Georgia defensive lineman Trent Thompson entered the Liberty Bowl against TCU as one of the Bulldogs' most consistent playmakers on defense. He left with another standout performance to his credit as well as two very large trophies.
Thompson was named Liberty Bowl MVP and Georgia's Most Outstanding Defensive Player after delivering repeatedly in the Bulldogs' 31-23 victory over TCU in the Liberty Bowl. He ended the game with eight tackles and three sacks, the latter of which was a Liberty Bowl record as well as a Georgia bowl record.
As a result, Thompson became the first defensive player to be named MVP of the bowl since Kentucky defensive lineman Ventrell Jenkins took home the honors in 2008.
"I think I prepared in practice pretty good," Thompson said. "I went in with the mindset that you've got to stay low, shoot your hands, listen to your coaches and listen to your keys. I think overall it was a good defensive effort."
Thompson's plays were huge for the Bulldogs, especially considering the timing. Two of his three sacks of TCU quarterback Kenny Hill came on third-down plays in the red zone; The other came on a second down at the Georgia 17-yard line that was followed by an incompletion and a field-goal attempt.
TCU only connected on one of those field goals, providing a points swing for the Bulldogs that was crucial in the eight-point victory.
His hindrance of Hill throughout the game caused Thompson to be named MVP and left the Horned Frogs quarterback shaking his head when it was all said and done.
"He played well," Hill said. "He's got a high motor, always working. That last (sack), I needed to throw that ball away."
Thompson's biggest concern now seems to be what to do with the reward for his latest outing. The sophomore received two trophies for his respective MVP honors: one featuring a golden football and the other a golden eagle that's about three feet tall.
Thompson explained the trophies aren't headed back to his home in Athens. Instead, it's going to Albany, where all of his awards are displayed.
"I'm going to give it to my mom," Thompson said. "She's got an area that she puts all my trophies. She can do with it what she wants to do with it."
Georgia head coach Kirby Smart then quickly chimed in about the display.
"I've been to his house and seen that area," Smart said. "It's full of trophies. It's got tons of them."
With the way Thompson played against TCU, it's no wonder that's the case.