College football: top 25 roundup
Published 12:00 am Saturday, October 29, 2011
The Top 25 roundup …
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Georgia coach Mark Richt may have saved his job with two gutsy, fourth-down calls.
Aaron Murray threw two touchdown passes on fourth down, and the 22nd-ranked Bulldogs overcame several mistakes to beat Southeastern Conference rival Florida 24-20 Saturday and keep pace with South Carolina in the Eastern Division.
It was Georgia’s fourth victory in the last 22 games against Florida and could be a big one for Richt. He had been under pressure since losing his first two games this season.
Now, the Bulldogs (6-2, 5-1 SEC) have won six straight.
The Gators have lost four in a row for the first time since 1988, a streak that certainly will taint coach Will Muschamp’s first season in Gainesville.
The latest loss came against Muschamp’s alma mater and eliminated Florida (4-4, 2-4) in the division race.
Oklahoma State 59, Baylor 24
STILLWATER, Okla. — Joseph Randle set career highs by running for 152 yards and four touchdowns and Oklahoma State started a season with eight straight wins for only the second time in school history.
The other time was in 1945, when the Cowboys finished the season 9-0, won the Sugar Bowl and were ranked fifth in the final poll.
Brodrick Brown recovered two fumbles, and Daytawion Lowe and Justin Gilbert had interceptions as Oklahoma State (8-0, 5-0 Big 12) forced five turnovers.
Oregon 43, Washington State 28
EUGENE, Ore. — Oregon stars LaMichael James and Darron Thomas returned from injury but true freshman De’Anthony Thomas sparked the Ducks with two second-half touchdowns.
Darron Thomas, who missed a game because of a knee injury, returned to start against the Cougars but threw two interceptions in the first half and was replaced by backup Bryan Bennett in the second.
Washington State (3-5, 1-4 Pac-12) lost its fourth straight. The Cougars hung tough with Oregon for much of the game and trailed by only 15-10 at halftime.
Arkansas 31, Vanderbilt 28
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Zach Hocker kicked a 42-yard field goal with 6:53 left, and Arkansas rallied again for its fourth straight win.
It was the third time this season the Razorbacks (7-1, 3-1 Southeastern Conference) trailed by double digits. They didn’t trail by 18 as they did against Texas A&M or 17 last week before beating Mississippi. This time, Vanderbilt led 21-7 with 1:39 left in the first half.
South Carolina 14, Tennessee 3
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Connor Shaw threw for one touchdown and ran for another as No. 14 South Carolina survived Tennessee with a 14-3 victory on Saturday night.
The Gamecocks (7-1, 5-1) remain in control of the Southeastern Conference’s East Division.
It was their first game without star Marcus Lattimore, who suffered a season-ending knee injury Oct. 15 against Mississippi State.
Brandon Wilds had 137 yards on 28 carries and was the centerpiece of a methodical drive that ate up much of the third-quarter. He ran 11 times for 51 yards on the 20-play drive, and Shaw finished it off with a 5-yard touchdown run on a draw that gave the Gamecocks a 14-3 lead with 47 seconds in the third quarter.
Ohio State 33, Wisconsin 29
COLUMBUS, Ohio — Braxton Miller threw a 40-yard touchdown pass to Devin Smith with 20 seconds left to give Ohio State a 33-29 victory over No. 12 Wisconsin on Saturday night.
It was almost exactly seven days earlier that the Badgers were beaten 37-31 at Michigan State on a miracle pass on the final play of the game. The latest heartbreak, just like that one, wasn’t confirmed until it passed a video review.
The Buckeyes (5-3, 2-2 Big Ten) won their biggest game of a season shadowed by NCAA problems.
Nebraska 24, Michigan State 3
LINCOLN, Neb. — Rex Burkhead scored three touchdowns and ran for 130 yards on 35 carries, and Nebraska took control of the Big Ten Legends Division.
Burkhead, who went over 100 yards for the fifth time in six games, scored at the end of 80- and 89-yard drives in the third quarter to put Nebraska (7-1, 3-1) up 24-3.
Oklahoma 48, Kansas State 17
MANHATTAN, Kan. (AP) — Landry Jones threw for five touchdowns and All-American Ryan Broyles caught 14 passes for 171 yards and a score.
Kenny Stills added four catches for 101 yards for Oklahoma (7-1, 4-1 Big 12). Roy Finch finished with 73 yards rushing and another 69 through the air, and the Sooners’ potent, fast-paced attack managed 690 yards of total offense against Kansas State (7-1, 4-1), the league’s top-ranked defense.
Iowa State 41, Texas Tech 7
LUBBOCK, Texas — Redshirt freshman Jared Barnett threw for a touchdown and ran for another, and Iowa State shocked No. 19 Texas Tech 41-7 on Saturday night, a week after the Red Raiders won at Oklahoma.
Making his first start, Barnett’s mobility caused the Red Raiders defense fits. He rushed for 92 yards on 19 carries and completed 14 of 26 passes for 144 yards. His touchdowns were career firsts.
Missouri 38, Texas A&M 31, OT
COLLEGE STATION, Texas — James Franklin’s 11-yard touchdown pass to Marcus Lucas in overtime lifted Missouri to an upset.
Texas A&M got the ball after the score, but Ryan Tannehill’s pass on fourth down was deflected.
The Tigers had a chance to win it in regulation, but a 46-yard field goal attempt sailed wide right as time expired.
Michigan 36, Purdue 14
ANN ARBOR, Mich. — Fitzgerald Toussaint ran for a career-high 170 yards and scored two touchdowns for Michigan.
The Wolverines (7-1, 3-1 Big Ten) gave up a TD on the opening drive of the game, then scored 36 straight points to bounce back from their first loss of the season, two weeks ago at Michigan State.
Penn State 10, Illinois 7
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. — Joe Paterno broke Eddie Robinson’s record for victories by a Division I coach with No. 409 in Penn State’s sloppy win.
The 21st-ranked Nittany Lions (8-1, 5-0 Big Ten) overcame six fumbles thanks to Silas Redd’s 3-yard touchdown run with 1:08 to go.
Illinois (6-3, 2-3) drove from its 17 to the Penn State 25, but Derek Dimke’s 42-yard field goal attempt bounced off the right upright as time expired.
West Virginia 41, Rutgers 31
PISCATAWAY, N.J. — Geno Smith threw two second-half touchdown passes and scored a go-ahead TD on a fourth-down, 1-yard run with 6:18 to play as West Virginia rallied past Rutgers in a wet and snowy storm.
Smith sandwiched touchdown passes of 19 yards to Stedman Bailey and 20 yards to Tavon Austin around his clutch dive into the end zone in rallying the Mountaineers (6-2, 2-1 Big East) from a 10-point halftime deficit to their 17th straight win over Rutgers (5-3, 2-2).
Austin also scored on an 80-yard run and Shawne Alston scored on runs of 52 and 2 yards for West Virginia, which earlier this week announced its intention to leave the Big East and join the Big 12 next season.
Freshman Gary Nova threw two touchdown passes for the Scarlet Knights, who were blanked in the second half after putting up a season high for points in the opening half.
The Associated Press