Secrecy was Syracuse Coach Frank Maloney's immediate aim, an upset of Pittsburgh his objective for the afternoon. So, instead of having his players go through their usual pregame workout at Archbold Stadium, Maloney had them warm up a mile away. There the Orangemen polished up their I offense, which had been installed in place of the veer because Quarterback Tim Wilson had a pulled hamstring.
Although the I did not overpower the Panthers, it did take them back a bit, the Orangemen controlling the ball for seven minutes after taking the opening kickoff and getting a 37-yard field goal from Dave Jacobs. Another Jacobs, Pitt's Fred (no kin), put the Panthers in front 7-3 with a five-yard run late in the first period. With freshman Joe Morris carrying 29 times for 149 yards and Ken Mandeville scoring on a pair of one-yard runs, Syracuse went into the fourth quarter leading 17-7. But Pitt made it 17-15 on a five-yard run by Rick Trocano and a two-point conversion run by Jacobs. Then, with 3:09 left, Mark Schubert kicked a 28-yard field goal for Pitt's 18-17 win.
On his first play after coming off the Army bench, Quarterback Earle Mulrane teamed up with Jim Merriken on a 65-yard pass to the Air Force two-yard line. That play set up a third-quarter touchdown that put the Cadets on top 14-3. Mulrane's next bomb was an 80-yarder to Clennie Brundidge, who established an Army record with his 13th career touchdown reception as the Cadets won 28-14.
Boston University, Rutgers, Villanova and West Virginia all came through with non-conference triumphs. The Terriers jarred Holy Cross 15-7 as freshman Gregg Drew rushed for 136 yards. Two touchdowns by Rutgers' Dave Dorn. the first coming on a 46-yard pass, the second on a 10-yard run, enabled the Scarlet Knights to beat Massachusetts 21-11. Rushing for 408 yards, Villanova defeated winless Boston College 28-16. And West Virginia ended a seven-game losing streak by holding off Virginia 20-17.
Fancy passing enabled Dartmouth and Brown to win and remain tied for the Ivy League lead. The Big Green was an easy at-home 37-7 victor over Columbia, Buddy Teevens passing for 247 yards and Jeff Dufresne rushing for 123. At Harvard, the Bears had to work for their 31-30 win. They did not go ahead for keeps until Mark Whipple passed four yards to Charlie Boucher and tacked on a two-point conversion pass to Rick Villella with four minutes remaining. A 100-yard kickoff return by Ken Hill plus scoring runs of 11, 12 and four yards by Pat O'Brien were the Yale highlights in a 42-14 defeat of Cornell. Joe Holland, Cornell's and the nation's leading rusher with an average of 148.2 yards a game going into the game, was held to 55 yards. Princeton's first league win was a 21-0 victory over Pennsylvania.
1. PENN STATE (9-0)
2. NAVY (7-1)
3. PITTSBURGH (6-2)
A newspaper story indicating that Florida's Doug Dickey would soon be fired brought two responses that encouraged the coach. From University President Robert Marston came a forceful "Baloney!" Then Dickey's Gators handed Auburn its first Southeastern Conference loss by an emphatic 31-7 score. Joe Cribbs of the visiting Tigers ran for 111 yards, caught two passes for 16 more and threw a 13-yard completion, but that was not enough against the charged-up Gators. John Brantley of Florida passed for 102 yards and one touchdown, and also scored on an 11-yard run.
"I thought they threw the ball 100 times and gained a mile," said Alabama Coach Bear Bryant after beating Mississippi State 35-14. Actually, the Bulldogs passed only 53 times (a school record) and gained 456 yards on 31 completions. With Quarterback Dave Mailer nursing a pulled leg muscle, State Coach Bob Tyler resorted to a shotgun offense to hype up the passing attack. Marler connected on 28 of 46 throws for 429 yards and one touchdown, but was intercepted four times. Only one passer has exceeded Marler's yardage against the Tide—Archie Manning, whose 33-for-52 performance netted 436 yards in 1969. The Bulldogs' Mardye McDole, who grew up in Mobile but turned down an Alabama scholarship, caught nine of Marler's passes for 168 yards. Tony Nathan of the Tide latched on to a six-yard touchdown pass, broke loose for an 82-yard scoring run and piled up 145 yards in 12 carries. In the dressing room after the game, Tide players sang, "If you don't go to 'Bama, go to hell" and "We want you, LSU." They will get LSU this week in Birmingham.