It was a frustrating Saturday for Syracuse, Baylor, Rutgers and, to a lesser degree, Mississippi, but seven of the nation's major college teams managed to preserve their prestige and unblemished records for at least another week. Navy (7-0), Missouri (7-0), New Mexico State (7-0), Utah State (7-0), Iowa (7-0), Minnesota (6-0) and Yale (6-0) were still unbeaten and untied.
Navy Coach Wayne Hardin was doing more than employing coachly strategy when he insisted that Notre Dame, despite its four straight losses, would be the best team the undefeated Middies had faced so far. It didn't look that way to the 63,000 in sprawling Philadelphia Stadium when Halfback Joe Bellino (see page 14) got away on a feinting 43-yard run on the first play. And it looked even less like a ball game when Bellino turned right end for 12 yards and a touchdown after three minutes of play. However, the Irish moved their defenses to protect the flanks, then proceeded to give the Middies an uncomfortable afternoon. They tied the score 7-7 on Halfback Angelo Dabiero's three-yard plunge in the second quarter, came close on two field-goal attempts before Bellino scored from the one-yard line to lead Navy to a 14-7 victory.
Army found Miami of Ohio prepared for a super effort. The hopeful Redskins scored first, but Miami fumbles, Quarterback Tom Blanda's passing and Fullback Al Rushatz's inside bursts put Army ahead 30-7. Penn Stale, enjoying its first respite after three tough games, ran over West Virginia 34-13.
Yale and Princeton moved methodically toward an Ivy League showdown November 1. The Elis scored three times on passes by Quarterbacks Tom Singleton and Bill Leckonby Jr., trounced Dartmouth 29-0 while Princeton pummeled last-place Brown 54-21. However, both had a wary eye on Harvard, which remained in the running by beating Penn 8-0. Columbia, looking at last like the team it was supposed to be, whomped Cornell 44-6.
Rutgers, idly dreaming of its first unbeaten season in 92 years, was brought up short by hitherto winless Villanova 14-12. The top three:
1. NAVY (7-0)
2. SYRACUSE (5-1)
3. PITT (3-2-2)
The up-and-down Southwest Conference was engaged in its usual autumn pastime. TCU, with a well-earned reputation for stumbling and bumbling, suddenly planted its feet firmly on the ground and upset Baylor 14-6. Six-foot 7-inch, 230-pound Quarterback Sonny Gibbs took care of the attack, while 6-foot 5-inch, 250-pound Tackle Bob Lilly smothered the swift Bear backs. It was nothing new for TCU Coach Abe Martin, whose coaching philosophy remains indestructible. Protested Abe: "There ain't no geniuses in coaching. I get beat a lot of times, too. That's why I'm no genius."
The reigning genius is now Coach Jess Neely of Rice. His Owls pounced on Texas Tech, won 30-6 to take a tentative grip on first place. But Arkansas, 7-3 victor over Texas A & M, Texas, which beat SMU 17-7, and Baylor can still challenge for the title. The top three:
1. RICE (5-1)
2. BAYLOR (5-1)
3. ARKANSAS (5-2)
Wisconsin still has a mathematical chance to win, but the Big Ten race is settling down to a three-way scramble among Iowa, Minnesota and Ohio State. The surprising Buckeyes were very much in contention after whipping Michigan State 21-10. While Coach Duffy Daugherty fretted, Ohio State wrapped up the Spartans in a containing defense, unexpectedly varied its attack to occasionally spring loose a halfback.
Iowa and Minnesota took a furlough from the Big Ten wars, enjoyed themselves at the expense of Big Eight opponents. The Hawkeyes beat Kansas easily, 21-7 as Wilburn Hollis scored twice, on a 30-yard keeper play and a one-yard plunge. Kansas Coach Jack Mitchell was impressed: "The best offensive team I've seen in all the days I've coached football." Minnesota had an even easier time against defenseless Kansas State, mauled the poor Wildcats 48-7.
Wisconsin lost Quarterback Ron Miller with two sprained ankles and agile pass-catcher Pat Richter with a broken collarbone but found adequate substitutes in Quarterbacks John Fabry and Jim Bakken, who kicked a 19-yard field goal to beat Michigan 16-13 for the first time ever at Madison. Illinois stopped Purdue's two-point bid in the last quarter and outlasted the Boilermakers 14-12.
The Big Eight was building up to a climax game of its own between Missouri and Colorado Saturday at Columbia. Fast Missouri swept the ends, pecked away at the middle and trimmed Nebraska 28-0. In Denver, 46,000 watched tensely as Colorado tried for its first victory in 14 years over Oklahoma, breathed a collective sigh of relief when the Buffs made a second-period touchdown plunge stand up for a 7-0 win. The top three:
1. IOWA (6-0)
2. MINNESOTA (6-0)
3. MISSOURI (7-0)
Mississippi, for the second week in a row, kicked a field goal in the final seconds to stay unbeaten, but this time the Rebels gained only a 6-6 tie as LSU scared them badly (see page 15).
In contention again for the SEC title, Auburn's hefty Tigers slipped past Florida 10-7 as Fullback Ed Dyas kicked his seventh field goal of the season (from the 21-yard line).
Unbeaten but tied Tennessee ran over North Carolina 27-14; Georgia walloped Tulsa 45-7; Alabama edged Mississippi State 7-0. Georgia Tech was not SO fortunate. With Don Altman doing most of the pitching, Duke bedeviled the Yellow Jackets with swing and flare and hook passes, completed 15 out of 16, and beat Tech 6-0.
VMI, bothered, besieged and battered by Memphis State's Fullback Charles Killett, was beaten 21-8 for the first time in 15 games; Maryland jarred South Carolina into seven fumbles, beat the Gamecocks 15-0; Wake Forest managed to hold off Virginia 28-20. The top three:
1. MISSISSIPPI (6-0-1)
2. TENNESSEE (5-0-1)
3. DUKE (5-1)
For Washington, life was getting tougher. This time it took a 47-yard touchdown pass from Quarterback Bob Hivner to Don McKeta and George Fleming's placement kick, all with 2:24 to go, to overtake determined Oregon 7-6. And looming directly ahead was improved USC, which beat Stanford 21-6.
UCLA controlled North Carolina State Quarterback Roman Gabriel's passing, used its speed and Tailback Bill Kilmer's tosses to Marv Luster to defeat the Wolf Pack 7-0. But the biggest surprise took place in Corvallis, where winless California caught Oregon State with its spirit lagging and upset the Beavers 14-6.
Wyoming Coach Bob Devaney revealed his pregame strategy: "We thought our smaller line could hold those monsters out while our bigger backs powered through." It worked. Bull-like Halfback Jerry Hill ranged through the Utah line for 112 yards, led the Cowboys to a 17-7 victory. Wyoming's next Skyline challenger: unbeaten Utah State, a 34-0 winner over Brigham Young as Tom Larscheid returned the opening kickoff 102 yards, scored two other touchdowns. The top three:
1. WASHINGTON (6-1)
2. UCLA (3-1-1)
3. OREGON (5-2)
NEW FACES: Wisconsin Quarterback John Fabry (left) took over for injured Ron Miller in last period, led Badgers to 16-13 victory over Michigan; Ohio State Halfback Bob Klein, a sophomore, surprised Michigan State with several long runs.
BACK OF THE WEEK: TCU Quarterback Sonny Gibbs completed seven of 11 passes for one touchdown, ran for second as Frogs upset Baylor 14-6.
LINEMAN OF THE WEEK: Pitt End Mike Ditka hurried Syracuse quarterbacks into bad passes, threw path-clearing blocks for his backs in 10-0 win.
DEATH OF A TEAM
After their game with Bowling Green last Saturday, 35 players, coaches and friends of the California Poly football team boarded a chartered C-46 in Toledo for the long flight home. The plane took off in a dense fog. Seconds later it veered off course and crashed, killing 22 persons, including 16 of the players. Visible in the smoking wreckage was a football, a sad symbol of the worst tragedy in U.S. athletics.
SATURDAY'S TOUGH ONES
Iowa over Minnesota. Coach Evashevski badly wants the Big Ten title before he retires to the athletic director's chair. Iowa's offensive skill and speed will overcome Minnesota's efficient defense.
Missouri over Colorado. The winner can take a giant step toward the Big Eight title. The Buffs are tough, but unbeaten Missouri's backs are better.
Kansas over Nebraska. The Jayhawks aren't as bad as they looked against Iowa. Kansas will do better in its own conference, even without ailing Bert Coan.
Arkansas over Rice. The Owls are flying high but the Razorbacks' flinty defense should bring them to earth.
Baylor over Texas. Despite the loss to TCU, the Bears are a sound, well-coached team. They should have enough bounce left to beat the Longhorns.
Syracuse over Army. With the pressure off, Syracuse may now begin to play up to its potential. The Cadets lack the depth to challenge the Orangemen.
Navy over Duke. Navy's running attack, with Joe Bellino to lead the way, will overcome Duke's excellent passing. But it won't be easy for the Middies.
Tennessee over Georgia Tech. The Vols' single wing can be just as punishing as the multiple T. The Tech defense has been too inconsistent and is vulnerable to passes.
UCLA over California. Cal broke through to win against Oregon State, but the stern UCLA defenders will trap the Bears and give the Bruins the victory.
Washington over USC. A Spot for an Upset—if the Huskies don't score early. They can't afford too many lapses against the eager Trojans.
MICHIGAN OVER ILLINOIS
PITT OVER NOTRE DAME
PURDUE OVER MICHIGAN STATE
NORTHWESTERN OVER WISCONSIN
PRINCETON OVER HARVARD
PENN STATE OVER MARYLAND
AUBURN OVER MISSISSIPPI STATE
FLORIDA OVER GEORGIA
CLEMSON OVER NORTH CAROLINA
WYOMING OVER UTAH STATE
LAST WEEK'S PREDICTIONS:
14 RIGHT, 5 WRONG, 1 TIE
SEASON'S RECORD: 84-49-7