- TOP PLAYERSOffensePABLO S. TORRE | August 20, 2012
- TAMPA BAY buccaneersENEMY lines WHAT A RIVAL COACH SAYSJune 28, 2012
- Faces in the CrowdJune 11, 2001
Baylor coach Grant Teaff, an eternal optimist, was suspending judgment. He hadn't yet cast a Top 20 vote for his Bears, despite their 4-1 record going into the SMU game. "This is where we prove whether we're a team," said Teaff. They proved not only that they are but also that SMU isn't. Visiting Baylor held the Mustang offense, which had been averaging 515 yards, to 236; controlled the ball for 10:40 more than SMU; marched 80 yards in the fourth quarter to snap a 14-14 tie; and then allowed SMU just six snaps in the final 9:18 to preserve a 21-14 victory. The Mustangs couldn't capitalize on two interceptions and botched a 91-yard drive with a fumble. "We're no doubt in a hole," said SMU coach Bobby Collins, whose club suffered its second straight defeat. Said Teaff, "I'll probably vote us 11th or 12th."
Texas Tech received a 30-7 drubbing from Arkansas after running back Chris Pryor, a former San Antonio schoolboy star, revealed earlier in the week that Tech recruiters supplied him with cash, a rental car and the use of a motel room in 1984. The Red Raiders' athletic department has asked the NCAA to investigate the incident. Tech becomes the fourth SWC school—SMU, Texas A&M and TCU are the others—to receive NCAA scrutiny this season for possible abuses.
The Deep South is thick with Gator haters, but at the top of Florida's own hate list these days is Tennessee. Last spring the Volunteers led the charge to strip the Gators of their first-ever SEC title. So when the Vols roamed Gainesville-way last week, one Gator fan started a drive to have his cohorts wear blue instead of orange so they wouldn't be mistaken as Tennessee supporters. School officials printed a letter in the student newspaper and broadcast messages over the P.A. system that urged low-key behavior. Security was beefed up.
But, lo and behold, despite a record turnout of 74,432 fans at Florida Field, push came to shove only on the gridiron. "I saw two of the hardest-fighting teams I've seen in a long time," said Tennessee coach Johnny Majors. Florida got its revenge 17-10 on the legs of Neal Anderson (160 yards on 29 carries and two TDs) and the foot of Ray Criswell, whose two fourth-quarter punts buried Tennessee deep in its territory. Indeed, the Vols started nine of their 13 possessions from inside their 20 as Florida extended its unbeaten streak to 15 games.
Auburn's Bo Jackson bolted for 176 yards on 30 carries in a 59-27 rout of Florida State to run his five-game rushing total to 991 yards, tops in the country. But it was a run he threatened to make that deflated the Seminoles. FSU had drawn to within four, 31-27, in the fourth quarter when the Tigers gave the ball to fullback Tommie Agee on a trap play designed to gain four yards. "We were obviously overplaying, looking to stop Bo Jackson," said Seminole coach Bobby Bowden. "When they went to Agee and he got past the line, I knew we were in trouble." Agee's 68-yard dash set off a 67-second, 21-point Auburn scoring spree. FSU quarterback Danny McManus, who was knocked unconscious in two earlier games, suffered dizzy spells and left in the second quarter after spearheading two touchdown drives.
Alabama coach Ray Perkins did the sensible thing: He deployed a tight-to-the-line defense and told his charges to look for a fumbled snap. Penn State coach Joe Paterno had just inserted Matt Knizner for the shaken-up John Shaffer at quarterback with his team up 12-10 and facing a third-and-one at the Tide 11 with 6:30 to play. "I figured, what the heck, let's let it all hang out," said the normally staid Paterno. So he gave a second-stringer who hadn't warmed up and had thrown but one pass all season the option to go to the air. Knizner's TD toss to tight end Brian Siverling was the difference as the Nittany Lions handed the Tide its first defeat, 19-17.
Air Force's flexbone pilot, Bart Weiss, showed his brass in a 24-7 thumping of Navy before a record crowd of 35,663 at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium. Weiss ran for 102 yards and completed two passes for 113 more.