Green Wave rolled off 530 yards of total offense, the most in the past two years. That was the seventh time this season that Tulsa allowed more than 500 yards of total offense. ... When asked about his job security after the game, Tulane coach Curtis Johnson said, "I don't determine those things. You guys will know as soon as everyone tells me." ... Johnson is now 0-4 in season finales.