Massachusetts Daily Collegian

Alabama holds off A&M, Sun Devils get controversial win

By Matthew Zackman

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In a battle between Heisman Trophy-caliber quarterbacks, Johnny Manziel and the No. 6 Texas A&M football team failed to upset AJ McCarron and top-ranked Alabama, falling 49-42 in a high-scoring affair.

 

Manziel was attempting to lead the Aggies to a second straight upset of the nation’s top team, but two interceptions impeded his efforts.

 

The Aggies (2-1, 0-1 Southeastern Conference) already had a 14-point lead within the first 10 minutes of the game on touchdowns scored by tight end Cameron Clear and running back Ben Malena.

 

However, the Crimson Tide (2-0, 1-0 SEC)  took a 28-14 lead into halftime after McCarron erupted for three touchdowns and running back T.J. Yeldon ran for a score as well.

 

Almost immediately after the second half began, Alabama safety Vinnie Sunsieri added some extra insurance to the Crimson Tide’s 14-point lead by intercepting a Manziel pass and returning it 73 yards to the end zone.

 

Although Manziel threw for five touchdowns and posted a career high 464 yards, the Aggies couldn’t muster a comeback, despite scoring four touchdowns in the second half.

 

The Crimson Tide remain atop the AP Top 25, while the Aggies dropped four spots and currently sit at No. 10 in the nation.

 

Next week, Alabama will face Colorado State and Texas A&M will go against Southern Methodist in non-conference battles.

 

ASU wins wild one

On Saturday, 20th-ranked Wisconsin took on Arizona State in what turned out to be a wild contest, in which the Sun Devils upset the Badgers, 32-30.

 

After crushing both UMass and Tennessee Tech by a combined score of 93-0, the Badgers (2-1) were looking to wreck even more havoc upon the Sun Devils, but were done in by a controversial ending.

 

The Sun Devils used their momentum to build a 32-30 lead, which they maintained until the final whistle. However, the Badgers had the ball and a chance to win the game in the final minute, but with under 15 seconds left, Wisconsin quarterback Joel Stave ran the ball to the left to give the field goal kicker a good line, but ran into one of the Badger lineman, dropped the ball and then picked it up. However, the officials ruled the ball dead and the clock expired as the Badgers were unable to kick what would be the winning field goal.

 

Wisconsin may have never been in this position to begin with had it not been shut out in the first quarter.

 

With 4:08 left in the first quarter, Arizona State (2-0) struck first with a 34-yard field goal to take a 3-0 lead. However, within the first four minutes of the second quarter, Wisconsin scored a touchdown and recovered a fumble in its own end zone for a 14-3 advantage.

 

But Arizona State mounted a comeback and finished the second quarter down by only one point before pulling ahead in the second half.

 

Next week the Arizona State will face No. 5 Stanford, while Wisconsin will take on Purdue.

 

Ducks dominate Vols

For the second week in a row, Oregon posted 59 points as they thrashed Tennessee in a 59-14 victory.

 

At the onset of the game, it seemed that the Volunteers (2-1) were going to put up a fight as they scored the game’s first touchdown. However, the Volunteers only scored once more, which occurred in the second half of the fourth quarter when the game was already in hand for the Ducks (3-0).

 

Oregon sophomore quarterback Marcus Mariota threw for a career-high 456 yards and added four passing touchdowns and a rushing touchdown to his stat line.

However, it was not just Mariota that was responsible for the scoring. Six other players scored touchdowns and receivers Josh Huff and John Mundt amounted for 246 combined receiving yards and three touchdowns.

 

Next Saturday, Tennessee will face SEC rival Florida in a crucial conference game. Oregon will take on California in its first conference matchup of the season.

 

Matthew Zackman can be reached at [email protected]

 

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