Penn State Downs Illinois, College News


Published on November 4 2013 6:29 am
Last Updated on November 4 2013 10:40 am
Written by Millie Lange

Illinois Falls In OT At Penn State

(University Park, PA) -- Kyle Carter's 15-yard touchdown catch in overtime gave Penn State a 24-17 win over Illinois Saturday at Beaver Stadium. Nathan Sheelhaase finished 33-of-52 for 321 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions for the Fighting Illini, who have lost four straight to dip to 3-5 and 0-4 in the Big Ten. Illinois travels to Indiana this Saturday.


EIU Trounces Tennessee Tech

CHARLESTON, Ill. – Senior wide receiver Erik Lora hauled in three touchdown passes to tie the Ohio Valley Conference regular season record with his 16th touchdown grab of the year as the second ranked Eastern Illinois Panthers improved to 8-1, 5-0 in the OVC with a 56-21 victory over Tennessee Tech (3-7, 0-6 OVC).

In addition to his touchdown receptions, Lora added an 80-yard punt return for touchdown to tie the EIU record for longest punt return in a game.  Lora had another long punt return for touchdown wiped out by a holding call on the return.  Lora finished the day with 12 catches for 119 yards as EIU racked up 552 yards of total offense.

Lora scored EIU’s first two touchdowns of the game in the first quarter on receptions from Jimmy Garoppolo of 5 and 29 yards.  Shepard Little returned a punt 75-yards for a touchdown with 35 seconds left in the opening quarter to stake EIU to a 21-0 lead.  It marked the first time in EIU school history that two separate players have returned a punt for a touchdown over 50-yards.

“I have seen it happen before in my career,” said head coach Dino Babers following the game.  “We had three punt returns for touchdown, if you can count the one that was called back.  I have never had that happen before in my career.  We have two guys who can both return punts and it is special when they both score a touchdown in the same game.”

Keiondre Gober extended the Panthers lead to 28-0 with 11:17 to play in the second quarter breaking loose for a 79-yard reception from Garoppolo.  It was Garoppolo’s eighth 60-plus yard touchdown pass this season.  Gober finished with five receptions for 129 yards.

Garoppolo was 33-of-50 for 399 yards with four touchdown passes.  It was the ninth time this season Garoppolo has passed for more than 300-yards in a game.  It was the ninth straight game this season he has passed for 200 or more yards in the first half.  It was the sixth time this season he has passed for four or more touchdowns in a game.  Garoppolo now has 39 touchdown passes this season to rank 10th on the all-time FCS single season list.  Garoppolo’s 104 career touchdown passes rank him 11th on the FCS career list.

“I’m always impressed by Jimmy and his numbers,” Babers added.  “It’s amazing how standards and expectations have changed for him.  Now he has a 300-yard game with four touchdowns and people ask after the game if something was wrong with him.  He continues to impress me as the head coach every game.  He is a special player and our fans need to realize that they only have a limited number of opportunities remaining to see him play in an EIU uniform.”

Tennessee Tech cut the halftime margin to 28-7 with Krys Cates hauling in a 15-yard pass from Jared Davis following an EIU turnover.  Davis played in relief of TTU starter Darian Stone who passed for 15 yards on 7-of-11 passing.  Davis finished 11-of-27 with three touchdown passes.  He hit Eric Belew on two fourth quarter scoring drives.

EIU opened the game up in the third quarter with Lora scoring on a 5-yard touchdown reception and the 80-yard punt return with 6:25 left in the third quarter.  Lora increased his career receptions total to 296 as he ranks seventh on the FCS career receptions list.  Next up for Lora to catch on the all-time list is Jerry Rice with 301 career catches.  Lora has 87 catches for 1,152 yards and 16 touchdowns this year.

“I was able to get open and make some plays today against the Tennessee Tech defense,” Lora said.  “They played some different coverages than some of the other teams we have played in the past couple of weeks, with some single coverage.  This season if teams want to double cover me, it just means that Jimmy (Garoppolo) can throw to the other guys on our team.  All of them have stepped up and had a big game during the year to help us win games.”

EIU’s defense once again played solid allowing only one score against the first team unit.  The Panthers allowed just 281 yards of total offense with TTU rushing for 83 yards and passing for 198.  Alex Helms, Antonio Taylor and Kamu Grugier-Hill all finished with a team-high five tackles.  Clinton Simpkins had EIU’s one sack as the Panthers finished with 12 quarterback hurries.

EIU returns to action next Saturday at Murray State with a 12 p.m. start.


Northwestern Drops Fifth Straight

(Lincoln, NE) -- Jordan Westerkamp had a 49 yard touchdown catch as time expired to lift Nebraska past Northwestern 27-24 on Saturday at Memorial Stadium. Treyvon Green ran for 149 yards and three TD's for the Wildcats, who have lost five in-a-row to dip to 4-5 and 0-5 in the Big Ten. Northwestern hosts Michigan on November 16th.


Irish Rally By Navy

(South Bend, IN) -- Tarean Folston's one-yard touchdown run with just under four minutes to play lifted Notre Dame past Navy 38-34 on Saturday.  He ended with 140 yards on the ground. Tommy Rees threw for 242 yards, two TDs and two interceptions for the Irish, who improved to 7-2 and are now 23rd in the BCS Standings. The Irish travel to Pittsburgh on Saturday.


Texans Head Coach Kubiak Collapses At Halftime

(Houston, TX) -- Texans head coach Gary Kubiak collapsed while running off the field and into the locker room during halftime of the Texans 27-24 win over the Colts on "Sunday Night Football." He was carted off the field on a stretcher and taken to a local hospital. Multiple outlets reported Kubiak did not have a heart attack. Defensive coordinator Wade Phillips took over as head coach.