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No. 22 Florida 52, Middle Tennessee 16

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  • No. 22 Florida 52, Middle Tennessee 16

    Oct. 16, 2004

    GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) Chris Leak threw three touchdown passes, DeShawn Wynn scored three times and No. 22 Florida rebounded from a home loss to LSU with a 52-16 victory against Middle Tennessee on Saturday.


    Leak, who was 15-of-33 for a season-low 142 yards in a 24-21 loss to the Tigers, completed 17 of 22 passes for 316 yards against the Blue Raiders (2-4).

    He was rarely pressured, giving him plenty of time to find open receivers. He had TD passes to O.J. Small, Andre Caldwell and Chad Jackson before sitting out the fourth quarter.

    Wynn ran for 81 yards, and Ciatrick Fason added 48 yards and a touchdown on the ground.

    Defensively, the Gators (4-2) gave up more yards than they wanted. But for the most part, they kept Middle Tennessee out of the end zone.

    Clint Marks, who completed 30 of 34 passes for 447 yards with four touchdowns last week against Arkansas State, was hurried all afternoon and threw two interceptions.

    The game went about like expected: a mismatch from the opening kickoff. It was supposed to be played as the season opener but was postponed six weeks because of Hurricane Frances.

    The Swamp was about half empty when the fourth quarter started. The game was considered a sellout even though there were thousands of empty seats. The reasons? The weak opponent, it was the fourth consecutive home game, it was an early start and the Gators already have two losses.

    Nonetheless, Florida was ready from the start.

    The Gators scored on their first four possessions and led 24-3. They also scored touchdowns on all three drives in the third quarter, opening up a 36-point lead.

    After forcing the Blue Raiders to punt to open the third, Leak found Jackson for a 33-yard touchdown that made it 38-13. It was the second one-play scoring drive of the game. Leak had a 62-yard TD pass to Caldwell early in the second quarter.

    Colby Smith hit his third field goal for Middle Tennessee to make it 38-16, but the Gators quickly answered.

    Leak hooked up with Dallas Baker for a 41-yard gain, and then Fason ran 20 yards on the next play to make it 45-16.

    But Leak wasn't done.

    Middle Tennessee - which fell to 0-8 against ranked opponents since joining Division I-A in 1999 - punted for the fifth time, and Leak quickly drove the Gators back down the field. Wynn capped the drive with a 9-yard score. He also has TD runs of 5 and 15 yards.

    The Gators were short-handed on defense, playing without two starters. Linebacker Channing Crowder and safety Jarvis Herring were suspended in July for the Middle Tennessee game after an alleged dispute with police. Reserve running back Skyler Thornton also was suspended for the game, but for another off-the-field incident.

Related Topics


  • DJRamFan
    Syracuse Buffaloes Bulls
    by DJRamFan
    Syracuse 31, Buffalo 0

    Sept. 10, 2005

    SYRACUSE, N.Y. (AP) - Damien Rhodes ran for 236 yards and scored four touchdowns, leading Syracuse to a 31-0 victory over Buffalo on Saturday for Greg Robinson's first win as coach of the Orange.

    The Bulls (0-2) were shut out for the third straight game dating back to last season. They lost 38-0 at Connecticut last week in their season opener and also were beaten 29-0 by the Huskies in the 2004 season finale.

    Rhodes' rushing total was 16 yards shy of the school record of 252 yards by Joe Morris against Kansas in 1979 and 5 yards off the Carrier Dome mark set two years ago by Walter Reyes against Central Florida.

    Rhodes gained 216 yards on 19 carries and scored three times in the first half to help the Orange (1-1) take a 24-0 halftime lead. He scored on runs of 27, 50, and 54 yards, the last one alone equaling the Bulls' offensive production for the half.

    Buffalo never seriously threatened to score in the game and finished with 123 yards on offense.

    Syracuse went ahead 7-0 late in the first quarter, despite some early rumbling from the home crowd. The jeers came after 6-foot-4 quarterback Perry Patterson, ineffective in last week's 15-7 loss to West Virginia, had a pass batted away on a second-down play, but the junior quickly regrouped.

    After scrambling 10 yards for a first down, Patterson hit tight end Tom Ferron for 30 yards down the right side. Rhodes followed Ferron's first career catch with a 27-yard touchdown run.

    A year ago, Buffalo threw a scare into the Orange, taking a 10-3 lead in the first quarter before Syracuse scored 34 straight points and won 37-17 at Buffalo. There was no scare on this day - the Bulls drove past midfield only three times and Ben Woods punted 11 times for the second straight week.

    After Buffalo failed to gain a first down after Syracuse's scoring drive, a high snap caused a short punt by Woods and the Orange took over at midfield. On third-and-10, Rhodes broke free over left tackle and raced untouched into the end zone with 12:15 left in the half for a 14-0 lead.

    Ricky Krautman added a 21-yard field goal for the Orange midway through the second quarter before Rhodes struck again.

    After the Bulls moved into Syracuse territory for the first time on runs of 11 and 25 yards by quarterback Stewart Sampsel, Orange safety Anthony Smith made his second interception of the game and Syracuse took over at its own 27.

    Rhodes gained 19 yards on consecutive runs and followed with a 54-yard sprint up the middle on the next play. He scored his final touchdown on a 1-yard run early in the third quarter and sat out the fourth.

    Buffalo defensive tackle Rob Schroeder blocked a field goal attempt by Krautman early in the second...
    -09-11-2005, 01:28 PM
  • DJRamFan
    UCLA Cooks Rice For Dinner
    by DJRamFan
    Olson and Drew lead Bruins to 63-21 victory.

    Sept. 10, 2005

    PASADENA, Calif. (AP) - Drew Olson threw for three touchdowns and Maurice Drew scored twice to help UCLA open a big early lead, and the Bruins went on to a 63-21 victory over Rice on Saturday night.

    The Bruins (2-0) scored the first seven times they had the ball - including Drew's 66-yard punt return for a touchdown - to pull out to a 49-14 lead by halftime.

    Rice, losing its season opener and seventh game in a row dating back to last year, simply could not stop the Bruins' versatile offense. UCLA had 299 yards in the first quarter, and had amassed 408 yards by halftime before going mostly with reserves in the second half.

    Olson and Drew each went to the sidelines after playing the first series of the third quarter, which also was the first time in the game the Bruins had to punt.

    UCLA's Maurice Drew. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

    Olson finished 18-of-25 for 296 yards, with no interceptions. He threw scoring strikes of 39 and 10 yards to Junior Taylor, and connected with Brandon Breazell for an 11-yard touchdown.

    Drew rushed for 95 yards on 11 carries, including a 4-yard TD run in the first quarter after a 23-yard scoring run by Rice's Joel Armstrong briefly pulled the Owls into a 7-7 tie.

    Drew's long punt return for a TD, with the Bruins springing him with good blocks, was his second in as many games.

    UCLA immediately set the tone against the Owls.

    After the Bruins lost 2 yards on a screen on their first play of the game, Chris Markey sliced off tackle on a 51-yard dash down to the Owls' 39. On the next play, Olson hooked up with Taylor on a 39-yard scoring play.

    That drive, starting from the UCLA 10 after the 2-yard loss, took one minute, 13 seconds - and signaled what was to come.

    Michael Pitre made it 21-7 on a 6-yard run late in the first quarter, Markey scored on a 2-yard run early in the second. Linebacker Christian Taylor added a fourth-quarter touchdown when he picked up a fumble at the Rice 4 and ran it into the end zone, and Kahlil Bell capped the UCLA scoring with a 22-yard scoring run .

    A 1-yard run by Marcus Rucker and a 4-yard run by Tommy Henderson accounted for the Owls' other touchdowns.

    Fullback John Wall was Rice's leading rusher, with four carries for 58 yards. Armstrong was 5-of-8 for 32 yards in the air, and carried six times for 25 yards.

    The game was the third between the schools, with UCLA winning all three. The last time the teams met was in 1966 at Rice Stadium, when the Bruins won 27-24.

    The Owls lost for still another time in California. They've won just one of 14 trips, beating Stanford in 1957 and tying USC in 1947.
    -09-11-2005, 01:32 PM
  • DJRamFan
    I-AA Wrapup: Shakedown Saturday
    by DJRamFan
    Changes in the elite are emerging

    Oct. 3, 2004

    By David Coulson, Senior Columnist,
    Special to from

    As a youngster, I used to watch reruns of Star Trek every day after school. And I always wondered what it would be like to have Scotty's transporter in my house.

    Just think about how cool it would be to quickly beam yourself from one place to another.

    I could have used that device on Saturday to keep track of some great matchups in I-AA football -- matchups that will have obvious repercussions on the NCAA playoffs in the next month and a half.

    I would have started my journey by beaming to Tubby Raymond Field for the Delaware-Maine showdown in the Atlantic 10. As it was, I had to settle for watching the No. 4 Blue Hens and No. 8 Black Bears play a instant classic on my trusty, though less flashy VCR.

    This was a game that many thought would be a defensive struggle, but instead the two teams combined for 81 points and 954 yards of total offense.

    Delaware, which had showed almost no offensive consistency this season, jumped to a 20-0 lead early in the second quarter and had beaten its best scoring output of the season by the middle of the second period with a 27-7 advantage.

    Maine, which usually likes to control the ball on the ground behind big, senior tailback Marcus Williams, was forced to almost completely abandon its rushing attack and came charging back behind the arm of sophomore quarterback Ron Whitcomb.

    Whitcomb completed 22-of-40 passes for 310 yards and three touchdowns, two of the scoring aerials to Christian Pereira (nine catches for 143 yards).

    When Whitcomb connected with Pereira on a 10-yard scoring strike early in the fourth quarter, the Black Bears pulled within 37-35 and Mike Mellow's 21-yard field goal finally gave Maine the lead with 7:12 to play, 38-37.

    But Saturday was the day that Delaware quarterback Sonny Riccio finally arrived. Much was expected when Riccio transferred last spring from Missouri to fill the void left by the graduation loss of I-AA.Org offensive player of the year Andy Hall.

    Riccio struggled in his first three games as a Blue Hen, games that included a loss to New Hampshire and two unimpressive wins over Towson and Division II West Chester.

    But Riccio hit 33-of-51 passes for 415 yards and a 28-yard touchdown and added a 12-yard scoring run against Maine. And he led Delaware on a clutch drive that resulted in a last-minute, game-winning touchdown.

    As soon as the gun sounded in Newark, Del., I would have been ready to say: "Scotty, beam me to Carbondale, Ill. for the Southern Illinois-Northern Iowa showdown."

    It looked for a half like it would be another week for the curse...
    -10-04-2004, 12:58 PM
  • DJRamFan
    Turnovers Bite Huskies at Michigan
    by DJRamFan
    No. 4 Michigan 33, Northern Illinois 17

    Sept. 3, 2005

    ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) - Michigan made Northern Illinois pay for its mistakes, using turnovers to turn a competitive game into a lopsided win.

    Mike Hart ran for 117 yards and a scored two touchdowns, and the fourth-ranked Wolverines took advantage of five Northern Illinois giveaways to beat the Huskies 33-17 on Saturday.

    A season after leading the nation by losing only one fumble, the Huskies lost four fumbles and threw an interception while the Wolverines turned it over only once.

    "If you win the turnover battle, statistics say you win 79 percent of the time," Michigan coach Lloyd Carr said. "If the turnovers were 1-1, the score would've been much different."

    The Wolverines led just 14-10 early in the second quarter before scoring 19 straight points in the opener for both schools.

    The Huskies ran for 211 yards and threw for 200, but they were doomed by the turnovers and a blocked field goal.

    "I honestly thought we had a shot if we didn't turn it over," said coach Joe Novak, who has built Northern Illinois into a mid-major power after it lost 23 straight from 1996-98.

    Michigan's Chad Henne was 20-of-31 for 227 yards and two TD passes. Jason Avant had nine receptions for 127 yards and a score. Hart had 27 carries and ran for more than 100 yards for the sixth time in his last eight games. He also caught four passes for 49 yards.

    The Wolverines scored TDs on their first three drives, missed a field goal on their fourth and led 27-10 at halftime after converting 8 of 10 third downs.

    "Offensively, we played as well in the first half as any team since I've been at Michigan," said Carr, in his 11th year as head coach.

    Adrian Arrington, Michigan's promising No. 3 receiver, was carted off the field with ice packed on his right ankle after he returned a kickoff early in the second quarter. Carr said he's going to miss some time, but didn't elaborate.

    Garrett Wolfe had 17 carries for 148 yards and a TD for the Huskies, but his fumble in the second quarter was the first of their turnovers.

    "With my fumble, everything started to turn around," he said. "The game started to go downhill for us."

    Phil Horvath was 17-of-25 for 200 yards with an interception and a fumble.

    Northern Illinois had some success against the Wolverines' high-powered offense, but not when it counted most on third downs.

    Michigan opened with a 14-play drive - converting four third downs - ending with Avant's leaping 4-yard catch in the corner of the end zone.

    The Huskies responded with a 16-play possession, but they missed their first of many opportunities...
    -09-05-2005, 09:21 AM
  • DJRamFan
    Air Raid wakes up in second half in upset of Oklahoma State
    by DJRamFan
    Nov. 27, 2004 wire reports
    LUBBOCK, Texas -- Texas Tech coach Mike Leach and Jarrett Hicks huddled up at halftime and decided the team's leading receiver should get the ball more.

    It turned out to be a good plan.

    Hicks caught two of Sonny Cumbie's three touchdown passes in the second half and the Red Raiders beat No. 23 Oklahoma State 31-15 on Saturday.

    "It was my opinion he could whip the guy across from him, and he was going up against one of the better cornerbacks in the Big 12," said Leach, referring to Cowboys cornerback Robert Jones.

    Hicks agreed and suggested more throws his way to Leach.

    "He's a great player, and he really rose up there," said Leach of Hicks, the Big 12's leading receiver.

    The Red Raiders' prolific passing attack didn't get going until its first possession of the second half when Cumbie went 4-for-4, with three going to Hicks.


    The catches were Hicks' first of the game and went for 38, 27 and 2 yards, the last one for the touchdown to put the Red Raiders (7-4, 5-3) up 14-9.

    "Right before that drive, coach Leach got in my ear and told me to make a play," said Hicks, who finished with five catches for 96 yards. "It was coming to a point in the game where we really needed a play."

    He caught his second TD pass, a 14-yarder, midway through the fourth quarter to make it 24-15. Taurean Henderson sealed the win on a 6-yard TD run with 2:52 remaining.

    "We talked during halftime that we were going to try to get me the ball even more. We made some adjustments, talked about it and got it corrected," Hicks said.

    Cumbie, the nation's leading passer, had a season-low 281 yards.

    The Cowboys (7-4, 4-4) have dropped four of six following a 5-0 start. Vernand Morency finished with 108 yards on 23 carries, well below his 149-yard average for Oklahoma State.

    Tech's defense held the Cowboys without an offensive touchdown and to 176 yards rushing. They ranked eighth nationally coming into the game, averaging 251.9 yards per game.

    "It looked like to me we didn't block well," Cowboys coach Les Miles said. "But you have to give them credit.Their defense played well."

    Leach went a step further.

    "I thought our defense set the tone for this game," he said.

    The last time Tech kept an opponent from scoring an offensive TD was in 2002 in a 49-0 win over New Mexico.

    Cumbie, who came in averaging 394 yards passing, was 31-for-46 with an interception. His previous low of 294 yards came two weeks ago in a 42-35 overtime loss at Texas A&M.

    OSU took a 15-14 lead when safety Jaime Thompson intercepted...
    -11-28-2004, 06:21 PM