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USC (2-1) bounced back from an ugly week 2 loss to Washington State to hand Boston College (2-1) its first defeat of the 2013 season at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on Saturday. The Trojans dominated the Eagles in all phases of the game, racking up 521 yards of offense and limiting BC to 184.
The BC defense, which was very solid as the Eagles opened the season 2-0, forced USC to a three-and-out on the first drive of the game, but the Trojans offense started to click with its second possession, a 14-play, 96-yard drive that ended with a five-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Cody Kessler to running back Tre Madden. Kessler threw his second TD pass early in the second quarter, an 80-yarder to wide receiver Marqise Lee to give USC a 14-0 halftime lead. The Eagles, conversely, ended each of their five first-half drives with a punt.
In the second half, the Trojans took a 28-0 lead on a 30-yard run by Madden and a 17-yard run by RB Justin Davis, before Tyler Rouse put Boston College on the board with a 29-yard TD run of his own early in the fourth quarter. USC backup QB Max Wittek entered the game late and led his team on an 11-play, 75-yard drive, carrying the ball into the end zone himself from two yards out to close it out.
Kessler finished the game a terrific 15-for-17 for 257 passing yards and two TDs, while Madden racked up 134 all-purpose yards. BC QB Chase Rettig totaled just 83 yards and was 11-of-24 passing.
The loss was a comedown for an Eagles team that looked good in the first two games, but there was little doubt that they were outmatched against a very motivated USC club, whose head coach Lane Kiffin came under fire from fans after the Washington State upset. Still, there’s no denying that BC has looked much better in three games under new HC Steve Addazio than it did in going 2-10 last year. Now, the Eagles will have a bye week to rest up before facing the next stretch of the season.
Next Eagles game: September 28 vs. #10 Florida State (2-0). Time TBD
Massachusetts dropped to 0-3 on the season with a beatdown at the hands of Kansas State (2-1) at Bill Snyder Family Football Stadium. The teams were evenly matched through the first quarter but the Wildcats pulled away after that en route to a comfortable victory.
Minutemen QB A. J. Doyle threw an interception in just his second pass attempt of the game, which defensive back Kip Daily returned 38 yards for a touchdown. The ensuing extra point attempt was blocked, as was Massachusetts kicker Blake Lucas‘s 23-yard field goal attempt on the following drive. Further damage was averted by the defense when DB Antoine Tharpe picked off a pass by K-State QB Jake Waters on the next possession. UMass then took a 7-6 lead late in the first period on a two-yard TD run by RB Stacey Bedell.
It was all Kansas State after that, though, as Waters led the Wildcats to three consecutive TD drives in the second quarter: a one-yard run by QB Daniel Sams, a 26-yarder by RB Robert Rose and a 43-yard pass from Waters to RB John Hubert. The second half began in much the same way, as Waters connected with fullback Glenn Gronkowski (the youngest member of the Gronk clan) for a 50-yard score that put K-State up 34-7.
On the next possession, Doyle led the Minutemen down to the Kansas State 30 before his fourth-down pass was again intercepted by Daily, dashing any hope of a comeback. Jack Cantele kicked a 42-yard FG early in the fourth quarter to close out the scoring.
Waters finished the game with 115 passing yards on just 5-of-10 completions, while Hubert totaled 168 all-purpose yards. For UMass, Doyle went 21-for-31 for 186 yards. With the loss, Massachusetts is one of two 0-3 teams in the Mid-American Conference, the other being Western Michigan. The Minutemen won’t play their first conference game until October 5.
Next Minutemen game: Saturday, noon ET vs. Vanderbilt (1-2)