Princeton roared out of the locker room (remembering to open the door) and, using outside sweeps and tough defense, stunned the Indians 35-7. It was never even close as 175-pound Halfback John Bjorklund, starting only his second game, scored three touchdowns. "Beating Dartmouth had become an odyssey," noted Defensive End Jim Nixon, "but we figured, what have we got to lose? Let's go out and attack, and if we blow it, we really blow it." The victory created a three-way tie for the Ivy crown among Dartmouth, Princeton and Yale.
Yale, which had been knocked out of the honor of sole titleholder in the final 42 seconds against Harvard last season, seemed to be awaiting another final-second crush. Alas, the only interest at the end came from the Yale supporters who counted off the remaining 42 seconds as the El is crawled away with a 7-0 victory. Their defensive team held the Crimson to a mere 27 yards rushing, forced four fumbles and let the passing get no farther than their 11. The Elis' score came on a third-quarter two-yard plunge by Fullback Bill Primps after an 80-yard drive inspired by Quarterback Joe Massey, a junior who once quit the freshman team due to a preference for singing in the Glee Club. Yale wasn't the only Ivy team to enjoy the day's outcome. Columbia upset Brown 18-3, closing the season at 1-8 for the Lions.
Penn State remained undefeated, as did Quarterback Chuck Burkhart, who hasn't lost since he was in junior high school. Strangely enough, the guy who beat him then is now Pittsburgh Quarterback Jim Friedl, whose Panthers fell to the Lions 27-7, leaving State with one game left en route to a second straight undefeated season. West Virginia squirmed by Syracuse (favored despite a 5-3 record to West Virginia's 8-1) 13-10 after being down 10-0. Said Coach Jim Carlen of his Peach Bowl-bound team whose record this year is the best since an undefeated season in 1922, "We're 9-1, but we're not getting any national attention."
1. OHIO STATE (8-1)
2. MISSOURI (9-1)
3. MICHIGAN (8-2)
As soon as the news broke, on the Monday before the Air Force game, that Notre Dame would play in the Cotton Bowl, the press speculated on the reason for the change in policy. Notre Dame's share of the Cotton Bowl purse will be about $350,000, but the athletic department will get none of it. The money will go to the central operating fund to be used for minority-study programs, a subject that is dear to Father Hesburgh's heart. He is the chairman of the National Civil Rights Commission.
That is the way Notre Dame players want it. The first question senior Co-Captain Bob Olson asked about the bowl trip was "How will it help the university?" Parseghian and his staff shielded players from questions about the Cotton Bowl because the Air Force Academy still remained on the schedule. At first, it looked like Air Force would suffer an embarrassment from the Irish similar to the ones experienced by Navy and Army. Notre Dame scored in the opening two minutes on a 39-yard run by Denny Allen. But then the game settled down into an old-fashioned defensive battle. Four field goals later that first touchdown proved to be the difference, 13-6.
Purdue survived a hideous start against Indiana. Trailing 14-0 in the first quarter, Mike Phipps threw a 71-yard scoring pass to Stan Brown and then continued to pick the Indiana defense apart with his passing. The 44-21 win gave Jack Mollenkopf his fifth consecutive 8-2 season, and the 64-year-old coach had a few words concerning speculation that he'd retire. "I'm not going to. No, sir. I think an 8-2 season will be good enough to rehire me."
As is his style, Missouri's Dan Devine expressed concern on the eve of the Kansas game. He posted signs in red and blue Kansas colors which reminded the Tigers of their '67 and '68 defeats. " Kansas," said Devine of a team that ranked last in the Big Eight in rushing defense, "has better defensive personnel than Michigan." Kansas' Pepper Rodgers tried manfully to preserve his reputation as a humorist. "We are not taking Missouri lightly," he cracked. "About all we had to laugh at this week is the build-up the Missouri staff has been giving us." Whether Rodgers was still chuckling after the Jayhawks' 69-21 defeat was doubtful. Terry McMillan threw for four touchdowns and ran for two more. The Tigers—tied with Nebraska for the Big Eight title—happily bussed to Kansas City for 28-oz. steaks at the restaurant of Peter J. Carter, Missouri's No. 1 fan.
Nebraska had an easy time, 44-14, against Steve Owens and the Oklahoma Sooners. The Cornhuskers allowed the famous tailback just 70 yards in 21 carries and ended his streak of 17 straight 100-yard games. The defense also managed to intercept three passes and recover two fumbles. About all Nebraska needed offensively was sophomore Tailback Jeff Kinney, who rushed for two touchdowns, caught a pass for another and passed for a fourth.