Friday, October 28, 2016

Backup QB Worthman leads Air Force past Fresno State 31-21

 Backup quarterback Arion Worthmanran for 102 yards and two touchdowns as an injury replacement to rally Air Force past Fresno State 31-21 on Friday night.
Air Force (5-3, 2-3 Mountain West Conference) snapped a three-game losing streak, while Fresno State (1-8, 0-5) joined the 1929 Bulldogs as the only teams in school history to lose seven consecutive games.
The Falcons were able to win despite senior starting quarterback Nate Romine leaving the game with an apparent ankle injury with 6:19 remaining in the third quarter, when the Falcons were trailing 21-17.
Enter Worthman, a sophomore with one career rush and one career pass - both in this season's opener - to his credit. He fueled the winning rally as the primary ball carrier on two scoring drives in the fourth quarter, attempting just two passes as Air Force ran the ball on its final 30 plays - including all 24 in the fourth quarter.
Worthman's 2-yard leap into the end zone on an option keeper gave Air Force a 24-21 lead with 13:02 to play in the game. His 4-yard keeper sealed the victory with 2:34 to play in the game.
Fresno State was playing its first game since head coach Tim DeRuyter was fired. Freshman quarterbackChason Virgil threw three touchdown passes to KeeSean Johnson, but also threw four interceptions that set up two Falcons touchdowns.
AIR FORCE: The Falcons have scored in 293 consecutive games, the fifth-longest streak in FBS history, and the third-longest active streak behind Florida (353) and Texas Christian (300).
FRESNO STATE: The Bulldogs are out of bowl-game contention, so their attention is focused on finding the next head coach to replace DeRuyter. Local media reports name former Cal coach Jeff Tedford, a former Fresno State player and offensive coordinator, as the clear front runner. Tedford has long-running ties with Fresno State athletic director Jim Bartko from their mutual time at Oregon. Other potential candidates include Alabama offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin, a former Fresno State quarterback, and former USC coach Steve Sarkisian.
AIR FORCE: The Falcons can win the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy for a record 19th outright time with a win next Saturday at Army. Air Force beat Navy 28-14 on Oct. 1 in the first leg of the round robin.
FRESNO STATE: The Bulldogs hope to avoid the second 1-8 start in school history, dating to 1921, in next Saturday's trip to Colorado State.

Pumphrey 5th in NCAA after San Diego State rolls 40-13

 Donnel Pumphrey ran for 223 yards, moving into the top five on the NCAA career list, and Juwan Washington added 137 yards and two touchdowns in San Diego State's 40-13 victory over Utah State on Friday night.
John Baron II was perfect on a career high four field goals in the driving rain for the Aztecs (7-1, 4-0), who have won 15 straight over Mountain West Conference rivals.
Pumphrey leads the country with 1,469 yards this season. He passed Cedric Benson, Travis Prentice and Charles White as he reached 5,741.
Washington had scoring runs of 39 and 1 yards en route to his first 100-yard game and the Aztecs piled up 400 yards on the ground.
Malik Smith scored his first touchdown with a 28-yard return on his ninth career interception for the final Aztec score.
Kurt Myers passed for a score and ran for another for Utah State (3-7, 1-4). His first-quarter run marked the first time SDSU has trailed in a regular-season conference game since last Oct. 31, a span of 400 minutes, 14 seconds.

Flowers shines, South Florida beats No. 22 Navy 52-45

 Quinton Flowers ran for 176 yards and two touchdowns to help South Florida get back on track in the American Athletic Conference with a 52-45 victory over No. 22 Navy on Friday night.
Rebounding from a 16-point loss to Temple that cost the Bulls (7-2, 4-1) sole possession of first place in the AAC's East Division, Flowers keyed a balanced attack that amassed 629 yards total offense against an overmatched Navy defense that yielded TDs on USF's first six possessions of the game to fall behind 42-14 at halftime.
"Great win for us," USF coach Willie Taggart said. "I'm really excited the way our guys responded to how we performed last week."
Will Worth ran for four touchdowns for Navy (5-2, 4-1), which leads the AAC West and entered game as the only team without a loss in league play after beating then-No. 6 Houston and Memphis to nudge into the Top 25.
Flowers joined Marlon Mack in topping 100 yards rushing for the third time in four games. The dual-threat quarterback scored on runs of 1 and 63 yards, while also throwing for 219 and two more TDs.
Mack scored on an 85-yard run in the opening quarter and finished with 125 on 11 carries for the 18th 100-yard performance of his career, fifth this season.
"Our guys accepted the challenge. We needed to run the ball well and score early," Taggart said. "You want (Navy) to have to play from behind."
Worth rushed for 129 yards and scored on runs of 4, 1, 1 and 2 yards for Navy, which was forced to throw the ball more than the Midshipmen are accustomed, with Worth going 15 of 27 for 299 yards, one touchdown and one interception.
The senior quarterback from Valrico, Florida - a short drive from the USF campus - set up one of his TDs with a 42-yard completion to Toneo Gulley. The Midshipmen attempted more than eight passes in a game for only the third time this season, finishing with 616 yards total offense, including 317 rushing.
Worth's 9-yard TD pass to Darryl Bonner came on the game's final play.
"We gave them a 28-point lead," Worth said, "and it's tough to come back against a talented team like that."
Navy: The Midshipmen thrive by essentially playing keep-away, using a potent rushing attack to control the ball and keep opposing offenses off the field for long stretches. The strategy worked to perfection a year ago - when Navy ran for 442 yards to beat USF 29-17 in Annapolis - but never got a chance to work this time.
South Florida: Flowers leads the American in TD passes, however the Bulls are at their best when they're able to run the ball consistently. Mack led the AAC is rushing the past two years. And along with Flowers, who is averaging more than 7 yards per carry, USF has the best one-two running punch in the conference.
South Florida rushed for a school record 190 yards in the first quarter and finished with 412. D'Ernest Johnson gained a career-high 108 on 19 attempts, giving the Bulls three 100-yard rushers in a game for the first time in program history.
Worth's passing total was a season high. The only other time he threw more than 12 passes in game, he was 17 of 30 for 260 yards and no touchdowns in a 14-point loss at Air Force on Oct. 1.
Navy remains atop the American West standings, however the lopsided result likely will knock the Midshipmen out of the Top 25. USF was inching toward a spot in the rankings before last week's loss at Temple. The dominating performance on national television states the case that at the very least no team in the AAC is playing better than the Bulls right now.
Navy has won 11 of 13 conference games since joining the American last year. The only another loss in league play was a 52-31 defeat at Houston last season.
Navy steps out of conference, returning to Florida next Saturday to face Notre Dame in Jacksonville.
South Florida has a bye before playing at Memphis on Nov. 12.

Darnold, Jones lead USC over Cal 45-24

Ronald Jones just needed an opportunity to show he was still the running back that became Southern California's most prolific freshman rusher a season ago.
With starter Justin Davis sidelined because of injury and the Pac-12's worst run defense trying to stop him, coach Clay Helton knew that the sophomore was "ready to explode."
Jones rushed for a career-high 223 yards, Sam Darnold threw five touchdowns passes and USC downed California 45-24 on Thursday night.
Darnold threw for 231 yards, with Darreus Rogers making six catches for a career-high 97 yards, as the Trojans rolled up a season-high 629 yards of total offense. Aca'Cedric Warecontributed a career-high 130 yards rushing to USC's total of 398, the fourth time this season the Golden Bears have allowed more than 300 yards on the ground.
"We looked like a tired, beat-up football team and we were," Cal coach Sonny Dykes said.
USC (5-3, 4-2 Pac-12) scored on three of its first four possessions, with Darnold finding Rogers, Jones andDeontay Burnett for touchdowns. Rogers added a second touchdown catch with 28 seconds left, but two fumbles by Darnold allowed Cal (4-4, 2-3) to maintain a modicum of hope despite allowing 451 yards on 46 plays in the first half.
Defensive tackle James Looney returned a fumble to the USC 22, where Tre Watson took a screen pass into the end zone. Webb, the Texas Tech transfer, found his rhythm on Cal's next drive, with throws of 23 and 32 yards to set up Matt Anderson's field goal.
Webb threw for 331 yards and two touchdowns, throwing a ball up for grabs that was intercepted by safety Marvell Tell in the first quarter. Webb also rushed for a touchdown in the third quarter that cut USC's lead to 28-17 before Jones had a 37-yard touchdown run and Daniel Imatorbhebhe caught a 17-yard touchdown pass from Darnold.
Melquise Stovall, a freshman who originally committed to attend USC as a recruit, had nine receptions for 87 yards and a touchdown.
Cal's best chance to take the lead came on its fourth play from scrimmage, but freshman Demetris Robertsondropped a potential 64-yard touchdown that hit him in the hands. After Webb quick kicked on fourth-and-1 from the Cal 45, Jones ripped off a 61-yard run on the next play and the Cal defense was on its heels for the rest of the half.
"I think we were prepared when we got here," Webb said. "It's on us. That's how it should be. It's a player's game."
Jones had 149 yards on eight first-half carries.
USC cornerback Adoree Jackson set a new school record for career kick return yardage, breaking the previous mark of 1,723 yards held by Curtis Conway.
Jackson had 56 yards on two kick returns, giving him 1,779 yards in his three seasons at USC. The electric Jackson also had two spectacular punt returns, though one was called back because of a holding penalty.
Cal: The Bears have now lost 13 in a row to the Trojans since handing Pete Carroll's 2003 national championship team its only loss in triple overtime that season. Cal was always going to have trouble defending Darnold and USC's plethora of skill players, and that task was even tougher with a short week to prepare and mounting injuries. But with three home games left, Cal has a good chance at becoming bowl eligible if it can maintain its strong play in Strawberry Canyon.
USC: The Trojans are white-hot, with Darnold leading the way. The freshman quarterback has now thrown 16 touchdown passes in leading USC to four consecutive wins, playing with a fearlessness and fire that the team was missing at the start of the season, though his ball security must improve. They need help to win the Pac-12 South, but the Trojans are more than capable of turning the conference race upside down when they travels to No. 4 Washington on Nov. 12.
Cal: The Bears host the Huskies on Nov. 5, a potential trap game for Washington while completing its only back-to-back road games this season.
USC: The Trojans host faltering Oregon on Nov. 5, seeking their first five-game winning streak since interim coach Ed Orgeron won five straight in 2013.

Brown leads Ohio to 31-26 win; 1st win at Toledo since 1967

Dorian Brown had career highs with 212 yards rushing and 29 carries and Ohio beat Toledo 31-26 on Thursday night for the Bobcats' first road victory over the Rockets since 1967.
Ohio (6-3, 4-1 Mid-American) led 31-20 on Brown's 51-yard TD run with 8:08 left in the game and the Bobcats held the Rockets at midfield in the final minute for the first win in the series since 1988.
Quinton Maxwell passed for 159 yards and two touchdowns and the Bobcats never trailed.
Toledo (6-2, 3-1) capped the scoring on Logan Woodside's 10-yard pass to Jon'Vea Johnson with 3:28 left, but failed on the 2-point conversion attempt.
Woodside was 32 of 24 for 438 yards, three touchdowns and an interception. Johnshon had six catches for 156 yards and two TDs and Corey Jones had seven catches for 115 yards and a score.
The Rockets cut the deficit it to 14-13 and 21-20.

Lamb, Appalachian State beat Georgia Southern 34-10

Taylor Lamb passed for 199 yards and ran for 94 yards and two touchdowns to help Appalachian State beat Georgia Southern 34-10 on Thursday night.
Jalin Moore added 126 yards rushing and Marcus Cox ran for 115 yards for the Mountaineers (6-2, 4-0 Sun Belt). Each had a touchdown run in the final quarter and Appalachian State scored the final 34 points after falling behind early.
Lamb put the Mountaineers on the board with a 14-yard run in the middle of the second quarter. Michael Rubino added field goals on each side of halftime and Lamb made it 20-10 with a 30-yard keeper late in the third.
Younghoe Koo's 32-yard field goal opened the scoring for the Eagles (4-4, 3-2) and Ukeme Eligwe returned a fumble 90 yards to make 10-0 late in the first quarter.
Georgia Southern never got moving on offense, though, and was outgained by the Mountaineers 498-159.

Johnson runs for Buffalo-record 282 yards, Bulls beat Akron

 Jordan Johnson ran for a Buffalo-record 282 yards in the Bulls' 41-20 victory over Akron on Thursday night.
Tatum Slack sacked Akron's Thomas Woodson on a fourth-and-7 play to preserve the Bulls' 34-20 lead with 5:44 left.
Johnson put it out of reach 54 seconds later with a 39-yard scoring run. On that play, Johnson passed Alan Bell's previous single-game rushing mark of 266 yards set against Duquesne in 1991.
Johnson covered all 63 yards on Buffalo's final scoring drive and 50 of the Bulls' 64 yards on the drive that made it 34-20 with 9:34 left.
Tyree Jackson threw a touchdown pass and ran for two more scores for Buffalo (2-6, 1-3 Mid-American).
Johnson had a 61-yard TD run to make it 17-3 in the second quarter. He has 24 carries.
JoJo Natson scored on a 79-yard punt return and a 33-yard reception for the Zips (5-4, 3-2).

Thursday, October 27, 2016

No. 25 Virginia Tech holds off Pitt in 39-36 win

One of the nation's worst secondaries kept daring Virginia Tech quarterback Jerod Evans to throw. So he did. Over. And over. And over.
The junior shook off a right ankle injury to throw for a career-high 406 yards and two touchdowns to lead the 25th-ranked Hokies to a 39-36 victory over Pittsburgh on Thursday night.
Joey Slye tied the school and Atlantic Coach Conference records by making six field goals to help the Hokies (6-2, 4-1) beat the Panthers (5-3, 2-2) on the road for the first time in 17 years.
Pitt came in with the nation's 120th-ranked pass defense yet played bump-and-run for most of the game, hoping its defensive backs could win more than they lost.
Didn't happen. Instead, three Tech wide receivers topped 100 yards in the same game for the first time in school history.Isaiah Ford's 10 receptions included his school-record 23rd receiving touchdown. Bucky Hodges caught six passes for 145 yards and a score and Cam Phillips added 109 yards on a night the Hokies piled up 556 total yards.
"It's a great feeling when you can do what you love doing and that's throw the ball up and down the field against a pretty good defense," Evans said. "One-on-one coverage. You can't ask for anything better than one-on-one coverage."
Pitt coach Narduzzi built his reputation as defensive coordinator at Michigan State by requiring his secondary to play physical. He's intent on doing the same at Pitt, even as the weeks pass and improvement only comes in sporadic bursts. Facing the Hokies, it was no different.
"We had guys in position to make plays," Narduzzi said. "We didn't make them. . There's not a whole lot of different ways to do it."
Evans left briefly in the third quarter after getting his right leg rolled up on but returned to lead a fourth-quarter surge that included Slye's sixth field goal. Slye joked it got a little bit boring knocking in chip shot after chip shot, though he's hardly complaining after the Hokies won at Heinz Field for the first time in five tries and assured themselves of a bowl berth for a 24th straight year, the longest active streak in the nation.
It's a notable streak, but bigger goals lie ahead. The Hokies will end the weekend no worse than tied in the loss column with North Carolina atop the Coastal. Virginia Tech owns the tiebreaker, having beaten the Tar Heels decisively this month.
James Conner ran for 141 yards and three touchdowns for the Panthers but offensive coordinator Matt Canada continued to masterfully tinker with the Pitt playbook.
Nate Peterman completed 13 of 22 passes for 267 yards with a touchdown and an interception while also catching the first pass of his. Pitt offensive tackle Brian O'Neill scored his second touchdown of the season, this time on a pitch from Peterman that resulted in the 6-foot-6, 300-pound O'Neill barreling over the goal line from 5 yards out. O'Neill, a tight end in high school, scored on a throwback screen against Georgia Tech earlier this month.
One of the connections between Evans and Ford includes a wild 36-yard gain in which Ford and Pitt cornerback Phillipie Motley batted it back and forth to each other as they went to the ground. Officials ruled it a catch on the field after Ford ripped it away from Motley before it hit the ground. The call stood upon review.
Narduzzi became increasingly animated on the sideline as the game wore on, convinced Virginia Tech's wide receivers were illegally giving themselves and advantage on all those alley-oop passes from Evans.
"They did a great job pushing off all night," Narduzzi said. "Give them credit for that."
Virginia Tech: The Hokies have the weapons to run the table. If Evans can avoid turning it over, the Hokies will be in the ACC title game.
"When you have three elite wide receivers, you can't ask for more," Evans said.
Pitt: Midway through Narduzzi's second season, the defense remains a chaotic work in progress. Even the debut of ballyhooed freshman safety Damar Hamlin's long anticipated debut did little to help. If Pitt's pass defense was even average, the Panthers would be a threat to reach the ACC title game. It's not, and the Panthers almost certainly won't be in Orlando in December.
Virginia Tech: Travel to Duke on Nov. 5. The Hokies fell to the Blue Devils 45-43 in four overtimes last season.
Pitt: Begin a tough two-game stretch at Miami on Nov. 5. Hurricanes have won two of three meetings since Pitt joined the ACC in 2013.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Utah State pulls away to beat Fresno State 38-20

 Kent Myers passed for 188 yards and three touchdowns and ran for 66 yards to help Utah State beat Fresno State 38-20 on Saturday night.
Utah State (3-4, 1-3 Mountain West) never trailed but allowed the Bulldogs (1-7, 0-4) within 17-14 after a touchdown late in the first half on Chason Virgil's 1-yard pass to Jared Rice.
The Aggies then pulled away steadily in the second half, twice trading touchdowns for field goals and adding a third TD on Damion Hobbs' 4-yard run to cap the scoring with 7:14 left.
Both teams' kickers notched career-long field goals - Brock Warren with a 43-yarder for Utah State in the second quarter and Kody Kroening with a 49-yarder in the fourth. Kroening made two field goals on the night, extending the nation's current longest streak of made field goals to 13.
Tonny Lindsey had 90 yards rushing for Utah State. Dontel James ran for 80 yards and a score for Fresno State.

Hill runs for 289 yards, 3 TDs; Wyoming beats Nevada 42-34

Brian Hill had career highs with 289 yards rushing and three touchdowns, quarterback Josh Allen ran for two more scores and Logan Wilson intercepted a pass in the final minute to help Wyoming hold off Nevada for a 42-34 win on Saturday night.
The Cowboys (5-2, 3-0 Mountain West) had a season-high 403 yards rushing and improved to 3-0 in conference play for the first time since 1998, their final season in the Western Athletic Conference.
Hill had runs of 20 and 39 yards during a nine-play, 80-yard drive that was capped by Allen's 7-yard TD run that made it 42-27 with 2:52 left.
On their ensuing drive, the Wolfpack (3-5, 1-3) went 75 yards in 2 minutes, 12 seconds and James Butler recovered his own fumble in the end zone to pull within 42-34.
Nevada recovered an onside kick, but on its next play from scrimmage Wilson's interception sealed it.

Falk leads Washington State to 37-32 win over Arizona State

Washington State coach Mike Leach earned himself a big fine and some harsh words from Arizona State coach Todd Graham after accusing the Sun Devils of stealing signs this week.
Even if the Sun Devils knew what was coming, they had a hard time stopping Luke Falk and the Cougars.
Falk threw for 398 yards and three touchdowns, helping Washington State hold off Arizona State 37-32 Saturday night in a game punctuated by heated words during the coaches' postgame handshake.
"I respectfully decline on grounds that I might be publicly reprimanded and fined, so any questions about them I really don't plan to answer," said Leach, who repeated the refrain four times.
Leach irritated the Sun Devils and Graham this week by repeating a comment from last season about Arizona State stealing signs. Washington and Oregon both used sheets to block their signs from Arizona State last season, so the sign-stealing accusations were nothing new.
But the Pac-12 came down hard on Leach for his comments this time, hitting the coach with a $10,000 fine. Graham retorted during the week and again during the postgame handshake, using a pair of expletives picked up by TV cameras that sent Leach walking away, but would not elaborate when asked about the encounter after the game.
"That's between me and him," Graham said.
Washington State (5-2, 4-0 Pac-12) had more trouble with Arizona State's defensive scheme in the first quarter, unable to get anything going as the Sun Devils dropped deep into coverage and forced Falk to throw underneath.
Once Falk adjusted, he picked the Sun Devils (5-3, 2-3) apart, leading the Cougars to 28 straight points, a run triggered by Robert Taylor's 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown.
Falk hit Tavares Martin on a 9-yard TD late in the second quarter and Jamal Morrow on a 3-yard score in the third. The junior also laid the ball in perfectly for Gabe Marks, who became Washington State's all-time receptions leader, on a 52-yard touchdown in the fourth quarter that put the Cougars up 37-21.
Falk completed passes to 11 different receivers and connected on 42 of 53 overall to keep Washington State tied atop the Pac-12 North Division with No. 5 Washington after its fifth straight win.
"We started off slow. That's on me," Falk said. "You've got to put the ball in play and give it to our playmakers, but ultimately we did a nice job of having a gutsy win and finishing the game."
Arizona State was down to its fourth-string quarterback after Manny Wilkins was injured on the opening drive and had four other starters out. The Sun Devils still managed to lead by 11 early and clawed most of their way back from a 16-point deficit in the fourth quarter.
Tim White had a 70-yard touchdown on a punt return and Zane Gonzalez hit a 29-yard field goal to pull Arizona State within 37-32. But Falk and the Cougars ground down the game's final 4:36.
Wilkins ran for a 3-yard touchdown by hurdling a defender - his third hurdle of the season - before going out and freshman Sterling Dillon-Cole completed 7 of 16 passes for 86 yards in his place.
"Dillon did what he could do, he played with heart and all we had to do as an offense is keep him motivated and confident because you never know what can happen on the last series of the game," White said.
Arizona State was banged up heading into Saturday and it only got worse as the game wore on.
The Sun Devils were missing two starters from their offense, Sam Jones and AJ McCollum, and safetyArmand Perry was out with a turf toe injury.
Wilkins did not play after the first series and linebacker Salamo Fiso, one of the keys to Arizona State's defense, had to be helped off the field in the fourth quarter.
Washington State: The Cougars have come a long way since their 0-2 start to the season, keeping themselves on course for a season-ending showdown against the rival Huskies that could decide the Pac-12 North.
Arizona State: The Sun Devils' struggles against the pass continue and their offense could be in more trouble if Wilkins continues to miss time. Arizona State has lost three of four.
Washington State plays at Oregon State next Saturday.
Arizona State plays at Oregon next Saturday.

Fournette sets LSU record, Tigers top Ole Miss, 38-21

 LSU running back Leonard Fournette broke something all right - and it wasn't the left ankle that had sidelined him for nearly a month.
Fournette rewrote LSU's single-game rushing record on just his first eight carries - scoring three touchdowns of 59 yards or more - and the 25th-ranked Tigers beat No. 23 Mississippi 38-21 on Saturday night.
"I've never been (associated with) a player like Leonard," LSU interim coach Ed Orgeron said. "He's dynamic. I believe he's the best player in the country."
Fournette finished with 284 yards rushing in his first action since aggravating a bone bruise in his ankle on Sept. 24. His touchdowns went for 78, 76 and 59 yards. He averaged 17.8 yards on 16 carries. Fournette broke Alley Broussard's LSU record of 250 yards rushing (on 26 carries) in 2004, also against Ole Miss.
He ran the ball with speed and force, at one point leveling Mississippi defensive back Deontay Anderson while turning a screen pass into a 22-yard gain.
"This has been one of the hardest seasons for me. Especially dealing with this injury. I'm still dealing with it," Fournette said, adding that he heeded a pre-game text message from his mother, Lory, advising him to "keep the faith." "Everybody thinks I'm healthy, but I'm out of shape, too."
The victory puts LSU (5-2, 3-1 Southeastern Conference) at 3-0 under interim coach Ed Orgeron, who replaced Les Miles four games into the season.
Since Orgeron took over and promoted Steve Ensminger to offensive coordinator, the Tigers have demonstrated a penchant for big plays . They had four TDs of 40 or more yards against the Rebels, includingDanny Etling's 40-yard pass to D.J. Chark.
LSU finished with 515 total yards against Ole Miss (3-4, 1-3), which saw its chances of getting back into the SEC West race take a huge hit.
"We've got to really, really look at ourselves hard - coaches and players - and figure out why we're not putting together complete games," said Rebels coach High Freeze, who served as an assistant under Orgeron at Ole Miss nearly a decade ago. "Youth is no longer an answer in certain places, and neither are injuries. It's time to grow and be able to play a complete game in this difficult conference.
LSU "really dominated this game in the second half," Freeze added. "When things didn't go well for us, we didn't respond."
Fournette's 78-yarder, which gave him 249 yards on his first seven carries, put the Tigers up for good in the third quarter. Derrius Guice iced it with a 6-yard TD.
Mississippi: The Rebels' defense is sprinkled with big-play talent, but the unit as a whole doesn't consistently play together and gives up too many big plays and too many points. In all of their losses, they've allowed 34 or more points.
LSU: Fournette certainly made up for lost time. His performance puts him right back in Heisman Trophy consideration. To stay there, he'll have to keep it up against Alabama, which held him to 31 yards on 19 carries last season in Tuscaloosa.
Chad Kelly, who came in averaging an SEC-best 308.2 yards passing, was intercepted twice and sacked twice. He finished 19 of 32 for 209 yards and one touchdown, and the Rebels failed to scored 30 points for the first time this season.
Kelly capped Ole Miss' opening drive with a 15-yard scoring pass to Van Jefferson, and the Rebels briefly led 10-0 before Fournette came rumbling through the right side of LSU's offensive line for his 59-yard score. Fournette's 76-yard run put the Tigers up 21-13, but Marquis Haynes' sack and strip of Etling gave Ole Miss the ball on the LSU nine. Three plays later, the Rebels tied it at 21 when Akeem Judd scored from 2 yards out and Ole Miss added a 2-point conversion on Kelly's keeper.
Haynes, who leads Mississippi with five sacks, left the game in the second half, unable to put weight on his right leg.
Orgeron called the play of his offensive line "tremendous." Fournette said his record is an honor he shares with Tigers linemen. Fournette had big holes on all three of his scoring runs. Twice, he cut inside stout blocks on the right edge by Maea Teuhema.
LSU, which just got back into the AP Top 25 poll last week, should continue to move up. Ole Miss, which was the only three-loss team in the poll, is unlikely to remain ranked.
Mississippi: The Rebels hosts surging Auburn next Saturday.
LSU: The Tigers get next weekend off before hosting the top-ranked Crimson Tide in what could be a pivotal game in both teams' seasons.

New Mexico runs for 476 yards in rout of Louisiana-Monroe

Jadon Boatright returned an interception 40 yards for a score 76 seconds into the game, and New Mexico added three more first-quarter touchdowns on Saturday in a 59-17 romp of Louisiana-Monroe.
That was exactly the way the Lobos wanted to get the game started.
"We definitely we need turnovers," said Boatright of his first career interception. "We've been struggling turnover-wise so that definitely helped us out, especially at the beginning of the game, starting off the game with a pick-6 and getting us already up 7-0. That helped us a lot. As soon as I picked it, I saw all green; I knew I was going back with it."
Tyrone Owens finished with 171 yards rushing on nine carries, including an 83-yard scoring run, as New Mexico (4-3) piled up 476 yards on the ground.
The Lobos got touchdowns from eight different players, withElijah Lilly returning a kickoff 93 yards for a score to open the second half.
The lone bright spot of sorts for the Warhawks (2-5) came from reserve quarterback Caleb Evens, who completed 12 of 15 passes for 120 and one score.
But with three other runners topping 65 yards, New Mexico's three lost fumbles were not a factor.
The Lobos only completed seven passes - all to different receivers - for 146 yards; their third-best total of the season.
New Mexico's defense finished with five sacks and limited the Warhawks to 235 total yards.
New Mexico: After a series of close games (and one blowout loss to then-No. 19 Boise State), the Lobos needed to put the hammer down on somebody and Warhawks provided the perfect foil. It was a game that was never in doubt for New Mexico.
"This was great for our confidence," Lobos coach Bob Davie said. "It's no secret we gave up 40 points in a row for three weeks (games). But we did play offenses that really do keep you off balance."
With Louisiana-Monroe running an offensive scheme that New Mexico will see again as the season progresses, Davie was hoping to see just this kind of performance
"We knew we had a chance to get some rhythm tonight just because we've been kind of doing the things over and over," he said. "From a schematic standpoint, ULM is a lot like what Hawaii, Nevada, and really Utah State will be running so hopefully we can get on a little bit of a roll, defensively."
ULM: There was little for Louisiana-Monroe to take away from this performance as it was dominated from the outset and did little to remain competitive. Without quarterback Garrett Smith, redshirt freshman Will Collinsmissed all seven of passes with one interception before being replaced by Evans.
"We just got out coached, out played, really didn't have enough juice, not near enough juice and that's on me," said Warhawks coach Matt Viator. "We've got to be more ready to play than that. We've got to have more juice than that and we didn't. It's nothing really in particular because it was really the whole thing when you look at it. To come in and play a team like this, you better have some juice and we didn't."
New Mexico says aloha with a trip to the island Saturday, facing Hawai'i. The Lobos have won the last six meeting in the series.
Louisiana-Monroe, which has lost five of its last six, plays at Arkansas State on Saturday. The Red Wolves are tied for the top spot in the Sun Belt.

Defense rests: No. 16 Oklahoma beats Texas Tech 66-59

 Baker Mayfield knew Texas Tech's offense would put up points Saturday night.
"I told some of the guys at halftime, `If you're scared and you don't want to score every drive, then stay in here,'" the Sooners quarterback said.
The only thing to stop No. 16 Oklahoma after that was the final whistle.
Mayfield passed for seven touchdowns and 545 yards to help the Sooners beat Texas Tech 66-59 in a game that broke the NCAA record for combined offensive yards with 1,708.
Mayfield completed 27 of 36 passes and broke the school game touchdown mark of six held by Landry Jones. His TD passes went for 56, 49, 23, 23, 43, 34 and 15 yards.
The Sooners scored on five of their six second-half possessions, and the exception was when they ran out the clock in the fourth quarter.
Joe Mixon caught three touchdowns passes and Dede Westbrook had two for the Sooners (5-2, 4-0 Big 12). Mixon also ran for two touchdowns, a 46-yarder and a 42-yarder. He finished with 263 yards rushing and 114 yards receiving. He's the first Sooner ever to reach 200 yards rushing and 100 receiving in the same game.
"I thought Joe Mixon just had a game for the ages," Sooners coach Bob Stoops said. "Just incredible."
Westbrook caught nine passes for 202 yards.
"He's phenomenal," Texas Tech coach Kliff Kingsbury said. "He's just better than anybody we had on the field."
Pat Mahomes threw for five touchdowns and 734 yards for Texas Tech (3-4, 1-3). His passing yards total tied the NCAA record, matching Connor Halliday when Washington State played California in 2014.
"Someone told me (about tying the passing record) in the locker room," Mahomes said. "But, like I said, we didn't win the game, so it really didn't matter."
The 125 points are the second-most in a game involving a ranked team. The record is 133 in No. 9 West Virginia's 70-63 victory over No. 25 Baylor on Sept. 29, 2012.
The teams surpassed the 1,640 yards gained when Nevada played San Jose State in 2001.
Oklahoma defensive coordinator Mike Stoops was disappointed in his unit.
"Everything we did, they had guys running free pretty much all night," he said. "We thought we were making improvements. To fall on our face like this, we've got to re-evaluate some things we're doing."
Kingsbury was glad the game wasn't an embarrassment that last week's 48-17 loss to West Virginia.
"I thought we were into it, a lot more passionate at least," he said. "I thought at least we had good energy."
Oklahoma: The Sooners relied heavily on Mixon, who finished with 31 carries, and his work made it easier to be without Samaje Perine. Perine, who has six rushing TDs, is out for at least two weeks with a pulled leg muscle .
Texas Tech: The Red Raiders' defense, often derided as weak and porous, put together three stops against the Sooners in the first half. Texas Tech forced punts on two OU possessions and held the Sooners on fourth-and-1 when they stopped Mixon deep in Red Raiders territory.
Oklahoma likely won't move up much in the AP Top 25 poll after the win - Texas Tech hasn't been ranked this season - but the Red Raiders might get some votes after playing the Sooners so closely.
Both teams finished with the same number of total yards - 854. The longest pass play by each quarterback was 56 yards. Mahomes had the most yards rushing: 85 to 19 for Mayfield.
Oklahoma: The Sooners play Kansas at home next Saturday.
Texas Tech: The Red Raiders face TCU in Fort Worth next Saturday.

UPSET! Penn State topples No. 2 Ohio State 24-21

The white out in the stands became the white out on the field as Penn State fans mobbed their Nittany Lions. Well after the biggest victory of the post-Joe Paterno era was over, the cries of "We Are! Penn State!" echoed underneath 56-year-old Beaver Stadium and bounced off its big rusty metal beams.
It felt like the good ol' days for Penn State football and Happy Valley was downright ecstatic Saturday night after the Nittany Lions upset No. 2 Ohio State 24-21.
"Obviously these types of wins are important," coach James Franklin said. "To be honest with you, I don't want to spend a lot of time thinking about the big picture right now, I just want to soak this all in. I just want to enjoy tonight."
Grant Haley returned a blocked field goal 60 yards for a touchdown with 4:27 left in the fourth quarter and the Nittany Lions sacked J.T. Barrett twice on Ohio State's final possession to seal a milestone victory for Penn State:
- First against Ohio State since 2011.
- First over a ranked team under Franklin.
- First against a top-five team since 1999 against Arizona.
- First against a top-two team since 1990 against No. 1 Notre Dame.
- First in Beaver Stadium against a team ranked so high since 1982 against No. 2 Nebraska.
Penn State (5-2, 3-1 Big Ten) took its first lead against the Buckeyes when Marcus Allen leaped high to blockTyler Durbin's 45-yard field goal attempt and Haley made the scoop and sprint to the end zone.
"It's something you dream about as a kid," Haley said. "Just running to the end zone and falling, it was a huge sigh of relief, like, everything, all the hard work this team's put in coming into play against the No. 2 team in the country."
The crowd of 107,280 at Beaver Stadium, almost all dressed in white, went nuts after Penn State took the lead, and then thousands poured out onto the field when the clock hit 0:00.
The Buckeyes (6-1, 4-1 Big Ten) had their 20-game road winning streak snapped and the Big Ten East race that looked like an inevitable march toward an Ohio State-Michigan showdown on Nov. 26 in Columbus, Ohio, took a bit of a detour. Two seasons ago the Buckeyes bounced back from an early loss and won the national championship. Last season one loss turned out to be enough to eliminate Ohio State from the College Football Playoff.
"Feel the same as Michigan State last year," Ohio State defensive end Sam Hubbard said.
The Buckeyes are in much better position to recover.
Penn State is now in the mix, but the Wolverines and Buckeyes still have the advantage in the division. If they all finish 8-1 in the conference and the Buckeyes beat Michigan, Penn State - which has already lost to the Wolverines - would be eliminated from three-way tiebreaker because of a worse overall record.
The Nittany Lions will worry about that later.
"This isn't a fluke win," linebacker Jason Cabinda said. "This is who we are. This is who we believe we can be and will continue to be."
Ohio State: The Buckeyes became the highest ranked team to lose to an unranked team this season. Problems with the passing game left them unable to put Penn State away. Barrett was 28 for 43 for 245 yards and he was sacked six times as the Buckeyes, especially right tackle Isaiah Prince, struggled to protect their quarterback.
"I think we put our O-line in bad spots early on in drives, so we're in second and long and then we had to pass and that harmed us," Barrett said.
Penn State: The Nittany Lions got Cabinda and fellow linebacker Brandon Bell back from injury, and the defense played it best game of the season. Bell (19 tackles) and Cabinda (12 tackles) were all over the field and defensive end Garrett Sickels had 2.5 sacks.
Ohio State: How far will the Buckeyes fall? At least behind most of the unbeaten teams and maybe behind Louisville. Figure somewhere around No. 7 or 8.
Penn State: The Nittany Lions have not been ranked since 2011, but that could change on Sunday.
Ohio State: The Buckeyes return home after two straight road games to face Northwestern, which is on a three-game winning streak.
Penn State: The Nittany Lions visit Purdue. Penn State has won seven straight meetings.