No. 6 Ohio State strikes late, stuns No. 2 Penn State

Jay LaPrete/AP

Ohio State tight end Marcus Baugh starts celebrating after scoring the winning TD against Penn State.

Associated Press 

Ohio State coach Urban Meyer called it the best he has ever seen a quarterback play.

J.T. Barrett capped the greatest game of his decorated career with a 16-yard touchdown pass to Marcus Baugh with 1:48 left in the fourth quarter and No. 6 Ohio State rallied from 11 down in the final five minutes to hand No. 2 Penn State its first loss, 39-38, on Saturday in Columbus, Ohio.


Barrett was near flawless, going 33 for 39 for 328 yards and four touchdown passes, three in the fourth quarter after the Buckeyes (7-1, 5-0 Big Ten) were down 35-20.

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‘‘I’ve never had a kid play perfect, but damn he was close tonight,’’ Meyer said.

Penn State led, 38-27, with 5:42 left and it looked as if the Nittany Lions (7-1, 4-1) were going to knock the Buckeyes out of the College Football Playoff race and put a firm grip on the Big Ten East. Saquon Barkley scored two long touchdowns for Penn State, but it was Barrett who surged into the Heisman Trophy race in what was billed as the Big Ten game of the year and lived up to the hype.

‘‘I think the H-word is appropriate after today’s game,’’ Meyer said.

Barrett hooked up with Johnnie Dixon for two touchdowns in the fourth and then got the ball back down five with 3:20 left. The Buckeyes quickly marched down the field and then Barrett found his big tight end Baugh open for the lead.


‘‘I didn’t manage the game well,’’ Penn State coach James Franklin said. ‘‘There’s enough blame to spread around.’’

The blackout crowd at the Horseshoe poured onto the field to celebrate with the Buckeyes after Barrett took a final knee. He calmly wandered through the mayhem, receiving pats on the back. The fifth-year senior, who some fans wanted benched after the Buckeyes’ offense struggled in a September loss to Oklahoma, had just delivered a performance to quiet any remaining doubters.

Iowa State 14, TCU 7 — Kyle Kempt threw for 202 yards and two touchdowns and 25th-ranked Cyclones upset the fourth-ranked Horned Frogs in Ames, Iowa, handing TCU its first defeat and leaving the Big 12 without an unbeaten team.

Marcel Spears intercepted a Kenny Hill pass with 1:16 left to seal it for Iowa State (6-2, 4-1), who forced a pair of turnovers in the red zone in the second half in winning their fourth straight game.

Kempt put Iowa State ahead, 14-0, at the break with touchdown passes to Matt Eaton (17 yards) and Hakeem Butler (4 yards).

TCU (7-1, 4-1) answered to open the second half on a 94-yard kickoff return by KaVontae Turpin. But Brian Peavy intercepted Hill in the end zone in the third quarter and brought it back 70 yards, and Willie Harvey caused Hill to fumble a ball recovered by Iowa State at its own 15-yard line with 7:11 to go.


Hill had his worst game of the season, finishing 12-of-25 passing for 135 yards and those two very costly interceptions. The Horned Frogs also committed 11 penalties for 104 yards.

Georgia 42, Florida 7 — Sony Michel put third-ranked Georgia (8-0, 5-0 SEC) up big early and put Florida (3-4, 3-3) away late, scoring on two long runs in a drubbing in Jacksonville, Fla., that might have been the final game for Gators coach Jim McElwain.

Michel finished with 137 yards rushing on just six carries and helped the Bulldogs remain unbeaten and in control in the Southeastern Conference’s Eastern Division.

Nick Chubb also scored for the Bulldogs, who ended a three-game losing streak in ‘‘The World’s Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party’’ and started 8-0 for the first time since 2002.

Athletic director Scott Stricklin said there had been no buyout talks with McElwain but he stopped short of giving the embattled coach a vote of confidence.

Florida started the day by responding to a tweet from a sports lawyer who said Florida and McElwain’s agent, Jimmy Sexton, have engaged in buyout negotiations and are ‘‘miles apart.’’

Stricklin released a statement several hours before the game saying the buyout report was inaccurate. ‘‘No one representing the University of Florida or our athletic department has had any conversations with Coach McElwain or his representatives regarding a buyout of his contract,’’ Stricklin said.

‘‘I haven’t been told anything,’’ said McElwain, who is now 22-12 in three seasons. ‘‘There have been no conversations about that. . . . Nothing in this world surprises me. I know what I was brought here to do. Look, we haven’t been good on offense. I get it. We’ve won a few games, but we haven’t won enough; haven’t won a championship. That’s real. That’s life. And I take full responsibility for all of it, no doubt.’’

The loss capped one of the strangest weeks in program history.

McElwain created a firestorm Monday when he said Florida players and families received death threats amid the team’s struggles. Stricklin met with McElwain in hopes of gathering more information and helping alleviate any safety concerns. McElwain rebuffed their efforts, prompting a statement from the athletic department that essentially criticized McElwain for being uncooperative.

McElwain backtracked a bit Wednesday but stopped short of apologizing and again refused to provide details about the threats.

Wisconsin 24, Illinois 10 — Alec Ingold and Garrett Groshek scored on short runs in the first half, offensive lineman Michael Deiter added another touchdown on a trick play late in the game, and the No. 5 Badgers (8-0, 5-0 Big Ten) knocked off the host Illini (2-6, 0-5).

Star running back Jonathan Taylor rushed for just 73 yards but didn’t appear in the second half for Wisconsin because of a left leg injury. The freshman entered the game averaging 158.6 yards rushing. Coach Paul Chryst said he does not know the extent of Taylor’s injury.

Miami 24, North Carolina 19 — Malik Rosier threw for a career-high 356 yards with three touchdowns to help the eighth-ranked Hurricanes (7-0, 5-0 ACC) hold off the host Tar Heels (1-8, 0-6).

Rosier had a 51-yard touchdown throw to Christopher Herndon IV late in the first half and a 78-yarder to Jeff Thomas to open the third quarter. His 5-yarder to Braxton Berrios gave the Hurricanes a 24-13 fourth-quarter lead. Still, Miami — which led just 7-6 at halftime — had to come up with a couple late plays after UNC made it a one-score game.

First the Hurricanes recovered a fumble by Jordon Brown after the Tar Heels had pushed near the Miami 35 with 2:11 left. Then Rosier ran for a chains-moving keeper near the 2-minute mark, allowing Miami to run out the clock.

Notre Dame 35, N.C. State 14 — Julian Love returned his second interception of the season for a touchdown and running back Josh Adams had another big day, rushing for 202 yards, to help the No. 9 Fighting Irish (7-1) beat the 14th-ranked Wolfpack (6-2) in South Bend, Ind.

The sixth straight victory by Brian Kelly’s Irish avenged a 10-3 loss at N.C. State last year in the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew. N.C. State saw its six-game winning streak come to an end.

Love’s 69-yard return behind a convey of his defensive mates with 12:05 left in the third quarter ended N.C. State quarterback Ryan Finley’s streak of consecutive passes without throwing an interception at 339. Love, who also broke up three other Finley attempts, had a 50-yard interception return for a TD in Notre Dame’s 38-18 victory at Michigan State.

A little less than eight minutes after Love’s theft, the 6-foot-2, 225-pound Adams, who earlier in the game became the quickest back in school history to go over 1,000 yards in a season on his 110th attempt, broke up the middle for a 77-yard touchdown run that provided further breathing room. Adams had his second 200-yard rushing game of the season and his sixth game over 100 yards this year.

Brandon Wimbush added three first-half touchdowns, his 11th rushing TD of the season and two scoring passes of 25 yards to Durham Smythe and 11 yards to Kevin Stepherson.

Oklahoma State 50, West Virginia 39 — Mason Rudolph threw three touchdown passes and ran for another score to outshine Will Grier to lead the No. 11 Cowboys (7-1, 4-1 Big 12) over the No. 22 Mountaineers (5-3, 3-2) in Morgantown, W.Va.

Rudolph earned his 29th win as a starter, breaking the school record set by current coach Mike Gundy from 1986 to 1989. Rudolph finished 20 of 34 for 216 yards. The national passing yards leader prevailed in a matchup with Grier, who entered the game first in the FBS with 26 touchdown passes.

Grier threw four interceptions, and his streak of seven straight 300-yard passing games ended. He finished 20 of 42 for 285 yards and two TDs.

Washington 44, UCLA 23 — Myles Gaskin led Washington’s running onslaught with 169 yards and one touchdown, Lavon Coleman added 94 yards and three touchdown runs, and the 12th-ranked Huskies (7-1, 4-1 Pac-12) routed the visiting Bruins (4-4, 2-3).

Washington finished with 333 yards rushing as a team, averaging 5.7 yards per carry. Gaskin finally found the end zone late in the third quarter on a 6-yard run. Coleman scored on runs of 1, 33, and 13 yards, and Browning added a 1-yard quarterback sneak early in the second quarter after it appeared Gaskin had scored on the previous play.

UCLA quarterback Josh Rosen was 12 of 21 passing for 93 yards and was sacked four times. Rosen was pulled midway through the third quarter and later was on the sideline in sweats. He had been limping after being sacked in the second quarter by Washington’s Austin Joyner. Rosen threw a 7-yard TD pass to Jordan Wilson in the second quarter, but Washington scored the next 27 points.

Virginia Tech 24, Duke 3 — Josh Jackson threw for a touchdown and ran for another to lead the No. 13 Hokies (7-1, 3-1 ACC) past the visiting Blue Devils (4-5, 1-5).

Jackson hit Sean Savoy with a 26-yard pass just before halftime to give the Hokies a 17-3 lead. He scored on a 6-yard run in the third quarter, all but cementing Virginia Tech’s third victory in a row on a night when it rained for most of the second half and footing became increasingly uncertain.

The Blue Devils lost their fifth in a row. They had less than 100 yards of offense until late in the third quarter when quarterback Daniel Jones broke free for a 33-yard run. But Jones threw incomplete on fourth-and-14 from the Virginia Tech 28 to turn the ball over.

Northwestern 39, Michigan State 31 — Clayton Thorson threw a 22-yard TD to Flynn Nagel in the third overtime, Nate Hall intercepted Brian Lewerke, and the host Wildcats upset the No. 16 Spartans.

The Wildcats had a third down at the 22 when Thorson hit Nagel on a slant for the go-ahead TD. Cameron Green caught the 2-point conversion to make it an 8-point game, and two big plays by the defense preserved the victory.

Houston 28, No. 17 South Florida 24 — D’Eriq King kept Houston’s hopes alive with a 30-yard completion on fourth-and-24, then finished a game-winning drive with a 20-yard touchdown run with 11 seconds remaining, lifting the visiting Cougars (5-3, 3-2 American) over the No. 17 Bulls (7-1, 4-1).

UCF 73, Austin Peay 33 — McKenzie Milton threw for 275 yards and three touchdowns and scored another on the ground and the Knights blew out the Governors (5-3) for the first 7-0 start in school history.

  The 73 points scored was a school record for the Knights, who lead the nation in scoring. UCF scored on 11 of 12 possessions.

UMass 30, Appalachian State 27 — Logan Laurent’s 36-yard field goal in the second overtime lifted the Minutemen (2-6) past the Mountaineers (5-3) in Amherst.

Missouri 52, UConn 12 — Drew Lock threw for 377 yards and five touchdowns and the visiting Tigers (3-5) routed UConn (3-5) to win back-to-back games for the first time since the start of the 2015 season.

  Bryant Shirreffs completed 19 of 39 passes for 202 yards for UConn, but was sacked five times.

Holy Cross 24, Georgetown 10 — Peter Pujals threw for 257 yards and rushed for a touchdown, Jackson McLarty made three short field goals, and the host Crusaders (3-6, 2-2 Patriot) got past the Hoyas (1-7, 0-3).

Pujals’s 18th career rushing touchdown came after a fake handoff from the 1 with 6:24 left in the game and Diquan Walker added the 2-point conversion.

Yale 23, Columbia 6 — Kurt Rawlings ran for a touchdown and threw for another and the Bulldogs (6-1, 3-1 Ivy) stymied the Lions (6-1, 3-1) to end Columbia’s seven-game winning streak, its longest since 1935.

Columbia (6-1, 3-1), which was looking to go 7-0 for the first time since 1932, came in averaging 400 yards a game but was limited to 206 yards and had two turnovers. Columbia’s 6-0 start had equaled the 1996 team, which was the last squad to post a winning record for the Lions.


Denver 6, BC 1 — Henrik Borgstrom and Blake Hillman each scored twice and the top-ranked Pioneers (4-0-2) blitzed the No. 19 Eagles (1-5-1) at Conte Forum to complete a weekend sweep of BC and Boston University. BC has dropped four in a row.

Providence 3, BU 0 — Hayden Hawkey made 22 saves and the No. 11 Friars (5-2-0, 2-1-0 Hockey East) got second-period goals from Vimal Sukumaran, Erik Foley, and Brandon Duhaime to dispatch the sixth-ranked Terriers (3-4-1, 1-1-1) at Agganis Arena.

NU 5, UMass Lowell 4 — Patrick Schule scored 2:10 into overtime and the host No. 20 Huskies (4-2-1, 2-0 Hockey East) beat the 17th-ranked River Hawks (3-5-0, 0-4-0) for a weekend sweep.