Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

MAC Football Notebook: Pair of MAC teams best Big Ten foes

(John J. Kim/Chicago Tribune/MCT)
(John J. Kim/Chicago Tribune/MCT)

The Toledo football team was overmatched Saturday, as it lost to No. 24 Missouri 49-24

The Rockets (1-1) were led by sophomore running back Kareem Hunt, who totaled 148 yards on 15 rushes and also caught three passes for 12 yards. He scored the only three touchdowns for Toledo during the afternoon.

The Rockets contended early and answered an early Tigers touchdown with six points of their own on a 38-yard run by Hunt late in the first quarter. But Missouri (2-0) countered quickly and regained the lead with another touchdown less than two minutes later.

That sequence set the tone for the day, as the Tigers matched Toledo’s additional scores with more points of their own. Missouri’s sophomore quarterback Maty Mauk had an outstanding game against the Rockets secondary, as he passed for 325 yards and five touchdowns.

After Mauk’s third touchdown of the game made the score 35-7 midway through the third quarter, Toledo tried to mount a rally. A quick drive down the field led to a one-yard touchdown run from Hunt  and an interception by junior cornerback Chris Dukes led to another Rockets touchdown to make the score  35-21. But the Tigers scored another pair of touchdowns which put the game out of reach.

Toledo returns to action next Friday at Cincinnati at 7 p.m.

Central Michigan tops Big Ten opponent Purdue

Central Michigan pulled off a surprising upset Saturday morning, as it won 38-17 against Big Ten opponent Purdue.

The Chippewas (2-0) wasted little time getting started. An interception return for a touchdown by junior cornerback Brandon Greer coupled with a 65-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Cooper Rush to receiver Anthony Rice put Central Michigan up 14-0 midway through the first quarter.

Purdue (1-1) responded with a touchdown early in the second quarter, but never really took momentum away from the Chippewas. Boilermakers starting quarterback Danny Etling didn’t  consistently move the ball down the field and his backup Austin Appleby was equally ineffective.

The Central Michigan skill players clicked on all cylinders. Rush totaled 172 yards passing and two touchdowns for the Chippewas and running back Thomas Rawls had two touchdowns of his own in addition to 155 yards on the ground. Add in interceptions from Greer and Jason Wilson, and Central Michigan cruised to victory.

The Chippewas play next Saturday at home against Syracuse (1-0) at 12:00 p.m.

 Northern Illinois sneaks by Northwestern

Northern Illinois University narrowly escaped Northwestern  Saturday afternoon, winning 23-15 at home in Evanston, Illinois.

The first half was a defensive battle filled with three-and-outs and stalled drives. Neither team scored a single point and the game went to halftime tied 0-0.

The second half brought more offense on both sides, starting with a Tyler Wedel field goal to put the Huskies (2-0) on top 3-0. Northwestern  fought back and took the lead on a 19-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Tyler Siemian to Kyle Prater. Northern Illinois responded with less than a minute left in the third quarter on a Drew Hare touchdown pass to Da’Ron Brown put them back on top 10-7.

Northern Illinois added two more touchdowns and appeared to be in total control of the game late in the fourth quarter. The Wildcats (0-2) would not go down without a fight though and added a touchdown and two-point conversion on a 54-yard touchdown pass from Zach Oliver to Pierre Youngblood-Ary, providing the 23-15 final score.

A strong performance from Da’Ron Brown aided Northern Illinois to victory. Brown had six catches for 128 yards and two touchdowns. A strong Huskies running game, which totaled 221 yards, also paved the way to victory.

Northern Illinois will play next Saturday at University of Nevada, Las Vegas at 7 p.m.

Adam Aucoin can be reached at [email protected].

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