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NCAFF: Inside the Boxscores

NCAFF: Inside the Boxscores

Inside the Boxscores - Part I
By Matt Fargo

Thursday, September 11, 2008

North Carolina 44 RUTGERS 12

North Carolina pulled off the minor upset as it broke open a tight game by putting up 28 unanswered points between the 2nd and 3rd quarters. Despite this, Rutgers outgained the Tar Heels 383-378 and finished with five more first downs. North Carolina took advantage of four Scarlet Knights interceptions, one of which was returned for a 66-yard touchdown. Rutgers finished 0-9 on third down.

Friday, September 12, 2008

(12) SO FLORIDA 37 (19) Kansas 34

Kansas built a comfortable 20-3 lead late in the first half but it turned out to be not close to enough. South Florida ran off the next 31 points and had a 14-point lead in the fourth quarter before the Jayhawks staged their own comeback. Kansas scored touchdowns on its first two fourth quarter possessions to tie the game and was driving a third time but was picked off which set up the game-winning field goal for the Bulls.

BAYLOR 45 Washington St 17

Baylor spotted the Cougars a 7-0 lead as they scored after the opening kickoff but the Bears then scored 42 of the next 49 points to run away with the game. After Washington St. scored on its opening drive, it turned the ball over on its next three possessions, the start of five turnovers on the night. In total, BYU racked up 555 yards of offense while allowing 340 yards despite running 19 fewer plays from scrimmage.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Air Force 31 HOUSTON 28

The Cougars jumped ahead 7-0 before Air Force scored 31 unanswered points to build a big third quarter lead. Houston rallied with three consecutive touchdowns to pull within three points. It could have been four touchdowns for the lead but sandwiched in that rally was an interception at the Falcons 20-yard line. The Cougars outgained Air Force 534-380 with all of the Falcons yards coming on the ground as they didn’t complete a pass.

BUFFALO 30 Temple 28

The miracle of the day took place in Buffalo as the Bulls won the game on a 35-yard touchdown pass as time expired. The game was close the whole way with neither team establishing a lead of greater than a touchdown. Buffalo kicked a field goal with 2:27 remaining but Temple followed with a 74-yard touchdown drive with 38 seconds remaining to take the lead back before the Bulls final drive.

(23) CLEMSON 27 NC State 9

Clemson tossed an interception on the first play of the game that was returned for a touchdown. The Tigers then scored on three of their next four possessions and then added two final quarter scores to win going away. Clemson outgained the Wolfpack 428-288 but NC State has its chances. Over the last four possessions, the Wolfpack kicked a field goal, missed a 25-yard field goal and threw two picks inside Clemson territory.

DUKE 41 Navy 31

Duke did a good job in holding the Navy rushing game in check as it held the Midshipmen to 207 yards rushing on 46 carries (4.5 ypc). Navy was efficient in the passing game, going 8-10 for 150 yards but a costly interception on its final drive stopped the possible go ahead possession. The Blue Devils put up 396 yards of offense but just 79 yards rushing on 34 carries (2.3 ypc).

Toledo 41 EASTERN MICH 17

Toledo only outgained the Eagles 347-263 but used four turnovers that led to 21 points to run away with it. Four of the six Rockets touchdown drives were 40 yards or less. Eastern Michigan either punted or turned it over in all six of its first quarter possessions and over half of its total yards came on its final two drives when the game was already decided. Toledo rushed for 233 yards on 36 carries (6.5 ypc).

(22) ILLINOIS 20 UL Lafayette 17

Illinois was involved in a surprisingly close game. The Illini took a 14-point lead into the fourth quarter and UL-Lafayette was able to cut it to a touchdown late in the period. Illinois then took the ensuing possession and kicked a field goal to make it a two-possession game. The Cajuns fumbled in their first two possessions which led to 10 points for the Illini. Both teams finished 7-16 on third down.

MARYLAND 35 California 27

Maryland pulled off one of the bigger upsets of the days as the final score was hardly an indication of the game played. The Bears actually outgained Maryland 461-297 but most of those yards came late as they scored touchdowns on their final three possessions that totaled 241 yards. The Terrapins scored touchdowns on their first three possessions and jumped ahead 28-6 late in the third quarter.

MICHIGAN STATE 17 Fla Atlantic 0

The 17-0 final may have looked close but it could have been a lot worse if not for the bad weather that took place in East Lansing. The Spartans put up 250 yards rushing but they were able to go only 3-15 on third down and that resulted in opportunities lost. The Owls finished with just 225 total yards but turned it over on downs twice inside the Spartans 25-yard line and also fumbled at the four-yard line.

IOWA 17 Iowa State 5

Iowa St. actually outgained the Hawkeyes 325-240 and held Iowa to 11 first downs but three interceptions ended up being very costly. The second killed the first drive of the second half as the Cyclones made it to the Iowa 20-yard line before the pick. Iowa St. was down by just a touchdown in the fourth quarter but Iowa returned a punt 81 yards to seal the win. A safety to end the game provided the final margin.

(5) MISSOURI 69 Nevada 17

Missouri dominated from start to finish as it racked up 651 yards of total offense while holding the Wolf Pack to 362 yards. The Tigers scored on their first 10 possessions with eight of those drives being 60 yards or more. Missouri gained a whopping 10.0 yppl as Nevada had no answer as it forced only one punt on the day. The Tigers ended the scoring on a 27-yard interception return for a score.


Tennessee rebounded from its opening loss as it outgained the Blazers 548-275. UAB was also hurt by mistakes as it failed on a fourth down at the Tennessee 19-yard line while also tossing two interceptions inside the 10-yard line. The Volunteers were very balanced with 282 yards passing and 266 yards rushing on 41 carries (6.5 ypc). Tennessee also had two interceptions but they resulted in only three points.

Ball State 41 AKRON 24

Ball St. took an early 10-3 lead and then picked off a pass as the Zips were driving but the Cardinals fumbled on the very next play to set up a short field. Akron took advantage as it tied the game but Ball St. scored 21 unanswered points to pull away. The Cardinals outgained Akron 491-418 although 118 of the Zips yards came in the fourth quarter when the game was already decided.

T-C-U 31 Stanford 14

TCU jumped ahead 14-0 early in the second quarter but Stanford was able to put together a long drive to pull within a touchdown and then blocked a punt and retuned it for a score to knot the game at halftime. The Horned Frogs defense came through in the second half, allowing just 69 total yards while the offense tacked on 17 points. TCU allowed just 193 total yards and 10 first downs and won the time of possession nearly 2-to-1.

Central Mich 31 OHIO U 28

Central Michigan spotted the Bobcats a 14-0 lead after the first quarter before the Chippewas scored the next 24 points and never relinquished the lead. Central Michigan was up by 10 points midway through the fourth quarter and Ohio scored on a 77-yard pass play to pull to within three. The Bobcats forced a punt and drove the field before fumbling in the endzone. They got it back one more time only to fumble once again.

(15) East Carolina 28 TULANE 24

This game was back and forth throughout and the stats showed it as East Carolina outgained the Green Wave by just four total yards. Tulane took its first lead early in the fourth quarter but the Pirates were able to put together their best drive as they went 80 yards for the winning touchdown with just 1:41 remaining. Tulane had one last shot but tossed an interception to end it.

(14) B-Y-U 59 U-C-L-A 0

BYU scored early and often and UCLA never had a chance. The Cougars put up 35 points in the second quarter and they scored on nine of their first 11 possessions before calling off the dogs. BYU outgained UCLA 521-239 and it finished 13-17 on third down while going a perfect 8-8 inside the redzone. The Bruins did not help their cause by committing four turnovers, going 0-2 on fourth down and missing two field goals.

NOTRE DAME 35 Michigan 17

Notre Dame won despite getting outgained 388-260. Michigan committed six turnovers which led to 21 points for the Fighting Irish. The Wolverines fumbled on their first two possessions and Notre Dame had a 14-0 lead 11 minutes into the game and by running just six plays on offense. The Fighting Irish iced the game by returning a fumble 35 yards for a touchdown. Notre Dame had just 72 total yards in the second half.

(17) Oregon 32 PURDUE 26

Purdue jumped ahead early as it scored on its second play from scrimmage on an 80-yard run and eventually built a 20-3 lead before the Ducks mounted their comeback. Oregon pulled to within seven points in the third quarter on an 87-yard punt return and then tied the game in the fourth quarter. Both traded field goals in the first overtime but Purdue missed a field goal in the second overtime and the Ducks punched it in for the win.

(3) Georgia 14 SO CAROLINA 7

South Carolina outgained the Bulldogs 289-252 but mistakes hurt the Gamecocks late in the game. Georgia took its first lead midway through the third quarter and South Carolina was able to move the ball into Georgia territory on all four subsequent possessions. They resulted in a punt, a fumble in the endzone, a turnover on downs at the 31-yard line and finally an interception at the three-yard line to end the game.

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Re: NCAFF: Inside the Boxscores

Inside the Boxscores - Part II
By Matt Fargo 

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Penn State 55 SYRACUSE 13

Penn St. fumbled on its second play from scrimmage but Syracuse gave it right back on a fumble of its own. The Nittany Lions scored on the very next play on a 55-yard touchdown pass and the rout was on. Penn St. outgained the Orange 560-159 and limited Syracuse to just eight first downs. The lone bright spot for the Orange was committing only one penalty. Penn St. finished 10-17 on third down with Syracuse going just 2-17.

VIRGINIA TECH 20 Georgia Tech 17

Georgia Tech lost despite outgaining the Hokies 387-247 as three turnovers ended up being the difference. The Yellow Jackets fumbled in their own territory late in the second quarter and Virginia Tech took advantage by tacking on a touchdown. Georgia Tech tied the game early in the fourth quarter but the Hokies took the ensuing possession 76 yards to set up game-winning field goal.

OREGON STATE 45 Hawaii 7

Oregon St. picked up its first win in dominating fashion. The Beavers spotted Hawaii an early 7-0 lead before scoring the final 45 points of the game. They outgained the Warriors 485-211 and doubled the first downs 28-14. Hawaii drove 76 yards on its first possession but did not have a drive longer than 36 yards the rest of the way. The lone downfall for the Beavers was three missed field goals.

Western Mich 51 IDAHO 28

Western Michigan returned an interception for a touchdown only five plays into the game and after the Vandals tied the game early in the third quarter at 14-14, the Broncos ran off 23 consecutive points to pull away. Western Michigan was actually outgained by Idaho 455-416 but both Idaho turnovers led to touchdowns. The Vandals finished 7-15 on third down but the first three punts all occurred around midfield.

(9) ALABAMA 41 Western Ky 7

Alabama completely dominated the Hilltoppers as it outgained them 557-158 and had a 30-9 advantage in first downs. Western Kentucky’s lone score was set up by an interception that led to a short field as it drove 36 yards for a touchdown. The Tide drove into Hilltoppers territory in 10 of their 11 drives and finished 12-17 on third and fourth down combined. Alabama was balanced with 276 yards passing and 281 yards rushing.

Southern Miss 27 ARKANSAS STATE 24

Arkansas St. outgained the Golden Eagles 447-348 but its comeback fell short. Southern Miss jumped ahead 17-3 at halftime before the Red Wolves tied the game in the third quarter. They were poised to move down the field against but a fumble set up the go ahead field goal and they never gave the lead back. Arkansas St. has one last shot but an interception at the Southern Miss 40-yard line with a minute remaining ended the game.

KENTUCKY 20 Middle Tennessee 14

Kentucky dodged a huge bullet as the Blue Raiders almost pulled out a miracle win. The Wildcats ran the clock down to eight seconds and instead of running a fourth down play, they kicked a field goal which was blocked. Middle Tennessee completed a desperation 61-yard pass but was tackled at the one-yard line to end the game. The Wildcats were outgained 383-356 despite running 23 more plays from scrimmage.

MARSHALL 17 Memphis 16

Memphis outgained the Thundering Herd 462-403 but it could not convert two important third down plays which ended up resulting in field goals of 22 and 25 yards. The Tigers also fumbled at the Marshall eight-yard line on their second possession of the day. Memphis was able to force two punts last in the fourth quarter to get the ball back but the offense was stopped both times trying to get into field goal range.

(10) Auburn 3 MISS STATE 2

The defenses were the story here but more so for the Auburn side. The Tigers held Mississippi St. to just 116 total yards and six first downs as the Bulldogs crossed midfield only three times. Auburn tallied 315 yards of offense but was hurt by three fumbles, two which took place in Mississippi St. territory as well as two missed field goals including a 22-yarder. The Bulldogs longest drive was 22 yards.

NEBRASKA 38 New Mexico St 7

Nebraska racked up 553 yards of offense and the score could actually have been much worse. The Huskers missed a 35-yard field goal on their opening drive, turned it over on downs at the Aggies four-yard line and also at the 21-yard line. A fumble that was returned to the three-yard line set up New Mexico St.’s lone score. The Aggies gained a respectable 339 yards but had two interceptions as well as a 20-yard field goal blocked.

(11) TEXAS TECH 43 S-M-U 7

Texas Tech piled up 693 yards of offense while the defense allowed 274 yards, 188 prior to the Mustangs lone touchdown in garbage time. The Red Raiders picked off five SMU passes, leading to three touchdowns and a field goal. 513 yards of the offense came through the air but the rushing game was solid, gaining 180 yards on 27 carries (6.7 ypc). SMU crossed midfield in six of its first nine possessions but came away with nothing.


Vanderbilt was outgained 407-344 but it took advantage of great field position most of the day. The Commodores started their drivers at their own 44-yard line compared to the 21-yard line for the Owls. The three Rice touchdowns were on drives of 69, 76 and 80 yards while three of Vanderbilt’s touchdowns were on drives of 1, 35 and 42 yards. Of the Commodores yards, 263 of them were rushing on 43 carries (6.3 ypc).

CONNECTICUT 45 Virginia 10

The Huskies’ first four possessions resulted in touchdowns, covering 308 yards while Virginia’s first four possessions totaled just 90 yards and led to no points. Connecticut ended with 506 yards of offense and it entered Cavaliers territory on all 10 of its possessions. Virginia finished with only 219 total yards and 14 first downs and had only 31 yards rushing on 14 carries (2.2 ypc).

(2) Oklahoma 55 WASHINGTON 14

Oklahoma scored in the 50’s for a third straight game as it came out of the gates strong and built a 41-0 lead before easing up in the second half. The Sooners piled up 591 total yards that consisted of 317 yards passing and 274 yards rushing on 47 carries (5.8 ypc). The Huskies put up 336 yards and had 23 first downs and while most of that came late, they were still hurt by three fumbles and three missed field goals.

BOISE STATE 20 Bowling Green 7

The game was much closer than the final score indicates as Boise St. outgained the Falcons by only 340-307. The Broncos scored on their first three possessions, totaling 254 yards but the offense fizzled after that. Bowling Green had numerous opportunities it could not take advantage of as it missed field goals on two of its first three possessions while also turning the ball over three times, all in Boise St. territory.

(6) L-S-U 41 North Texas 3

LSU dominated from the start as it built as 27-3 lead in the first half and cruised for the easy win. The Tigers outgained North Texas 425-199 and it was a very balanced attack as they had 209 yards passing and 216 yards rushing on 28 carries (7.7 ypc). North Texas’ longest drive was only 31 yards and its lone score was set up by an interception as it drove nine yards for a field goal.

NEW MEXICO 36 Arizona 28

Arizona jumped ahead 7-0 after its first possession but it came undone as turnovers did it in. The Wildcats turned it over five times, four in their own territory and all five led to points for the Lobos. New Mexico pulled it off despite getting outgained 388-335. Arizona had one last chance as it was down eight points and forced a punt but it was stopped on fourth down at midfield to end the game.

SAN JOSE ST 35 San Diego St 10

San Jose St. jumped ahead 21-0 and this final should have been a lot worse as the Spartans outgained San Diego St. 476-146 and held the Aztecs to just seven first downs. The lone San Diego St. touchdown came on a 28-yard interception return right before halftime. Sam Jose St. forced nine punts, seven of which were three and outs and four which resulted in negative yardage. The Aztecs were 1-12 in third down.

(1) U-S-C 35 (13) Ohio State 3

The marquee game of the weekend turned into a laugher as USC ran away with it. Ohio St. took the lead early with a field goal but the Trojans outscored the Buckeyes 35-0 the rest of the way. USC scored on its next two possessions and then returned an interception for another touchdown right before halftime. The Buckeyes were unable to move the ball in the second half, gaining only 25 total yards and getting just two first downs.

(20) Utah 58 UTAH STATE 10

The Utes decimated their in-state rival as they spotted the Aggies a 7-0 lead before scoring 58 of the final 61 points of the game. Utah St. took advantage of a fumble to set up a short field for that touchdown but the offense was shut down after that. Utah outgained the Aggies 446-116 and held them to only eight first downs and two of those were from penalties. Utah had 213 yards passing and 233 yards rushing.


UNLV pulled off the shocker as it rallied late in the fourth quarter to force overtime. The Rebels trailed by 10 points late in the third quarter and used a nine-minute drive to tack on a field goal and then forced a punt with three minutes left. UNLV drove 74 yards and tied the game with only 18 seconds remaining on an eight-yard touchdown pass. The Rebels kicked their field goal in overtime while the Sun Devils missed theirs.

(8) Wisconsin 13 (25) FRESNO STATE 10

The defenses dominated the late game as Fresno St. put up 343 total yards while the Badgers put up 304 total yards. The Bulldogs lost the turnover battle 2-0 and that was the difference as both miscues led to 10 points for Wisconsin. Those two turnovers took place in their own territory and the two scoring drives for the Badgers totaled 43 yards. Fresno St. missed a 35-yard field goal in the fourth quarter and never got close again.

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