By the day after Colorado's victory over Iowa State, Moschetti's headaches had largely subsided, and he prepared for the Oklahoma game with a vengeance. "I've never seen Mike the way he was all week," said junior wideout Javon Green. "He was yelling at everybody. I think he was more intense than the coaches." Moschetti, a 24-year-old from La Mirada, Calif., who played three years of minor league baseball before starting his college football career at Mount San Antonio Junior College in Walnut, Calif., made only one glaring mistake against Oklahoma, throwing an interception late in the second quarter. His 88-yard scoring pass to Green with 7:58 to play was crucial, coming on first-and-20 after the Sooners had moved to within a touchdown and seemed to be finding their offensive rhythm.
With Saturday's victory Colorado improved its record to 5-3 and remained in the hunt for a bowl invitation after a 2-2 start that included losses to Colorado State and Washington. What's more, Moschetti (22 of 31) outplayed Oklahoma quarterback Josh Heupel (26 of 58, 328 yards, two touchdown passes), who came into the game ranked seventh in the nation in pass efficiency but threw four interceptions.
Stabbings at Syracuse
Three Players Injured In Melee Outside Bar
After losing All-Big East quarterback Donovan McNabb and nine other starters from last year's 8-4 team, Syracuse expected to rebuild this year, but six weeks into the season the resilient Orangemen were 5-1 and ranked No. 16. Since then the bottom has dropped out: Virginia Tech knocked Syracuse out of first place in the Big East with a 62-0 whipping on Oct. 16, and Boston College, a 19�-point underdog, edged the Orangemen 24-23 last Saturday. Approximately 10 hours after that defeat, three Syracuse players, including two starters, were stabbed during an altercation at a bar, Sadie's Place, that coach Paul Pasqualoni had discouraged his players from patronizing because of its reputation as a hot spot for fights.
The incident, which occurred outside the bar and involved a crowd of 60 to 75 people, was still under investigation as SI went to press on Monday, but police indicated that it may have been set off by patrons merely staring at each other and exchanging words as bouncers cleared out Sadie's Place around 1 a.m. First-string cornerback David Byrd, a 6-foot, 192-pound senior, suffered severe neck, back and leg stab wounds and was listed in serious condition following five hours of surgery at University Hospital in Syracuse. Junior defensive end Duke Pettijohn, who led the Orangemen in sacks with six, was stabbed in the head and right ear and was treated at St. Joseph's Hospital, also in Syracuse, and released. Sophomore reserve tackle Giovanni DeLoatch, who was wounded in his right arm, right ear and back, was also treated at St. Joseph's and was released on Monday.
On Sunday police arrested two men—Trequill Stackhouse and Cheiron Thomas, both 22 and from Syracuse—and said that additional arrests were possible. Stackhouse and Thomas were charged with assault (first degree for Stackhouse, second degree for Thomas), first-degree gang assault and third-degree criminal possession of a weapon.
"When this kind of adversity hits, you become stronger," Pasqualoni said on Monday, "and I'll be very disappointed if our team isn't a stronger, more cohesive unit after what we've been through."
SMU Upsets Rice
Mustangs Not Out of The Bowl Picture Yet
"I've never been through a year like this," Southern Methodist coach Mike Cavan said after his suddenly resurgent Mustangs stunned WAC-leading Puce 27-2. First, there was the suspension of defensive assistant coach Steve Malin last August pending an internal investigation into possible violations involving recruiting and competitive advantages. Then there was SMU's 0-5 start and the letdown last month of not being invited to join Conference USA while archrival TCU was asked and accepted. After the Mustangs' nationally televised 24-14 upset of Fresno State on Oct. 14, Cavan thought the bad luck had ended. No chance—on Oct. 23, SMU's WAC game at San Jose State was canceled minutes before kickoff when an electrical transformer providing power to Spartan Stadium exploded. "With a young team, once you start winning, you want to keep playing," Cavan says. "I didn't think it would have been fair for us to play on Sunday. We didn't know if we could get home on Sunday?' Nor did Cavan want to lose two days of preparation for Rice.
The Mustangs came home to be greeted by worse news: the death of SMU alumnus Payne Stewart. To pay tribute to him, the Mustangs affixed stickers bearing his likeness and initials to their helmets and then held the nation's fourth-leading running team to 240 rushing yards.