YOLO COUNTY NEWS

Sports

College football roundup: North Dakota State nabs FCS title

By From page B6 | January 05, 2014

FRISCO, Texas — From Fargo to Frisco again, and a perfect championship ending for senior quarterback Brock Jensen and coach Craig Bohl at North Dakota State.

Jensen threw a touchdown pass and ran for another score in his FCS-quarterback record 48th victory, and the Bison capped a 15-0 season with a 35-7 victory over Towson on Saturday to claim their third consecutive FCS title in Bohl’s final game at the school.

“It hasn’t (set in) right now, but I think in a couple of months it’s going to,” said Bohl, who stayed with the Bison for their playoff run after accepting the job as Wyoming’s coach. “This team was possessed with perfection. And they relentlessly pursued it. … It’s pretty remarkable.”

The Bison joined Appalachian State (2005-07) as the only FCS teams to win three consecutive championships. They are the first undefeated champs at that level since Marshall in 1996, the year before the Thundering Herd moved to Division I.

“It gets better every time. Definitely,” Jensen said. “That was the last time I’ll put on a Bison jersey but man, it’s been fun ride.”

Bohl was 104-32 in 11 seasons at North Dakota State, which has won 24 consecutive games to match the FCS record.

The Bison went ahead to stay on Ryan Smith’s 5-yard TD run in the second quarter that snapped a 7-7 tie. That came one play after Colten Heagle blocked a field goal try that was scooped up by defensive end Kyle Emanuel and returned 59 yards. It was the first of three consecutive possessions when North Dakota State scored touchdowns.

Terrance West ran 3 yards on the final play of the first quarter for the Towson (13-3) touchdown, his 41st TD rushing and 42nd overall this season. The junior finished with 22 carries for 99 yards, pushing his season total to 2,509 — the most ever by an FCS player.

BBVA Compass Bowl

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — Patton Robinette threw two 50-yard touchdown passes to Jordan Matthews, and Vanderbilt recovered after blowing a 24-point lead to beat Houston 41-24 on Saturday in the BBVA Compass Bowl.

Robinette, starting after senior Austyn Carta-Samuels had season-ending surgery to repair a torn ACL in his left knee, also had an 8-yard scoring run as Vanderbilt built a 24-0 lead in the first half.

After Houston (8-4) pulled even by scoring 24 points in the third quarter, Vanderbilt reclaimed the lead on Brian Kimbrow’s 21-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter.

Vanderbilt (9-4) closed the season with five straight wins, adding to third-year coach James Franklin’s status as a possible candidate for coaching vacancies, including at Penn State and with the NFL Browns and Redskins. The Commodores played in three straight bowl games under Franklin — a first for the program — and completed their first back-to-back nine-win seasons.

Houston gained only 22 yards and had one first down in the first half but rallied with 24 points in the third quarter to pull even. Kenneth Farrow had a 6-yard scoring run and Deontay Greenberry and John O’Korn threw scoring passes to Markeith Ambles.

The Commodores regrouped with two big gains on direct snaps to running backs early in the fourth quarter. Jerron Seymour ran for 38 yards to the Houston 34. Kimbrow’s touchdown run gave the lead back to Vanderbilt.

The Associated Press

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