The team started off the season going undefeated through nine games, including a dramatic win over then-3rd ranked Louisville, which was highlighted by kicker Jeremy Ito's last minute field goal to seal the win. They were defeated by both West Virginia and Cincinnati, but nonetheless received an invitation to play Kansas State in the inaugural Texas Bowl. Rutgers defeated Kansas State 37-10 for the first bowl game win in school history. HalfbackRay Rice was named the game's MVP and ran for 170 yards and one touchdown in twenty-four carries. Due to his tremendous 2006 season, in which he ran for 1,794 yards and scored twenty touchdowns, Rice won Big East Player of the Year honors. He also finished seventh in Heisman Trophy voting and was a finalist for the Maxwell Award.