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Former Wildcats Nick Foles, Rob Gronkowski shine in Super Bowl

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David Maialetti/Philadelphia Inquirer | The Daily Wildcat Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Nick Foles throws a pass during the 1st quarter against the Dallas Cowboys at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas, on Sunday, December 2, 2012.

Super Bowl LII was a night to remember for a former Wildcat, and a night that two other former ‘Cats will try to forget. The Philadelphia Eagles, lead by former UA quarterback Nick Foles, defeated the New England Patriots, and former Wildcats Rob Gronkowski and Marquis Flowers, 41-33. Foles' performance landed him the Super Bowl MVP award. 

Foles went 28 for 43 with 373 yards and 3 touchdowns, along with one interception in the winning effort. He also had a receiving touchdown on a trick play that came on a crucial fourth down form the goal line. Foles was clutch for the Eagles on third down, racking up almost half of his yardage on third down. 

Foles made the engine go for the Eagles offense, making big time throw after big time throw, including a 34 yard to receiver Alshon Jeffery that capped off a three play, 77-yard drive. Also, Foles had an over the shoulder throw to running back Corey Clement that went for a 22-yard touchdown.

After playing as well as Foles did in the biggest game of the year, the question is now, what lies ahead for him? With injured quarterback Carson Wentz slated to return next season, is there a QB controversy brewing in Philadelphia? Or will Foles, who at one point was set upon retiring for the game, find himself starting for another NFL team?

It's too early to tell what will happen next for the now-famous former UA quarterback, but all signs point to Foles sticking around in the NFL on one team or another.

Not to be outdone, Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski had himself a big game as well in the Patriots losing effort. He had nine catches for 116 yards and two touchdowns. Gronkowski set a number of records, including most receptions by a tight end in the playoffs in NFL history. After a quiet first half, Gronkowski had 68 receiving yards on the opening drive of the second half. 

Gronkowski’s Patriot teammate and also former Wildcat, linebacker Marquis Flowers, finished the game with just one tackle, that came on a third down for the Patriots defense that held the Eagles to three points on the drive.

After the game, Gronkowski, whose NFL career has been plagued by injuries, was non committal about returning for another season.

“I’m definitely going to look at my future, for sure,” Gronkowski told reporters when asked about the possibility of his retirement. “Sit down the next couple of weeks and see where I am at.”

Foles' performance won't just be remembered by Eagles fans, though. Foles’ Super Bowl MVP nod marks the first Super Bowl MVP for an Arizona Wildcat, and also joins elite company among former Wildcats who have won a Super Bowl.

In his three years at Arizona (2009-2011), Foles passed for 10,011 yards, 67 touchdowns, and a 138.2 passer rating, including a monster senior year in which he had 4,334 yards,  28 TD’s, and a 145.6 passer rating.


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