The Michigan State Spartans took over to begin the third quarter, trailing Georgia 16-0 in the Outback Bowl. After a punt, they were able to force a turnover when Aaron Murray was picked off by Darqueze Dennard. Michigan State took over in Georgia territory, and it was the spark they needed. After a pair of incompletions, Kirk Cousins hit B.J. Cunningham for 12 yards to keep it alive, and then hit Brian Linthicum for 17 yards. At that point, they were in the red zone and that set up a Le'Veon Bell eight-yard touchdown run. They went for the two-point conversion, and Cousins hit Linthicum to make it 16-8.
Georgia was then forced to punt, which was followed by a Michigan State three-and-out. When the Bulldogs took over again, it was Aaron Murray once again being picked off, by Dennard once again. This one was picked off at the Georgia 38-yard line, and taken all the way in for a touchdown. Threatening to tie, MSU went for the two-point conversion, but the attempt came up short and the quarter came to an end with Georgia having possession, leading 16-14.