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News Nuggets, 11.21.04
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Compiled from staff reports and electronic dispatches

Utah rout of old nemesis BYU forces BCS hand


11.20.04: ABC TV backing out of BCS sweepstakes? ... Former Louisville hoops star dead at 48 ... More...
11.19.04: Holtz paves way for ascension of Spurrier at South Carolina ... Mountain West Conference bonanza rides on Utah-BYU game ... More...
11.18.04: No separate divisions planned for future Big East ... Old nemesis stands in Utes' path to BCS bid ... More...
11.17.04: National talent hunt lands 12 diamond prospects for ECU ... BCA tourney takes on distinct Wolfpack flare ... More...
11.16.04: Badiane joins Heels' Felton on one-game suspension ... BCS football rankings ... AP college basketball poll ... More...
11.15.04: C-USA standings, scoreboard, schedule & TV ... Utes close in on BCS berth ... AP football poll ... More...
11.14.04: Cancer-stricken USF basketball player to miss season ... College football weekend: stars & storylines ... More...
11.13.04: Herrion seals the deal with New Jersey prep target ... Tigers tune up for Pirates with win over USM ... More...
11.12.04: Cook, Badiane fuel ECU win in final preseason test ... Hard-luck Louisville big man lost for season ... More...
11.11.04: Spurrier signals desire for warm weather college job ... LeFors leads Louisville rout of Horned Frogs ... More...
11.10.04: Wednesday primetime preview: TCU at Louisville ... CIAA basketball lands national TV package ... More...
11.09.04: Frogs hopping backwards from BCS territory ... Utah slips in BCS poll despite latest big win ... More...
11.08.04: C-USA standings, scoreboard, schedule & TV ... Associated Press college football poll ... More...
11.07.04: Roundup: Bearcats shoot down Golden Eagles ... College football weekend: stars & storylines ... More...
11.06.04: USM poised to increase its dominance of C-USA ... Juggernaut Utah team downplays distractions ... More...
11.05.04: Pirates overpower Newberry in preseason warmup ... Cardinals gun down Memphis in wild shootout ... More...
11.04.04: Pirates poised to hit hardwood amidst news aplenty ... Primetime TV preview: Louisville at Memphis ... More...
11.03.04: Primetime TV preview: South Florida at UAB ... Almond back in the saddle for No. 21 Southern Miss ... More...
11.02.04: Army game once again the charm for ECU honors ... No. 25 Miners digging out of rut under Price ... Tar Heels savor first victory over Top 5 opponent ... More...
11.01.04: C-USA standings, scoreboard, schedule & TV ... Associated Press college football poll ... More...

SALT LAKE CITY — The BCS is all but busted.

Utah beat rival Brigham Young 52-21 Saturday, completing its first unbeaten season since 1930 and putting the Utes one step closer to the first appearance in the Bowl Championship Series for a team from a conference outside the controversial postseason cartel.

Receiver Steve Savoy ran for two touchdowns and caught a pass for another score to lead the fifth-ranked Utes (11-0, 7-0 Mountain West) and help offset the worst game of the season for Alex Smith. Utah's Heisman hopeful quarterback threw two interceptions — doubling his season total — and had another dropped by a BYU defensive back.

But Smith had enough help around him to get Utah past the rival Cougars (5-6, 4-3) for the third straight year.

Savoy ran 92 yards for a score in the third quarter that turned the game for good in Utah's favor. Quinton Ganther ran for 122 yards on 11 carries and Smith completed 16 of 24 for 184 yards and a touchdown.

A few fans tossed tortillas and some of the Utes donned sombreros in reference to the Fiesta Bowl, where they're most likely headed. Fans spent the final minute of the game lining the sideline and started pouring onto the field with about 15 seconds left to play. It took a few minutes, but both goalposts eventually came down as Utes fans reveled in the perfect season.

Utah won't officially know if it's going to a BCS game until the final standings come out Dec. 5. The Utes need to be in the top six to guarantee a BCS spot and should hang on to the sixth position they held last week unless something strange happens with the computers.

If it wasn't a lock before, Michigan's loss to Ohio State earlier Saturday made it closer to one for the Utes. The Wolverines were one spot behind Utah in the BCS standings and nobody else was close.

John Beck completed 17 of 32 passes for 213 yards and two touchdowns to lead BYU, which has had three consecutive losing seasons for the first time since 1964.

The last six games in the rivalry had been decided by a touchdown or less, including Utah's 3-0 victory a year ago.

This one turned into a rout, but not until late in the game.

The Cougars answered the Utes' first two touchdowns with their own scores, never falling behind by more than seven until the third quarter. But BYU couldn't recover from a lethal turnover in the third quarter that led to Savoy's scamper down the sideline and crushed the Cougars.

BYU's Spencer White had just intercepted a pass from Smith that set the Cougars up at the Utah 45, down just 31-21. But when BYU got creative on first down, Utah's Eric Weddle stepped in front of receiver Austin Collie's pass and intercepted it at the 8.

On the next play, Smith pitched the ball to Savoy and the Ute receiver shuffled his feet through the defense, then bolted down the BYU sideline for a score that put Utah up 38-21.

Savoy caught a 20-yard pass from Smith in the fourth quarter to seal it and defensive lineman Steve Fafita took a handoff 4 yards for a touchdown with 1:03 remaining.

Bo Nagahi returned a fumble 12 yards for a touchdown and ran 23-yards on a fake punt to set up another score for the Utes, who were 3-for-4 on fourth-down conversions. Savoy ran in an option for the first score of the game with 52 seconds left in the first quarter.

Marty Johnson added a 5-yard touchdown run for Utah, but after Nathan Soelberg intercepted a pass from Smith and returned it to the Utah 24-yard line, Brown scored on a 6-yard run to tie it at 14.

Smith nearly threw another pick the next time Utah had the ball, but Aaron Francisco dropped it. That was costly for BYU after Nagahi ran 23 yards on a fake punt to set up Smith's 2-yard touchdown run on a broken play to give Utah a 21-14 halftime lead.

College football weekend: stars & storylines


 —  Troy Smith and Ted Ginn Jr., Ohio State. Smith, ran for 145 yards and completed 13 passes for 241 yards and two TDs without an interception to lead Ohio State to a 37-21 upset victory over No. 7 Michigan. Ginn tied an NCAA record with his fourth punt-return TD of the season, an 82-yarder in the third quarter.

 —  Adrian Peterson, Oklahoma, tied the NCAA record for most 100-yard rushing games by a freshman with his 10th in the No. 2 Sooners' 35-0 win over Baylor. Peterson ran for 240 yards on 32 carries, with three TDs. He has 1,671 yards this season for the undefeated Sooners.

 —  Jon Helmandollar, Boise State, rushed for a school-record five touchdowns, and No. 13 Boise State clinched at least a share of its third straight Western Athletic Conference title with a 55-14 win over Louisiana Tech.

 —  J.J. Arrington, California, ran for 169 yards to set California's single-season rushing record in the fourth-ranked Golden Bears 41-6 win over Stanford, their biggest victory in the Big Game since 1930. Arrington has 1,584 yards and is the only running back in the NCAA to gain at least 100 yards in all of his games this season.

 —  Brock Berlin, Miami, threw for a career-best 361 yards and four TDs in just over a half in the No. 12 Hurricanes' 52-7 rout of Wake Forest.

 —  DeAngelo Williams, Memphis, rushed for 225 yards and four TDs to lead the Tigers to a 38-35 win over East Carolina.


Auburn and Oklahoma, tied for second in the last AP poll, both won. The Sooners routed Baylor 35-0 to improve to 11-0 and 8-0 in the Big 12. They won't play again until the Big 12 championship game on Dec. 4. Auburn rallied from a six-point halftime deficit to beat Alabama 21-13. The Tigers (11-0, 8-0 Southeastern Conference) completed their first perfect regular season since 1993, when the team was on probation. They'll next face Tennessee in the SEC championship game on Dec. 4. ... No. 13 Boise State extended the nation's longest winning streak to 21 games and tied BYU's record for the most consecutive conference wins at 25 after beating Louisiana Tech 55-14. The Broncos (10-0, 7-0 WAC) clinched at least a share of their third straight Western Athletic Conference title. Boise State can claim the WAC title outright beating Nevada next week. ... Top-ranked Southern California did not play, and will face Notre Dame next week. Undefeated No. 5 Utah played BYU later Saturday.


Harvard completed a perfect season by beating Yale 35-3 in the 121st edition of The Game. Harvard (10-0, 7-0 Ivy League) finished unbeaten and untied for the second time in four years. Before 2001, the Crimson had not had a perfect season since 1913. The Crimson had already clinched at least a share of the Ivy title. Harvard beat Yale for the fourth consecutive year; the last Harvard seniors to go 4-0 against their rivals was the class of '23.


Virginia Military Institute finished its third winless season in the school's 114-years of football after losing to Wofford 19-18. The Keydets' other winless seasons came in 1969 and 1997. Texas Southern and Central Florida are the only other winless Division I teams. Texas Southern hosts Morgan State later Saturday and UCF hosts Kent State on Tuesday.


Purdue's Taylor Stubblefield broke the NCAA record for career receptions, catching his 301st pass during the first quarter against Indiana. Stubblefield entered the game needing six receptions to pass Louisville's Arnold Jackson for the career record. Jackson caught 300 passes from 1997-00. Stubblefield caught 14 passes for 138 yards and three touchdowns in a 63-24 rout, giving him a total of 309 receptions. Marshall's Josh Davis entered Saturday with 295 receptions and caught six against Western Michigan to improve to 301 for his career.


In its last game in the Big East, Temple lost to Boston College 34-17. The Owls are getting kicked out of the Big East for failing to meet minimum requirements for membership, most notably in attendance, facilities and fielding a competitive team. Temple finished with its 13th straight losing season and had only 14 Big East wins in 14 conference seasons. Boston College is leaving the Big East for the ACC next year, and can win the conference title with a win over Syracuse next week.


Lafayette beat Lehigh 24-10 in the 140th meeting in college football's most-played rivalry. The Leopards secured a share of the Patriot League championship and the league's automatic bid to the I-AA playoffs. Lafayette leads the all-time series 73-62-5.


Kyle Orton threw for 522 yards and six touchdowns, setting a school record with 530 total yards, to lead Purdue to a 63-24 victory over Indiana. Taylor Stubblefield set the NCAA's receiving mark by catching 14 passes for 138 yards and three TDs, giving him 309 career receptions. The Boilermakers finished with a Big Ten record 763 yards in total offense and scored their most points since 1912.


Northwestern beat Illinois 28-21 in overtime. It was the fourth overtime game this year for the Wildcats, an NCAA Division I-A record. Northwestern also beat Ohio State and Indiana in overtime, and lost to Texas Christian. The Wildcats have to win at Hawaii next weekend to be bowl eligible.


Steven Gostkowski made a tie-breaking field goal with six seconds left to give Memphis a 38-35 win over East Carolina.


Fourth-stringer Brian Luke threw for 239 yards and two touchdowns, helping Kansas end a 13-game Big 12 road losing streak with a 31-14 victory over Missouri.


Florida Atlantic intercepted Illinois State quarterback Yance Vaughan five times in the Owls' 28-0 win. It was the first home win of the season for Florida Atlantic. Vaughan finished 11-for-27 for 169 yards, but completed just one pass in the first half.


``Have I ever said I wasn't (coming back)? Is that wishful thinking? I'm planning to be back next year.''  —  Joe Paterno, after the Nittany Lions beat Michigan State 37-13, ending his 39th season at Penn State with a win.

News Nuggets are compiled periodically based on material supplied by staff members; data published by ECU, Conference USA and its member schools; and reports from Associated Press and other sources. Copyright 2004 and other publishers. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.


Page Updated: 02/23/2007 12:06 PM


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