ORLANDO, Florida (Ticker) -- The Tangerine Bowl again saw a prolific passer close his college career with a game to remember.
Philip Rivers passed for a career-high 475 yards and five touchdowns as North Carolina State closed an inconsistent season with a 56-26 rout of Kansas.
The 2002 Tangerine Bowl saw Texas Tech's Kliff Kingsbury throw for 375 yards and three touchdowns in a 55-13 win over Clemson. This one had a similar outcome as Rivers raised the bar and the Wolfpack toyed with an overmatched opponent.
"We felt coming in we'd have opportunities for big plays," Rivers said. "We felt like there were a lot of holes right behind the linebackers and that's where we attacked. There's no better way to go out."
The Atlantic Coast Conference Player of the Year, Rivers threw for more than 4,000 yards in the regular season and had his No. 17 retired prior to a November game against Maryland. He showed he deserved the honor, throwing a 45-yard TD pass to Richard Washington just 62 seconds into the contest to set the tone.
"If there were NFL players or coaches that didn't know what Philip Rivers could do before this game, they need bifocals," Wolfpack coach Chuck Amato said.
Rivers connected on a 14-yard touchdown toss to Washington in the second quarter and found running back T.A. McLendon for a three-yard score that made it 28-10 at halftime.
Rivers completed TD passes of 40 yards to Brian Clark in the third quarter and 21 yards to Jerricho Cotchery - who had 13 catches for 171 yards - in the fourth. Rivers completed 37-of-45 passes and received a warm ovation when he was removed with 7 1/2 minutes left.
McLendon also had a pair of rushing touchdowns for North Carolina State (8-5), which lost its final two regular-season games.
"It was a statement we wanted to make in our final game to cap a season where we didn't get exactly where wanted to get," Amato said.
Kansas (6-7) completed its second season under coach Mark Mangino with its first bowl appearance since the 1995 Aloha Bowl. It was a long night for the Jayhawks - not just because the game took more than 3 1/2 hours to complete.
Kansas allowed 653 yards and its highest point total since last season's 64-0 setback to Kansas State.
"They got a taste of a bowl game, and hopefully some positive things will come from that," Mangino said. "We're looking forward to January 23 when we begin winter conditioning."
Bill Whittemore threw a pair of touchdown passes and ran for another for Kansas.