EVANSTON, Ill. -- Joe Paterno needed help from an unlikely hero -- a freshman backup quarterback -- in the final two minutes Saturday to finally tie the major-college coaching record.
Called off the bench for the first time with 1:39 remaining, Zack Mills threw a 4-yard touchdown pass to Eric McCoo with 22 seconds to go as previously winless Penn State rallied for a 38-35 upset of No. 22 Northwestern.
Paterno tied Bear Bryant for most Division I victories with 323, and can surpass Bryant next week against Ohio State, although Saturday's dramatics will be hard to top.
''This is the kind of game you love,'' Paterno said after his first victory in five games. ''I'm going to go home and get in trouble with a good stiff bourbon. Then I'm going to take a nap and get out some Ohio State tapes.''
The 74-year-old coach is 323-94-3 in 36 seasons at Penn State. Bryant was 323-85-17 in 38 seasons at Maryland, Kentucky, Texas A&M and Alabama. Florida State's Bobby Bowden was going for his 319th Saturday night against Virginia.
Characteristically, Paterno tried to shift the focus to his players and said he hadn't even thought about the record until asked about it afterward.
''The thing that's special for me is I've been able to coach that long. Not many guys get to coach 300 games,'' much less win that many, he said. ''I've coached a lot and I've enjoyed it.''
Entering the game averaging just eight points a game and with the nation's worst rushing offense, Penn State (1-4, 1-3 Big Ten) enjoyed a productive afternoon against Northwestern's porous defense. In coming from behind five times, the Nittany Lions piled up 501 yards total offense, including a season-high 213 on the ground, and exceeded their previous point total of 31 in one game.
But it took a late flurry to get the win.
Robbie Gould kicked a 24-yard field goal with 3:36 left to give Penn State its first lead at 31-28. Then Northwestern quarterback Zak Kustok ran for his third touchdown of the game with 2:03 left to make it 35-31.
Mills, a redshirt freshman, was summoned early in the subsequent game-winning, 69-yard drive after junior Matt Senneca, enjoying a career game, was knocked out on a jarring tackle. Penn State had the ball on its own 48, 2nd and 10.
He promptly completed 5 of 8 passes for 54 yards, including the game-winner to McCoo near the goal line on the left side on a first-down play.
''I thought it was great the way Zack went in cold,'' Paterno said. ''He's a very cool and poised kid.''
No. 2 Oklahoma 33, Baylor 17
NORMAN, Okla. -- Jason White threw for 343 yards in his first start as Oklahoma tuned up for next week's showdown against No. 3 Nebraska.
The Sooners (7-0, 4-0 Big 12) extended their winning streak to 20 games, but were sluggish after building a 27-7 halftime lead. Oklahoma allowed eight sacks, one more than it had given up in the first six games.
Baylor lost its 25th straight conference game, dating to 1998.
The Bears chose to crowd the line of scrimmage to negate Oklahoma's running game, and it worked. But White, named the starter this week after strong performances in relief of Nate Hybl the past two games, finished 32-of-44 with one touchdown and no interceptions.
Freshman Mark Clayton had eight catches for 108 yards. Trent Smith caught seven passes for 70 yards, and Curtis Fagan had five catches including a 16-yarder for the Sooners' first touchdown.
No. 3 Nebraska 41, Texas Tech 31
LINCOLN, Neb. -- Eric Crouch passed for three touchdowns and ran for another as Nebraska survived a scare.
Texas Tech had 440 yards of offense, 75 more than anyone had gained against Nebraska (8-0, 4-0 Big 12) this season.
Dahrran Diedrick ran 20 times for 157 yards for the Huskers, who didn't hold a halftime lead for the first time this season.
Crouch was 10-of-22 for 196 yards with two interceptions, including one in the Tech end zone that ended a Nebraska scoring threat in the fourth quarter. He also had 21 carries for 105 yards, his fourth-straight 100-yard game.
No. 4 UCLA 56, California 17
PASADENA, Calif. -- Cory Paus passed for a season-high 273 yards and three touchdowns in less than three quarters as UCLA (6-0, 3-0 Pac-10) beat winless California.
DeShaun Foster, who entered the game as the leading rusher in the country with a 162.6-yard average, gained 117 yards on 24 carries and caught two passes for 61 yards.
Paus, who opened the game with an incompletion before connecting on his next 11 passes, finished 13-of-16 without being intercepted. He has attempted 189 straight passes, including 122 this season, without an interception.
Stanford 49, No. 5 Oregon 42
EUGENE, Ore. -- Kerry Carter bulled in for a 3-yard touchdown run with 1:10 remaining for Stanford.
Stanford (4-1, 3-1 Pac-10) rallied from a 42-28 fourth-quarter deficit by blocking a punt and intercepting Oregon's Joey Harrington pass, turning both turnovers into touchdowns. But the Ducks' Seth McEwen deflected Mike Biselli's extra point with 5:32 left, leaving Oregon with a 42-41 lead.
All Oregon (6-1, 3-1) had to do was salt away the clock, but on third-and-1 from his own 30, Harrington was hit by safety Tank Williams and the ball floated into the hands of diving defensive end Marcus Hoover at the 33.
On third-and-goal from the 3, Carter was stopped at the line of scrimmage, but got a push from his line to get into the end zone for his fourth touchdown.
Not only did Stanford stop Oregon's nation-best 23-game home winning streak, it ruined an undefeated record by the Ducks for the eighth time since 1964.
No. 9 Texas 41, No. 14 Colorado 7
AUSTIN, Texas -- Cedric Benson ran for 100 yards and a pair of touchdowns and Chris Simms passed for three scores for Texas.
Texas (6-1, 3-1 Big 12) kept alive its hopes for a Bowl Championship Series bid with the victory and snapped a five-game winning streak by Colorado (5-2, 3-1.)
Benson, a freshman who got his first career start a week earlier in a win over Oklahoma State, also caught three passes for 59 yards. He had 131 yards rushing a week ago and is the first freshman to run for over 100 yards since Ricky Williams in 1995.
No. 11 Tennessee 35, Alabama 24
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- Casey Clausen and Travis Stephens capped big games with late 1-yard touchdown runs as Tennessee became the first team beat Alabama seven straight times.
Clausen was 21-of-28 for 293 yards and two scores and Stephens racked up 33 carries for 162 yards and a pair of TDs for the Volunteers (4-1, 3-1 Southeastern Conference).
No. 12 Maryland 59, Duke 17
COLLEGE PARK, Md. -- Shaun Hill guided Maryland to touchdowns on its first six possessions and amassed 428 yards in total offense as the unbeaten Terrapins handed Duke its 19th consecutive defeat.
With scouts from the Sugar Bowl looking on, Maryland (7-0, 5-0 Atlantic Coast Conference) bolted to a 21-0 lead after nine minutes and led 42-10 at halftime. The 59 points are Maryland's second-most in an ACC game, and the Terrapins' lone punt came on the final play of the afternoon.
Maryland, which hasn't been to a bowl game since 1990, is virtually assured of ending that run. The 7-0 start is the team's best since 1978, and the seven wins its most since 1985, the last time Maryland won an ACC title.
North Carolina 38, No. 13 Clemson 3
CLEMSON, S.C. -- Julius Peppers and North Carolina held Clemson quarterback Woodrow Dantzler to 118 yards.
Peppers, the 6-foot-6, 285-pound defensive end, had a remarkable interception that led to the first of Bosley Allen's two touchdown catches and never gave Dantzler the chance to dazzle the Tar Heels (5-3, 4-1 ACC) like he did Georgia Tech and North Carolina State the past two weeks.
The Tar Heels, who had tied Wake Forest's comeback streak of 1970 with last week's victory over Virginia, became the first ACC school to win five in a row after starting 0-3.
No. 15 Washington 31, Arizona 28
SEATTLE -- Two weeks after separating his throwing shoulder, Cody Pickett ran 3 yards for the winning touchdown with 13 seconds left in Washington's latest fourth-quarter comeback.
Pickett threw touchdown passes of 78 and 75 yards in the first quarter and finished 29-of-49 for a career-high 455 yards, with three touchdowns and four interceptions.
The Huskies (5-1, 3-1 Pac-10) overcame five turnovers to bounce back from their first loss in 13 games. They haven't lost two straight since coach Rick Neuheisel's first two games in 1999.
No. 16 South Carolina 46, Vanderbilt 14
COLUMBIA, S.C. -- Phil Petty was 13-for-21 for 208 yards and two TDs as South Carolina rolled up a school-record 656 yards.
Brian Scott caught six passes for 143 yards, all in the first half, for the Gamecocks (6-1, 5-1 SEC). Andrew Pinnock and Derek Watson both ran for 105 yards and a touchdown.
No. 17 Georgia 43, Kentucky 29
ATHENS, Ga. -- Freshmen David Greene and Fred Gibson won a shootout with Jared Lorenzen, connecting on two long touchdown plays to lead Georgia past Kentucky.
Gibson broke a 59-year-old school record with 201 yards on nine receptions, including touchdown catches of 68 and 56 yards.
Greene, a redshirt freshman, had his third straight 300-yard game. He was 22-of-36 for a career-high 364 yards, throwing for three touchdowns and running for another score.
No. 18 BYU 63, Air Force 33
PROVO, Utah -- Brandon Doman completed 20 of 32 passes for a season-high 338 yards and four touchdowns and also ran for a 7-yard score for BYU.
The Falcons (4-2, 2-1 Mountain West) were the first BYU opponent with a winning record, but the Cougars (7-0, 3-0) silenced criticism of their soft schedule with an outstanding effort.
Since the Falcons started playing in 1955, they'd never allowed so many points. Until this weekend, the biggest rout in Air Force history was a 57-27 loss at Notre Dame in 1990.
No. 20 Auburn 48, Louisiana Tech 41, OT
AUBURN, Ala. -- Daniel Cobb threw a 5-yard touchdown pass to Deandre Green in the first overtime for Auburn.
It was Cobb's school-record fifth touchdown pass of the game. The senior was making his first career start for Auburn (6-1).
Louisiana Tech (3-3) tied it at 41 with 58 seconds remaining on Luke McCown's 23-yard pass to Delwyn Daigre. Auburn's Damon Duval missed a 37-yard field goal at the end of regulation.
No. 21 Florida St. 43, Virginia 7
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. -- Bobby Bowden moved closer to the career victories record as Florida State beat Virginia.
Bowden, who received a raise to $2 million Thursday, moved into a tie with Pop Warner for third place in Division I-A victories with 319, four behind Bear Bryant and Joe Paterno.
William McCray scored on a 1-yard run and Abdual Howard returned a tipped passed 80 yards for a touchdown in the third quarter for the Seminoles (4-2, 3-1 ACC).
No. 23 Georgia Tech 27, N.C. State 17
ATLANTA -- George Godsey threw two touchdown passes and Joe Burns ran for 114 yards, helping Georgia Tech overcame kicking difficulties.
Godsey was 24-of-39 for 256 yards. His second scoring pass, a 4-yarder to Jonathan Smith on the first play of the fourth quarter, gave the Yellow Jackets (5-2, 2-2 Atlantic Coast Conference) a 24-17 lead, and Luke Manget added a 50-yard field goal.
Ball St. 24, No. 25 Toledo 20
MUNCIE, Ind. -- Corey Parchman returned a kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown with 3:07 left as Ball State snapped Toledo's 12-game winning streak.
The score came after Todd France kicked an 18-yard field goal with 3:26 to play to give Toledo (5-1, 2-1 Mid-American) a 20-17 advantage. Tommy Schembra blocked a punt to set up a touchdown as Ball State (2-4, 2-0) took a 14-7 lead in the first half.
Peninsula Clarion © 2016. All Rights Reserved. | Contact Us