TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — No. 2 Alabama really owns the state now.
AJ McCarron passed for four touchdowns and Eddie Lacy rushed for 131 yards and two scores to lead the Crimson Tide to a 49-0 beatdown of rival Auburn on Saturday in the most lopsided Iron Bowl in 64 years.
The Crimson Tide (10-1, 7-1 Southeastern Conference) clinched the Western Division title outright and a spot in the conference title game against No. 3 Georgia with the winner likely getting a national championship shot.
None of that will come as easily as this one. Auburn (3-9, 0-8) completed the worst season for any team within two years of winning an Associated Press national title in what might have been the last game for embattled coach Gene Chizik.
University President Jay Gogue has only said he’ll evaluate the program at season’s end. That end came in a painful way for the Tigers.
Chizik met Tide coach Nick Saban briefly at midfield, hugged McCarron, and walked off the field with cameras following his every move.
The biggest Iron Bowl margin was Alabama’s 55-0 victory in 1948.
Alabama outgained the Tigers 483-163 and had 25 first downs to Auburn’s seven.
No. 6 Florida 37,
No. 10 Florida State 26
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Mike Gillislee ran for two touchdowns and No. 6 Florida scored 24 straight points in the fourth quarter to defeat Florida State 37-26 Saturday and keep its national title hopes alive.
Florida regained the lead 23-20 on Gillislee’s 37-yard run with 11:01 left in the final period on the first play after Florida State’s EJ Manuel fumbled, his fourth turnover of the game. Gillislee finished with 140 yards rushing.
Florida (11-1, 7-1 Southeastern Conference) came into the game fourth in the BCS standings, and the gators could find themselves in position to earn a spot in the national championship game if No. 1 Notre Dame loses to Southern California. The Gators lone loss was in late October to third-ranked Georgia, and it will keep them out of the SEC title game.
Florida State (10-2, 7-1 Atlantic Coast Conference) was hurt by five turnovers in the game. The Seminoles will play Georgia Tech next week in the ACC title game.
Florida State was hoping to keep its own long shot national title hopes alive, and restore a bit of respect for its conference, with a third straight win over the Gators, but couldn’t.
Florida salted its victory away on a Jeff Driskel’s 14-yard touchdown throw to Quinton Dunbar with seven minutes left and Matt Jones’ 32-yard run with 2:33 left for a 37-20 lead.
Caleb Sturgis kicked three field goals for the Gators. Florida State’s Dustin Hopkins had field goals of 50 and 53 yards to tie former Georgia kicker Billy Bennett’s NCAA record of 87 career field goals.
Oregon 48, Oregon State 24
CORVALLIS, Ore. — Kenjon Barner ran for 198 yards and two touchdowns despite leaving the game for a time with an injury and No. 5 Oregon defeated No. 16 Oregon State 48-24 in the Civil War on Saturday, keeping alive the Ducks’ hopes for a spot in the Pac-12 title game and even an outside chance at the national championship.
De’Anthony Thomas, who helped picked up the slack while Barner was on the sidelines, ran for 122 yards and three scores for the Ducks (11-1, 8-1).
After Oregon’s undefeated season was thwarted by a 17-14 overtime loss to Stanford last weekend, the Ducks had to wait for UCLA’s game against the Cardinal later Saturday to see who would be headed to the conference championship game. Both Oregon and Stanford started the day with one conference loss in the league’s northern division.
It was Oregon’s fifth straight victory in the 116-game rivalry series with the Beavers.
While the Civil War is normally the season finale for both teams, Oregon State (8-3, 6-3) will host Nicholls State next Saturday in a matchup that was supposed to open the season but was put off when Hurricane Isaac bore down on the Colonels’ Thibodaux, La., campus.
The Beavers will have to wait to find out where they’re headed for a bowl game, but already their season can be counted a success after they went just 3-9 last year.
Barner appeared to hurt either his abdomen or ribs late in the first half and headed to the locker room. He returned after the break, but much of the work went to Thomas until he returned on a scoring drive that made it 41-17 early in the fourth quarter.
Oregon redshirt freshman Marcus Mariota threw for 140 yards and a score, and also ran for 85 yards and a touchdown.
His Oregon State counterpart, Sean Mannion, threw for 311 yards and a touchdown but was intercepted four times. Storm Woods rushed for 70 yards and two scores.
Mannion started the first four games of the season, throwing seven touchdowns and averaging 339 yards, but injured his left knee and required surgery. Vaz, who hadn’t started since high school, took over and helped the Beavers to win in the next two games, and later became the team’s starter.
But Vaz sprained his left ankle in the final moments of a loss to Stanford two weeks ago, and sat out last Saturday during Oregon State’s 64-14 victory at home over California. Mannion got the nod for the Civil War.
A 47,249 fans attended the game, setting Reser Stadium record.
Oregon put the Stanford loss behind them by striking quickly on their first possession with Mariota’s 42-yard keeper. The touchdown drive took just 1:46, but the Ducks’ 2-point try to cap it off failed.
The Beavers took a 7-6 lead on Woods’ 7-yard touchdown run, but the Ducks answered on the next series with Thomas’ 2-yard TD dash. Barner added a 1-yard scoring run before he was hurt.
Stanford held Barner to 66 yards the week before, but he had 141 yards before halftime against the Beavers. With his first 15 yards rushing Saturday, he moved past Derek Loville (1986-89) for second on Oregon’s career rushing list.
Trevor Romaine kicked a 36-yard field goal to narrow it to 20-10 at halftime and the Beavers pulled closer with Woods’ 2-yard scoring run on their first series of the second half.
It was all Ducks the rest of the way. Thomas scored on a 6-yard run to extend Oregon’s lead to 27-17, before the Ducks capitalized on a Beaver fumble that led to Thomas’ 29-yard touchdown run. Barner returned with his 1-yard run and Mariota found B.J. Kelley with a 2-yeard scoring pass.
Mannion hit Micah Hatfield with a 6-yard touchdown pass with 20 seconds left for the final margin.
The Ducks hold a 60-46-10 advantage in the Civil War which dates back to 1894 and is the seventh-most contested rivalry in the nation.
It was the fourth time that both teams were ranked for the Civil War. The last was in 2009, when Oregon was No. 7 and Oregon State was No. 13. That game was dubbed the “War of the Roses” because the winner was guaranteed a Rose Bowl berth. Oregon won 37-33.
No. 14 Oklahoma 51,
No. 22 Oklahoma State 48 (OT)
NORMAN, Okla. — Landry Jones threw for 500 yards and three touchdowns, and Brennan Clay scored on an 18-yard run in overtime to lift No. 14 Oklahoma to a 51-48 win against No. 22 Oklahoma State in the Bedlam rivalry on Saturday.
The Sooners (9-2, 7-1 Big 12) never led during regulation, overcoming double-digit deficits in both halves. Backup quarterback Blake Bell tied it with 4 seconds left on a 4-yard keeper on fourth-and-1.
Joseph Randle ran for 113 yards and matched his career-high with four touchdowns for Oklahoma State (7-4, 5-3), which settled for Quinn Sharp’s 26-yard field goal in overtime.
On the Sooners’ second play, Clay got through traffic at the line of scrimmage and then broke through attempted tackles by Daytawion Lowe and Shamiel Gary to score the game-winner and set off a celebration on Owen Field.
Penn State 24,
Wisconsin 21 (OT)
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. — Sam Ficken hit a 37-yard field goal in overtime, and Wisconsin’s Kyle French attempt from 45 yards went wide left to seal Penn State’s 24-21 win Saturday in an emotional season finale in Happy Valley.
The Nittany Lions (8-4, 6-2 Big Ten) could have ended it for good a play earlier, but linebacker Glenn Carson dropped a potential interception.
Still, the Beaver Stadium faithful celebrated anyway after French’s miss on Senior Day capped a challenging year that began with landmark sanctions from the NCAA for the Jerry Sandusky child molestation scandal.
Quarterback Curt Phillips found Jeff Duckworth for a 4-yard touchdown pass with 18 seconds left for Wisconsin (7-5, 4-4) to make it 21-all and send the game into overtime.
Badgers star running back Montee Ball ran for 111 yards and a touchdown on 27 carries, and set the NCAA record with his 97th career score.
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