No. 3 Buckeyes Hang On
Ann Arbor, Mich. — Michigan went for the victory — and Ohio State stayed undefeated.
Tyvis Powell intercepted Devin Gardner’s pass as the Wolverines went for a go-ahead 2-point conversion with 32 seconds left and No. 3 Ohio State held on for a 42-41 victory Saturday in one the most thrilling games in the history of the storied Big Ten rivalry.
Gardner threw a 2-yard touchdown pass to Devin Funchess to make it 42-41, but instead of kicking for the tie, Wolverines coach Brady Hoke went for the lead with his offense.
“We played the game to win,” Hoke said.
Gardner tried to zip a pass into traffic near the goal line, but Powell came up with it. Buckeyes cornerback Roby Bradley recovered the onside kick to seal Ohio State’s 24th consecutive victory and keep its national championship hopes alive.
Braxton Miller accounted for five touchdowns for Ohio State (12-0, 8-0) and Carlos Hyde ran for a 1-yard score with 2:20 left to make it 42-35.
The Wolverines (7-5, 3-5) started strong as a 16 1-2-point underdog and didn’t wilt when Ohio State went up 35-21 late in the third quarter.
Michigan, though, couldn’t make a pivotal play that might’ve given it the biggest upset in the series since Bo Schembechler’s first team at Michigan beat what Woody Hayes said was his best Buckeyes squad.
The Buckeyes play Michigan State in the Big Ten title game next Saturday in Indianapolis.
No. 2 Florida State 37 Florida 7
Gainesville, Fla. — Jameis Winston threw three touchdown passes to Kelvin Benjamin, and No. 2 Florida State moved a step closer to playing for the national championship.
The Seminoles improved to 12-0 for the first time since 1999 and likely will earn a spot in the Bowl Championship Series title game by beating Duke in the ACC championship game next Saturday.
No. 9 Baylor 41, TCU 38
Fort Worth, Texas — Bryce Petty threw for two touchdowns and ran for another, Baylor returned two interceptions for scores and the Bears hung on for a victory over TCU.
The Bears (10-1, 7-1 Big 12) scored 21 straight points on either side of halftime with just 1 yard from their high-powered offense and bounced back from a blowout loss at Oklahoma State to maintain their hopes for a share of the conference title.
Baylor could win the league outright and qualify for a BCS bid, likely the Fiesta Bowl, if it beats Texas and the Cowboys lose to Oklahoma next Saturday.
No. 11 Michigan State 14 Minnesota 3
East Lansing, Mich. — Jeremy Langford ran for 134 yards and a touchdown, and Michigan State wrapped up an unbeaten regular season in Big Ten play.
The Spartans (11-1, 8-0) finished a perfect Big Ten regular season for only the third time. They also did it in 1965 and 1966, when they had to play only seven conference games.
Michigan State will face Ohio State in the Big Ten championship game next weekend. The Spartans had already wrapped up the Legends Division title, but there was no letdown against Minnesota (8-4, 4-4).
Penn St. 31 No. 14 Wisconsin 24
Madison, Wis. — Christian Hackenberg threw for 339 yards and four touchdowns, and Penn State pounced on a slew of blunders before holding off a late rally to upset Wisconsin.
The Nittany Lions (7-5, 4-4 Big Ten) secured a statement win against a team that had been dominant all year at home. Joel Stave threw for three touchdowns for Wisconsin (9-3, 6-2), though Penn State capitalized on second-half interceptions, turning one into Lewis’ long TD.
No. 24 Duke 27, UNC 25
Chapel Hill, n.c. — Ross Martin kicked a 27-yard field goal with 2:22 left and No. 24 Duke beat North Carolina 27-25 on Saturday, completing the Blue Devils’ improbable run to reach the Atlantic Coast Conference championship game.
Anthony Boone threw for 274 yards and two touchdowns to Jamison Crowder as the Blue Devils (10-2, 6-2 ACC) clinched the Coastal Division championship with their eighth straight victory.
Duke will face No. 2 Florida State next weekend in Charlotte, where the heavy underdog Blue Devils will go for their first ACC crown since 1989.
Syracuse 34, Boston College 31
Syracuse, n.y. — Terrel Hunt hit tight end Josh Parris with an 8-yard touchdown pass with 6 seconds remaining, and Syracuse stunned Boston College to become eligible for the postseason for the third time in four years.
Boston College (7-5, 4-4 ACC) had won four in a row behind star tailback Andre Williams, the nation’s leading rusher, but he was injured in the third quarter and did not return, finishing the game watching from the sidelines.
It was a must-win game for (Syracuse 6-6, 4-4 ACC), and Hunt provided the dramatic finish after the Eagles had settled for a field goal after a late turnover.
UConn 28, Rutgers 17
East Hartford, Conn. — Casey Cochran threw for 311 yards and two touchdowns and Connecticut beat Rutgers in the final conference meeting between the two regional rivals.
Max DeLorenzo rushed for two scores for the Huskies (2-9, 2-5 American), who won for the second straight week after losing their first nine games this season.