Mike Kern: No road blocks for Villanova, Penn

Villanova wideout Joe Price hauls in a pass for a touchdown against Maine.
Villanova wideout Joe Price hauls in a pass for a touchdown against Maine. (ASSOCIATED PRESS)
Posted: October 01, 2012

Players of the Weekend * 

National: Who else? Geno Smith threw for 656 yards and eight touchdowns in West Virginia's Big 12 debut, a 70-63 home win over Baylor.

Local: James McFadden kicked a 33-yard field goal in overtime to give unbeaten Widener, ranked 18th in Division III, a 40-37 win at Lebanon Valley. One week after beating Wilkes, 90-0, the Pride had to rally from a 16-point deficit in the final 6 minutes of regulation.

Around Town Villanova 35, Maine 14

Andy Talley said he wanted to find out something about his team, which was playing for the first time outside Philadelphia.

It's hard to say how good the Black Bears (1-3, 0-1 CAA), a playoff team last season, are going to be. But the Wildcats (4-1, 2-0) had won only twice in seven trips to Orono. Some of them were ugly. Now they've taken the last two, both convincingly.

This young group is still probably a year away, after going 2-9 in 2011. But the opening 41-10 loss to Temple seems like a long time ago. It was tied at seven early. Villanova scored the next 28.

Sophomore Kevin Monangai, with two other backs limited by injuries, had career highs of 30 carries and 192 yards, the first time a Wildcat had rushed for over 190 since Brian Westbrook went for 233 against William & Mary in 2001. He scored twice. The Wildcats totaled a season-high 314 (on 52 carries), having gone over 200 in every game. They held Maine to 11, on 23 tries.

Pro prospect Norman White, who is been playing with an injured shoulder, had a TD catch for the third straight game.

The Wildcats have just one turnover in their last four games. They've won their last four second halves, 73-28.

Redshirt freshman John Robertson, 4-0 as a starter, threw for 128 yards and two TDs and ran for 79 and another score.

The Wildcats had seven sacks, giving them 11 the last 2 weeks.

This week they host Richmond (3-2, 1-1), which lost at home to No. 4 Old Dominion, 45-37. They are at ODU on Oct. 13.

Penn 28, Dartmouth 21

For the 14th time in the last 15 years, the Quakers (1-2, 1-0) won their Ivy League opener.

They led at halftime, 20-0. The Big Green (2-0, 0-1) got to within seven with 3:33 to go but never got the ball back.

The Quakers lost running back Brandon Colavita (ankle) early. They still ran for 207 yards, with 51 coming on a Lyle Marsh TD with just under 6 minutes to go. It was one of his two carries.

Billy Ragone (14-for-18) threw for 189 and ran for 60.

Conner Scott, who is having a big year after sitting out last season with an injury, caught eight passes. Connor Loftus had two second-period field goals.

The Quakers did not have a turnover for the second straight game, after committing eight in an opening loss at Lafayette.

On Saturday, the Quakers host William & Mary, their second CAA opponent in 3 weeks.

No Defense

Vegas had set the over-under for Baylor-West Virginia at 81. They were paying off with 9:13 left in the third quarter of the Mountaineers' 70-63 victory.

WVU's Geno Smith (45-for-51) had two more TDs than incompletions.

Nick Florence, the losing QB and RG3's successor, passed for 581 yards and five scores.

Miami's Stephen Morris, by the way, had 566 and five, including the late-game winning bomb, against North Carolina State. According to STATS LLC, the last QB with at least 550 and five was Houston's Case Keenum against Southern Mississippi on Oct. 31, 2009. Before that, you had to go back to Texas Tech's Graham Harrell vs. Oklahoma State on Sept 22, 2007.

Now, three in one afternoon.

WVU had a school-record 807 yards. The teams combined for 1,507, and 67 first downs. Six receivers had at least 100 yards. Baylor's Terrance Williams set a Big 12 record with 314, breaking the mark set minutes earlier by WVU's Stedman Bailey (303), who caught a school-record five TDs. Baylor tied an FBS mark for points by a losing team.

Makes Georgia's 51-44 win over Tennessee sound lightweight.

All but three of the 19 scoring drives were less than 3 minutes. WVU's basketball team reached 70 just 14 times last season.

The record for most points in a regulation FBS game is 136, set by Navy (74) and North Texas (62) in 2007. Navy, pardon the digression, has scored 58 this season. And 41 came in one game.

But it was the most points in a game involving a ranked team. It had been 124, by No. 12 Oklahoma (82) over Colorado (42) in 1980.

This week, the Mountaineers go to Texas, which just won at Oklahoma State on a late TD. Because of an injury to West Hunt, the Cowboys used backup QB J.W. Walsh, who by the way threw for 307.

Did You Notice? * 

Urban Meyer, who survived his Big Ten debut by one at Michigan State (the Buckeyes' fourth straight victory there), is the third Ohio State coach to win his first five games. He joins Carol Widoes (1944) and Earl Bruce (1979).

* Duke (4-1) is off to its best start since 1994, which was also the last time it went to a bowl.

* Navy (1-3) is off to its worst start since 2002 (2-10).

* Arkansas is the first preseason Top 10 team to lose four games in September since Pitt in 1984. The 1-4 Hogs, who have lost four straight, started No. 10. Those Panthers were ranked third, then lost their first four (including 13-12 at Temple). They finished 3-7-1, closing with a 31-11 (season-high in points) win over Penn State.

* Southern Mississippi (0-4) is off to its worst start since 1976.

* Louisiana Tech, the defending WAC champ, has beaten Houston (56-49), Rice (56-37), Illinois (52-24) and Virginia (44-38), three on the road. It'll host Texas A&M in a makeup game Oct. 13.

* Georgia, 5-0 for the first time since 2006, has won 15 straight in the regular season.

* Stony Brook got its first win over an FBS team, 23-3 over Army.

* Unbeaten Northwestern had a school-record 704 yards in a 44-29 win over Indiana.

* North Carolina scored a school-record 66 in shutting out Idaho.

* Alabama A&M is 5-0 for the first time in 46 years.


Contact Mike Kern at kernm@phillynews.com

 

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