The 9th Saturday of the college football season provided two great matchups in the Northwest. Unfortunately, neither game lived up to its expectations as the home team in each game scored decisive victories. The victors of each game still have hope of winning a National Championship in their teams’ respective classifications, while the losers of each game have seen their championship dreams vanish.
Game of the Week #1-USC at Oregon: In Eugene, the Oregon Ducks established themselves as the team to beat in the Pac 10 conference after dismantling the USC Trojans 47-20. Duck QB Jeremiah Masoli accounted for 386 yards of total offense and 2 TDs. RB LaMichael James added 183 yards rushing as Oregon rolled up 613 yards of total offense; the most yards given up by a Pete Carroll led USC defense. The Ducks now enjoy a one-and-a half game lead on 2nd place Arizona in the Pac 10 standings. USC, meanwhile, falls to 3-2 in the conference, which ties them for 4th.
Game of the Week #2-Weber State at Montana: In Missoula, the Montana Grizzlies separated themselves from the rest of the Big Sky with their 31-10 win over the Weber State Wildcats. Montana dominated the Wildcats on both offense and defense, as evidenced by the total offense difference of 506-299. Chase Reynolds led Montana with his 241 yards rushing and a TD. The Wildcats also suffered from 4 Cameron Higgins INTs, including 2 by CB Trumaine Johnson. The Griz are just a victory over cellar dweller Idaho State away from clinching a share of their 12 consecutive Big Sky Conference Championship. With the loss, Weber State is now tied with Eastern Washington for 2nd place at 5-2, but has more than likely seen their postseason hopes dashed due to its 5-4 overall record.
Washington State vs. Notre Dame (in San Antonio, TX): Notre Dame dominated Washington State at the Alamo Dome in San Antonio by winning 40-14. The Fighting Irish enjoyed a 592-206 total yard edge and won the time of possession battle by over a 2:1 margin. RB Dwight Tardy for the Cougars racked up 72 yards rushing, but only on 8 carries, as the Cougars fell behind quickly and was forced to throw early and often.
UCLA at Oregon State: James Rodgers ran for a 17 yards TD with 44 seconds left in the game to lift Oregon State over UCLA 26-19. UCLA had tied the score at 19 with 2:06 left in the 4th quarter on a 7 yard TD and successful 2-point conversion. The Rodgers brothers, James and Jacquizz, accounted for 338 of the 463 total yards of offense for the Beavers and Jacquizz also threw for a 14 yard TD in the 2nd quarter.
San Jose State at Boise State: Kellen Moore completed 21 of 33 passes for 278 yards, 3 passing TDs and a rushing TD in leading the Boise State Broncos to a 45-7 win over the San Jose State Spartans. After the Spartans tied the score at 7 with 11:28 remaining in the 2nd quarter, the Broncos scored 17 points to finish the first half, including 2 TDs in the final 44 seconds of the half, in pulling away from San Jose State.
Louisiana Tech at Idaho: DeMaundray Woolridge scored his 2nd TD of the 4th quarter with 52 seconds left, and Trey Farquhar kicked the extra point to lead Idaho over Louisiana Tech 35-34. Vandal QB Nathan Enderle threw for 327 yards with 2 TDs and 2 INTs. The difference in the game proved to be a missed PAT by Louisiana Tech after its final TD, after going up 34-21 in the 4th quarter.
Portland State vs. Eastern Washington (in Seattle, WA): Eastern Washington CB Matt Johnson tied a Big Sky record by picking off 4 passes in a game in the Eagles’ victory over Portland State 47-10. EWU QB Matt Nichols passed for 413 yards and 4 TDs. Eastern limited PSU to 278 yards of total offense, including only 163 passing. Last year, Vikings QB Drew Hubel threw for 623 yards and 5 TDs against Eastern Washington.
Idaho State at Montana State: Montana State RB rushed for 108 yards and 2 TDs as the Bobcats blew out the dismal Idaho State Bengals 41-10. Idaho State actually led the game 10-3 until a Bobcat TD tied it at 10 with 4:07 left in the 2nd quarter. After that, it was all Montana State. Idaho State finished with only 144 yards of total offense, including just 17 on the ground.