Saturday's SEC College Football Capsules
Sunday, September 9, 2012
LOUISIANA-MONROE 34, ARKANSAS 31 OT
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — Kolton Browning made the most of his return to Arkansas.
Browning's 16-yard touchdown run on fourth-and-one lifted Louisiana-Monroe to a 34-31 overtime win over the No. 8 Razorbacks on Saturday night.
Browning accounted for 481 yards of total offense and four touchdowns to lead the Warhawks (1-0) to their first win over a Southeastern Conference team since defeating Alabama in 2007.
The junior made his first career start in Little Rock's War Memorial Stadium two years ago as a freshman, a 31-7 loss by the Warhawks. He showed his maturity and then some in his return, helping Louisiana-Monroe outgain Arkansas 550-377 in total yards.
The Razorbacks (1-1) played the second half without quarterback Tyler Wilson, who suffered a head injury after taking several big hits in the first half.
Wilson, who also missed the second half against New Mexico last season with concussion-like symptoms, was 11-of-20 passing for 196 yards and a pair of touchdowns before leaving the game at halftime.
The Warhawks trailed 28-7 midway through the third quarter before rallying behind Browning. The second-team Sun Belt Conference quarterback from a season ago found Brent Leonard for a 23-yard touchdown pass on fourth-and-10 with 55 seconds remaining in regulation to tie the game at 28-28.
ALABAMA 35, WESTERN KENTUCKY 0
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) — AJ McCarron passed for 219 yards and matched his career high with four touchdown passes to lead No. 1 Alabama to a 35-0 win over Western Kentucky on Saturday.
McCarron had two scoring tosses apiece to Christion Jones and Kevin Norwood in a performance that was more about big plays than consistent, muscle-flexing dominance for the top-ranked Crimson Tide (2-0). The Hilltoppers (1-1) were 40-point underdogs and the sandwich opponent between top 10 opponents Michigan and No. 8 Arkansas.
A running game that produced 232 yards against the Wolverines took a back seat to McCarron and the capitalistic defense. McCarron completed 14 of 19 passes and played all but the final series.
Norwood caught three passes for 92 yards.
Alabama forced four turnovers, three fumbles and a C.J. Mosley interception to keep Western Kentucky's offense from mounting any real scoring threats.
KENTUCKY 47, KENT STATE 14
LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) — Maxwell Smith had a career-best 354 yards passing and four touchdowns and Raymond Sanders added a career-high 115 yards rushing as Kentucky beat Kent State 47-14 Saturday night to win its seventh straight home opener.
The Wildcats, who trailed 7-0 at the end of the first quarter, racked up 539 yards to wear down the Golden Flashes. Aaron Boyd caught 11 passes for 100 yards for Kentucky (1-1).
Trayion Durham and Dri Archer each rushed for a touchdown for Kent State (1-1).
Boyd caught his first career touchdown in the back of the end zone with 14:04 remaining in the first half. Six minutes later, Sanders rushed 67 yards for a score, then Craig McIntosh booted a 47-yard field goal to give Kentucky a 17-7 halftime lead.
After Durham's 26-yard touchdown run pulled the Golden Flashes within 17-14, the Wildcats scored 30 unanswered points in the last 22:06.
GEORGIA 41, MISSOURI 20
COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — No. 7 Georgia trailed by eight points early in the third quarter and was down by three late in that quarter. Missouri was rising to the occasion in its SEC debut, fueled by a sellout crowd that anticipated the game for months and had been tailgating much of the day.
Aaron Murray hit Marlon Brown for two of his three touchdown passes, the second for the go-ahead score as the Bulldogs recovered from a shaky start with 32 second-half points that spoiled Missouri's SEC debut in a 41-20 victory Saturday night.
The Bulldogs (2-0, 1-0) trailed 17-9 early in the third quarter before turning Missouri's SEC debut into an unsatisfying initiation for the Tigers (1-1, 0-1) and a sellout crowd of 71,004 clad in yellow and waving yellow pom-pons.
LSU 41, WASHINGTON 3
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Alfred Blue's explosive runs were tough for Washington to handle. The rest of LSU's running backs made it a really long night for the overmatched Huskies.
Blue rushed for 101 yards, including a 21-yard score, and No. 3 LSU racked up 242 yards on the ground in a 41-3 victory over Washington on Saturday night.
Kenny Hilliard added a pair of short touchdowns and fullback J.C. Copeland pounded through the pile for another score for LSU (2-0), which basically ran at will while averaging nearly 5 yards per carry.
Tigers quarterback Zach Mettenberger was 12 of 18 for 195 yards, including a 32-yard scoring pass to Kadron Boone. James Wright caught five passes for 75 yards.
Keith Price was 17 of 36 for 157 yards for the Huskies (1-1). Normally a good scrambler, Price had trouble with LSU's speedy defenders, who sacked him four times and intercepted him once.
TENNESSEE 51, GEORGIA STATE 13
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Justin Hunter tied a school single-game record Saturday by catching three of Tyler Bray's four touchdown passes, as Tennessee trounced Football Championship Subdivision program Georgia State 51-13 in its home opener Saturday.
Hunter caught eight passes for 146 yards in his second game back for Tennessee (2-0) after tearing the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee last September. A Tennessee player had caught three touchdown passes in a game eight previous times, most recently by Chris Hannon in a 59-21 victory over Mississippi State in 2003.
Bray went 18 of 20 for 310 yards and completed his last 13 passes, the third-longest streak in school history. His other touchdown pass was a 19-yarder to Mychal Rivera, who was celebrating his 22nd birthday.
Rajion Neal added two touchdown runs for Tennessee, which broke the game open against the Panthers (0-2) when Hunter scored twice in the last 4 ½ minutes of the first half.
OLE MISS 28, UTEP 10
OXFORD, Miss. (AP) — Bo Wallace threw for three touchdown passes and ran for another Saturday night as Mississippi defeated Texas-El Paso 28-10, improving to 2-0 for only the second time in 10 seasons.
Wallace finished 15 of 22 for 174 yards and rushed 11 times for 53 yards as the Rebels built a 21-0 halftime lead. The Rebels finished with 538 yards of total offense, including 113 yards by Jeff Scott on 13 carries.
UTEP (0-2), after failing to score an offensive touchdown in six quarters, rallied to pull within 21-10 in the third quarter. Nick Lamaison finished 21 of 33 for 213 yards but was sacked five times and the Miners never seriously threatened in the final quarter.
Ole Miss set the tone on its opening possession, as Wallace's first completion was a 55-yard touchdown pass to Donte Moncrief. The stop-and-go sideline route was the longest play of the game as Moncrief finished with three catches for 72 yards.
NORTHWESTERN 23, VANDERBILT 13
EVANSTON, Ill. (AP) — Venric Mark ran for 123 yards and a late touchdown, Tyler Scott forced a key fumble and Northwestern beat Vanderbilt 23-13 Saturday night.
Northwestern (2-0) didn't score a touchdown in the first three quarters but managed 17 points in the fourth to come away with another dramatic win after beating Syracuse 42-41 in the opener.
The Wildcats finally found the end zone when Mark ran it in from the 7 to give Northwestern a short-lived 13-10 lead with 9:28 left in the game. Vanderbilt's Zac Stacy then turned a short swing pass into a 55-yard gain that put the ball on the 14, but instead of a touchdown, the Commodores had to settle for a tying 26-yard field goal by Carey Spear.
Northwestern caught a break on the next drive when Trevor Siemian's 34-yard pass to Rashad Lawrence along the left sideline was ruled a completion even though he fumbled the ball as he went out of bounds. The call was upheld after a review, putting the ball on the Vanderbilt 22, and Jeff Budzien kicked an 18-yarder with 2:01 remaining to break the tie.
Scott then forced a fumble when he sacked Jordan Rodgers on Vanderbilt's next play from scrimmage, and Dean Lowry recovered the ball. That led to a 29-yard TD run by Kain Colter, sending Vanderbilt (0-2) to another difficult loss.
FLORIDA 20, TEXAS A&M 17
COLLEGE STATION, Texas (AP) — Mike Gillislee ran for 83 yards and two touchdowns and No. 24 Florida shut down Texas A&M's offense in the second half in a 20-17 win on Saturday in the Aggies' first Southeastern Conference game after moving from the Big 12.
Florida trailed 17-10 at halftime after a first half where Texas A&M's offense under new coach Kevin Sumlin pretty much did what it wanted. Things changed in the second half as the Gators clamped down and forced punts each of A&M's six possessions after the break.
Caleb Sturgis helped Florida cut A&M's lead to 17-13 with a 25-yard field goal early in the third quarter.
Florida quarterback Jeff Driskel looked indecisive most of the day and was sacked eight times. But he made a play when he had to, finding Omarius Hines on a 39-yard completion to propel a drive early in the fourth quarter.
SOUTH CAROLINA 48, EAST CAROLINA 10
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Dylan Thompson completed 21 of 37 passes for 330 yards and three touchdowns to help No. 9 South Carolina (2-0) beat East Carolina 48-10 Saturday.
Thompson started the game in place of the injured Connor Shaw, and left little doubt coach Steve Spurrier made the right choice to let Shaw rest.
Thompson's first completion was a 53-yard pass to Damiere Byrd. He finished the game averaging almost 16 yards a completion and did not throw an interception.
The rejuvenated passing game allowed Spurrier to use star running back Marcus Lattimore sparingly. He gained 40 yards on 13 carries.
East Carolina (1-1) gained 403 yards. But the Pirates turned the ball over five times, including four interceptions and a fumble in just 16 plays.
MISSISSIPPI STATE 28, AUBURN 10
STARKVILLE, Miss. (AP) — As Mississippi State coach Dan Mullen watched the dropped passes, missed field goals and costly penalties mount, he couldn't help but wonder if he was watching one of those sad, what-could-have-been games that have dogged the Bulldogs for years.
The triumphant ending was a welcome surprise.
Mississippi State scored 21 answered points in a dominant second half for a 28-10 victory over Auburn on Saturday at Davis Wade Stadium. Tyler Russell threw for 222 yards and three touchdowns — including two to senior tight end Marcus Green — and LaDarius Perkins rushed for 83 yards and a touchdown.
The victory broke a string of unsavory trends for the Bulldogs. They had lost 10 out of the last 11 against Auburn — including four straight — and hadn't won a Southeastern Conference opener since 1999.
It was also Mullen's first victory against the SEC Western Division's best four teams. He was 0-12 combined against Alabama, LSU, Arkansas and Auburn until Saturday's breakthrough.