News and Notes - Week 5

News and Notes - Week 5

News and Notes - Week 5
By Phil Steele
Northcoast Sports

Week 6

Oregon St owned one upset of a #1 in its history and it was way back in 1967 when they beat OJ Simpson-led USC 3-0. This time the Beavers were a 25 pt dog on a Thurs night game but jumped out to a 21-0 lead at the half and pulled out the win. The Offensive POW has to be the diminutive Jacquizz Rodgers who rushed for 186 yds on 37 attempts vs a tough USC defense. He reminded us of Greg Pruitt hiding behind the big O-linemen and bouncing for extra yards...

At the half N Illinois had a 163-138 yd edge but led 21-0. In the game EM was int'd at its own 38, punted from the NI41, was int'd at their own 31 and was SOD (4 times) at the NI35, 40, 40 and 24 yd lines plus missed a 47 yd FG but NI did have a 235-119 yd passing edge. EM starting QB McMahon went out on the 3rd series of the game with an injury...

Texas and Arkansas used to be one of the best rivalries in football but Texas throttled the Hogs. In fact, Arkansas' only TD came on an 80 yd FR TD with 2:20 left in the game...
   
W Virginia had a 26-13 FD edge vs Marshall and 493-158 yd edge. MU did have 4 tries inside the 20 settling for a FG, missing a FG, had a bad snap on a FG att and did not get it off and being SOD. WV ended the game taking a knee at the MU 9...

Purdue had lost 11 straight to Notre Dame before Joe Tiller took over but he lost his final effort in South Bend dropping Purdue to 1-15 at Notre Dame Stadium. Tiller finishes his career 5-7 vs the Irish with the Boilermakers...

Michigan made the biggest comeback in Michigan Stadium history (built in 1927) rallying from a 19-0 halftime deficit. UM had 5 TO's at the half. At the end of the game, UW got a 22 yd TD pass with :13 left and the apparent tying 2 pt conversion but it was wiped out by an ineligible receiver downfield and their 2nd attempt failed. UM has not lost a Big Ten home opener since 1967!...

While South Carolina only beat UAB by 13, they controlled the game more than that. SC was SOD at the 2, int'd in the EZ and int'd at the UAB 13. They led 26-6 after a 24 yd FG with 2:23 left and UAB went 81/7pl for a garbage TD with :24 left...

Tennessee dropped to 1-3 for the first time since 1994. As expected, the game was a defensive struggle and after UT got a TD with 14:53 left to pull within 14-12 (2 pt ng) the next 8 poss were punt. Auburn got a crucial FD pass on 3rd & 5 to the 20 with 2:04 left and took a knee for the win...

Virginia Tech survived a 2nd straight tough road game and had a 21-14 FD edge over Nebraska and 377-333 yd edge. The Huskers had a crucial pers foul on what would have been a 4th & 3 forcing a punt and VT took advantage with a TD with 2:28 left for a 35-23 lead and NU got to the VT 40 with :05 left but fumbled...

Northwestern moved to 5-0 and the last time they opened up 6-0 was 1962...

Two years ago Memphis lost to Arkansas St on a Hail Mary pass on the last play and last year blew a 31-6 halftime lead. This time UM controlled the game with a 24-16 FD edge and 243 yds rushing and 210 passing. This time UM only led 19-7 but got a 40 yd FG with 7:58 left and then went on a clinching 70/10pl drive for a TD with 2:12 left. ASU gained 57 of their yards on a garbage drive after that...

Florida St delivered a big win and it was a nice setup as FSU got 4 defensive starters back from suspension, was coming off a loss, playing in the heat of Florida, taking on a Colorado team that was off a nationally televised win over a ranked foe and having to travel. It was a week after FSU had suffered 7 TO's in a close 12-3 loss to WF. FSU had a 259-125 rushing edge and led 19-17 at the half with CU never getting closer than 11 points in the 2H...

Derrick Williams had a great game vs Illinois as he caught a TD pass, ran for a TD and ret'd a KO 94 yds for a TD. PSU led 38-24 and they rec'd a fumble at the IL 36 but pooch punted out of FG formation from 50 yds and ended the game at the IL17 yd line, only winning by 14...

Oklahoma is on a current 21 game home winning streak, the 2nd longest in school history with their longest being a 25 game streak that ended in 1957. That streak started after TCU upset Oklahoma but this time the Sooners made sure there was no upset possibility as they jumped out to a 28-3 lead at the half and TCU had just 1 FD on their first 4 drives falling behind, 21-3...

Against San Jose St, San Diego St tried to change their offense and to go more of a running game. They said they would return to the pass attack vs Idaho and did just that as Ryan Lindley hit 24 of 38 for 433 yds and the Aztecs rolled to a 45-17 win with Idaho getting both of their TD's in the 4Q...

It was strange play calling for New Mexico St as they opened with 84 and 79 yd TD passes from Chase Holbrook but then went away from the deep passes and into a game of mostly draw plays and even tried some trick formations out of the backfield which did not have success. NM got 19 4Q points rallying from a 17-10 deficit to win 35-24...

Our Power Plays projection had Boston Coll beating Rhode Island 42-0 and that is precisely what BC did. They led 42-0 after 3Q's and RI's QB Cassidy was held to under 200 yds passing for the first time this year. BC benched starter Chris Crane after 2 series and Dominique Davis led them to 4 consecutive scores after an early 3-0...

Tulsa did not punt vs C Arkansas putting up 641 yds and had over 300 yards both rushing and passing...

Nevada's Colin Kaepernick rushed for 240 yards and threw for 176 and NV rolled over UNLV 49-27.

LETDOWN LOOKAHEAD

Right after the game vs Weber St, Utah Coach Kyle Whittingham said "our football team understands that there is a big game in five days. We have to be ready for that." Weber St was led by former Utah HC Ron McBride and Utah rested their starters in the 4Q leading 37-7. WSU got a couple of meaningless TD's late making it appear much closer than the score would indicate in what was definitely a "C" game for Utah.

RECORD BREAKERS

K-State was on their way to a dominating win scoring TD's on 4 consecutive poss on drives of 56, 81, 34 and 73 yds and led 28-3 with a TD with 3:43 left in the half but ULL battled back scoring a TD before the half and had a 248-246 yd edge at the half. They scored a TD with 8:49 left and forced a punt but K-St faked it for a FD and would add 3 more FD's leading by 5 and nailed a 26 yd FG with 1:37 left. ULL was int'd on 4th & 25 at its own 6 on the last play. Josh Freeman became Kansas St's career leading passer, passing Lynn Dickey. Chase Clement hit Jarrett Dillard with 4 TD passes and they set an NCAA record for career scoring passes involving the same two players as they now have 41. The previous high had been 39, shared by Hawaii's Colt Brennan and Davon Bess and LA Tech's Tim Rattay and Troy Edwards...

Oklahoma St had a Boone Pickens Stadium record crowd of 52,463 fans on hand and got revenge for LY's upset loss vs Troy. OSU had 612 yds offense in their 55-24 win

INJURIES OF NOTE

The Conn/L'ville game had two key injuries to QB's which really hurt UL. Tylor Lorenzen for CT had hit just 2 of 5 for 32 yds and when he was inj'd ND transfer Zach Frazer (PS#7) came off the bench and hit 8 of 15 passes for 90 yds. Frazer is an upgrade to the throwing ability of the QB. UL QB Hunter Cantwell was inj'd (missed a series in the 2H) and threw for 210 yds in the 1H but had just 37 yds hobbling around on an injured ankle in the 2H. UL still blew numerous opportunities and had an amazing 508-279 yd edge in the game but due to a shaky kicker, opted to go for it on 4th down at the UC29 and UC28 and they were int'd at the 19. Leading 21-20 Cantwell was int'd and ret'd 45 yds for a TD and UL's final 2 drives saw them SOD at the UC29 and int'd at the UC30...

Cincinnati had already lost starting QB Grutza to a broken leg. Backup QB Tony Pike broke his non-throwing arm in their victory over Akron and he'll be out 3-4 weeks. Akron RB Andrew Johnson was inj'd in the 3Q...

Iowa RB Shonn Greene rushed for 159 yds on 21 carries but was knocked out of the game with a head injury midway through the 4Q. They could have used him at the end as Iowa was at the Northwestern 8 yd line with a 1st & goal but instead fired 4 passes, all incomplete, the final with 1:08 left and came up short at home to Northwestern...

LSU starting defensive tackles Ricky Jean-Francois and Charles Alexander both were inj'd in the 1H vs Miss St. Jean-Francois did not return and Alexander only came in briefly in the 4Q but LSU did lead comfortably 27-10 after 3Q's. Miss St turned to Tyson Lee at QB and he hit 17 of 26 for 175...

USF was without 3 starters from their defensive front 7 but dominated an NCSt team that was even more banged up. USF had a 29-13 FD edge and 520-265 yd edge as Harrison Beck hit just 9 of 32 with 3 int's and a fumble...

Trevor Vittatoe was listed as doubtful for the UTEP game but ended up playing and hit 18 of 32 for 263 as UTEP waxed UCF 58-13. UCF did have 6 TO's...

One of the key injuries of the week happened when Washington QB Jake Locker suffered a broken right thumb. Locker had accounted for nearly 70% of UW's offense on the year but was inj'd midway through the 2Q with the scored tied at 7. Ronnie Fouch hit 13 of 27 for 186 yards. Stanford star RB Toby Gerhart left after jut 2 carries with a mild concussion and DNR. He came in #3 in the Pac-10 avg 102 ypg rushing...

Minutes before KO, Rutgers susp'd top WR Kenny Britt and starting LT Anthony Davis but it was prior to playing Morgan St, who Rutgers allowed just 8 FD's to...

QB Jeremiah Masoli returned for Oregon but only hit 9 of 16 passes for 161 yds but Oregon rushed for 346 yds and buried Wash St 63-14 with the Cougars getting a TD with 1:19 left trailing 63-7...

Cal RB Jahvid Best was inj'd in the 3Q vs Colorado St and DNR. Cal's offense struggled and Kevin Riley was replaced after hitting just 6 of 13 for 59 yds.

GAME CHANGING PLAYS

There were two key plays in the Army/Texas A&M game which decided the outcome as Army hung surprisingly tough. Army had a 21-14 FD edge but after getting an int with 1:01 left in the half, had a FD run to the Aggie 35 but QB Bowden fumbled. A&M ret'd it 58 yds for a TD with :06 left in the half for a stunning turnaround and a 14-7 lead. Later, with A&M clinging to a 21-17 lead, Army was SOD inches short at their own 48 with 3:58 left and A&M ran out the clock...

C Michigan got a TD with 3:11 left to apparently clinch their win, 27-18 but Buffalo got a 65 yd TD pass with 1:37 left then recovered the onside kick, got 2 FD's and their 46 yd FG for the win bounced off the upright and CM prevailed 27-25...

Just before the half, UCLA led Fresno 16-13 and went for it on 4th & 1 at the FSU17 with 2:09 left. They were SOD and FSU got a TD before the half. UCLA trailed at the half despite a 235-192 yd edge. UCLA accepted a holding penalty, trying to force FSU out of FG position and made it 3rd & 22 when FSU got a 25 yd TD pass with 6:03 left in the 3Q to go up 30-22. Later, UCLA trailed 36-31 and had a FD at the FSU 14 when they fumbled. FSU went on a 85/17pl drive running out the rest of the clock ending the game at the UCLA5.

MISLEADING FINALS, FRONTDOOR AND BACKDOOR COVERS

Ohio St had a dominating 34-6 lead in the 4Q vs Minnesota with the Gophers having 123 yds offense in the first 3Q's. The Gophers went on a 69/13pl drive converting on 4th & 5 and 4th & 7 to get a TD with 8:24 left then took over with 5:35 left and went 80/10pl and on 4th & 14 got a 22 yd TD pass which was barely in the back of the EZ with 1:13 left for the backdoor cover.

COACHES ON THE HOTSEAT

Not much was expected from Joe Glenn and Wyoming TY but as it is often said that when you have two QB's, you actually have none. WY has an even bigger problem as they have 4 QB's. Glenn had threatened to pull QB's if they were int'd. That's precisely what happened vs BG. Starting QB Crum was int'd and ret'd 19 yds for a TD early and Sween replaced him. Sween guided the team to 10 points but when he was int'd in the 3Q, Stutzriem came in. He took the team to the BG30 but was int'd in the EZ and Hetrick came in at QB. Hetrick went 3 & out and did not throw an int but Crum ret'd and threw another int and at the end of the game it was Sween directing an 80/11pl drive for a TD as WY was buried at home, 45-16. WY was favored in 3 out of their first 5 games but has opened 2-3. The Cowboys figure to be an underdog in 5 of their last 7 games so Coach Glenn is clearly on one of the hottest seats...

Washington is playing the nation's toughest schedule and in one of their most winnable games at home vs Stanford, they lost not only the game, but 70% of their offense in QB Locker who is out indefinitely. In your countdown to coaches that are likely to be fired first, Ty Willingham is near the top as the schedule does not get any easier. With a bye next week Syr's Greg Robinson may get a reprieve although the Orange have B2B road games vs WV & USF.

BIG DOGS BARK LOUDLY

It was another big week for big upsets and another big week for the Big Dog. Houston not only beat E Carolina 41-24, but had a commanding 25-13 FD and 621-275 yd edges. In the 1H EC got an IR TD and a 26 yd FG after another TO, while UH fumbled into the EZ, missed 29 & 44 yd FG's at the end of long drives and only led 21-10 at the half. The Cougars did extend it in the 2H delivering the outright upset win...

Maryland went to Clemson and they escaped Death Valley once again with the win. CU did have 19-11 and 372-295 yd edges. The Terps hung around in the 1H despite being outgained 269-99 as a pair of fumbles set them up for short FG's. A 75 yd run on a reverse by Heyward-Bey was their key offensive play of the game getting them to the 4 and their TD pulled them within 17-13 after 3Q's. After the Terps drove 56 yds for a TD with 10:25 left, CU was SOD at the MD40 with 5:36 left and the Terps went on an 8pl drive running out the clock...

Florida did have 24-10 FD and 443-325 yd edges but the Rebels got some big plays like an 86 yd TD pass with 5:26 left which put them up 31-24. After UF appeared to tie it, Mississippi blk'd the xp and UF, a team that came in with zero TO's on the year, had 3 fumbles and Mississippi had a stunning upset win, their 2nd straight in Florida...

Georgia had great success with a "blackout" game last year but had no success vs Alabama. In fact, the 41-30 final is a bit misleading as this game was basically over at the half with Bama leading 31-0 in a dominating win, their 2nd win over a Top10 team away from home already this year.

TURNOVERS CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE

For most teams, TO's vary from week to week and season to season but Wake Forest has caught the benefit of TO's the last 3 years and coming into last week, led the nation in TO margin. The TO Fairy went away this week as WF actually had 6 TO's to just 2 for Navy and not surprisingly the scoreboard indicated that as Navy won 24-17 in an upset. Last week WF forced 7 TO's vs Florida St keying their 12-3 win. Navy did have a 292-43 rushing edge...

In the 1H, Virginia had a 141-100 yd edge vs Duke but it was 3-3. In the 2H UVA imploded with 5 TO's. Duke got a TD to take the lead with 7:25 left in the 3Q and UVA was int'd on their next 3 poss incl a 42 yd IR TD to break it open, 24-3 and Duke's final score was set up on a 25 yd drive following another int in their 31-3 win. UVA had a 304-258 yd edge...

North Texas and Rice were trading scores and it was just 28-20 in the 2Q but NT fumbled at their 19 setting up a Rice TD. After Rice's first punt with 5:41 left in the 2Q, fumbled the punt setting up a 21 yd drive for a TD and they trailed 56-20 at the half. In the 3Q NT threw 2 int's which were ret'd 13 and 40 yds for TD's within a 1:28 span and it was 77-20 after 3Q's with NT SOD twice and having a 6-0 TO deficit...

Toledo jumped out to a 13-0 lead vs FIU and had 20-12 FD and 302-239 yd edges. Knowing that, you're probably surprised that FIU won the game 35-16 thanks to a 4-0 TO edge...

Hawaii had an 18-11 FD edge vs SJSt and 356-237 yd edge but SJSt snapped the Warriors 15 game conf win steak with a 47 yd FG with 1:49 left. The key was a 6-0 TO edge.

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