Sunday, December 5, 2010

Helmet Stickers: Week 14

ACC—After starting 0-2, Virginia Tech won eleven straight games, including Saturday’s Atlantic Coast Conference championship game against Florida State. Virginia Tech prevailed 44-33. The Hokies’ 44 points was the most ever scored in an ACC title game. Virginia Tech was 13 for 18 on third downs and put up 101 more yards than Florida State. Hokies quarterback Tyrod Taylor threw three touchdowns and ran for another. Hokies wide receiver Danny Coale exploited a weak Seminole secondary for a career-high 143 yards. Virginia Tech has won three ACC titles in the last four years.
Big 12—Nebraska opened the Big 12 title game 17-0 over Oklahoma. The Sooners battled back to be down 17-20 at the half. The Sooner defense regrouped during halftime and Nebraska was held scoreless in the second half of the game. Oklahoma added two field goals to become Big 12 Champion in a 23-20 win. Although Oklahoma was only 1 for 16 on third downs, they did win the turnover battle 4 to 1. Sooner linebacker Travis Lewis accounted for three of those turnovers: an interception and two fumble recoveries.

Big East—Connecticut clinched the Big East title and a BCS bowl bid by beating South Florida 19-16 on Saturday. The Huskies’ points came off of a pick six from senior linebacker Lawrence Wilson and four field goals by kicker Dave Teggart. With 1:16 left in the game, South Florida tied the game at 16-16. UConn drove 25 yards from its own 40 yard line to get to South Florida’s 35 yard line. On 4th and 3 with 17 seconds left, Dave Teggart hit a 52-yard field goal to put the Huskies up by 3 points and shortly thereafter win the game.

C-USA—Central Florida won its second Conference USA title by defeating Southern Methodist University by a score of 17-7. Central Florida’s true freshman quarterback Jeff Godfrey went 15 for 19 passing. His 78.9 percent completion percentage was a record for a C-USA championship game. The Knights defense tallied five sacks on the afternoon. Central Florida has won its second conference championship in the last four seasons. George O’Leary has this program rolling.

MAC—Miami (OH) upset Northern Illinois in the Mid-American Conference championship game on Friday night in Detroit by a score of 26-21. Wide receiver Armand Robinson had fourteen receptions for 176 yards. The RedHawks offense was led by freshman Austin Boucher, who was making only his third start of the year, filling in for an injured Zac Dysert. Miami went 10-3 this season after going 1-11 last season. That’s quite a turnaround. This was the first time Miami has won the conference title since 2003.

Pac-10—Arizona State capped their season by defeating in-state rival Arizona for the Territorial Cup. Arizona could have won the game if it had hit an extra point, but Arizona State defensive end James Brooks blocked it. Instead the game went into two overtimes. Both schools hit field goals in the first overtime. In the second overtime Arizona State scored a touchdown and extra point. Arizona responded with a touchdown but James Brooks blocked another Alex Zendejas extra point to win the game for the Sun Devils 30-29. A blocked point-after-touchdown to force overtime and another blocked PAT to win the game in double overtime over your in-state rival. That's big.

SEC—Auburn absolutely destroyed South Carolina in the Southeastern Conference championship game 56-17. Cam Newton locked up the Heisman with a performance that included four passing touchdowns and two rushing touchdowns. Auburn wideout Darvin Adams was also spectacular, catching seven passes for 217 yards. Auburn's 56 points is the most scored in an SEC title game and the 39-point margin of victory was the largest in an SEC championship game. Auburn finished the season a perfect 13-0 and will now have an opportunity to win the BCS National Championship.

Sun Belt—In its final game of the season, Middle Tennessee State became bowl-eligible. The Blue Raiders beat a formidable Florida International team 28-27. Middle Tennessee was able to put the game away after linebacker Corey Carmichael recovered a fumble on the Blue Raiders’ 35 yard line with FIU moving into field goal range and 3:43 left in the fourth quarter. Blue Raiders quarterback Dwight Dasher hit nine different targets for 244 yards on the day.

WAC—Fresno State upset Illinois 25-23 on Friday night at Bulldog Stadium. Bulldogs quarterback Ryan Colburn threw for 304 yards and three touchdowns. The climax of the game came in the fourth quarter when Fresno State was trying to run out the clock. Pat Hill ordered his offense to go for it on 4th and 1 in his own territory. Running back A.J. Ellis barely converted, but the success of the call allowed Fresno State to finish draining the clock out and win the game. Fresno State moves to 8-4 and has claimed yet another automatic-qualifying-conference victim. Pat Hill is not afraid of “BCS schools”.

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