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Cardinal QB silences critics with comeback

Stepfan Taylor heads to the end zone for a 21-yard touchdown run that gives Stanford an overtime win over Arizona.

Associated Press

Stepfan Taylor heads to the end zone for a 21-yard touchdown run that gives Stanford an overtime win over Arizona.

STANFORD, Calif. — Josh Nunes erased doubts about whether he's the man to replace Andrew Luck. The redshirt junior quarterback threw for 360 yards and two scores and ran for three as No. 18 Stanford rallied from a two-touchdown deficit to defeat Arizona 54-48 in overtime Saturday.

Chase Thomas intercepted a tipped pass by Matt Scott in overtime, and Stepfan Taylor ran for a 21-yard touchdown two plays later to win it.

"This is the kind of game that we needed," Stanford coach David Shaw said. "We needed to fight. We needed to battle. We needed to be into it in the fourth quarter. We needed to be down. We needed to fight back just to test our character."

Maybe for nobody more than Nunes.

The offense failed to find the end zone in a 17-13 loss at Washington in its previous game. Critics mounted enough for Shaw to open a news conference by calling any question about a quarterback change "asinine."

"I made a lot of throws that I didn't make last week," said Nunes, who was 21-of-34. "It's not like I can't make these throws."

Scott completed 45 of 69 passes (both school records) for 491 yards and three scores. "It's depressing not to win," he said. "But that's football."

Buckeyes put up 63

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Braxton Miller rushed for 186 yards, zig-zagging 72 yards for one score and passing for another, to lead No. 12 Ohio State past No. 21 Nebraska 63-38 before an Ohio Stadium-record 106,102.

It was the most points Ohio State scored in a Big Ten game since a 69-18 win over Minnesota in 1983.

Taylor Martinez ran for two scores but was intercepted three times for the Cornhuskers. Their leading rusher, Rex Burkhead, injured his left knee early in the third and did not return.

No. 14 Ore. St. 19, Wash. St. 6: Sean Mannion passed for 270 yards and a touchdown for the host Beavers. Mannion threw for 433 yards in last week's win over Arizona. Saturday he threw two interceptions early, and Oregon State failed to convert a fourth and 2 to lead 6-3 at halftime. Mannion led a 75-yard touchdown drive to start the third and an 86-yard touchdown drive in the fourth.

Iowa St. 37, No. 15 TCU 23: The visiting Cyclones ended the Horned Frogs' winning streak at 12. It had been the nation's longest. This is the third straight season Iowa State has beaten a Top 25 team on the road. "I don't think they are so much upsets anymore," said linebacker Jake Knott, who had a late interception. "There's a lot of people now that respect us on a new level. We need to keep winning games like this." TCU played without quarterback Casey Pachall, who is suspended indefinitely after last week's arrest for driving while intoxicated. Coach Gary Patterson said he was scheduled to meet with TCU's chancellor today to discuss Pachall, who eight months ago tested positive for marijuana.

No. 7 Kansas St. 56, Kansas 16: John Hubert ran for 101 yards and four scores for the host Wildcats, who scored 50-plus for the third straight Sunflower Showdown. Kansas State led 21-14 at halftime after Kansas ran a successful fake field goal and fake punt. But the Wildcats scored four touchdowns in the third, three in 5:22. "I think they were angry," coach Bill Snyder said of the halftime mood, "which is probably the best mental approach and emotion they could have in that situation."

No. 17 Oklahoma 41, Texas Tech 20: Landry Jones passed for two touchdowns and fellow quarterback Blake Bell ran for two as the visiting Sooners avenged last season's home loss to the Red Raiders. It was their first game since a 24-19 home loss to Kansas State two weeks ago. "You've just got to realize what kind of player you are and realize what you're capable of and kind of silence the outside," Jones said. "Just realize who you are and go out there and play the way you think you're capable of playing."

Penn St. 39, No. 24 N'western 28: Matt McGloin ran for a 5-yard touchdown with 2:37 left for the host Nittany Lions. The Wildcats went up 28-17 on Venric Mark's 75-yard punt return in the third. "Our staff and myself tried to talk to the players and get them going," Penn State coach Bill O'Brien said. "We felt like we could move the ball." The Wildcats couldn't get to 6-0 for the first time in 50 years after blowing a second-half lead to the Nittany Lions for the third consecutive season. Said safety Ibraheim Campbell: "We've just got to find a way to make a play.

Around the nation

Mich. St. 31, Indiana 27: Bennie Fowler caught the winning 36-yard touchdown pass with 6:35 left for the visiting Spartans, who trailed 27-17 after three quarters.

Wisconsin 31, Illinois 14: Montee Ball ran for 116 yards and two touchdowns for the host Badgers. His 59 career rushing touchdowns are nine shy of the NCAA record.

Michigan 44, Purdue 13: Denard Robinson rushed for 235 yards for the visiting Wolverines, who led 21-0 2:17 into the second quarter.

Boise St. 40, S. Miss. 14: Joe Southwick threw three touchdown passes for the visiting Broncos. The Golden Eagles, who trailed 24-0 at halftime, are 0-5 for the first time since 1976.

Cardinal QB silences critics with comeback 10/06/12 [Last modified: Sunday, October 7, 2012 12:29am]
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