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Saturday NCAA Football Recap: Texas secures a winning season; Baylor and LSU destroy opponents

Saturday NCAA Football Recap: Texas secures a winning season; Baylor and LSU destroy opponents
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Joe Burrow


Navy 56, Houston 41

Jamale Carothers rushed for career highs of 188 yards and five touchdowns for No. 24 Navy and the Midshipmen beat Houston 56-41 on Saturday. Houston receiver Marquez Stevenson collected 133 yards and two touchdowns on eight catches and receiver Tre'von Bradley caught three passes for 99 yards and a touchdown for the Cougars. Houston quarterback Clayton Tune threw for 393 yards, a career-high four touchdowns and four interceptions. The Cougars finished 4-8, the worst record since finishing 3-8 in 2004. "We didn't give up on the season," Dana Holgorsen said. "We didn't quit coaching. We didn't quit practicing. We didn't quit preparing. We didn't quit playing. Ever. Not in 12 games." Houston's season is over and hopefully the program makes coaching adjustments before the 2020 season.

LSU 50, Texas A&M 7

Joe "Superman" Burrow padded his Heisman resume with 352 yards-passing and three touchdowns in No. 1 LSU's 50-7 highlight-reel victory over Texas A&M on Saturday night to close out their first unbeaten regular season since 2011. "I thought it would just be an awesome tribute to the state, to the university," said Burrow of the name on his jersey reading "Burreaux," a spelling that evokes Louisiana's Cajun heritage. "It's been awesome not only for me, but for my family as well. ... I'm going to miss it with all my heart and I couldn't be more grateful." Star receiver JaMarr Chase racked up 197 yards and two touchdowns on seven catches for the Tigers. Chase's touchdowns built on the school record the Biletnikoff Award finalist broke two weeks earlier. Burrow has 4,366 yards and 44 touchdowns this season, destroying LSU single-season records in both categories and surpassing the SEC yards passing total which stood since 1998. "They kicked our butts," Aggies coach Jimbo Fisher said. "LSU's offense is outstanding." Texas A&M quarterback Kellen Mond completed just 10-of-30 passes for 92 yards and was intercepted three times by the Tigers defense. LSU faces off against Georgia in the SEC championship game on Saturday and the Aggies await their bowl invitation.

Texas 49, Texas Tech 24

Longhorn quarterback Sam Ehlinger threw two touchdowns, ran for another score and Texas secured a winning season with a thrilling 49-24 win over Texas Tech on Friday. "We all know this is not where we hoped we would be to begin the season, but to send these seniors out (with a win) that was our mission," Texas coach Tom Herman said. "Nothing that happened prior to this week mattered." The Longhorns were down 14-0 in the first quarter before Ehlinger struck back with his first rushing touchdown in five games. The resilient quarterback finished with 348 passing yards and ran for 83 yards on 10 carries. Texas began the year ranked in the Top 10 and was badly tripped up in the second half of Herman's third season, yet avoided December pressure by guaranteeing a winning record regardless of what happens in the bowl season. The Red Raiders season is concluded and Texas awaits its bowl destination.

Baylor 61, Kansas 6

Running back JaMycal Hasty ran for three touchdowns, the Bears forced six Kansas turnovers and Baylor cruised to a 61-6 victory over the lowly Jayhawks on Saturday. Baylor quarterback Charlie Brewer threw for 182 yards and one touchdown as the Bears matched the school record for wins. Only three times since Baylor's football program was founded in 1899 has the team won 11 games in a single season. "I'm really proud of them not just today but over the past two years, the process that they've had, the toughness, the grind," said Rhule. No. 11 Baylor now has a chance to avenge its only loss this season in a rematch against No. 7 Oklahoma in the Big 12 title game.

West Virginia 20, TCU 17

Sophomore quarterback Isaiah Esdale made an impossible over-the-shoulder 35-yard touchdown catch with 2:10 left, barely getting his feet inside the pylon and West Virginia closed out the regular season with a 20-17 win on Friday that kept TCU from becoming bowl eligible. The game-winning drive by West Virginia was extended by a pass interference call on a fourth down, and then TCU defensive back Ross Blacklock was ejected for a targeting hit on a third-and-12 incompletion. "Can't give ballgames away. ... Can't keep drives alive with personal fouls. Plain and simple," TCU coach Gary Patterson said. "Only a few times in my life, since I've been here, that we've lost when I've held people under 300 yards. And that's happened twice this year." The Horned Frogs are not bowl-eligible for just the third time in Patterson's 19 seasons as head coach. Freshman quarterback Max Duggan finished 15-of-36 passing for 144 yards with two interceptions for TCU. The Horned Frogs open the 2020 season at California on September 5.

Costal Carolina 24, Texas State 21

Quarterback Bryce Carpenter completed 10-of-11 passes for 114 yards and a score and the Chanticleers beat the Bobcats 21-24 on Saturday. Texas State quarterback Tyler Vitt led Texas State on a nine-play, 71-yard scoring drive to get the Bobcats within three points but Costal Carolina recovered an onside kick and ran out the clock. Vitt finished 23-of-33 passing for 285 yards and two TDs with one interception for the Bobcats, who lost their final three games.

Rice 30, UTEP 16

Running back Ashton Walter ran for a touchdown and a career-best 149 yards and Rice beat UTEP 30-16 on Saturday in its season finale.


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Cougars win in OT. Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images.

The only cheers Houston guard L.J. Cryer heard in his return to Baylor came when he missed a 3-pointer on the first shot of the game for the second-ranked Cougars.

Cryer, who as a freshman three years ago was part of Baylor’s only national championship, made six free throws in overtime and finished with 15 points as No. 2 and Big 12-leading Houston beat the 11th-ranked Bears 82-76 on Saturday after blowing a 16-point halftime lead.

“I was expecting the boos and stuff like that, like not welcoming,” said Cryer, who had no turnovers while playing nearly 43 minutes.

“Really proud of L.J.,” Cougars coach Kelvin Sampson said. “L.J. was in a tough environment today. ... He showed his maturity because he just played solid.”

The Cougars (24-3, 11-3 Big 12) never trailed in regulation and appeared to win the game on a long 3-pointer by Jamal Shead at the buzzer. But replay showed the ball was still in his hands when the clock ran out.

All six of Cryer’s free throws came in overtime, the first two with 3:06 left to put the Cougars back ahead to stay after falling behind for the first time. After playing 70 games the past three seasons for Baylor before transferring to Houston, he got booed loudly every time he touched the ball early.

Emanuel Sharp had 18 points to lead the Cougars. J’Wan Roberts had 17 points and eight rebounds, while Shead had 12 points and 10 assists.

“Everybody contributed to this win, we’re all responsible for this win,” Shead said. “This was a really good team win.”

Ja’Kobe Walter scored a game-high 23 points for Baylor (19-8, 8-6), and RayJ Dennis had 21. Jalen Bridges had 17 points and 13 rebounds, and Jayden Nunn scored 11 points.

The Bears didn’t tie the game for the first time until Yves Missi, their 7-foot freshman, made a layup while being fouled with 4.4 seconds left in regulation to make it 69-all. Roberts rebounded Missi’s missed free throw, and Shead was just a tick late in ending the game without overtime.

Baylor opened the second half with a 12-0 run while Houston missed its first eight shots. Bridges scored 14 of his 17 points in the second half, including nine in a row for the Bears in the final 5 1/2 minutes of regulation.

The Cougars led 41-25 at halftime after scoring 13 points off 11 Baylor turnovers. They made 10 of 11 shots in one stretch, which Roberts started by assisting on consecutive baskets before ending it with a jumper that made it 27-10.

“We just felt like they brought it to us in the first half. They’re easily the most physical team that we’ve played so far and I feel like we were a little bit taken back,” Bridges said. “And we just came out in the second half trying to punch them back.”

MISSING GUARDS

Bears sophomore guard Langston Love, their sixth player averaging double-figure scoring going into Saturday, was out of the fourth time in five games because of a leg injury. He played 15 minutes at BYU on Tuesday. ... Sampson revealed after the game that Cougars junior guard Ramon Walker, who got hurt in practice this week, will miss the rest of the season because of a torn meniscus.

BIG PICTURE

It was their first meeting as Big 12 foes, and first since the Final Four three years ago when Baylor beat Houston in a semifinal game on way to winning its first national championship.

POLL IMPLICATIONS

Some consider Houston the best team in the country, even though reigning national champion UConn is No. 1. The Cougars won both games this week against top-11 teams, also beating sixth-ranked Iowa State. Baylor is certain to drop several spots, even though its consecutive losses are to Top 25 teams.

UP NEXT

Houston is home Tuesday night against Cincinnati.

Baylor plays Monday night at TCU, which won 105-102 in triple overtime on Jan. 27 to become the first and only other opposing team to win at Foster Pavilion.

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