EAST CAROLINA - The Pirates kicked off a three-game road trip this past
weekend with a 49-27 loss at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg. It marked ECU's
(2-1) first loss under new head coach Ruffin McNeill, who led the Pirates to a
pair of league home wins to start the campaign. The Pirates were torched for
249 yards and four scores on the ground, while allowing Virginia Tech to
average 24.9 yards on eight pass completions. Jonathan Williams paced ECU in
the loss with 72 yards and two TDs on 17 carries, while Dominique Davis threw
for 251 yards with one TD against two INTs. Dwayne Harris hauled in 10 balls
for 119 yards and a score for the Pirates, who will head to Chapel Hill to
take on North Carolina in their next game on October 2nd.
MARSHALL - The Thundering Herd rallied from a 21-point deficit to tie the game
at 28-28, but Bowling Green would score 16 unanswered points in the final
frame for the 44-28 decision over the weekend. QB Brian Anderson had a rough
game for Marshall (0-3), as he was picked four times, two of which were
returned for TDs. He finished the game just 20-of-44 for 191 yards and a
single TD. Andre Booker paced the offense with 121 yards, including a 68-yard
TD run, on seven carries, while Chuck Walker had seven receptions for 66
yards. Mario Harvey logged 12 tackles and two of the team's four sacks, as
Marshall remained winless under head coach Doc Holliday. The Herd returns to
Huntington this weekend to host Ohio University in its final tuneup before C-
MEMPHIS - The Tigers earned their first win under new head coach Larry Porter
this past weekend, as they outlasted Middle Tennessee, 24-17, in their home
opener. After allowing 49 points in each of its first two games, Memphis (1-2)
turned it up a notch on defense and held Middle Tennessee without a point in
the final quarter, while forcing four turnovers. The Tigers surrendered just
315 total yards, including only 67 on the ground, in snapping an eight-game
slide. Gregory Ray provided much of the offense for the Tigers with 121
rushing yards and two scores on 25 carries, while QB Ryan Williams passed for
129 yards and a TD on 15-of-28 tosses. Memphis will now head back out to the
road for the third time in four weeks, as it faces Texas-El Paso this weekend.
SOUTHERN MISS - The Golden Eagles took it to Kansas this past week, holding
the Jayhawks to just 274 yards of total offense in a convincing 31-16 victory.
Winners of two straight overall and 10 in a row at home, Southern Miss (2-1)
ran for 202 yards, while also scoring on a blocked punt return. Desmond
Johnson led the ground attack with 89 yards on eight carries and QB Austin
Davis added 61 yards and a score on nine totes. Davis also had an efficient
night through the air, completing 19-of-24 throws for 155 yards. The Eagles'
defense came up with four sacks and the unit seeks another strong effort this
weekend at Louisiana Tech.
UAB - Jackie Williams pulled in a 44-yard TD pass on the final play, as UAB
took a dramatic 34-33 decision from Troy over the weekend. The Blazers (1-2),
who trailed 23-0 at one point, scored three TDs in the final quarter,
including the game-winner which capped a nine-play, 99-yard drive in just over
a minute. Backup QB Bryan Ellis rallied UAB with 360 yards and three TDs
through the air, as he replaced ineffective starter David Isabelle. Williams
finished the game with six receptions for 114 yards, including the final two
TDs for the Blazers. A two game road trip begins for UAB this weekend with a
visit to Knoxville to face Tennessee.
UCF - Ronnie Weaver ran for a pair of fourth quarter TDs, as the Knights came
away with a 24-10 victory at Buffalo over the weekend. Weaver carried the ball
just eight times for 49 yards, while freshman QB Jeff Godfrey had 44 yards on
13 attempts. Making his first career start, Godfrey also completed 15-of-24
pass attempts for 130 yards and more importantly, he didn't commit a single
turnover. Defensively, UCF (2-1) recorded a pair of takeaways and four sacks,
while limiting Buffalo to 326 total yards. Darius Nall led the way with nine
stops and a pair of sacks, and Bruce Miller took back an INT 30 yards for a
score. UCF will head out to the road this weekend to face Kansas State in
HOUSTON - The nationally-ranked Cougars were defeated at UCLA, 31-13, this
past weekend, but they lost more then just a game. Heisman hopeful QB Case
Keenum suffered a torn ACL in the defeat and will miss the season, as will
backup Cotton Turner, who fractured his clavicle. Keenum, one of the most
decorated returning QBs in the nation, helped make Houston (2-1) an offensive
firepower and he was a big reason why the program was a favorite to win C-USA.
Terrance Broadway, a highly touted freshman that was expected to redshirt, now
steps in as the starter and he passed for 84 yards and a score in last
weekend's loss to UCLA. James Cleveland led the Cougars with six receptions
for 144 yards and score, but Houston's defense was gashed for 266 yards and
four scores on the ground. Houston will begin life without Keenum this
weekend, when its hosts Tulane in C-USA action.
RICE - The Owls committed four turnovers, one of which was returned for a TD,
as they suffered a 30-13 loss to Northwestern over the weekend. Rice (1-2)
recorded only one takeaway itself and was outgained 451-377 in the contest.
Nick Fanuzzi and Taylor Cook both saw time under center and they combined for
291 yards and two INTs on 30-of-52 tosses. Sam McGuffie had seven receptions
for 48 yards, as the Owls kicked off a three-game homestand on a low note.
Rice will try to respond on Saturday, when it hosts Baylor in an instate
SMU - QB Kyle Padron threw for 280 yards and four TDs, as SMU rolled to a
35-21 victory over Washington State this past weekend. Padron completed 19-
of-34 tosses and added a score on the ground for the Mustangs (2-1), who
defeated a BCS conference school for the first time in 10 years. The Ponies
had been 0-17 against schools from BCS conference's since defeating Kansas
31-17 back on September 2nd, 2000. Aldrick Robinson was clearly his favorite
target, as he pulled in four passes for 111 yards and three TDs. The Mustangs
will wrap up a three-game homestand this week Friday with a much anticipated
bout against a highly ranked TCU club.
TEXAS-EL PASO - QB Trevor Vittatoe tossed five TDs and the Miners breezed past
New Mexico State, 42-10, over the weekend. Vittatoe finished the game with 246
yards through the air and another 55 on the ground for UTEP (2-1), which
racked up 249 rushing yards as a team. Joe Banyard led the charge with 64
yards and a TD on 11 caries, while Kris Adams had 86 receiving yards and a
pair of scores. The Miners were also sharp defensively, limiting NMSU to just
296 total yards. UTEP will wrap up a short two-game homestand this weekend
when Memphis comes to town.
TULANE - The Green Wave was off this past weekend following a 27-13 loss to
Ole Miss on September 11th. Tulane, which opened the campaign with a 27-21
triumph of Southeastern Louisiana, is set to face Houston this weekend in the
first two consecutive road games.
TULSA - The Golden Hurricane's defense forgot to show up this past weekend, as
Tulsa permitted a whopping 722 total yards in a 62-28 loss at Oklahoma State.
Tulsa (1-2) was torched for 574 yards and eight scores through the air,
allowing an average of 18.5 yards per completion. Offensively, G.J. Kinne
guided Tulsa with 219 yards and one TD on 22-of-34 throws, but he was also
picked off three times. He added a score on the ground as well. Marco Nelson
had 12 stops for the defense and he also took back an INT 81 yards for a
score. The Hurricane will hope for a better effort this weekend versus Central