Best Games Of The 2012 Midseason - No. 6-10
Which games were the best of the lot over the first half of the season?
2012 CFN Midseason Review
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Best Games No. 6-10
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10. Sept. 22 – Marshall 51, Rice 51 2OT
It took a wild rally just to get to the double overtime finish. Down ten with five minutes to play, Rice roared back with a 43-yard Taylor McHargue touchdown run to keep the game alive. A defensive stop gave the ball back to the Owls, and McHargue went back to work with a 47 yard run to get down to the MU two with time ticking. A false start penalty killed any hopes of getting the win in regulation, so the Owls had to settle for a field goal with no time left on the clock to for overtime.
The two teams traded touchdowns in the first overtime, but the Owls stalled in the second frame, getting a 28-yard field goal for a 51-48 lead. It took the Herd just two plays to find the end zone capping the game off with a five-yard Kevin Grooms run for his third score of the day. Rice finished with 647 yards of total offense while Marshall rumbled for 334 yards and six touchdowns.
9. Sept. 15 – Utah 24, BYU 21
It was a mediocre game with a classic finish. The Utes were comfortably ahead 24-7 in the fourth quarter when the stalled BYU offense finally starting clicking with a long drive finishing with touchdown and a short field leading to a one-yard Kaneakua Friel touchdown catch to pull within three late. A three-and-out gave the Cougars the ball back, but they had to start on their own 19 with just over a minute to go. The drive wasn't going anywhere and Utah appeared to have the win when on 4th and 12 Riley Nelson heaved the ball to Cody Hoffman for a 47-yard gain to get down to the Utah 34. Justin Sorensen's 51-yard field goal attempt was blocked, Utah went nuts, and the fans stormed the field. However, there was still time on the clock and the Utes were nailed with an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty giving Sorensen another shot from 36 yards out to tie the game – but only after the fans cleared the field. Sorensen clanked his kick off the left upright and Utah could finally celebrate.
8. Sept. 29 – Texas 41, Oklahoma State 36
Little did anyone know at the time that this would be a sign of things to come for the Texas defense that was ripped apart by the Oklahoma State offense for 576 yards. Longhorn quarterback David Ash was brilliant with 304 yards and three touchdown passes, but Joseph Randle ran for 199 yards and two scores as the Cowboys hung around punch for punch. OSU finally appeared to take control late with Quinn Sharp nailing a 24-yard field goal with 2:34 to play, but then Ash went to work connecting with D.J. Grant for a key fourth down play to keep the Longhorns' final drive alive. Two plays later, Ash got the offense down to the Cowboy five leading to Joe Bergeron's second touchdown of the game – or was it? He appeared to turn the ball over on a fumble before crossing the goal line, but the score stood after replay. Texas got out alive dealing OSU a heartbreaking loss.
7. Aug. 30 – Minnesota 30, UNLV 27 3OT
The opening night of the season started out with a bang in the only three-overtime game so far this year. The balanced Gopher attack couldn't seem to put points on the board with drive after drive stalling. Even so, two fourth quarter field goals gave Minnesota a 13-10 lead with just a few minutes remaining, but then the Rebels picked the right time to go on their best drive of the day. The running of Tim Cornett and a bad personal foul call on the Gophers set up 35-yard Nolan Kohorst field goal with 2:46 to play. Minnesota didn't go anywhere, UNLV ran out the clock, and the two teams went into overtime.
UNLV needed just three Cornett runs to get into the end zone, but Minnesota answered right back with a ten-yard John Rabe touchdown catch. Rabe scored again on a 25-yard pass play on Minnesota's first snap in the second overtime, and then it was up to the defense to come up with a fourth down stop. It couldn't do it as Nick Sherry connected with Devante Davis for the touchdown to tie it up and force a third OT. This time the Gophers came through with a pick on the first play, Jordan Wettstein nailed the 32-yard field goal, and Minnesota survived.
6. Oct. 6 - Florida 14, LSU 6
There might not have been a more physical game all year. Neither passing game was working and it was a war of attrition on the lines with field position and ball control at a premium. LSU managed to take a 6-0 lead into the locker room, but Florida running back Mike Gillislee was able to pound out 146 yards and two 12-yard scoring runs on 34 carries, but LSU stayed alive but there was still plenty of time for the Tigers to come back. And then the Gator defense went to work, but only after a struggling Zach Mettenberger completed an improbable 20-yard pass on 3rd and 18 to keep a late drive alive. Florida ended up getting the ball back, and ground down the clock.
LSU had another shot, but didn't go anywhere forcing a punt and a hope that Kevin Minter – who finished with 20 stops – and the great defense would come up with a hold. It didn't happen. A six-yard run on 3rd and 3 from quarterback Jeff Driskel was able to effectively wind down the clock. LSU had one last gasp, but didn't go anywhere giving Florida a huge win to jump into the national title picture.