Everyone, including visiting Arizona State, knew that Washington State's Jack Thompson would live up to his Throwin' Samoan nickname. Even so, the Sun Devils could not contain Thompson, who unleashed scoring passes of three, 20 and 80 yards while passing for 271 yards. What no one expected was that Thompson would also do more than a little running. "I thought Jack's running was something ASU wasn't ready for," said Cougar Coach Jim Walden. Obviously the Sun Devils weren't ready, and Thompson ran for three touchdowns, twice going one yard and once scampering 19 as the Cougars romped 51-26.
Gifford Nielsen was Brigham Young's ace passer early last season when he was injured against Oregon State. Sophomore Marc Wilson, who took his place, uncorked seven touchdown passes against Colorado State. Last week the Cougars again faced Colorado State. This time it was Wilson who was sidelined with a slight hamstring injury. Taking his place was sophomore Jim McMahon, who was on target with seven of nine passes for 112 yards and a touchdown and ran 12 times for 80 yards and another six-pointer. McMahon played most of the way as the Cougars prevailed 32-6.
Two touchdown passes by Rich Campbell propelled California to a hard-fought 24-6 win over University of the Pacific. Holy Cross overcame a 10-0 Air Force advantage and went on to win 35-18. A 77-yard pass play from Peter Colombo to Larry Ewald started the Crusader rally. In a Western AC battle, Texas-El Paso bumped off San Diego State 31-24.
October 1, 1978
1. USC (3-0)
2. UCLA (2-1)
3. WASHINGTON STATE (3-0)
It was appropriate that at halftime of the UCLA-Kansas game, the Jayhawk band performed selections from The Wizard of Oz. UCLA must have felt it was in Oz when Kansas' young players helped build a 28-7 half-time lead.
On the opening kickoff, freshman Buford Johnson of Kansas tackled UCLA's Anthony Lagar so hard that he fumbled, and another first-year man, J. C. Booker, recovered at the Bruin 34. The first offensive play by the Jay-hawks was a 21-yard pass from sophomore Jeff Hines to sophomore Lester Mickens. Three plays later, Hines completed his first collegiate touchdown pass, a three-yarder to Kirby Criswell.
UCLA tied the score at 7-7 when Rick Bashore barged over from one yard out. But the Jayhawks zipped in front to stay by scoring three touchdowns in less than three minutes during the second period. Hines set up the first of those scores with a 51-yard toss to freshman Kevin Murphy. After Kansas went ahead 14-7, Johnson again jarred the ball loose from the UCLA kickoff returner, this time Theotis Brown. Another freshman, Roger Foote, recovered at the UCLA 19. A second Hines-to-Criswell TD pass put Kansas up 21-7. And then, after Jimmy Little ran back a punt 66 yards to the Bruin three-yard line, Hines went in for the touchdown that made it 28-7.
Touchdown runs of one and 20 yards by Brown, who finished with 148 yards in 23 carries, helped UCLA pull to within 28-24. That, however, turned out to be the final score as Bashore's last-second desperation pass was intercepted at the Kansas 42 by Robert Gentry, a—what else—freshman.
With its offense churning out 534 yards and its defense limiting Mississippi to 186 and tackling runners 16 times for losses, Missouri waltzed to a 45-14 victory. Phil Bradley of the Tigers completed 14 of 19 passes for two touchdowns and 178 yards. The most dazzling play, however, was a 77-yard up-the-middle scoring jaunt by Missouri's Gerry Ellis.
Despite a school-record 27 tackles by San Jose State Linebacker Frank Manumaleuna, Colorado came out ahead 22-7. Twenty-eight pass completions by Ed Luther tied another Spartan record, as he threw for 261 yards in 50 attempts. One hundred and seventy-six yards in penalties, plus the relentless running of James Mayberry of the Buffaloes, who had 168 yards in 34 carries, led to the Spartans' downfall.
Oklahoma and Iowa State were easy winners. The Sooners routed Rice 66-7 while resting their first units during the second half. Oklahoma scored eight of the first nine times it had the ball and rolled up 607 yards, 560 of them on the ground.
Junior-college transfer Walter Grant came off the Iowa State bench to throw three touchdown passes during a 31-0 rout of Iowa. The Cyclones, who had passed for only 11 yards the week before against San Diego State, gained 178 through the air as Grant hit on seven of 10 throws and Terry Rubley on three of five. With the Hawkeyes keying on Dexter Green, the Cyclone speedster, State receivers found they had ample running room. Green, who played only half the game and ran for 56 yards, snapped his string of five straight outings in which he picked up 100 or more yards.
Arkansas ground out a 19-7 win at Oklahoma State. The Razorbacks, who led 3-0 at halftime, opened the second half with a four-play, 80-yard drive that Ben Cowins capped with a 25-yard scoring run. State promptly trimmed its deficit to 10-7 when Scott Burk combined with freshman Ron Ingram on an 80-yard touchdown pass. Minutes later, the Cowboys had a fourth down and one foot to go on the Arkansas 13-yard line. The Cowboys went for it. They did not make it. A 24-yard field goal by Ish Ordonez and a one-yard plunge by Ron Calcagni finished off the scoring for the Razorbacks in the decisive fourth quarter.
Big Ten teams took three of four decisions against non-conference opponents, with Indiana coming through with the most notable victory, a 14-7 upset of Washington. The Huskies outgained the Hoosiers 402 yards to 238, but Indiana recovered a Washington fumble and picked off three passes, Dave Abrams coming up from his strong safety position to snare two of them. Short touchdown runs—a one-yarder in the second period by Mike Harkrader and a two-yarder by Derrick Burnett in the fourth—put the Hoosiers ahead 14-0. Washington's Joe Steele gained 155 yards in 28 carries, but that was not enough for the Huskies, who have dropped two of their three outings.
Michigan State and Purdue breezed, the Spartans walloping winless Syracuse 49-21 and the Boilermakers blanking Ohio 24-0. Flanker Kirk Gibson of the Spartans ran 16 yards for one touchdown and collaborated with Bert Vaughn on a 36-yard scoring pass. The Boilermakers also had an easy time of it as sophomore Mark Herrmann returned to form by passing for 223 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
Steve Dils of Stanford picked apart Illinois and keyed a 35-10 win by completing 24 of 30 passes for 240 yards and a touchdown. Darrin Nelson also had impressive statistics for the Cardinals, latching on to six passes and rushing a total of 20 times for 123 yards.
In a pair of Big Ten games, Ohio State knocked off Minnesota 27-10 and Wisconsin toppled Northwestern 28-7. Buckeye freshman Art Schlichter, who had been intercepted five times by Penn State the week before, completed only three of seven passes, but ran for 56 yards and two touchdowns. The Badgers had little trouble with the Wildcats as Tom Stauss rushed for 123 yards and two touchdowns and Ira Matthews carried for 125. Matthews also returned a punt 78 yards for a touchdown.
Ball State won its 11th in a row, downing Toledo 20-0 in a Mid-American Conference tussle. Western Michigan's Jerome Persell ran for 226 yards, but Miami of Ohio hung on for a 7-3 MAC victory. Cincinnati was a 28-14 loser to Louisville in a non-conference game.
1. OKLAHOMA (3-0)
2. MICHIGAN (2-0)
3. COLORADO (3-0)
With 1:24 left in the first half and Texas Tech trailing visiting Arizona 16-7, freshman Ron Reeves of the Red Raiders got the chance he had longed for. It was at that juncture that Reeves, who grew up in Lubbock, stepped in for the Red Raiders at quarterback. He dropped back to pass. Incomplete. Again he passed. Again incomplete. Reeves is nothing if not persistent, and on the next play it paid off, a 16-yard completion to the Wildcat 28-yard line and a first down. Zeroed in, Reeves then hit on a 12-yard screen pass and, with 14 seconds remaining in the half, teamed up with Godfrey Turner on a 10-yard scoring play to cut Tech's deficit to 16-14.
Reeves kept the attack going in the third period, climaxing an 80-yard drive by scoring on a three-yard rollout and then passing 10 yards for another touchdown. Thus, after six minutes of playing time, Reeves had put Tech in front 28-16. Altogether, he completed 11 of 14 for 159 yards and ran 12 times for 38 yards as Tech smothered favored Arizona 41-26.
It was giveaway time when Wyoming and Texas clashed in Austin, each team losing three fumbles and being intercepted twice. Fumbles led to all the scoring, the Cowboys cashing in first after a recovery on the Texas 13, which resulted in a 22-yard field goal that put them on top, 3-0, at the end of the first quarter. Texas defenders then pounced on three loose balls deep in Wyoming territory to set up all the Longhorns' points in a lackluster 17-3 decision.
A third Southwest Conference team that knocked off an outsider was Houston, which throttled Utah 42-25. Emmett King of the Cougars rambled 74 yards for one score and finished with 141 yards rushing.
1. ARKANSAS (2-0)
2. TEXAS (2-0)
3. TEXAS A&M (2-0)
Only Alabama's loss to Southern Cal (page 22) and Tennessee's tie with Oregon State kept Southeastern Conference teams from a clean sweep against non-league opponents. The Vols, who trailed 13-0, salvaged a deadlock when Quarterback Jimmy Streater accounted for two touchdowns in the last three minutes, first on a two-yard dive and then on a 44-yard pass to Jeff Moore.
The most convincing of the SEC's six winners was Mississippi State, which defeated Memphis State 44-14. Tailback James Jones picked up 114 yards in 10 carries and equaled a Bulldog record with four touchdowns. Dave Marler added variety to the Bulldog offense by completing 15 of 23 passes for 274 yards.
Baylor, which lost at Georgia the week before, was jolted this time at Kentucky. Although the Wildcats coughed up the ball five times, Quarterback Mike Deaton kept them rolling, completing 16 of 26 passes for 182 yards. Seven of his aerials, good for 99 yards, were pulled in by Felix Wilson, but the payoff strike was a 10-yarder to Greg Nord in the fourth quarter that sealed a 25-21 win.
"I would like to call them 'takeovers' instead of 'turnovers,' " said Georgia Coach Vince Dooley after his Bulldogs came up with four Clemson fumbles and made two interceptions. Whatever they should be called, Clemson Coach Charlie Pell was impressed as the Bulldogs stopped his high-powered offense en route to a 12-0 upset. Field goals of 28 and 38 yards by Rex Robinson and an 11-yard pass from Jeff Pyburn to Carmen Prince accounted for all the points.
Wake Forest blocked a punt, a field-goal attempt and a PAT kick but couldn't finish off Louisiana State. What made the Tigers 13-11 victors in front of a hometown crowd of 77,197 was the running of Charles Alexander and a defense that recovered five fumbles and stole a pass. Alexander lugged the ball 31 times for 123 yards and scored LSU's touchdowns on runs of 11 and 32 yards.
Other SEC winners were Auburn, which won 18-7 at Virginia Tech, and Vanderbilt, which beat Furman 17-10.
Former redshirt Tim O'Hare is in his fifth and final year at Maryland, where he is a drama major. Last week, O'Hare went onstage at North Carolina. With 28 yards to go on second down at the Tar Heel 35, O'Hare lofted a perfect cross-field pass to Gary Ellis. But Ellis was looking toward the middle of the field for the ball, which was headed toward the sideline. While O'Hare pleaded, "Gary, please turn the other way," Ellis did exactly that, turning, clutching the ball and barely making a first down. Moments later, Tailback Steve Atkins dashed six yards for the touchdown that gave the Terps a 21-20 Atlantic Coast Conference win.
O'Hare's 13-for-24 passing netted 164 yards, and Atkins added 162 more in 28 carries. Three field goals by Ed Loncar also helped topple Carolina, last season's ACC titlist. Terp defenders kept the Tar Heels from sweeping to the outside and held Amos Lawrence to 38 yards in 17 runs.
Duke staved off South Carolina 16-12 in another ACC game, and North Carolina State downed independent West Virginia 29-15.
A bad phone connection between press-box spotters and the sideline caused Florida State Coach Bobby Bowden to call consecutive time-outs at Miami. Aside from an 80-yard scoring run by Ottis Anderson on Miami's first offensive play, however, the Seminoles were in command, winning 31-21. Florida State Nose Guard Ron Simmons forced and recovered a fumble at the Miami five to set up a field goal and also blocked a punt that Mark Macek scooped up and carried 48 yards for a Seminole TD.
1. ALABAMA (2-1)
2. LSU (2-0)
3. FLORIDA STATE (3-0)
"We were in a position where we had to take some chances," said Penn State Quarterback Chuck Fusina. The spot the Nittany Lions had found themselves in was trailing Southern Methodist 21-12 early in the third period, after Dave Hill stole a Fusina pass and returned it 40 yards for a touchdown. Two earlier SMU scores had been set up by the passing of sophomore Mike Ford, who hit on half of his 36 attempts for 289 yards.
The biggest chance Penn State took was a fourth-and-one gamble at its 36-yard line when it was trailing by nine points. Tailback Booker Moore picked up the first down on that play, and Fusina concluded the drive with a 16-yard pass to Scott Fitzkee. A three-yard run by Matt Suhey later in the third quarter wrapped up Penn State's 26-21 triumph before a record home crowd of 77,404.
In lengthening its victory streak to 12 games, the best among the Division I-A teams, State got four first-half field goals from Matt Bahr and clamp-down defense in the second half. The Nittany Lions sacked Ford four times in the second half and held the Mustangs to minus-five yards rushing for the afternoon. Bahr, who has made good on 13 of 15 three-point tries in four games, is already closing in on the NCAA season record of 21 field goals.
Pittsburgh, too, had to struggle to get past Temple 21-12. The Owls, 76-0 losers to the Panthers last season, led 6-3 at halftime and were outgained only 321 yards to 317. But a 16-yard run by Quarterback Rick Trocano put Pitt in front for keeps.
Texas A&M Running Back Curtis Dickey, who ran an unofficial world-record 9.85 for 100 meters last spring, turned on his speed at Boston College. Despite missing most of the second half because of a bruised thigh, Dickey ripped off 138 yards in 18 carries and scored three times as the Aggies thrashed the Eagles 37-2. Boston College, which gave up six of seven fumbles the week before, was even more butterfingered this time as it lost six of 10 to the Aggies.
Navy, 32-0 victors over Virginia two weeks ago, cruised to its second straight shutout, stifling Connecticut 30-0. The Middies had six sacks, allowed the Huskies only 106 yards and never let them penetrate deeper than the Navy 39-yard line.
A 14-0 lead was not enough for Army as visiting Virginia evened its record with the service academies with a 21-17 upset at West Point. Midway through the fourth quarter, Tom Vigorito bulled over from one yard out on fourth down to put the Cavaliers on top.
Lehigh and South Carolina State, which were tied for first place in the Associated Press Division I-AA poll, both won. The Engineers extended their longest-ever victory streak to 11 games by smothering Colgate 38-7, as Quarterback Rich Andres passed for a pair of touchdowns and ran for two more. In a Mid-Eastern Atlantic Conference contest played before a crowd of 17,139 at Giants Stadium in New Jersey, South Carolina State whipped Howard 27-0. The Bulldogs' offensive line, which averages 245 pounds, repeatedly opened holes, which Cornelius Reed rushed through for 163 yards and Nate Rivers for 126.
Yale began the defense of its Ivy League title by muzzling Brown 21-0. For the first time since 1970, Columbia came out on top of Harvard 21-19; it was also the first time the Lions had won in Cambridge since 1961. Buddy Teevens' 15 completions in 24 throws enabled Dartmouth to outlast Penn 31-21. Cornell's running built up a 14-0 edge over Princeton, but the passing of Ken Barrett rallied the Tigers to a 14-14 tie.
1. PENN STATE (4-0)
2. PITTSBURGH (2-0)
3. NAVY (2-0)
PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
OFFENSE: The Throwin' Samoan, Jack Thompson of Washington State, hit on 16 of 34 passes for 271 yards and three touchdowns and ran 13 times for 54 yards and three more TDs as the Cougars beat Arizona State 51-26.
DEFENSE: Indiana shocked Washington 14-7, largely because of senior Linebacker Joe Norman, who harassed ballcarriers all day, took part in 16 tackles—11 unassisted—and dropped runners for 14 yards in losses.