Despite consistent success, Boston College and Rutgers have drawn little notice this season, but last week their high-scoring splurges got some attention. The Eagles bombed Massachusetts 70-8 while the Scarlet Knights rocked Colgate 62-21.
Rutgers rolled up 781 yards on offense, an NCAA high for the season. Five of its nine touchdowns came through the air, the first two 90-and 67-yarders from Bert Kosup to Mark Twitty. Fullback Keith Barnette of Boston College maintained his national scoring lead with three touchdowns, giving him 122 points with one game yet to play, against Holy Cross. "Yes, I do want that title," he said later. "I like the feeling. I hadn't given it much thought until the coach [Joe Yukica] showed me I was high in the rankings a couple of weeks ago."
Temple Coach Wayne Hardin was thinking about what might have been after his Owls outclassed Villanova 17-7. "We're very happy with 8-2," he said. Then the late-season losses to Cincinnati and Pitt came to mind. "Except for five minutes and 15 seconds we would be exceedingly thrilled. The kids have done a tremendous job in the last two years—17 and three is not bad." Steve Joachim passed for two touchdowns and established a new Temple single-season total-offense record of 2,227 yards. Halfback Henry Hynoski rushed for 117 yards to set another Owl career standard of 2,218.
Lehigh blasted Lafayette 57-7 in the 110th edition of collegiate football's most-played rivalry, and Holy Cross tripped Connecticut 23-14. In the Ivy League, Penn came from behind to beat Dartmouth 27-20, Brown concluded its second straight winning season by whipping Columbia 28-19 and Princeton downed Cornell 41-20 as Walt Snickenberger scored four touchdowns and rushed for 163 yards. Snickenberger also broke Cosmo Iacavazzi's single-season Princeton touchdown mark of 14 and became the second Tiger to gain more than 1,000 yards in a season.
1. Penn State (8-2)
2. Pittsburgh (7-3)
3. Temple (8-2)
And now the "Liberty" formation, so named because Tennessee used it to defeat Kentucky 24-7 to earn a Liberty Bowl invitation. This latest of college football's offensive innovations features an unbalanced line with no split ends and three running backs stacked in an I formation. Because the backs are also set a full stride to the strong side, there is no one directly behind the quarterback. "We were looking for a way to get into the line and out to the corner as quickly as we could," said Volunteer Coach Bill Battle. "We figured this gave us a step or two."
Mississippi State defeated Mississippi for only the third time in 28 years, 31-13, and upped its record to 8-3, best since 1946. "We broke the string," said Walter Packer, who scored twice, "and I feel it's going to be like that for years to come." The Rebels committed eight turnovers, three of them setting up Bulldog touchdowns.
Louisiana State, looking for two straight wins to avoid its first losing season since 1956, got one of them against Tulane 24-22. The Tigers roared to a 17-0 lead but needed a time-consuming drive to hold off the Green Wave at the end. Brad Davis scored the final Tiger touchdown, and his 117 yards rushing made him the first LSU player to top 2,000 in a career. Vanderbilt had an easier time of it in another nonconference game, pasting Louisville 44-0. Mark Adams kicked three field goals for the Commodores, who amassed 603 yards on offense.
Relentless running powered Houston past Florida State 23-8. Reggie Cherry rushed for 170 yards, scoring twice, and John Housman netted 159 with one TD. Miami scored on its first two possessions and held on to beat Syracuse 14-7, guaranteeing its first winning season since 1967. After watching two drives stall inside the 10, Orange Coach Frank Maloney said, "All we needed was one key block for a break, but that's a mark of a great football team and obviously we're not great."
Two bowl-bound Atlantic Coast Conference teams, champion Maryland and co-runner-up North Carolina, got more than they expected from Virginia and Duke before winning 10-0 and 14-13 respectively. Louis Carter rushed for a school-record 213 yards in Maryland's victory, setting up a field goal with a 45-yard scamper and scoring the only TD from 44 yards out. His 991 yards are a Terrapin season high. Duke came within a missed extra point of tying North Carolina and a missed field goal of winning. Tailback Mike Voight joined Tar Heel teammate James Betterson as a 1,000-yard rusher, the first time two players alternating at the same position have ever done so.
Outside victories by Clemson, 39-21 over South Carolina, and Wake Forest, 16-10 over Furman, gave the ACC its best record ever in nonconference games. Wake Forest ended the nation's longest non-winning streak, 20 games, on Joe Bunch's three field goals. Clemson's victory left Paul Dietzel with a 4-7 record in his last season as Gamecock coach. Mark Fellers scored three touchdowns for the Tigers, and Ken Callicutt gained 197 yards.
Virginia Military won its first Southern Conference title since 1962 by defeating East Carolina 13-3. William & Mary, inspired by its trustees' decision to reemphasize sports, smashed Richmond 54-12 and ran up a school-record 649 yards in the process.
1. Alabama (10-0)
2. Auburn (9-1)
3. Maryland (8-3)
Get out your Bowmar Brain for this one. The Southwest Conference Cotton Bowl picture looks as follows: Baylor, by blitzing SMU 31-14, is still in it; Texas Tech, by losing to Arkansas 21-13, is out. Texas is out of it, too, but if the Longhorns beat Texas A&M, which is still in it, the Aggies are out and Baylor is in no matter what the Bears do against Rice. If A&M wins, it's in to stay. Better yet, punch your clear button and wait for this week's results.
Baylor tamed the Mustangs behind Steve Beaird's three touchdowns and 133 yards rushing. Neal Jeffrey, whose injured elbow had prevented him from throwing a pass in practice, completed 11 of 17 for a healthy 166 yards. But it was Don Bockhorn's 59-yard field goal, which tied the second longest in conference history, that broke the game open in the third quarter. "My offensive coaches nearly assassinated me," said Coach Grant Teaff later. "If the field goal had been short, SMU had a scooterbug [Arthur Whittington] who could have run it back on us. I just had one of those feelings." Baylor, meanwhile, had a 17-7 lead. Jeffrey, who has accumulated 4,224 yards to surpass Don Trull's career record for passing yardage, now finds himself in an unusual, not entirely comfortable, position. "I've never pulled for Texas in my life," he said, "but you better believe I will this week."
Texas Tech's hopes were slight, and the Arkansas victory erased them altogether. Or, more precisely, Ike Forte did by gaining 215 yards and scoring two touchdowns. The Raiders started sliding to their first home loss since the 1972 season—to Arkansas—when Tailback Larry Isaac fumbled twice inside the Razorback 10 during the first quarter.
Rice defeated TCU 26-14 as Tommy Kramer passed for a pair of touchdowns and Alan Pringle kicked two field goals, including a school-record 50-yarder. Pringle's kick was not a family record, however. Brother Duncan hit one of 52 yards earlier in the week for Trinity University.
1. Texas A&M (8-2)
2. Houston (8-2)
3. Baylor (7-3)
Southern California was acting like anything but a 14-point favorite over UCLA last week as it sought a third straight Pacific Eight championship and its 25th consecutive game without a conference loss. Coach John McKay was irritable, Running Back Anthony Davis couldn't sleep and mascot Tommy Trojan was nowhere to be seen.
The concern was unfounded, however, as USC romped to a 34-9 victory. "That's a mighty impressive football team," said Bruin Coach Dick Vermeil afterward. "They were just too good for us. If we'd played our best game, they'd still beat us."
Davis was the offensive star, gaining 195 yards in 31 carries and scoring a touchdown. He surpassed O.J. Simpson's team and conference career rushing mark of 3,423 yards on his first carry. "Davis runs with a lot of character," said Vermeil. "He doesn't spend much time going sideways."
California is still trying to figure out how it lost to Stanford. Steve Bartkowski's 13-yard pass to Steve Rivera had given the Bears a 20-19 lead with 26 seconds left, but after Stanford received the kickoff, Quarterback Guy Benjamin went to work against the least effective of all strategies: the prevent defense. Two completions gained 43 yards, and as the clock ran out Mike Langford kicked a 50-yard field goal for a 22-20 victory.
In other intrastate rivalries, Washington won the Apple Trophy by topping Washington State 24-17, and Oregon got the raspberry by blowing a 10-0 lead and losing 35-16 to Oregon State.
Utah State captured the Beehive Boot for the fourth straight year with a 20-7 triumph over Weber State. Brigham Young won the Western Athletic Conference title and a trip to the Fiesta Bowl by bombing Utah 48-20.
Arizona and Arizona State both posted narrow wins in the late moments. The Wildcats edged Wyoming 21-14 on Bruce Hill's 11-yard pass to Theopolis Bell with 1:18 left. Arizona State overcame a 21-0 halftime deficit to nip Colorado State 26-21 when Morris Owens scurried in from the eight with 45 seconds remaining.
1. USC (8-1-1)
2. Arizona (8-2)
3. California (7-3-1)
Raw ability alone does not win national championships. That takes the kind of poise and class Oklahoma showed in a 28-14 victory over Nebraska.
The Cornhuskers were leading 14-7 in the third period when they recovered a fumble at the OU 15. "We needed to get something there," Nebraska Coach Tom Osborne would say later. The Wishbone isn't a come-from-behind offense." Oklahoma stopped the Huskers cold, however, and tied the game later in the period. Then, in the fourth quarter Elvis Peacock and Steve Davis scored on short runs which, with the defense's three pass interceptions, clinched the Big Eight title and extended the Sooners' unbeaten streak to 28 games.
"Nebraska is the best team we've played in that stretch," said Coach Barry Switzer, "but this was the best game our offense has ever had. No one can expect to run for almost 500 yards against Nebraska." It was 482 to be exact, including 147 by Fullback Jim Littrell, 142 by Joe Washington and 112 by Quarterback Steve Davis.
For the Cornhuskers the loss was more painful than most. "I've never seen so much emotion for a game here," said Defensive Coordinator Monte Kiffin.
In other Big Eight games, Missouri ripped Kansas 27-3, Kansas State upset Colorado 33-19 and Oklahoma State held on to defeat Iowa State 14-12. Missouri was led by Tony Galbreath, who scored two touchdowns, passed for another and gained 137 yards in 34 carries. Thus the Tigers finish with a 7-4 record, but no bowl invitation. With its win, Kansas State ended a seven-game losing streak and picked up its first conference victory. Oklahoma State converted two fumbles into touchdown drives and overcame four field goals by the Cyclones' Tom Goedjen. However, the Big Eight's career record holder missed a 35-yarder that would have won the game in the final period.
Michigan State Coach Denny Stolz was saying, "I told you so," after the Spartans won their fifth straight and concluded a 7-3-1 season by walloping Iowa 60-21. "I said at the start of the year we'd be improved and exciting. I guess we took care of that pretty well. We're not bad on offense, are we?" Statistics provide the best answer to that question: eight touchdowns and 660 total yards. Quarterback Charlie Baggett scored three TDs, passed for two more and set a school single-season total-offense record with 1,712 yards. "A great record smashed to smithereens," joked Assistant Coach Jimmy Raye, who set the old mark in 1966. If the line sounds familiar it is only because Woody Hayes said the same thing after Ohio State lost to Michigan State three weeks ago.
Other standouts for the Spartans included Claude Geiger, who scored twice and gained 127 yards in his first college game, and Fullback Levi Jackson, who ran for 156 yards.
After Minnesota's Rick Upchurch returned the opening kickoff 100 yards, Wisconsin turned Bill Marek loose in a 49-14 victory. In driving rain the 5'8", 188-pound tailback splashed to a school-record five TDs (a sixth was called back) to become Big Ten scoring champion. He also tied John Cappelletti's national mark of three consecutive games with more than 200 yards and Red Grange's Big Ten standard of 30 points in a single game. The Gophers made life easier for Wisconsin by losing fumbles at the winner's eight-, three-and 15-yard lines.
Illinois got its first winning season in nine years by whipping Northwestern 28-14 as Jim Phillips scored twice. Mark Vitali passed Purdue to an easy 38-17 victory over Indiana. Vitali fired three touchdown passes, two of them for 46 and 34 yards to Olympic sprinter Larry Burton.
In its first possession against Notre Dame, Air Force moved to a first down at the four. A pass interception grounded that threat, however, and nine plays and 99 yards later Notre Dame had a 7-0 lead. The final score was 38-0.
Within three minutes of the second quarter Cincinnati's Tom Marvaso scored on an 81-yard kickoff return and a 69-yard punt return to lead the Bearcats to a 35-20 victory over Chattanooga.
1. Oklahoma (10-0)
2. Ohio State (10-1)
3. Michigan (10-1)
PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
DEFENSE: End Jim Stock had eight solo tackles and rive assists as Notre Dame handed Air Force its first shutout since 1967. Three tackles accounted for 37 yards in losses, giving Stock a school single-season record of 113 yards.
OFFENSE: Wisconsin's Bill Marek, who has rushed for 740 yards in his last three games, tied the Big Ten mark for touchdowns with five against Minnesota and set school records for carries (43), yards (304) and points (30).