Colleges

College roundup

Oklahoma routs TCU to win Big 12 championship

Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield, center, holds his Most Outstanding Player trophy as he celebrates with the team after their 41-17 win in the the Big 12 Conference championship NCAA college football game against TCU on Saturday, Dec. 2, 2017, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)
Tony Gutierrez/Associated Press
Oklahoma QB Baker Mayfield holds his Most Outstanding Player trophy after throwing for 243 yards and 4 TDs in a 41-17 romp over TCU in the Big 12 Championship game in Arlington, Texas.

Baker Mayfield and No. 2 Oklahoma were happy to have another game, even with the potential consequences. The Sooners definitely left no question about whether they will be in the playoff.

Heisman Trophy front-runner Mayfield completed 15 of 23 pass attempts for 243 yards and four touchdowns to claim MVP honors as the Sooners staked their playoff spot with a 41-17 win over No. 10 TCU in the Big 12 championship Saturday in Arlington, Texas.

‘‘The reason I came back was to play for a national title,’’ Mayfield said. ‘‘The most exciting thing about today is we control our destiny . . . That’s all out in front of us.’’

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With their record 11th Big 12 title, the Sooners (12-1, No. 3 CFP) are a lock to be in the College Football Playoff for the second time in three seasons. They are the only Big 12 team to make the four-team playoff format that started in 2014.

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The Sooners probably would have made the playoffs even if the Big 12 hadn’t played its first championship game since 2010. But a loss would have likely knocked the Sooners out of contention.

‘‘I’m really proud of our group for not listening to all the noise on the outside and we’ve played pretty good ball here at the end,’’ Sooners coach Lincoln Riley said. ‘‘We knew there was going to be a championship game and that was just going to be part of our journey if we wanted to get to this place.’’

Georgia 28, Auburn 7 — D’Andre Swift ran for a 64-yard TD with 10:34 left in the game that punctuated the Bulldogs’ victory over the No. 2 Tigers (10-3) in the Southeastern Conference championship at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta.

In sealing a berth in the College Football Playoff, Georgia (12-1) avenged its only regular-season loss, an ugly 40-17 defeat at Auburn, that knocked the then-No. 1 Bulldogs from the top of the polls.

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After trailing 7-0, Georgia took a 10-7 lead at the half and took control on Rodrio Blankenship’s 35-yard field goal and Terry Goodwin’s 7-yard TD pass from Jake Fromm.

Oklahoma jumped out to a quick 17-0 lead, including Caleb Kelly’s 18-yard fumble return for a touchdown after running back Kyle Hicks’ turnover on the first offensive play by TCU (10-3, No. 11).

Kenny Hill threw two TD passes to get the Horned Frogs within 24-17 at halftime, but Oklahoma scored twice on its first three offensive plays after the break.

‘‘Big plays, we gave up a couple. ... Two plays basically in the second half,’’ TCU coach Gary Patterson said. ‘‘The worst thing that could happen in the third quarter happened.’’

Hill opened the second half with three consecutive incompletions. On the first play after the punt, Mayfield hit Mykel Jones for a 55-yard catch-and-run score.

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On fourth-and-1 from the Oklahoma 41 on the next drive, Hill bootlegged to the right side. Big defensive end Ogbonnia Okoronkwo chased him toward the sideline before Parnell Motley delivered the crushing blow that kept TCU’s quarterback from getting a first down.

Two plays later, Marquise Brown made an impressive over-the-shoulder grab for a 52-yard TD and a 38-17 lead.

Hill finished 27-of-37 for 234 yards passing, and led TCU with 51 yards rushing.

Central Florida 62, Memphis 55 (2 OT) — In Orlando, Otis Anderson scored on a 1-yard run on the first possession of the second overtime and Central Florida (12-0) — playing its last game under coach Scott Frost, who was later hired as Nebraska’s head coach — beat Memphis for its third American Athletic Conference crown in five years.

The top two scoring teams in the country combined for 117 points and 1,479 yards. It was tied at 48 at the end of regulation.

The Knights led 48-34 early in the fourth quarter but the Tigers rallied to tie with 4:13 remaining on Ferguson’s 10-yard touchdown pass to Anthony Miller. Memphis had a chance to win it in regulation but Riley Patterson’s 51-yard field-goal attempt with 28 seconds remaining was wide left.

UCF’s McKenzie Milton was 28 of 40 for 494 yards and five touchdowns and was selected the game’s most outstanding player.

The Knights led 48-34 early in the fourth quarter but the Tigers rallied to tie with 4:13 remaining on Ferguson’s 10-yard touchdown pass to Anthony Miller. Memphis had a chance to win it in regulation but Riley Patterson’s 51-yard field-goal attempt with 28 seconds remaining was wide left.

UCF’s McKenzie Milton was 28 of 40 for 494 yards and five touchdowns and was selected the game’s most outstanding player.

Florida Atlantic 41, North Texas 17 — In Boca Raton, Fla., Devin Singletary ran for 164 yards and three touchdowns and Florida Atlantic beat North Texas to win its first Conference USA championship in coach Lane Kiffin’s first season.

The Owls (10-3) extended their unbeaten streak to nine games and were undefeated against C-USA opponents.

Jason Driskel completed 15 of 27 passes for 269 yards and a touchdown, and Kalib Woods had a school-record 208 yards receiving yards. FAU had 633 yards of offense.

The Owls, who beat North Texas (9-4) 69-31 in the regular season, took a 34-0 lead in the first 33 minutes. FAU had gains of 47, 49, 22, 44, 21 and 34 yards in the first quarter alone.

Toledo 45, Akron 28 — Logan Woodside threw four touchdown passes, Terry Swanson ran for 180 yards and two scores and Toledo beat Akron in the Mid-American Conference championship game at Ford Field in Detroit.

Receivers Diontae Johnson (118 yards) and Jon’Vea Johnson (103) combined for 221 yards and three touchdowns for Toledo (11-2).

The Rockets won their third conference title game and first since 2004.

Akron (7-6) forced five turnovers but couldn’t overcome a lopsided first half in it second loss to Toledo (11-2) this season. Woodside threw three touchdown passes in the first half, two to Diontae Johnson, as help the Rockets take a 28-0 lead.

New Hampshire 21, Central Arkansas 15 — The Wildcats struck for a decisive score with 7:19 left in the game on Malik Love’s diving 9-yard scoring catch from Christian Lupoli, who completed his first career TD pass. The upset victory over the fourth-seeded Bears in Conway, Ark., enabled UNH (8-4) to advance to the semifinals of the FCS playoffs.

Florida Int’l 63, UMass 45 — Andrew Ford completed 30 of 44 passes for 349 yards and threw four TDs to four different receivers — Marquis Young (who also had 125 rushing yards), Adam Breneman, Brennon Dingle, and Andy Isabella — but it wasn’t enough for the Minutemen (4-8) to overcome the host Panthers (8-4) at Riccardo Silva Stadium in Miami.

Indiana (Pa.) 27, Assumption 22 — Duane Brown rushed 13 times for 59 yards and a pair of TDs, including a 1-yard plunge for the go-ahead score with 1:09 remaining in the game to help host Indiana, Pa., (13-0) defeat Assumption (11-2) in the NCAA Div. 2 quarterfinals.

Men’s basketball

Kentucky 79, Harvard 70 — Kevin Knox had 20 points and Hamidou Diallo added 19 as the host No. 7 Wildcats (7-1) went on a 13-0 run midway through the second half to hold off the Crimson (3-6), who hit 12 3-pointers.Sophomore forward Seth Towns led Harvard with 25 points, hitting six 3-pointers (8-for-14 overall).

The Wildcats’ key run over 2:42 for a 72-52 lead withstood a cold spell down the stretch that Harvard took advantage of to get within nine on Towns’ 3 with 22 seconds remaining. Kentucky ran out the clock from there to win the first meeting between the schools and earn its fifth straight victory.

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander added 12 points for the Wildcats, who shot 46 percent but were just 2 of 12 from long range.

Villanova 94, Saint Joseph’s 53 — The No. 4 Wildcats (8-0) hit a school-record 19 of 35 shots from 3-point range to bury the Hawks (4-4) who had just 21 baskets for the game. Mikal Bridges (18 points, 9 rebounds) and Omari Spellman (16 points, 11 rebounds) led the way for Villanova.

South Carolina 76, UMass 70 — The Minutemen (3-5) were led by Luwane Pipkins (25 points) and pulled within 2 with 19.4 seconds remaining on a 3-pointer by Carl Pierre (12 points), but Hassani Gravett (14 points) made four straight free throws to seal it for the Gamecocks (6-2).

Northeastern 84, Cornell 66 — Donnell Gresham Jr. set career highs with 22 points and four steals to go with nine rebounds as the host Huskies (4-4) notched back-to-back wins following a four-game skid.

Vasa Pusica added 20 points, Bolden Brace scored 12 and Maxime Boursiquot had 11 for NU.

BC 73, Hartford 61 — Jerome Robinson scored 23 points and Ky Bowman added 21 to lead the Eagles (6-3) to a victory in West Hartford, Conn.

Jordan Chatman returned from a shoulder injury and finished with 12 points.

Nik Popovic added 13 points and 11 rebounds.

Rhode Island 75, Providence 68 — Freshman Fatts Russell scored 20 points off the bench to lead the host Rams (5-2) to a victory over their in-state rival Friars (6-2) as Jarvis Garrett added 15 points and Andre Berry had 12.

Women’s basketball

UMass 85, Miss. Valley St. 46 — Junior Gensis Rivera (23 points) tied the program’s game record with seven 3-pointers as the Minutewomen (5-4) defeated the Devilettes in the Battle on the Border hosted by Texas-Rio Grande Valley in Edinburg, Texas.

Hailey Leidel (game-high 25 points), Paige McCormick (15) and Maggie Mulligan (10), who along with Rivera was named to the all-tournament team, rounded out the UMass scorers in double figures.

Temple 86, Harvard 64 — Sophomore Jeannie Boehm had a team-high 12 points while the Crimson bench contributed 30, but it proved too little for Harvard (4-4) in its setback against the host Owls (6-2), who were led by Tanaya Atkinson (27 points, 11 rebounds).

Women’s hockey

BC 4, BU 2 — Daryl Watts had two goals and an assist and Makenna Newkirk tallied the game-winner in the third period as the No. 2 Eagles (13-1-3, 7-0-3 Hockey East) defeated the host Terriers to become the first team in league history to win 200 conference games.

Women’s soccer

Williams 1, Chicago 0 — Natasha Albaneze’s strike in the 56th minute proved the difference for the Ephs (22-1-1), who captured their second NCAA Division 3 championship in three years after not allowing a postseason goal.