THE TOP THREE:
1. OHIO STATE (4-0)
2. NOTRE DAME (4-0)
3. NEBRASKA (5-0)
Ohio State's Woody Hayes, still anguished by last year's 32-3 shellacking by USC, was feeling devilish when he sent his Bucks out to play the Trojans before 84,315 in sundrenched Ohio Stadium. Rarely have Woody's boys played such wide-open football. Quarterback Don Unverferth threw 17 times (he completed eight for 79 yards and one touchdown ) and the Ohio State halfbacks ran tricky counter plays and power sweeps. But. when it really mattered, wily old Woody had State play old-fashioned football. Fullback Will Sander found a home in USC's sagging middle and thundered through it 29 times for 120 yards. The Bucks held the ball for almost seven minutes on the way to their first touchdown, a two-yard slash by Sander. Another time they had it for 9� minutes before Bob Funk kicked a 24-yard field goal. What tickled Hayes most, however, was his stout defense, led by Linebackers Tom Bugel and Dwight Kelley. It keyed on fast USC Halfback Mike Garrett, never letting him get away, and held the freewheeling Trojans to 64 yards rushing. Final score: 17-0. Chortling like a schoolboy who has just discovered bubble gum, Woody said: "I wanted this one. Boy, you'll never know how much."
Now everybody in the Big Ten knows that Ohio State is the team to beat for the title, and maybe even for the national championship. But the rest of the Big Ten picture is confused. ILLINOIS survived against Minnesota, winning 14-0, but Michigan, Michigan State and Iowa went down hard in upsets. PURDUE went after Michigan's young backs with a rowdy defense and dropped the Wolverines 21-20 when Bob Timberlake's two-point gamble failed. INDIANA shrugged oft Steve Juday's 16-for-20 passing and out-scored Michigan State 27-20. WISCONSIN, moving solidly on the ground, defeated Iowa 31-21. Northwestern was surprised, too, by Mid-American's MIAMI, 28-27.
Notre Dame, it seems, does have a weakness after all. It misses extra points. But that is about all the steamed-up Irish missed in a 24—0 victory over UCLA. Quarterback Johnny Huarte threw two touchdown passes, End Jack Snow caught six tosses for 124 yards, and the bruising pro-type Notre Dame defense shut the Bruins off with 66 yards on the ground.
Kansas Coach Jack Mitchell was a mess when he met the press late last Saturday. He had been thrown in the shower by his players, and he had a cut across the bridge of his nose, acquired when he stepped in to stop a fist-swinging melee on the field. But Mitchell was grinning like a cat. His Jay-hawkers had just beaten Oklahoma 15-14, scoring on the first and last plays of the game. Halfback Gale Sayers ran the opening kickoff back 93 yards, Quarterback Bobby Skahan sprinted 26 yards on a busted play in the final second and Mike Johnson ran for the winning two-point conversion.
Despite Kansas' sudden affluence, the Jayhawkers are not the best team in the Big Eight. That has to be NEBRASKA, which throttled Kansas State 47-0 for its fifth straight.
THE TOP THREE:
1. SYRACUSE (4-1)
2. VILLANOVA (5-0)
3. PITT (2-2-1)
When SYRACUSE'S shifty Floyd Little, cleverly setting up his blockers with a neat change of direction, ran back a Penn State punt 71 yards for a touchdown in the first quarter, it seemed that the Orange was in for a pleasant afternoon at University Park. But State's Frank Hershey intercepted two Syracuse passes, and the Lions led 14-7 at half time. Then Coach Ben Schwartzwalder, who is well aware of his team's limitations, made a sensible decision. "We just decided to do what we do best," he said later, "and that is run with the ball." Syracuse threw only once in the second half, but Fullback Jim Nance charged up the middle. Little probed the tackles and soon it was a tie game. It could have ended that way but Penn State gambled for a victory and lost. With 3:30 left, Syracuse's Roger Smith intercepted Gary Wydman's pass and ran 38 yards to the State 22. Only 37 seconds remained when Quarterback Walley Mahle went over from the four to win for Syracuse 21-14.