Freshman Eric Martin's 100-yard kickoff return highlighted Louisiana State's 24-10 victory over Kentucky. James Jones ran for three touchdowns in Florida's lopsided 49-3 romp over Mississippi. Auburn, ahead 10-7 at the half at Georgia Tech, finished with a three-touchdown flurry to come out on top 31-7 in an out-of-conference contest.
Independent Southern Mississippi, which a week earlier had tied Alabama, was a 10-0 winner over Memphis State in the rain-drenched Liberty Bowl. It rained so hard that there were no pregame or halftime festivities, the scoreboard clock conked out and the bands stayed in their buses. Nevertheless, Sammy Winder of the Golden Eagles splashed for 175 yards in 29 carries. Quarterback Reggie Collier scored the game's only touchdown when he went 24 yards on a quarterback draw late in the first period.
North Carolina State led visiting North Carolina 10-0 at halftime, the first time the Tar Heels had been behind this season. The Wolfpack gambled on an onside kick to start the second half, but the Tar Heels got the ball and scored 10 plays later. Tyrone Anthony, who slipped three times during the first half, changed his cleats at halftime and put North Carolina in front 14-10 with a five-yard run in the third period. A change in tactics also helped Anthony. To take advantage of N.C. State's blitz by its strong safety—which disrupted first-half roll-out passes—the Tar Heels repeatedly used Anthony on draw plays. Anthony had 109 yards in the final two quarters, 183 for the day, and junior Fullback Alan Burrus scored twice on point-blank plunges as North Carolina rallied to win 21-10. It was the Tar Heels' 20th victory in their last 21 games.
Despite giving up its first touchdown in 18 quarters and committing its first turnover in three games, Clemson blasted past Duke 38-10. Cliff Austin rushed for 178 of the Tigers' 563 yards of total offense. On defense, the stopper for undefeated Clemson was Linebacker Jeff Davis, who made 13 tackles.
Not even 556 yards passing and 47 completions in 67 attempts by Wake Forest—24 for first downs—could keep Maryland from prevailing 45-33. Gary Schofield passed for 504 of those yards, but four of his throws were picked off by the Terps, who had some offensive guns of their own: Boomer Esiason tossed two touchdown passes, and John Nash ran for 136 yards and scored twice.
VMI had its perfect record sullied when Appalachian (N.C.) State earned a 14-14 deadlock.
Murray (Ky.) State, the top-ranked team in Division 1-AA, was upended by Middle Tennessee 14-9 in an Ohio Valley Conference contest. But No. 3 Jackson (Miss.) State walloped Southwestern Conference rival Southern University 41-0.
"I'm so happy I don't know where I am. I'm so happy I don't know what else to say." Muddy Waters, Michigan State's beleaguered coach, didn't have to say another word following a 33-14 upset that knocked Wisconsin out of the Big Ten lead. Quarterback Bryan Clark, whose father Monte coaches the Detroit Lions, was more articulate. Describing the new Spartan offense, he said, "We used four wide receivers and only one running back. On film Wisconsin was aggressive and intimidating, but the offense seemed to confuse them."
Clark threw for three touchdowns and completed 18 of 30 passes for 291 yards. He teamed with Daryl Turner on a 49-yard touchdown pass that started the scoring in the first period.