He who scores first usually laughs last, but Florida, Alabama and Kentucky were almost too scared to smile even though they were Southeastern Conference winners. And then there was LSU, which took a 10-7 lead over Mississippi and went on to lose 17-13.
Florida led Auburn 14-0, but needed a 10-point splurge in the final period to win 31-14 after the Tigers had made it 21-14. Gator Jimmy DuBose went over the 1,000-yard mark by gaining 149 yards, and Quarterback Jimmy Fisher threw two touchdown passes.
Alabama plodded 76 yards to a touchdown the second time it had the ball against Mississippi State and held its 7-0 lead until late in the first half. Then, with three minutes to go, the Bulldogs snarled back. Middle Guard Harvey Hull picked off an Alabama pitchout and went 45 yards for a TD. Two minutes later the Bulldogs took a 10-7 lead on a field goal. Properly shaken, the Crimson Tide scored twice to win 21-10, regaining the lead when Defensive Back Tyrone King scampered 26 yards with an interception. Florida and Alabama (both 4-0) continue to share first place in the SEC standings.
November 10, 1975
Tulane kept Kentucky edgy as Buddy Gilbert gained 265 yards through the air. But the Wildcat defense set up two touchdowns and a field goal, intercepting a pass and recovering two Green Wave fumbles as Kentucky prevailed 23-10.
Mississippi overhauled LSU when Coach Ken Cooper disdained going for a field goal and a 13-13 tie. Instead, he had his Rebels go for broke on fourth-and-two and they came through with a 16-yard scoring pass from Tim Ellis to Michael Sweet in the final 42 seconds.
Tennessee knocked off Colorado State 28-7 as Randy Wallace teamed up with End John Yarborough on two touchdown passes. Georgia beat stubborn Richmond 28-24 and Georgia Tech decked Duke 21-6.
1. Alabama (7-1)
2. Florida (7-1)
3. Georgia (6-2)
California Coach Mike White and his Washington counterpart, Don James, went gambling last Saturday and the two high rollers got the numbers they wanted: Golden Bears 28, USC 14 and Huskies 17, UCLA 13. As a result of the upsets, California (4-1) took the lead in the Pacific Eight race, with Washington, USC, UCLA and Stanford (all 3-1) bunched in second.
The day before he faced California, USC's John McKay confirmed rumors that he would join the pro ranks next season as coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, one of two new NFL teams. As for Mike White, he is just beginning to enjoy life in the Pacific Eight in this, his fourth year at Cal.
White decided to gamble by stunting and stacking his defense against USC, daring the Trojans to pass. It paid off: the Trojans completed just three of 11 for 44 yards and Ricky Bell was held to 121 yards rushing. White also gambled that his offense, tops in the nation with a 437.9-yards-per-game average, would be able to move against USC. the Pac-8 leader in defense.
What his offense did was just plain gambol, rolling up a total of 477 yards. Joe Roth zeroed in with his passes, completing 19 of 31 for 244 yards and two touchdowns. Split End Steve Rivera latched on to nine passes for 131 yards. Chuck Muncie was excellent as he accumulated 205 yards despite a bum ankle. And the defense stopped USC on fourth-and-goal at the one-yard line in the last few seconds of the first half.
When the final gun sounded Muncie, bad ankle and all, made one last dash—across the field to shake McKay's hand, perhaps suspecting he had impressed him enough to be drafted by Tampa Bay, which should get one of the NFL's first two picks.
Don James, who is in his first year at Washington, also gambled on defense, setting his outside linebackers exceptionally wide to contain UCLA Quarterback John Sciarra. That made the Huskies vulnerable up the middle, but they buttoned up when they had to, thanks largely to Weak Safety Al Burleson, who was ever-present, getting in on nine tackles, seven of them unassisted. Eleven penalties for 104 yards also hampered the frustrated Bruins.
More than anything, though, it was the running of 6'5", 250-pound Fullback Robin Earl that shattered the Bruins. Earl carried the ball 27 times, never once lost an inch and wound up with 169 yards. On his most devastating jaunt he blasted through the right side in the second period, bowled over would-be tacklers and went 56 yards. James Anderson, who scored both Washington touchdowns and ran for 84 yards, wrapped it up by catching a three-yard TD pass.
Following a 28-22 loss to Stanford, Oregon State Coach Dee Andros announced he would retire at the end of the season, his 11th at the helm of the Beavers. But there was joy for Oregon, which overcame a 14-3 halftime deficit to trim Washington State 26-14. Stan Woodfill kicked field goals of 44, 33, 23 and 33 yards for the Ducks, who won their first conference game in 15 outings dating back to 1973.
Utah had to hand it to Arizona State's defenders. Well, the Utes did not have to hand it to them, it just seemed they did as the Sun Devils intercepted nine Utah passes en route to a 40-14 victory that kept them atop the Western AC.
Arizona throttled Brigham Young 36-20 to move into a tie for second with Colorado State in the WAC. Theopolis Bell caught scoring passes of 24 and 23 yards from Bruce Hill and set up two other Wildcat scores with kickoff returns of 65 and 71 yards.
Dave Lawson of Air Force broke the national career record for points by kicking with four field goals and three PATs in a 33-3 conquest of Army. In raising his point total to 224, Lawson helped the Falcons end a 12-game winless streak.
San Diego State, the country's most prolific passing team, stopped Pacific 31-12, Craig Penrose completing 25 of 31 for 280 yards. Penrose came within one of tying the NCAA mark for consecutive completions, hitting 14 straight.
1. Arizona State (8-0)
2. USC (7-1)
3. San Diego State (8-0)
Southern Methodist, a three-touchdown underdog, tried to horn in on Texas. With Wayne Morris rambling for 202 yards to pass Alvin Max-son as SMU's alltime rushing leader, the Mustangs outgained the Longhorns on the ground 351 yards to 245. SMU even took a 7-0 lead before Texas geared up for a 30-22 victory. Bringing the Longhorns back were field goals of 52, 48 and 36 yards by freshman Russell Erxleben, and 160 yards rushing and two touchdowns by Earl Campbell. In winning, Texas gained a half-game edge in the Southwest Conference over idle Texas A & M, which, because of a TV-requested schedule change, will face Arkansas in a season-ending contest on Dec. 6.
Neither rain nor muck nor the Rice defenders could stop the Texas Tech passing combination of Tommy Duniven to Sylvester Brown. Squishing along the soggy turf and reaching between raindrops late in the third quarter, Brown hauled in a 32-yard toss from Duniven and then slid and slithered the remaining 40 yards for Tech's final score in a 28-24 win. Halfback Cleveland Franklin gained 190 yards as Baylor handed TCU its 18th loss in a row. 24-6.
1. Texas A & M (7-0)
2. Texas (7-1)
3. Arkansas (5-2)
Minutes before taking on Ohio State, Indiana Coach Lee Corso said, "I've been coaching offense all week. I think I can beat George Hill [the Buckeyes' defensive coordinator], but I can't beat that other guy [Coach Woody Hayes]. I've got just one objective: score two touchdowns. Nobody's done that on Ohio State this year."
It seemed like just another stream of words from the loquacious Corso as the Buckeyes forged a 17-0 halftime advantage. Ohio State took the second-half kickoff, gained 11 yards on its first play—and for the rest of the third period picked up just 11 yards in 12 tries. While the Buckeyes stumbled, the Hoosiers rumbled, driving 50 and 90 yards for third-period touchdowns that brought them up to 17-14.
"Our juices were flowing, man," Corso said after the game. In the fourth quarter, though, Ohio State shut off the flow, held Indiana to minus two yards and pulled away to a 24-14 win. For the 29th game in a row, Archie Griffin went over the 100-yard mark, zipping and darting for 150 yards. Fullback Pete Johnson picked up another 150 yards and scored his 19th touchdown. The top Indiana gainer was Fullback Rick Enis, who got both Hoosier touchdowns and racked up 148 yards on the ground.
Michigan remained tied with Ohio State for the Big Ten lead by putting down pesky Minnesota 28-21. After trailing 21-7, the Gophers knotted the score at 21-all. Tony Dungy, who had a 17-for-31 day, tossed a 14-yard scoring strike to Ron Kullas to cut the Wolverine margin to 21-14 and Buddy Holmes tied it up with a 16-yard TD run in the third period. But midway through the final quarter, Michigan's Gordon Bell capped his 172-yard performance by spurting 23 yards for the game-winning points.
Other Big Ten winners were Wisconsin over Illinois 18-9, Purdue over Michigan State 20-10 and Iowa over Northwestern 24-21. Billy Marek surpassed Alan Ameche as the Badgers' alltime top rusher, his 189 yards raising his total to 3,350. Almost all of the Boilermakers" rushing yardage was compiled by Scott Dierking (149) and Mike Pruitt (120). The Hawkeyes won on a 22-yard Butch Caldwell-to-Bill Schultz pass with 40 seconds to go.
Everybody knows Oklahoma always uses a "base" play on its first play from scrimmage, a line-testing, crunching run to probe the opposition. So when Assistant Coach Galen Hall ordered the Sooners to lead off against Oklahoma State with an end around, it caught everybody by surprise. Even the Sooners. "Everyone came up with a blank look in the huddle," said Guard Terry Webb. But an end around it was, and Tinker Owens gained 18 yards. Four plays and 43 yards later Oklahoma was in the end zone and on its way to a 27-7 victory. The Sooners won largely because the Cowboys did what everybody knew they could ill afford to do, turn the ball over; they lost three fumbles and were intercepted twice.
Hall had a few closing comments: "I think we'll he loosening it up more, going for the big play more the rest of the season. That'll make the fans happy."
While Nebraska was beating Missouri (page 30) to stay tied with Oklahoma for the Big Eight lead, Colorado struggled and Kansas frolicked to league wins. The Buffaloes scored three times in the second half against Iowa State. Fullback Terry Kunz, who ran for 187 yards, put Colorado in front 28-21 with a three-yard plunge with 2:11 left. The Cyclones, however, mounted an assault of their own, but came up 28-27 losers when their last-ditch two-point conversion try failed. Kansas topped Kansas Slate 28-0 for its 400th victory. In amassing a whopping total of 516 yards, the Jayhawks got off a remarkable 94 plays.
Defensive Tackle Jeff Weston and Linebacker Tom Eastman were instrumental in Notre Dame's 31-10 scuttling of Navy. Among other feats, Weston worked over Middie ballcarriers like so many tackling dummies, recovered a fumble and ran back an intercepted pass 53 yards for a touchdown. Notre Dame notched its final TD after Eastman returned an interception to the Navy five-yard line. About all the Middies could be thankful for was that Notre Dame had no one named Northton or Southman.
1. Oklahoma (8-0)
2. Ohio State (8-0)
3. Nebraska (8-0)
With Bob Haygood laid up with a hip injury, Pitt had to go against Syracuse with second-string Quarterback Matt Cavanaugh. Some second-stringer. Cavanaugh threw only nine passes, but six were completed, three for touchdowns. And then there was Tony Dorsett. In the first half the junior tailback ran 73 yards for a touchdown and gained 118 yards. All told, Dorsett gained 158 yards in 28 carries to surpass the 1,000-yard mark for the third straight season. Then, too, there was Dorsett's sophomore running mate, Elliott Walker, who rushed for another 91 yards in 17 carries. It all added up to a 38-0 score, the worst home defeat suffered by the Syracuse Orangemen in 35 years.
Unlike Pitt, Penn was unable to find a capable replacement for an injured player. With Jack Wixted, the No. 2 all-purpose runner in the country, sidelined, the Quakers lost to Harvard 21-3. By winning, the Crimson remained undefeated in the Ivy League with a 4-0 record. Holding on to second was Brown (3-0-1), which built a 17-0 lead over Princeton and then had to battle to win 24-16. Yale overcame Dartmouth 16-14 on the game's last play, Randy Carter booting a 47-yard field goal, his third three-pointer of the game. Doug Jackson of Columbia and Tim LaBeau of Cornell both scored three touchdowns, but it was the Lions who stiffened their defenses and prevailed 42-19, their first victory of the season.
West Virginia scored three quick touchdowns in the fourth quarter to break open a 17-13 contest and defeat Kent State 38-13. Mountaineer Tailback Artie Owens ran for 171 yards in 22 carries and raced for one of the late scores.
With 1:20 to play, North Carolina State trailed South Carolina 21-20 and had the ball on its own 35. Quarterback Dave Buckey completed two passes, and freshman Halfback Ted Brown gained the last of his 164 yards on a 21-yard dash to the Gamecock two. Two plays later Fullback Timmy Johnson hurtled into the end zone and State had a 28-21 win.
John Zeglinski scored three touchdowns as Wake Forest defeated North Carolina 21-9 in an Atlantic Coast Conference tussle.
With Mike Kruczek completing 11 of 13 passes and scoring on two short runs, Boston College squared its record at 4-4 with a 21-7 triumph over Miami, which is now 1-5. Once-beaten Lehigh brushed off Colgate 38-6, and Rutgers yielded only 93 yards as it pummeled Connecticut 35-8. Perhaps the week's most happy winners were those from Swarthmore, whose 16-12 victory over Muhlenberg ended a 34-game, five-year losing streak.
1. Penn State (8-1)
2. West Virginia (6-2)
3. Pittsburgh (6-2)
PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
OFFENSE: Chuck Muncie, California's 6'3", 220-pound senior running back, who wears glasses on the field, gained 143 yards on 18 carries and added another 62 on five pass receptions in the Golden Bears' 28-14 upset of USC.
DEFENSE: Wisconsin's Ken Dixon, a 6'1", 190-pound freshman playing his first game, harried Illinois by stealing three passes, making eight solo tackles and breaking up two passes, one in the Illini end zone, in the Badgers' 18-9 win.