Daily Blog • October 26, 2010

Auburn QB Cam Newton is now the Heisman frontrunner after his amazing performance against a good LSU defense last week but he has also had a direct effect on the fortunes of three teams this year. If you have been following the story of Newton, he originally was recruited by now Miss St HC Dan Mullen when he was the OC at Florida and eventually signed with the Gators. Due to some off the field problems, Newton transferred to Blinn JC where he had a sensational season (PS#2 JUCO). Newton was thought to be heading to Mississippi St this year with his former ties to Mullen but at the last minute decided to go with Auburn. Naturally Newton has had a huge impact on the Tigers and has been the main reason they are 8-0 (BCS #1) and have won 5 games by eight points or less. Take Newton off the team and you maybe looking at a 4-4 record for the Tigers. Meanwhile Miss St is having a great season at 6-2 and their only losses are by 3 pts to a Newton led Auburn team and to LSU on the road where the Bulldogs had a 267-262 yd edge but 5 TO’s by MSU QB’s being the difference. Put Newton on the Bulldogs this season and they maybe sitting at 8-0 and in the BCS Top 5. Finally going back to Newton’s original team Florida, they have struggled to a 4-3 start including two close home losses to LSU and Miss St. Had Newton stayed it might be a different story for the Gators this year adding more fuel to the possible scenarios for all three teams and the rest of the country this season. 

Temple rebounded from their loss to Northern Illinois in fine fashion. They outgained Buffalo 397-161, scored TD’s on their first 3 poss of the game and 4 of the first 5 poss and led 28-0 at the half. Buffalo did not cross midfield on offense until 7:34 was left in the 3Q. Temple had a 29-11 FD edge. In the 1H TU was also int’d in the EZ and missed a 33 yd FG. Each team gave a QB his first start as Mike Gerardi started for TU and Alex Zordich for Buffalo. Gerardi hit 9-15-131 while Zordich hit 11-26-99.

Duke had some drives early vs Virginia Tech. They had a 4&7 at the 35 and were sk’d and then allowed a 61 yd PR which set up a 19 yd TD drive, an int set up VT for a 24 yd TD drive and VT at the half led 27-0 with a 216-103 yd edge. VT dominated with 19-10 FD and 491-308 yd edges and ended the game at the Duke25 taking a knee in their 44-7 rout.

Iowa St came in having allowed 52 and 68 points the previous 2 weeks. Texas lost their 2nd game as a big favorite this year. After the gave HC Paul Rhoads called the win “historic” and ISU players were jubilant. ISU, on their 2nd poss, went 80/11pl for a TD. After UT settled for a 23 yd FG, ISU after a 33 yd punt went 38/7pl for a TD to lead 14-7. Texas had a 2&10 at the ISU17 but was int’d in the EZ and then went 55/18pl and missed a 37 yd FG and trailed 14-3 at the half despite a 162-132 yd edge. UT went on a 62/9pl drive but settled for a 21 yd FG. ISU then went 89/9pl for a TD and after the next 3 poss resulted in TO’s, ISU went 40/4pl for a TD and led 28-6. UT went 80/6pl for a TD and 53/9pl to the 37 but was int’d at the 3. UT went 59/8pl for a TD with 3:15 left. ISU punted with 1:03 left and UT started at their 10 but on 4&15 fired incomplete and ISU took a knee.

Taylor Martinez set a frosh record with 329 yards passing and threw a career high 5 TD’s. This, after not having thrown more than 150 yards in his first 6 starts. Kendall Hunter who we named 1st Tm Midseason AA, rushed for 201 yards. Justin Blackmon had 157 yards in rec. In the 1H Oklahoma St actually had a 344-255 yd edge and led 27-24 when Nebraska got a TD with :55 left in the half. The 2H was controlled by NU as they got a FG and TD on their first 2 drives to lead 41-27 and up 41-34, got a 45 yd FG with 11:39 left then drove 81/12pl for a TD with 4:29 left for a 51-34 lead. OSU converted on 4&3 and on 4&5 got a 25 yd TD pass to pull within 10 with 3:05 left but NU caught the onside kick, got 1 FD and took a knee.

Kent St was as dominant as the 30-6 final as they had a 351-135 yd edge. KSU did have some short drives set up by special teams in the 2Q. A 17 yd PR set up a 24 yd drive for a TD and a 20 yd punt by BG set up a 39 yd TD drive for KSU. KSU had a 226-44 yd edge and led 27-6 at the half but BG’s only score of the game came when their KR Gates appeared tackled by the KSU player. He was brought down on top of the tackler and the whistle had not blown. While everyone thought the play was over, he got up off the KSU players and raced 75 yds for a TD.

For the 2nd straight week Ball St blew a big lead, this time they jumped out to a 17-0 lead vs Toledo. TO’s were a key as BSU had 5 to UT’s 2. In the 1Q BSU had a FD at the UT18 but would fumble. In the 3Q, now trailing 24-17, BS had a 1st & gl at the UT2. On 2nd down RB Lewis gained 1 yard and fmbl’d into the EZ and UT rec’d for a TB. UT went 80/16pl to take a 31-17 lead with 7:44 left. BSU got a TD with :12 left, rec’d the onside kick but their Hail Mary pass was int’d at the 6.

San Diego St’s RB Ronnie Hillman missed most of the 2H with injury. The Aztecs were int’d at the NM5 with 2:54 left in the half but tipped a punt with :05 left and it only went 11 yards. On the last play of the 1H Lindley hit Sampson with a 40 yd TD pass for a 17-6 lead. SDS led 27-13 in the 3Q. The teams would have 7 consecutive punts and NM fmbl’d at their 38 with 6:54 left and SDS added a 31 yd FG with just 2:54 left. NM gained 81/11pl on a drive for a garbage 18 yd TD pass with :14 left to make the final 30-20.

The situation greatly favored Utah St last week as they were at home, in the altitude, off a bye vs a Hawaii team that had back-to-back outright upsets over Fresno St and Nevada. The game was played in heavy rain but that didn’t slow down UH’s offense which piled up a 605-181 yd edge. Surprisingly it was 14-7 at the half as UH was int’d in the EZ twice. Leading just 14-7, two TO’s broke it open. Utah St’s P Caldwell mishandled the punt and UH’s Graves grabbed it out of his hands and returned it 7 yds for a TD. After an int, UH got a 36/1pl TD run by Green. UH went 74/10pl, 73/5pl and 80/3pl for 2 TD’s and a FG on their next 3 poss to go up 45-7 in the dominating road win.

For the 2nd straight week vs a weak foe Fresno St got out to a big lead and then let up. FSt led 20-0 mid-3Q and 27-3 after 3Q’s of play. They yielded a 46 yd TD pass with 10:19 left. San Jose St faked a punt and was SOD at their own 23 and FSt settled for a 37 yd FG, 30-11. SJS got a 63 yd TD pass 2pl later after a 15 yard QB run on 3&12. FSt recovered the onside kick and got a 29 yd FG then returned an int 51 yds to the 9 with 1:08 left. They ran the ball for 2 yards but then took a knee.

Colorado St had three drives into Utah territory in the 1H. The first they recovered a fumble at the Utah16 and got a 27 yd FG. On their 2nd they drove 72/8pl but settled for a 26 yd FG. On the 3rd they had a 4&7 at the Utah 48 but gained 2 yds. Utah led 24-6 at the half and had a 266-162 yd edge. Utah went 87/6pl for a TD to open the 3Q and after recovering a fumble went 23/4pl for a TD then went 89/6pl and led 45-6 after 3Q’s. Utah brought backup QB Terrance Cain in and went 62/10pl for a TD, 52-6. CSU got to the Utah36 but was int’d at the 3 on 4&4 and then Utah, after 2 FD’s on 3&13, got a 72 yd TD run by Sausan Shakerin for the 59-6 final and that run helped Utah to a 648-213 yard edge and 27-13 FD edge.

Arizona was without starting QB Foles vs Washington but Scott had a fine game hitting 18-22-233 and rushing for 65 yards on 7 carries. Arizona fmbl’d on the fourth play at the end of an 11 yard pass and UW went 64/4pl for a TD and actually led 7-0. Arizona would go 62/7pl, 56/8pl and 92/10pl for 2 TD’s and a FG to lead 17-7. UW went 52/7pl and made it 17-14 with 7:15 left 2Q but Arizona got a 78 yd TD run by Antolin and went 54/8pl for a TD and led 30-14 at the half with a 356-178 yd edge. UW fmbl’d on the 3rd pay of the 3Q and Arizona drove 26 yards for a TD. Later Arizona added a 75/8pl drive and finished with a 467-290 yard edge.

The Virginia/Eastern Michigan game was a lot closer than the final score. At the half it was just 17-14 with UVA only having a 262-223 yd edge. EM got a 53 yd TD run with 7:47 left 3Q to pull within 24-21. UVA then got a 70 yd KR TD. Early 4Q UVA faked a punt and it went 56 yards for a TD on 4&7, 38-21. Two plays later UVA got an int and went 15/2pl for a TD, 45-21 with 13:07 left. UVA would then drive 54/12pl and got a 31 yd FG with 2:56 left to win 48-21.

UTEP QB Vittatoe was very questionable during the week and was clearly not 100% as he hit just 10-21-102. The game was tied at 10 at the half with Tulane having a 167-119 yd edge. TU even missed a 40 yd FG in the 1Q. After a 29 yd IR, UTEP went 26/5pl for a TD to lead 17-10. Tulane then went 80/11pl for a 7 yd TD pass and Vittatoe at the end of a 7 yd run, fumbled. TU went 56/7pl for a TD to lead 24-17. Vittatoe did hit a 28 yd TD pass at the start of the 4Q to tie it. After 2 punts, TU got a 43 yd TD pass with 5:30 left then after a Vittatoe int on the next play, took over at the UTEP29 and got a 20 yd FG with 2:12 left. UTEP got to TU’s 30 but Vittatoe was int’d in the EZ for a TB.

Yes, Kansas suffered another blowout loss but there were a couple of interesting things to come out of the game. First of all, Texas A&M went to backup QB Ryan Tannehill after getting up to a 17-3 lead. Tannehill’s first possession ended on a punt but he stayed in. On 3&15 roughing the passer gave them a FD and they would go 71/7pl for a TD to lead 24-10. KU went on a 67/13pl drive and on 3&6 from the 7 was not only int’d in the EZ but returned 83 yds. Tannehill hit a 12 yd TD pass 3pl later, 31-10. At the half KU trailed by 21 but had a 253-250 yd edge. Johnson QB’d the first 2 drives of the 2H but on 4&3 from the KU23 was sacked for a 16 yd loss. Tannehill QB’d the rest of the game and after guiding a 3&out, They went 80/5pl for a TD with a 39 yd TD pass and 2 possessions later went 57/3pl for a TD to lead 45-10. KU after an 11 play drive was SOD at the A&M32 with 7:55 left and A&M went on a 12pl drive eating up the remainder of the clock, kneeling at the KU23.

TJ Yates came in with the best % of td-int ratio in the NCAA and had a streak of 95 in a row without one but had 2 vs Miami. NC actually led 10-3 and it could have been worse as Yates hit a pass to Elzy but he fumbled going into the EZ for a TB with 2:40 left in the 1Q. UM battled back with a 10pl drive for a FG and a 55/9pl drive for a TD to lead 13-10 at the half. In the 3Q NC was int’d at the UM25, SOD at the UM33 and trailed 19-10. UM went 67/7pl for a TD. NC was int’d 8pl later at the UM44 and UM went 54/8pl for another TD, 33-10. UM took over with 6:53 left and went on a 48/10pl drive taking a knee at the NC23.

Connecticut suspended QB Endres for the rest of the season and he left the team. Even with Zach Frazer available, they went to Michael Box who was their starting QB vs Louisville. Connecticut’s first drive did go 60/12pl but a FG hit the upright. UC fmbl’d the punt setting up a Louisville TD then was int’d at the 30. UL did have a 91 yd PR TD called back on a hold and led 13-0 at the half. UL got a 74 yd TD pass but settled for 26 and 24 yd FG’s to lead 26-0 and their final drive took over with 6:51 left and went 50/10pl taking a knee at the UC35. UL had a 20-11 FD edge and 355-195 yd edge.

Western Kentucky broke the nation’s longest losing streak, which was 26 games and did so in convincing fashion. WKU’s first 2 drives were 48/11pl and 58/10pl but resulted in just 3 points. They made up for that as UL went on a 42/10pl drive but fmbl’d and WKU returned it 69 yards for a TD to lead 10-0. It was 27-7 at the half and 33-14 late 3Q when they got a 43 yd TD pass. WKU added a 62 yd IR TD then after an int drove 47/5pl for a TD and actually led on the road vs Louisiana, 54-14. UL went on a 71/11pl drive getting a garbage TD with 1:45 left and that allowed them to go from a 409-280 yd deficit to 409-351.

Every year TCU’s defense with its speed, shuts down Air Force’s option. That was the case again this past weekend. AF actually opened with an 89/10pl drive for a TD which tied it at 7 but had just 42 yds offense the rest of the 1H and punted on their first 3 poss of the 2H while TCU, which led 17-7 at the half, scored TD’s on their only three 2H poss going 80/8p, 70/9pl and 91/13pl. AF gained 42 of their 231 yards on their final 10pl drive once they were down 38-7 in the last 6:00.

Stanford has won 6 of their first 7 for the first time since the 1970 team, which was led by eventual Heisman winner Jim Plunkett. Washington St made a game of it for a while. In fact mid 2Q it was 10-7 after a WSU TD but SU went 73/9pl and 80/6pl for TD’s and led 24-7 at the half with a 256-127 yd edge. WSU was int’d at the SU16 and SU went 67/12pl for a TD, 31-7. After 2 punts, each team went on a TD drive, 38-14. WSU got a TD with 3:46 left then forced a punt with 2:13 left. On 3&10 WSU got a 74 yd TD pass with :35 left to close the scoring.

It happened a 2nd straight week. Last week Ohio St was #1 in the AP poll. They traveled to face a rank team and ESPN Gameday was on hand for the nighttime game and the crowd was excited. Wisconsin returned the opening KO for a TD and OSU lost. Oklahoma was #1 in the BCS rankings. Gameday was on hand, the game was moved from 3:30 to nighttime for ABC. The frustrating part of last weeks game was 3 blown opportunities for the Sooners, plus the KR TD. Just like the previous week, Missouri got an 86 yd KR TD to lead 7-0. OU answered back to tie it at 7. OU was driving to take a 14-7 lead and had a FD at the 12 but Jones was int’d by DE Smith who returned it 57 yds in what was basically a 14 point swing. Missouri went 28/6pl and instead of trailing 14-7 they led 14-7. The Sooners tied it with 4:08 left in the 1H and Missouri got a 36 yd FG to lead 17-14 at the half. At the half OU had a 301-99 yard edge. OU had a FD at the Missouri 11 early 3Q but settled for a 30 yd FG and missed it. Missouri got a 30 yd FG and then OU went 69/12pl for a TD to lead 21-20 after 3Q’s. Missouri took advantage of an OU DB going for the knockout hit and the WR spun off him and went 38 yards for a TD to lead 26-21. OU was int’d again on the next drive at their own 22 and Missouri got a 23 yd FG. With OU tackling the football, Missouri got a 38-yard run and went 77/5pl for a TD, 36-21. OU got an 81 yd KR setting up a TD but then went for 2 and failed and when they did so They were 2 scores down, 36-27 with 6:06 left. Amazingly, Bob Stoops, after they got the ball back on 4&10 from his own 7 with 2:17 left, opted to punt basically waiving the white flag and Missouri punted it back with :02 left.

The 1H was not easy for Alabama. In fact, on the 2nd poss Tenn got a 59 yard TD run by Tauren Poole to lead 7-0. Bama went 56/10p and 59/9pl for a 36 yd FG on an TD to lead 10-7. Bama missed a 25 yd FG but made a 25 yarder to lead 13-7 with :52 left but UT went 66/10pl for a 33 yd FG, 13-10. The Tide rolled to start the 2H and went 70/4pl, after UT missed a 52 yd FG, two plays later Richardson got a 65 yd TD run, 27-10. UT went 53/9pl but on 3&10 from the 11 was int’d in the EZ and Bama went 80/9pl and 80/8pl for TD’s for their 41-10 win.

Houston got back into the CUSA chase winning at SMU. SMU missed a 46 yd FG and UH went 72/14pl for a TD to lead 7-0. The game was then delayed about 3 hrs. When they returned SMU went 63/8pl for a TD. UH got a TD on 3&12 with a 30 yd pass early 2Q and after they recovered a fumble added a 23 yd FG to lead 17-7 with 8:46. SMU went on an 8pl drive for a 31 yd FG with 4:44 left but UH went 75/9pl for a TD with 1:46 left. At the half UH had a 255-169 yd edge and led 24-10. SMU got a TD on their 2nd 3Q poss to pull back within 7 but UH got a 91 yd KR TD. SMU got a 42 yd FG with 12:38 left but UH went on an 80/14pl drive for a TD to ice it, 38-20. They then got a 36 yd IR to the SMU19 and got a TD 5pl later with 2:42 left for the 45-20 final.

The stats were misleading in the Georgia/Kentucky game. If you look at the stat sheet, UK had a 423-290 yd edge and 22-13 FD edge but UGA led comfortably throughout the game. After allowing a UK FG of 41 yards, UGA got a 100 yard KR TD to lead 14-3. UGA missed a 47 yard FG but then went 39/7pl for a TD after UK went for it on 4&1 at their own 37 to make it 21-3. They extended it to 28-3 with 6:47 left in the half before UK went 71/10pl to get a TD to make it 28-10 at the half. UGA opened the 3Q with a 70/7pl drive for a TD, 34-10. They got a TD with 13:53 left to lead 41-17. UK got a TD with 10:52 left on a long drive and UGA settled for a 30 yd FG after a 67 yd drive to lead 44-25 with just 2:47 left. UK gained 59/7pl getting a TD with 1:23 left.

As you can tell by the score, Kansas St and Baylor was an offensive game. KSU punted twice in the 1H and Baylor was int’d once at the KSU12. Those were the only non-scoring drives and in fact, the other 7 first drives of the game were all TD’s until BU settled for a 22 yd FG and led 31-21. KSU fmbl’d to open the 3Q and BU got a 30 yd FG but KSU got a 100 yd KR TD to pull within 34-28. BU appeared ready to score again when Findley got an 82 yd run by fmbl’d into the EZ for a TB. BU scored a TD on their next poss and KSU was SOD on 4&2 at the BU23. BU added another TD and led 47-28 with 14:53 left. KSU would get a 67 yd TD pass from Daniel Thomas to Aubrey Quarles on a HB option with 14:36 left. BU’s first punt of the game came with 12:01 left in the game. KSU on 4&24 punting with 6:55 left and BU got 2 FD’s running off 4:04. KSU took over with 2:41 left and went 90/13pl and got a 1 yd TD run but with just :07 left and BU rec’d the onside kick.