Colorado State, which would have gone to the Fiesta Bowl if the Sun Devils had lost, squeezed past independent Utah State 13-10. The Rams' freshman halfback, Larry Jones, rushed for 177 yards and set a school record with 41 carries.
Brigham Young tied Arizona State for first place in the WAC by drubbing Texas-El Paso 68-19. That was more points than the Miners' basketball team allowed in its season-opening 78-64 victory over Abilene Christian. Marc Wilson of the Cougars was on target with 13 of 29 passes for 187 yards and a pair of touchdowns. The injury-riddled Miners committed nine turnovers, with the Cougars returning three interceptions for touchdowns and Marc Swenson scoring after recovering a fumble and running it back 92 yards. Nevertheless, the Miners had something to celebrate: 202 yards rushing by Robert (Ducky) Elliott, who became the first State player in 29 years to go over the 1,000-yard mark for a season.
Three of the four NCAA Division II playoff games took place in the West. Top-ranked North Dakota State (9-1-1) defeated Northern Michigan 20-6 as Linebacker Don Hut-son recovered two fumbles and intercepted a pass; No. 3 Cal-Davis (11-0) eliminated Bethune-Cookman 34-16; and Jacksonville State (10-2) was a 35-0 victor over Northern Arizona, which fumbled eight times.
1. WASHINGTON (7-4)
2. UCLA (7-4)
3. ARIZONA STATE (9-2)
It did not matter that Doc Blanchard, Glenn Davis and Joe Bellino were not carrying the ball. All that counted for the 81,091 shivering fans at John F. Kennedy Stadium in Philadelphia was that Army and Navy were squaring off in another season ender. A Navy triumph would have evened the series, which began in 1890, at 36-36-6. Victory was all that Navy Coach George Welsh was interested in, and his pursuit of that objective cost him an almost-certain tie.
The first half belonged to the Cadets, who led 17-7 at intermission. Army's scores came on one-yard runs by Quarterback Leamon Hall and Halfback Greg King, and a 21-yard field goal by Mike Castelli. Navy's touchdown came on an 18-yard pass from Bob Leszczynski to John Kurowski. A third-period two-yard scoring run by Joe Gattuso was set up by Kurowski's 18-yard dash and brought the Middies to within three points.
As the game wound down, the Middies put on a final drive and had a fourth-and-two on the Cadet nine. A field goal was within easy reach. But, as Welsh said, "You can't kick a field goal there." He had Gattuso try for the first down. The tailback took a pitchout, was hemmed in and threw a pass that fell harmlessly in the end zone. Welsh was praised for his decision to gamble. As Hall said, "You just don't tie an Academy game." Army's triumph ended Navy's string of four straight wins in the series.
Worthy of praise, too, was Holy Cross. The Crusaders, who had lost nine of 10 and were five-touchdown underdogs against Boston College, twice came from behind, scored 14 points in the fourth period and won 35-20. The game evoked memories of 1942, when Holy Cross was a 28-point underdog to No. 1-ranked Boston College and beat the Eagles 55-12.
With Quarterback Mike Rieker and Split End Steve Kreider teaming up repeatedly on passes, including a 71-yard touchdown pass on the game's first play. Lehigh stormed to a 23-0 second-quarter lead at Massachusetts in an NCAA Division II playoff. By halftime Rieker had completed 18 of 26 passes for 283 yards and Kreider had six receptions for 146 yards. But shortly before the intermission the Minutemen scored their first touchdown. They added two more in the third period for a 23-23 deadlock. After a fumble recovery deep in Massachusetts' territory in the fourth period, Lehigh scored on an eight-yard Rieker-to-Kreider pass for a 30—23 win. Rieker, who has thrown 27 touchdown passes this season, wound up with 25 completions in 40 attempts for 351 yards. Kreider's nine receptions for 171 yards gave him 62 for 1,352 yards, and his four touchdowns raised his total to 17.