1. UCLA (9-1)
2. USC (8-1-1)
3. ARIZONA STATE (9-1)
On the first play UCLA Quarterback Mark Harmon gave a fake and a nod, then lofted a 32-yard pass to freshman Tight End Ray Burks, who ran 50 more yards to score with only 15 seconds ticked off on the clock. At the end it was UCLA 56-Oregon State 14, and Oregon State Coach Dee Andros, thinking perhaps of USC, was saying that it was going to take a whale of a club to beat Pepper Rodgers' Uclans.
"I don't care what they run, they've got great ball handling, great execution and four great backs to run that damn wishbone," said Andros. "In 25 years of coaching this is the first time a team I've played hasn't made a turnover or once punted."
November 26, 1973
During the rout in the rain, Tailback Kermit Johnson carried only 12 times but he shattered two UCLA records. His 49 yards gave him 1,022 for the year, making him the first Bruin ever to exceed 1,000 in a season. And his three touchdowns gave him 15 for the year, passing the record of 14 set by Gary Beban in 1965. "I'm proudest of the 1,000-yard year," he said. "Mainly because all the guys up front wanted me to get it. They are the ones who deserve it."
USC, which plays UCLA this week for the Pac-8 championship and the host berth in the Rose Bowl, hadn't figured Washington to run much, and they were right. The Huskies put the ball up 45 times, completed 19 passes and twice led the Trojans before falling apart 42-19. At halftime, in the face of the aerial assault, Coach John McKay moved Artimus Parker from safety to a roving back in the secondary, and from there Parker intercepted three passes to turn loose USC's legions on scoring sprees.
In other Pac-8 action, Quarterback Mike Boryla broke open a tight game with two third-quarter passes to reserve Tight End Brad Williams, and Stanford clinched third place in the conference with a tidy 24-7 victory over Oregon. Washington State scored on a field goal the first time it had the ball, added three straight touchdowns and then held on to down California 31-28. The Bears closed to within three points in the last quarter, but then WSU's Andrew Jones went six yards to score and close it out.
Trailing by a point and with only 27 seconds to play, Arizona Coach Jim Young sent in a two-point conversion play, but something was lost in the communication. The play failed and Air Force won 27-26. "That's the first time I ever had to make that kind of a decision," Young said, "but there's no question that we made a big mistake on the play. I requested that the ball be moved to the far hash mark. That's the option of the offensive team. But apparently that part of my message was never delivered."
The University of Texas at El Paso scored first, but then Arizona State's Woody Green took over, rushing 12 times for 132 yards and three scores en route to a 54-13 rout. Arizona State, which leads the nation in total offense with 551.9 yards per game, amassed 615 against hapless UTEP.
1. ALABAMA (9-0)
2. LSU (9-0)
3. NO. CAROLINA ST. (7-3)
Bear Bryant was not all that happy with Alabama's 43-13 thumping of the University of Miami. "We were not consistent on offense," he said. Three of Alabama's touchdowns came on long strikes: Willie Shelby returned one Miami punt 52 yards; Duffy Boles ran back another 62 yards; and Gary Rutledge hit Johnny Sharpless with a 69-yard scoring pass. Take away the three explosions and PATs and that makes it a 22-13 ball game and, as Bryant said, "LSU is waiting for us Thursday."
LSU, meanwhile, was saving as much strength as possible, using almost nothing but reserves for the last two quarters, content with a modest 26-7 victory over Mississippi State. Even at that, LSU came away sorely wounded. Offensive Guard Tyler Lafauci, a prime All-America candidate and an outstanding pass blocker, injured his knee, and offensive Tackle Richard Brooks, who plays next to Lafauci, pulled a hamstring muscle.
Mississippi used what Coach John Vaught calls the new "I" formation to upset Tennessee 28-18, which didn't stop the Vols from accepting a bid to the Gator Bowl.
In a game in which a punt was punted twice, Georgia finally overcame Auburn 28-14 and now needs only a victory over Georgia Tech, a 26-22 victor over Navy, to earn a spot in the Peach Bowl. The double punt came in the third quarter, with Auburn's Roger Pruett picking up his first kick, which had been blocked, and getting off a wobbly second one, which bounced off a Georgia player. An Auburn player fell on the ball and a Georgia player fell on him. That's when the brawl started. Said Georgia Coach Vince Dooley, "Anything I would say would just show my ignorance of the rules." Said Auburn Coach Shug Jordan, "How the hell do I know what happened. It was just a lot of mumbo-jumbo." Oh, well. In other SEC action, freshman David Posey kicked field goals of 46 and 28 yards as Florida upset Kentucky 20-18. Tulane got two early scores from Quarterback Steve Foley and went on to beat Vanderbilt 24-3.
Surviving a terrible offensive showing, North Carolina State managed to score twice in the last quarter to down Duke 21-3, the last touchdown coming in the final seconds after Duke had accidentally called time out with the ball on its own three. With Maryland defeating Clemson 28-13, the victory assured N.C. State of the Atlantic Coast Conference co-championship.
1. TEXAS (7-2)
2. HOUSTON (8-1)
3. TEXAS TECH (9-1)
Last week one of the hunting seasons opened in Texas and Darrell Royal told his troops that that meant for Horned Frogs. So the Longhorns went out and slaughtered TCU 52-7. The victory was Texas' 30th straight at home and leaves Royal just one short of tying Jess Neely's record as the winningest coach in Southwest Conference history. Neely won 144 games during his career at Rice, and Royal should match that against Texas A&M Thanksgiving Day.
It was another big one for Roosevelt Leaks, who gained 105 yards in 22 carries to run his season's total to 1,388, surpassing by 26 yards the 23-year-old SWC season rushing record set by Bob Smith of Texas A&M. And it could have been greater. With the score 38-7, Leaks retired early in the third quarter. As TCU Coach Billy Tohill noted later, "We started wrong—and it went downhill from there."
Rolling to its highest score in history, Texas Tech slammed Baylor 55-24 and promptly accepted a bid to the Gator Bowl. At one point Tech trailed 10-7 but then scored three times in a minute and 41 seconds to take a commanding 18-point lead. Tech now stands 9-1 with only Arkansas left.
Another SWC mark fell last week, this one to Arkansas' Dickey Morton, who rushed for 189 yards in a 7-7 tie with SMU, giving him a career mark of 3,262, exceeding the record set by Texas' Chris Gilbert.
With little more than two minutes to play, Carl Swierc took off on a 95-yard touchdown return of a kickoff and the Rice Owls stunned favored Texas A&M 24-20. Swierc's scoring romp followed a second-half three-touchdown scoring spree by A&M.
Traveling mostly on the passing arm of Quarterback Jeb Blount, Tulsa defeated North Texas State 24-15 and clinched the Missouri Valley Conference co-championship. Blount was stung by five pass interceptions but completed 15 of 26 for 205 yards.
1. PENN STATE (10-0)
2. PITT (6-3-1)
3. HARVARD (7-1)
Harvard, looking ahead to this week's Ivy League final with Yale, had to overcome a 13-point disadvantage before downing surprising Brown 35-32 to remain in a tie with Dartmouth for the league lead. At that, Harvard won only because Brown twice missed on placement conversions and once on a two-point pass-conversion attempt.
After losing its first three games Dartmouth has come on with a big rush, making Cornell, the preseason Ivy favorite, its fifth straight victim, 17-0. Rich Klupchak, out three games with a shoulder separation, ran for 128 yards, mostly around the corners.
With another Orange Bowl berth safely tucked away, Penn State used Ohio University as little more than a polishing cloth for John Cappelletti's Heisman Trophy credentials. The senior tailback, playing less than half the game, ran for 204 yards and scored four times as the Lions won easily 49-10. Asked if he would have done anything different if he had known how strong Penn State really was, Ohio Coach Bill Hess said, "Yes, I wouldn't have scheduled them."
Syracuse, which has been having more than its share of despair, took the opening kickoff on a 76-yard march to score and went from there to upset Boston College 24-13.
Pitt had little trouble in downing winless Army 34-0, giving the Panthers their sixth victory and their first winning season since 1963, and then they surprised no one by accepting a bid to play in the Fiesta Bowl on Dec. 21.
Capitalizing on five turnovers, C. W. Post defeated Fordham 33-0 for its ninth victory against one loss. Rolling up 452 yards and matching four pass interceptions with four fumble recoveries, Delaware shocked Bucknell 50-0. And for the second straight year Williams defeated an unbeaten Amherst team, this time 30-14, to win their third successive Little Three championship.
1. OHIO STATE (9-0)
2. OKLAHOMA (8-0-1)
3. MICHIGAN (10-0)
Michigan and Ohio State will finally get around to picking on someone their own size this week: each other. The Big Two have finally run out of sparring partners. The Buckeyes pounded poor Iowa 55-13 while Michigan unloaded on Purdue 34-9. The workout over with, Bo Schembechler, the Michigan coach, said that he was relieved and now maybe they could start getting ready for Ohio State. "Everybody has been talking about Ohio State for three weeks. How the hell do you get a team prepared for anything else? But now they can talk Ohio because that's next."
Before Purdue, Schembechler had been worried. "Maybe I've been too nice," he mused. "And that doesn't become me at all. I'm gonna be pretty damn tough from now on." He was upset because the week before his troops had lost four of six fumbles in beating Illinois 21-6.
"This week my defensive scout team will tackle the football on every down," Schembechler had warned, "and the first guy that drops it, I'll run him until his tongue hangs out. Carelessness causes fumbles. The question is whether I can teach them not to be careless." As an educator, Schembechler was faultless. No one fumbled, and after a slow first-half start Michigan's powerful ground game (310 yards) crushed any Purdue hopes of an upset by outscoring the Boilermakers in the second half 28-6.
For Ohio State, Iowa went into a six-man line, ignoring what Woody Hayes has said in the past: "Anybody can take away one of our backs with their defense if they want to pay the price."
So Ohio State simply pitched out to Archie Griffin, and the sensational sophomore swept the flanks for 246 yards, breaking his own school record. "We went to the six-man line so they wouldn't punch us around," said Iowa Coach Frank Lauterbur. "If you want an endorsement of Ohio State, I'll endorse them."
At Ames, Iowa, the Sun Bowl people confided happily at halftime that they had signed Missouri and Auburn, and then ran into a total eclipse A two-touchdown underdog, Iowa State came from nowhere to upset Missouri 17-7, and the game was hardly over when another interesting score arrived at the stadium: Georgia 28, Auburn 14. "I was petrified," said Iowa State freshman Quarterback Buddy Hardeman, filling in for injured regular Wayne Stanley. Other quarterbacks should be so fearful before a game. Hardeman merely completed five passes for 74 yards and a touchdown and ran 15 times for 54 yards.
"I've been on the other side," said Barry Switzer, running in 72 players to hold down a 48-20 Oklahoma rout of Kansas. An authority on Nebraska, Kansas State Coach Vince Gibson decided that the Cornhuskers belonged in the Top Ten but that they were not a superteam without Johnny Rodgers. And so, without Rodgers, who is now doing his thing in the Canadian League, Nebraska ran up 434 yards on the ground, added 178 passing and crushed the Wildcats 50-21. Oklahoma State, twice beaten and twice tied, scored 31 straight points and gained a 38-24 conquest of defensively tender Colorado.
Elsewhere, Wisconsin Quarterback Gregg Bohlig moved the Badgers 60 yards in the final minute for the touchdown that nipped Northwestern 36-34, while Michigan State survived a last-minute surge by Indiana to hand the Hoosiers their sixth straight Big Ten loss, 10-9. Minnesota recovered six Illinois fumbles and wiped out a 13-point deficit to win 19-16. Marshall senior Quarterback Reggie Oliver completed 22 of 26 passes for 217 yards in a 37-14 victory over Dayton.
PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
THE BACK: Oklahoma Halfback Joe Washington rushed for two touchdowns and 119 yards against Kansas, giving him 1,006 yards for the season and making him the first Big Eight player to pass the 1,000-yard mark this year.
THE LINEMAN: Steve Heil, a 6'4", 205-pound linebacker, nailed the runner on a two-point conversion attempt in the last seconds to save Air Force's 27-26 upset victory over Arizona. Before that, Heil was in on 17 other tackles.