WAC & UH OPPONENTS
’Bama loses on missed PAT
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. » Mitch Mustain threw an 11-yard touchdown pass to Ben Cleveland in the second overtime -- and Jeremy Davis made the extra point -- to give Arkansas a 24-23 victory over Alabama yesterday.
The Crimson Tide had taken a 23-17 lead on a 1-yard pass from John Parker Wilson to Nick Walker, but Leigh Tiffin finished a horrendous afternoon of kicking by missing the extra point. Tiffin had already missed a 33-yard field-goal attempt in the first half, a 30-yarder late in the fourth quarter and a 37-yarder that would have won it in the first overtime.
Arkansas faced third down at the 11 on its final possession, but Alabama lost track of Cleveland, and he came down with Mustain's pass in the end zone to tie it. The celebration was a bit subdued at first -- Davis had missed an extra point himself in the third quarter -- but when his final kick sailed through, the Razorbacks charged onto the field.
Coach Houston Nutt, under pressure around Arkansas after two straight losing seasons, led the crowd in loud rendition of the school's fight song. The Razorbacks are 2-0 in Southeastern Conference play for the first time since 1998, Nutt's first season as their coach.
Arkansas added to its legacy of overtime thrillers. The Razorbacks are now 6-1 in overtime, although this was their first home game that required an extra session.
Arkansas won the two longest games in NCAA history -- in seven overtimes over Mississippi in 2003 and Kentucky in 2001. The Razorbacks also lost a six-overtime game to Tennessee in 2002.
Alabama is 2-6 in overtime games and hasn't won one since 1999. The Crimson Tide lost to Arkansas in double overtime in 2003.
Mustain, the Razorbacks' prized freshman, threw three interceptions -- including one in the first overtime that gave Alabama a great opportunity to win. But Tiffin, whose fourth-quarter kick was the margin in the Crimson Tide's 13-10 win over Vanderbilt two weekends ago, couldn't capitalize. All of Tiffin's misses were wide right.
Tiffin has been handling placekicking duties because of an injury to Jamie Christensen, who made three winning kicks late in the fourth quarter last year.
Texas A&M 45, Louisiana Tech 14
COLLEGE STATION, Texas » Stephen McGee threw three touchdown passes and Jorvorskie Lane ran for two scores to lead the Aggies to a win over the Bulldogs in a game that started 2 hours late because of lightning.
McGee completed 19 of 28 passes for a career-high 318 yards for the Aggies.
Patrick Jackson ran for 81 yards and a touchdown for the Bulldogs, who dropped to 4-20 against the Big 12.
Louisiana Tech drove into A&M territory on three of its first four possessions, but came away with nothing, mostly because quarterback Zac Champion started 4-for-15.
BYU 38, Utah St. 0
PROVO, Utah » Jason Beck passed for 305 yards and a touchdown in his first start and Fui Vakapuna ran for three scores to lead the Cougars past the Aggies.
Beck was starting for John Beck (no relation), who rested his sprained right ankle, and completed 20 of 28 passes with one interception as the Cougars gained 441 yards of offense.
Utah State was shut out for the third straight game and has yet to score a point on offense this season.
Marcus Cross ran for 127 yards -- more than half of Utah State's 242 yards of offense. Leon Jackson was 14-for-24 for 90 yards with one interception, which Justin Robinson returned 64 yards for a touchdown.
Oregon St. 38, Idaho 0
CORVALLIS, Ore. » Dennis Erickson returned to Reser Stadium only to get blanked by his former team.
Yvenson Bernard ran for 117 yards and a pair of touchdowns and Erickson's old team, Oregon State, beat his new one, Idaho.
Some in the crowd gave Erickson a standing ovation as he ran onto the field with the Vandals. There were also a smattering of boos.
San Jose State 17, Cal Poly 7
SAN JOSE, Calif. » San Jose State cornerback Dwight Lowery tied a school record with three interceptions and running back Yonus Davis rushed for 81 yards and two touchdowns to lead the Spartans to a nonconference win over previously unbeaten Cal Poly, ranked No. 3 in NCAA Division I-AA.
Lowery, a junior college transfer playing in his first season at San Jose, became just the sixth player in school history to record three interceptions in one game. All three interceptions came off Cal Poly quarterback Matt Brennan, who struggled after coming off the bench late in the second quarter.
Purdue 27, Minnesota 21
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. » Curtis Painter passed for 243 yards and two touchdowns to help the Boilermakers beat the Golden Gophers.
Running back Jaycen Taylor gained 110 total yards and scored twice and Dustin Keller had six catches for 119 yards for the Boilermakers, who will take a seven-game winning streak into next week's game at Notre Dame.
E. Illinois 24, Samford 13
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. » Vincent Webb rushed for 208 yards and a touchdown as the Panthers defeated the Bulldogs in the Ohio Valley Conference opener for both teams.
Webb accounted for more than half of the Panthers' total offense as he average 7.2 yards per carry. Webb helped seal the win for Eastern Illinois when he scored on a 27-yard run midway through the fourth quarter.