"We wanted to run the option away from Billy Ray, and damned if he didn't show up right where we ran." That's what Texas A&M Quarterback Gary Kubiak had to say about the play on which Arkansas End Billy Ray Smith dropped him for a one-yard loss on fourth-and-one at the Razorback 41 in the fourth quarter. That wasn't all Smith did. On the Aggies' next possession, Smith blind-sided Kubiak, jarring the ball loose as he prepared to pass. The Hogs recovered the ball on the A&M 41 with 1:13 left and hung on for a 10-7 victory. Bruce Lahay's 18th field goal of the season, a 40-yarder in the second period, had put Arkansas on top 3-0. But Kubiak gave A&M a 7-3 lead in the third period when he passed seven yards to Flanker Don Jones. Kubiak, who connected on 19 of 21 for 233 yards, was dumped by—who else?—Smith for an eight-yard loss on a third-down play later in the quarter. After that, Arkansas drove 91 yards and, as it developed, scored the winning points when Fullback Jessie Clark bulled over from one yard out.
With tailbacks Eric Dickerson and Craig James gaining more than 100 yards apiece in the same game for the fifth time this year, SMU improved its record to 9-1 by routing Texas Tech 30-6. Dickerson ran for 129 yards on 19 carries, James for 134 on 24. The Mustangs forced seven turnovers, which gives them 45 on the season, tying them with Tulsa for the most in the country. Eddie Garcia, who has kicked 14 field goals this year, booted three against Tech. The Mustangs, first in the SWC, play at Arkansas this week, but they are on probation and are not eligible to go to a bowl. Thus, if the Hogs pull off an upset and if Texas loses one of its last two games, Arkansas will be the host in the Cotton Bowl.
If Texas is to survive, it will have to do so without its leader on defense, Tackle Kenneth Sims. Late in the first quarter of a 31-15 win over Texas Christian, Sims damaged ligaments in his right ankle and broke the fibula in his right leg. A.J. (Jam) Jones, installed once again as the starting tailback for the Longhorns, rushed for 162 yards. Jones got Texas started with a 29-yard scoring run in the first period. The Horns were penalized for 135 yards, but capitalized on TCU's miscues, including an end-zone fumble that Safety William Graham pounced on for a TD.
Michael Calhoun's two touchdown passes earned Rice a 17-14 triumph at Baylor. Calhoun now has thrown for a conference-record-tying 21 touchdowns this season even though he has only 98 completions.
Before facing Alabama, Penn State Coach Joe Paterno referred to his counterpart, Bear Bryant (page 94), as "the Winston Churchill of another art form." Part of Bryant's artistry has always been his ability to arouse his players, which he definitely did once again on Saturday. Tide Quarterback Walter Lewis pointed out that before the game Bryant told his team, "Go out and play like it was the last game of your lives. Play every play like you're behind."
'Bama was never close to being behind, and early in the third period the Tide put on a goal-line stand reminiscent of the one it staged to stop the Nittany Lions in the 1979 Sugar Bowl and win the national championship. On this sequence, Penn State couldn't score from, in order, the four, three, two, one, one, one, one. The Tide thus clung to the 24-3 advantage it had built while outgaining the Nittany Lions 334 yards to 86 during the first two periods. To that point, half of Alabama's yards had come via the arm of Lewis, a sophomore, who completed six of nine throws. Two of those tosses, good for 37 and three yards, were caught for touchdowns by Jesse Bendross. Lewis also connected with Joey Jones on a 57-yard bomb that set up a 27-yard field goal by Paul Trodd. In nine previous games the Tide had averaged only nine passes and 98 yards through the air. Lewis, however, was delighted with the opportunity to show his stuff. "My eyes lit up when I looked at the films of Penn State," he said. "I was sure we could beat them deep."
The closest the Nittany Lions could get was 24-10 early in the final quarter after Tailback Jon Williams raced 41 yards for a score. But Penn State came up short on fourth-and-one a few minutes later, and the Tide went on to win 31-16, enabling Bryant to tie Amos Alonzo Stagg's record of 314 career victories.
"I'm looking forward to the three-week layoff after the Pitt game," Army Coach Ed Cavanaugh said before taking on the No. 1-ranked Panthers. "I'm not looking forward to the game itself." Cavanaugh had good reason to be wary. Dan Marino hit 19 of 29 throws for 282 yards as Pitt rolled 48-0. Julius Dawkins caught four touchdown passes from Marino, who leads the nation with 28 TD tosses.
Surely a 21-0 second-quarter lead at Princeton would suffice for Yale, which hadn't lost to the Tigers since 1966. Not quite. Princeton, which has a 4-4-1 record, went in front 22-21 in the third period. Surely a touchdown and a field goal, which put the Elis ahead 31-22 with 9:18 to play, would keep them unbeaten. Not quite. Princeton's Bob Holly completed his fourth touchdown pass of the day and then, with four seconds remaining, raced around left end for the final yard of a 76-yard drive to give Princeton a 35-31 victory. Holly threw for an Ivy League-record 501 yards, which increased his total for the season to 1,884. That, too, is a league mark. Rich Diana broke his own Yale records for carries (46) and rushing yardage (222). The loss dropped Yale into a tie for first in the Ivy with Dartmouth, a 38-13 winner over Brown. Harvard retained a share of third place with Princeton by defeating Penn 45-7 as Fullback Jim Callinan carried 15 times for 188 yards and three touchdowns. Unlike Columbia the space shuttle, Columbia the football team crashed again—15-9 at Cornell.
Joe Morris became the 14th collegiate runner to gain 4,000 yards in his career as Syracuse defeated Boston College 27-17. By gaining 132 yards, Morris amassed more than 1,000 yards for the third time in four seasons. The Orange also needed 119 yards passing and 79 yards rushing from Dave Warner to rally from a 7-3 halftime deficit.
Victories in their final Yankee Conference games left Rhode Island and Massachusetts deadlocked for first place. The Rams edged Connecticut 34-29, and the Minutemen knocked off New Hampshire 20-9.
"The seniors told me on Wednesday they wanted to wear the orange pants today," said Clemson Coach Danny Ford after his team whipped Maryland 21-3 to clinch the ACC title and close in on an Orange Bowl berth. "I told them if we didn't play well in the first half, I was going to take the orange pants off them at halftime." No change was necessary. Quarterback Homer Jordan completed 15 of 18 first-half passes for 214 yards to give Clemson a 21-0 lead. Eight of those passes went to Wide Receiver Perry Tuttle, who scored twice. The Tiger defense also was superb during the first two periods, not allowing the Terps within 34 yards of its goal line.
Virginia Quarterback Gordie Whitehead also was sharp in the first half, passing for 197 yards and two touchdowns, and the Cavaliers led visiting North Carolina 14-7 at intermission. Kelvin Bryant, who ran for 171 yards, scored that North Carolina touchdown on a one-yard run. In the third period, though, Whitehead injured his collarbone and had to leave the game. Tyrone Anthony tied the score for the Tar Heels with a two-yard run, and Brooks Barwick made them 17-14 winners with a 34-yard field goal.
By beating North Carolina State 17-7, Duke assured itself of its first winning season since 1974 and saddled the Wolfpack with its first losing record since 1976.
There was 8:33 left in the third period when Southern Mississippi Quarterback Reggie Collier left the game at Florida State. By that time Collier had the Golden Eagles in front 44-0 and well on their way to a 58-14 romp. Collier's stats: 150 yards rushing on 15 carries, one 69-yard scoring run, and seven pass completions in eight tries for 76 yards and two more TDs. Southern Mississippi Tailback Ricky Floyd caught a 31-yard scoring pass, returned a punt 73 yards for another touchdown and rushed 12 yards for a third. The undefeated and once-tied Golden Eagles lead the nation in scoring defense (6.9 points per game) and are fourth in pass defense (103.6 yards per game).
Miami had to struggle to get past Virginia Tech 21-14. Two touchdown passes by Jim Kelly put the Hurricanes up 14-0 in the first period, but from there on the offense sputtered. The Gobblers missed a chance to at least tie the game when they lost a fumble at the Miami 12 with 7:19 to go. That was the last time Tech had possession as Miami held the bail for the final 15 plays.
Although Auburn tore through Georgia's usually stubborn defense for 283 yards on the ground, the Tigers couldn't avoid a 24-13 SEC loss. Herschel Walker of the Bulldogs ran for 165 yards and one touchdown, and Buck Belue completed 10 of 17 passes for 128 yards and two scores. The win fueled Georgia's hope of defending its national championship in the Sugar Bowl against Pittsburgh.
For only the second time since 1956, Louisiana State will have a losing record. Mississippi State made sure of that by beating the Tigers 17-9 in Baton Rouge. LSU's Alan Risher, whose completion percentage (65.6) was the highest in the land, hit half of his 24 attempts but was sacked 10 times for a total of 90 yards in losses. As a result, the Tigers wound up with minus eight yards on the ground. John Bond passed for both Mississippi State touchdowns—36 yards to Wingback Lamar Windham and six yards to O.W. Richardson. In other SEC games, Florida knocked off Kentucky 33-12 and Tennessee defeated Mississippi 28-20.
In a battle for the championship of the Southern Conference, Furman beat VMI 33-21. Freshman Fullback Dennis Williams ran for 134 yards and sophomore Tailback Stanford Jennings contributed 89 yards and three TDs to the Paladins' attack.
Freshman Tailback Robert Lavette zipped three and 83 yards for first-period scores as Georgia Tech took a 14-3 lead over Navy. Lavette finished with an impressive 197 yards rushing, the Yellow Jackets with an unimpressive ninth straight loss, 20-14, since jolting Alabama in their opener.
A rain-soaked field. Winds up to 60 mph. All in all, perfect weather for Washington Coach Don James to have his Huskies gang up along the line of scrimmage. After all, reasoned James, visiting Southern Cal would have trouble passing and the Huskies might, be able to blitz Marcus Alien (page 38) before he could kick up a rooster tail on the soggy Seattle field. USC had trouble passing, all right, and lost 13-3, but Allen finished with 155 yards to become the first collegian to rush for 2,000 yards in a season Early in the second period Steve Jordan put USC ahead with a 45-yard field goal, but Chuck Nelson tied the game with a 21-yarder eight minutes later. The score remained 3-3 until there was only 2:19 to play in the game. After Washington's Steve Pelluer completed two passes and USC was hit by a pass-interference call, Nelson kicked a 46-yard field goal in a swirling wind for a 6-3 lead. The Huskies scored a TD on the ensuing kickoff when freshman Fred Small recovered the high-hopping boot in the end zone after it had struck a Trojan. With Outside Linebacker Tony Caldwell making 12 tackles, five for losses totaling 25 yards, USC was held to 182 yards in total offense. The Huskies themselves gained a paltry 120 yards.
Two hundred and seventy miles to the east in Spokane, a thunderous roar went up when Washington State fans learned that Washington had gone ahead of USC. The reason: A USC setback coupled with a Washington State defeat of California would tie the Cougars with UCLA for the Pac-10 lead. Washington State's defense got the job done, limiting the Golden Bears to 178 yards in total offense as State won 19-0. The Cougar offense, which lost three of six fumbles, accounted for only 264 yards, but Quarterback Clete Casper scored TDs on a one-yard sneak and a five-yard run. If Washington State wins at Washington this week, it will go to the Rose Bowl for the first time since 1931.
A 17-point fourth period against Arizona State gave UCLA a 34-24 win and kept its Rose Bowl hopes alive. The Bruins slowed the nation's No. 1 offense by recovering three Sun Devil fumbles and stealing four passes. Arizona State, which came into the game averaging 522 yards, gained 406-90 more than UCLA. But the Bruins, who trailed 14-0 after 15 minutes, converted turnovers into points, broke the game open and were in a 17-17 tie as the fourth quarter began. Kevin Nelson began the comeback when he zipped 28 yards for one UCLA touchdown. Quarterback Tom Ramsey then teamed up with Flanker Jojo Townsell on a 57-yard scoring play, and Norm Johnson booted a 44-yard field goal.
It was a dreary day for fans in the Beaver state: Oregon State lost to Arizona 40-7, and Oregon was beaten 42-3 at Stanford. Speedster Darrin Nelson, the Cardinals' 5'8", 185-pound halfback, picked up a total of 197 yards as a runner, pass catcher and punt returner. That gave Nelson 6,735 all-purpose yards for his career, 120 more than the previous record set by Pitt's Tony Dorsett in 1973-76.
Hawaii gave Brigham Young a good battle in Honolulu, but its unbeaten season came to a 13-3 end. The Rainbow Warriors ran for 203 yards and trailed only 6-3 in the third period. But the Cougars settled the outcome by scoring the only touchdown of the game when Wide Receiver Neil Balholm pounced on a fumble by teammate Waymon Hamilton that had bounced into the end zone. The Rainbow Warriors, however, did hold Quarterback Jim McMahon of BYU to a subpar performance: 22 completions on 33 tries for 269 yards.
BYU's victory set up a showdown for the WAC championship this Saturday in Provo against Utah, which held off Wyoming 30-27. The Utes were down 14-9 in the second quarter when freshman walk-on Quarterback Ken Vierra came in and took command. Vierra hit eight of 14 passes for 149 yards and one touchdown.
Running Back Del (Popcorn) Rodgers became the first Utah runner to gain 200 yards in a game, rushing 28 times for 232 yards and two TDs. The Utes were also helped by Todd Speer's 48-yard punting average and by a sack on the game's last play with the ball at the Utah 12.
Notre Dame allowed its first touchdown in 11 quarters but finished with a flourish to defeat Air Force 35-7. After the Falcons had cut the Irish lead to 14-7 in the fourth period, Notre Dame scored three quick touchdowns to pull away. Phil Carter rushed for 156 yards and the first two Irish scores.
Idaho State Quarterback Mike Machurek, the I-AA total offense leader, accounted for 426 with his passing during a 50-24 romp over Utah State. Machurek completed 25 of 42 throws, with four of his five touchdown passes going to Chris Corp.
At the request of the Nebraska team, Slick Steels sang the national anthem before the game against Iowa State. Later in the afternoon, Wingback Anthony Steels, a/k/a Slick, caught a three-yard touchdown pass from Turner Gill that helped the Cornhuskers win 31-7. Steels is a senior who went to high school in Spain, where his father was in the Air Force. His TD was part of a 24-point Husker spree accomplished in 5:08 of the fourth quarter, a spurt that broke apart what had been a 7-7 standoff.
After the game the Huskers learned they had clinched the Big Eight title—and an Orange Bowl bid—as Oklahoma lost at Missouri. A one-yard TD run by Quarterback Brad Perry to cap a 79-yard drive, two field goals by Bob Lucchesi and a 19-yard TD run by Bobby Meyer had put the Tigers on top 19-7 in that game. But before it was over, Mizzou fans had reason to fear a 12th straight loss to the Sooners. Four plays after Oklahoma recovered a Tiger fumble at the Missouri 47 with 2:51 left, Steve Sewell caught a deflected pass and turned it into a 46-yard scoring play that made the score 19-14. But after successfully executing an onside kick, the Sooners were unable to move the ball. Once again, turnovers—six fumbles, two interceptions—bedeviled Oklahoma.
With Frank Seurer passing for 209 yards and a pair of touchdowns, Kansas defeated Colorado 27-0. Oklahoma State toppled Kansas State 31-10 as Rusty Hilger threw for 224 yards and Cornerback Greg Hill ran 97 yards for a touchdown after fielding a fumble in midair.
"So things really haven't changed. It's down to one game. That's the way it's been through the years." That's what Michigan Coach Bo Schembechler said after the Wolverines beat Purdue 28-10. What it all meant was that, as usual, this week's Michigan-Ohio State game will probably settle the Big Ten race. Wolverine Quarterback Steve Smith, who had his first pass intercepted and fumbled on his team's second possession, redeemed himself by throwing 27 yards to Tight End Craig Dunaway to give Michigan a 7-3 lead. Boilermaker Tailback Jeff Feulner's five-yard run on a trap play midway through the third period made the score 10-7. The Wolverines didn't regain the lead until the final period, with touchdowns by Smith on a 26-yard option play, Butch Woolfolk on a one-yard plunge and Lawrence Ricks on a five-yard burst.
Ohio State handed Northwestern its 30th loss in a row. Buckeye Quarterback Art Schlichter starred in the 70-6 rout by hitting 16 of 24 passes for 281 yards before leaving the game midway in the third quarter. As usual, Ohio State was tough against the run (the Wildcats gained only 18 yards in 19 tries) but had trouble against the pass (Northwestern hit for 339 yards). If Michigan beats Ohio State, it will go to the Rose Bowl. Should the Buckeyes win and should Iowa defeat Michigan State, the Hawkeyes will make the trip to Pasadena. So the only way the Buckeyes can smell the roses is if they come through with a win and Iowa loses.
Wisconsin, which seemed to have first place sewed up midway through the season, fell out of contention with a 17-7 loss to Iowa. The Badgers had averaged 243 yards rushing in seven Big Ten games but were held to 43 this time. Iowa didn't make a first down in the second half and had just seven altogether, but the Hawkeyes made the most of five Wisconsin turnovers. Tailback Phil Blatcher scored both Iowa touchdowns, on two- and one-yard runs. Hawkeye punter Reggie Roby averaged 53.7 yards for his seven kicks, making his average for the season 50.3, the nation's best.
Bryan Clark's 15-yard run with 56 seconds to play carried Michigan State past Minnesota 43-36. Tony Eason ran for two touchdowns and passed for another pair to lift Illinois to a 35-14 victory over Indiana.
Toledo remained atop the Mid-American Conference by beating Kent State 17-0. Win-less Eastern Michigan, which has been out-scored 300-81 this season, lost to Bowling Green 28-0.
PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
OFFENSE: Bob Holly, a Princeton senior, set Ivy League single-game records for completions (36 in 55 tries) and passing yardage (501) as the Tigers shocked Yale 35-31. He also threw for four scores.
DEFENSE: Missouri Tackle Jeff Gaylord, a 6'3", 235-pound senior, made 12 tackles, had one sack and recovered three fumbles as the Tigers upset Oklahoma 19-14 and put Nebraska into the Orange Bowl.