- TOP PLAYERSOffensePABLO S. TORRE | August 20, 2012
- TAMPA BAY buccaneersENEMY lines WHAT A RIVAL COACH SAYSJune 28, 2012
- Faces in the CrowdJune 11, 2001
Southern Mississippi went from the pits on Monday to the peaks on Saturday. On Monday the NCAA slapped the Golden Eagles with a two-year probation for recruiting violations. Five days later Southern Mississippi shocked the bejabbers out of Alabama 38-29. The victory was the Golden Eagles' first over ' Bama since 1954 and broke the Tide's string of 57 wins at Bryant-Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa. That streak, which began in October 1963, was an NCAA record for at-home triumphs. More than anyone, Quarterback Reggie Collier was responsible for the upset. Collier passed for 68 yards, ran for 81 on 13 carries and scored from 22, eight and five yards out. Tailback Sam Dejarnette tacked on 152 yards on 26 rushes and scored on runs of 11 and three yards. The Golden Eagles scored on their first four possessions, converted 11 of 15 third-down plays and led 28-7 in what they decided would be their "bowl game" because the NCAA's ban will keep them out of postseason encounters.
Alabama trailed 35-21 at the end of the third quarter and narrowed the score to 35-29 in the fourth. The Crimson Tide was kept in contention by Walter Lewis, who passed for 197 yards, and by Ricky Moore, who ran 10 times for 109 yards. But ' Bama couldn't contain Southern Miss runners, who gained 304 yards. The Golden Eagles sealed their sixth win in a row when Steve Clark booted a 23-yard field goal with 5:10 to go.
Adding to the state of euphoria in the state of Mississippi was Mississippi State's 27-24 surprise victory over visiting Louisiana State. Alan Risher of the Tigers, who hit on 25 of 34 passes for 308 yards, began the scoring with a 69-yard strike to Eric Martin in the opening period. At intermission the game was tied 14-14, and going into the final 15 minutes it was 17-all. Two long scoring plays made it 24-24, the Bulldogs going in front on a 64-yard pass from John Bond to Danny Knight and the Tigers pulling even when Mike Montz rambled 35 yards with 4:52 left. Then, with 25 seconds to go, it was Dana Moore's turn. Moore, who grew up within a long field goal of the LSU campus but wasn't recruited by the Tigers, had missed a 41-yard three-pointer with 5:45 remaining in the game. This time, however, Moore split the uprights from 45 yards out for the points that gave LSU its first loss of the season.
Georgia, behind the power running of Herschel Walker, struggled past Auburn to lock up its third straight SEC title with a 19-14 win. The Tigers outgained the 'Dawgs by a margin of 350 yards to 288 yards and led 14-13 when Lionel James broke loose for an 87-yard scoring run early in the fourth quarter. Thus, for the seventh time this season, Georgia trailed in the fourth period. But as always, the Bulldogs rallied. And, as always, the main man was Walker, who finished the scoring by smashing over from three yards out with 8:42 remaining. During that 80-yard drive, Walker carried eight times for 36 yards. For the day, Walker had 177 yards on 31 carries. Following that touchdown. Auburn drove from its 20 to the Georgia 21 with 42 seconds to play. The Bulldogs thwarted that final surge when Cornerback Ronnie Harris broke up an end-zone pass on fourth down. Vanderbilt beat Virginia Tech 45-0, Florida handed Kentucky a 39-13 licking, and Tennessee was a 30-17 winner over Mississippi.
While Clemson took charge of the ACC race by beating Maryland 24-22 (page 36), North Carolina ended its two-game losing streak by defeating Virginia 27-14. The Tar Heels got 192 yards passing from Scott Stankavage and 150 yards rushing from Kelvin Bryant. Despite Ben Bennett's passing—27 of 41 for 313 yards—North Carolina State toppled Duke 21-16. Georgia Tech clobbered Wake Forest 45-7.
Florida State tailbacks Greg Allen and Ricky Williams combined for 313 yards during a 49-14 defeat of Louisville. Allen, who leads the nation in touchdowns (20) and points (120), carried 25 times for 178 yards and scored four times. Williams got the ball only 10 times, but that was enough for him to pick up 140 yards.
Turnovers, almost as many as can be found at the local bakery, were the pivotal factor in Washington and Southern Cal victories. The Huskies took command of the Pac-10 race by coming out on top 17-13 at Arizona State and USC prevailed 48-41 at Arizona.
Washington won despite being outgained by the Sun Devils 360 yards to 230. But the Huskies forced four turnovers and got what turned out to be the winning touchdown after recovering Arizona State's fumble of the second-half kickoff. Tailback Jacque Robinson made that pay off by barging over from the four to give Washington a 17-3 lead. Sun Devil Tailback Darryl Clack retaliated with a 50-yard scoring run and Luis Zendejas kicked a 47-yard field goal to round out the scoring. Washington had gone in front 10-0 on a 20-yard pass from Tim Cowan to Aaron Williams and on a 24-yard field goal by Chuck Nelson. That was Nelson's 23rd three-pointer of the season, tying an NCAA record. Robinson finished with 124 yards on 34 carries. Todd Hons kept Arizona State on the move much of the time by clicking on 19 of 31 passes for a total of 206 yards.