Mike Fuentes, Associated Press
SMU head coach June Jones, left, and Army head coach Rich Ellerson talk before the Armed Forces Bowl NCAA college football game in Dallas on Thursday, Dec. 30, 2010.
DALLAS — Josh McNary scooped up a fumble and returned it 55 yards for a touchdown and Army held on to beat SMU 16-14 in the Armed Forces Bowl on Thursday, giving the Black Knights their first winning season since 1996.
Army (7-6) had a 16-0 halftime lead on SMU's home field, then ran out the final 4 minutes after Matt Szymanksi was wide left on a 47-yard field goal attempt that would have put the Mustangs ahead.
SMU (7-7) hasn't had consecutive winning seasons since resuming play in 1989 after being the only team ever given the NCAA's so-called death penalty.
Kyle Padron threw two second-half touchdowns after throwing two interceptions before halftime. He also was sacked and fumbled on the third play, when McNary recovered and scored.
Malcolm Brown had a 13-yard TD run for Army, and Alex Carlton kicked a 44-yard field goal.