SEATTLE (AP) – The Washington Huskies found out first hand what second-year Oregon State coach Dennis Erickson has done to the once-downtrodden Beavers football program.
The Huskies (No. 11 ESPN/USA Today, No. 13 AP) needed touchdowns on short runs by freshman Rich Alexis and quarterback Marques Tuiasosopo in the final quarter to hold off the No. 23 Beavers 33-30 on Saturday night.
It wasn’t over until Oregon State’s Ryan Cesca missed a 46-yard field-goal attempt with 14 seconds left. Cesca had plenty of leg, but the kick was wide right.
The crowd of 73,145 at Husky Stadium watched as Jonathan Smith drove Oregon State (4-1, 1-1 Pacific-10) from its 26 to the Washington 28 in the final 4:55 before Cesca’s miss.
“We feel we’re a legitimate Rose Bowl contender,” Smith said. “So any time you lose, it’s a disappointment.”
Oregon State lost its 13th straight to Washington (4-1, 1-1), but the game was a thriller compared to the Huskies’ 47-21 victory last year in Corvallis.
LOS ANGELES (AP) – Arizona’s defense played like “Desert Swarm” again, and the Wildcats’ offense came up big.
Evoking memories of the Wildcats’ dominant defenses during several seasons in the 1990s, Arizona held Southern California (No. 16 ESPN/USA Today, No. 18 AP) to 10 yards rushing, logged five sacks and forced five turnovers in a 31-15 victory Saturday.
Ortege Jenkins and Clarence Farmer provided offensive spark for the Wildcats (4-1, 2-0 Pacific-10) against the bumbling Trojans (3-2, 0-2), who were booed by their own fans as the game went on.
Jenkins ran for two scores and hooked up with Bobby Wade on a 75-yard touchdown pass, and Farmer – a quick, hard-running freshman – scored on an 80-yard run and finished with 134 yards on 22 carries.
USC’s Carson Palmer threw three interceptions and lost a fumble. Palmer was 26-of-50 for 321 yards.
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) – The option was back at Notre Dame. The Irish offense, however, didn’t show a lot of improvement.
Freshman Matt LoVecchio guided the Irish 91 yards for a touchdown on their first possession, and a blocked punt and an interception set up two TDs as Notre Dame (No. 25 AP) beat Stanford 20-14 on Saturday.
“Any time that you can win a big-time college football game, you need to enjoy it,” Notre Dame coach Bob Davie said. “I also think the football team, particularly the defensive side, didn’t play as well as we should.”
Stanford (2-3) scored on a 14-yard touchdown pass from Chris Lewis to Darin Naatjes with 1:07 left to close within six points, but Jabari Holloway recovered the onside kick at the Stanford 45.
The Irish (3-2), who entered the game with the 106th rated offense of 114 teams, managed just 266 yards total offense.
Stanford had 384 yards total offense but was hurt by two turnovers, the blocked punt and a missed field goal. The Cardinal were led by Chris Lewis, who was 19-of-43 for 242 yards with one interception.
PULLMAN, Wash. (AP) – Jason Gesser threw two touchdown passes and ran for a third score as Washington State beat Boise State 42-35 on Saturday in a game that featured nearly 900 yards.
Washington State (3-2) won at home for the first time in a year, and rose above .500 for the first time since they were 3-2 in the 1998 season.
Boise State (3-2) lost despite 335 passing yards and four touchdowns by Bart Hendricks.
With the score tied at 35, Washington State took possession on Boise State’s 38 after an end zone punt and drove to the 1. Runs were stopped twice before Adam Hawkins bulled over for a touchdown that lifted WSU to a 42-35 lead with 1:15 left.
Boise State’s final drive ended on a Hendricks’ fumble.