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California beat Stanford 25-20 with some novel last-play-of-the-game shenanigans that resembled a Keystone Kops caper. Mark Harmon had seemingly given the visiting Cardinal a 20-19 win when he booted a 35-yard field goal with four seconds left. On the ensuing kickoff, Harmon had to tee the ball up on his 25 because of a 15-yard unsportsmanlike-conduct penalty on the field goal. As Harmon kicked off, the Cardinal band inched onto the field.
Kevin (Moon Dog) Moen fielded the squib kick at his 43, made it to the Stanford 48 and, in a tackler's grasp, lateraled to Richard Rodgers who lateraled to Dwight Garner at the 44. Upon advancing a few yards upfield, Garner was nailed by three tacklers, but while going down he lateraled back to Rodgers at the Stanford 48. Rodgers then lateraled to Mariet Ford at the Cardinal 46. Ford, trapped at the 25, flipped the ball over his shoulder, hoping some teammate might grab it. Sure enough, Moon Dog was on the scene. But where next? Stanford band members and fans were all over that end of the field. Unstoppable, Moen motored by the saxes, juked a tuba and somehow made it to the end zone, where as a fitting ending to one of the most bizarre plays of all time, he bowled over a trombone player. It had been a game of forward passes until that five-lateral Garbazz play. Garbazz is the Bears' name for a game they play at practice that's similar to the one they scored on. Stanford's John Elway completed 25 of 39 throws for 330 yards, and Gale Gilbert of Cal hit on 17 of 31 for 289 yards.
The improbable also occurred in Pullman, where Washington State knocked Washington out of the Rose Bowl 24-20. About halfway through the season, Cougar Assistant Coach Ken Woody had told Head Coach Jim Walden that Husky Field-goal Kicker Chuck Nelson would end his NCAA record string of three-pointers with a game-deciding miss against State. With 4:35 to go, Nelson, who had run his two-season streak to 30 with two earlier field goals, missed a 32-yarder. That left Washington State in front 21-20. The running of Tim Harris (124 yards) and James Matthews (110 yards), both of whom scored on short rushes, helped the Cougars build their lead. The Huskies were also hurt by the loss of two fumbles and by an interception.
Yet another big play helped UCLA hold off Southern Cal 20-19. Nose Guard Karl Morgan of the Bruins sacked Quarterback Scott Tinsley on the Trojans' try for a two-point conversion with no time left. Who goes to the Rose Bowl from the Pac-10? Arizona State, if it beats or ties Arizona this week. Otherwise, it will be UCLA. The happiest Pac-men, though, may have been on the Oregon teams, both of which won for the first time this season. Oregon upset Arizona 13-7, and Oregon State beat Montana 30-10.
After scouting Notre Dame during its loss to Penn State a week earlier, Air Force Coach Ken Hatfield predicted a Falcon victory. Naturally, he was laughed at. But Marty Louthan helped Hatfield get the last laugh by directing the Air Force's wishbone and rushing for 115 yards and two TDs as the Falcons won 30-17. It was the Irish's first loss to a service academy in 33 games since 1963.
Four turnovers and 10 penalties cost Utah a 17-12 loss to Brigham Young. The Utes led 24-11 in first downs and by 468 yards to 300 in total offense, but the Cougars still sewed up the WAC title. Runner-up New Mexico scored 27 points during a 7�-minute onslaught in the fourth period that wrapped up a 41-17 win over Hawaii.
SMU's vaunted Pony Express was bushwhacked by Arkansas, which held Eric Dickerson to 81 yards rushing and Craig James to 72. Nevertheless, the Mustangs rode off with the Southwest Conference title and a spot in the Cotton Bowl against Pitt thanks to a 17-17 tie. Dickerson may have been slowed down, but he sure wasn't stopped. He scored on a six-yard burst and broke Earl Campbell's career conference running record by raising his total to 4,448.
Baylor, which had upset Arkansas the week before, gave Texas a scare. But Longhorn Defensive End Kiki DeAyala spoiled the Bears' comeback by dropping Tailback Alfred Anderson for no gain on a fourth-and-one at the Texas six with 46 seconds to go to preserve the Longhorns' 31-23 win. Texas got 202 yards rushing from Darryl Clark, 209 yards passing from Robert Brewer and 80 and 52-yard scoring receptions from Herkie Walls.