For Penn State, beating Ohio State was one small step toward a national championship. The victory was one giant leap for Curtis Enis.
A year's worth of frustration ended Saturday for No. 2 Penn State as Enis ran for 211 yards and a fourth-quarter touchdown in a 31-27 victory over No. 7 Ohio State.
Last season, the Buckeyes beat the Nittany Lions, 38-7 -- Penn State's worst defeat in 12 years -- and went on to win the Big Ten and the Rose Bowl. This time, it is Penn State's turn for a run at the roses and a possible national title.
"When we looked at each other in the huddle," Enis said, tears beginning to well in his eyes, "we just said we worked too hard this summer. We got embarrassed by them last year and we weren't going to let it happen in our place."
And the 6-foot-1, 233-pound Enis was the main reason it didn't. As the game moved into the fourth quarter, it was Enis who got stronger as players on both sides tired, which was understandable since the teams combined for 1,010 yards.
With Ohio State ahead, 27-24, Enis ripped off a 24-yard run to the Buckeyes' 49. Five plays later, he broke outside, cut back inside and raced 26 yards for the winning touchdown with 10:31 left in the game.
"He got stronger and the other guys got a little tired," Penn State coach Joe Paterno said. "And really, you can't tackle him unless you put everything you got into it."
Added Enis: "I felt like I was on Amtrak going one way."
Enis, from Union City, Ohio, was recruited heavily by Ohio State. Last year, he was held to just 34 yards on 11 carries by the Buckeyes. His 211 yards on 23 carries was the second-best game of his career -- he had 241 yards in his first start, a 24-7 win over Southern California to open the 1996 season.
The 21-year-old junior said he received one piece of hate mail saying Ohio State didn't need him, anyway. He kept the letter until just before Saturday's game, when he ripped it up.
Before a record crowd of 97,282 at Beaver Stadium, the Lions (5-0 overall, 2-0 in the Big Ten Conference) fell behind, 27-17, with 1:42 left in the third quarter. That's when Enis and Aaron Harris took over.
Harris ran 51 yards for a TD -- the longest run of his career -- with 20 seconds left in the third quarter to bring the Lions within 27-24.
"We came out flat today," said Buckeyes linebacker Andy Katzenmoyer, who helped shut down Iowa's Tavian Banks last week but couldn't duplicate the feat against Enis. "Banks is more of a speed guy, Enis can run over you or run past you. He has the speed of a 180-pounder and he can run over you like a tackle."
Penn State extended the nation's longest winning streak to 10 games, while the Buckeyes (5-1, 1-1) lost for the first time in seven games.
Tennessee 38, Georgia 13
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. -- Freshman Jamal Lewis gained 232 yards and Peyton Manning threw for 343 yards and four touchdowns as No. 9 Tennessee (4-1, 2-1) beat No. 13 Georgia (4-1, 2-1) in the Southeastern Conference.
The Volunteers won their seventh straight over Georgia by shredding what had been the SEC's leading defense for 628 yards, nearly triple what the Bulldogs allowed on average through their first four games.
"I really felt this was the first time we became a unit offensively and defensively," Vols coach Phillip Fulmer said. "We've had flashes on both sides, but this was the first time we came together."
The Georgia offense wasn't far behind with 430 yards. Robert Edwards gained 131 yards on 17 carries and Mike Bobo completed 20 of 31 passes for 267 yards.
Tennessee put together touchdown drives of 79, 80, 99, 80 and 75 yards before 106,656 fans, the third-largest crowd in Neyland Stadium history.
The last Tennessee score came against Georgia reserves with 1:44 to play on 15-yard pass from Manning to Derrick Edmonds, and it left Georgia coach Jim Donnan pointing his finger and yelling at the Tennessee sidelines.
Manning put up his usual big numbers, surpassing 300 yards for the fifth straight game while completing 31 of 40 passes.
Oklahoma St. 33, Colorado 29
STILLWATER, Okla. -- Tony Lindsay threw a 19-yard touchdown pass to tight end Alonzo Mayes with 1:56 left to give No. 20 Oklahoma State a Big 12 victory over No. 24 Colorado, leaving the Cowboys 6-0 for the first time since 1945.
Colorado (2-3, 0-2) seemed to be in good shape after recovering a fumble at the Buffaloes' 7-yard line with 3:52 left, leading, 29-26. But on third down, John Hessler's overthrown pass was intercepted by Maurice Simpson at the Colorado 23. Two plays later, Lindsay hit the 6-foot-7 Mayes on a looping pass for the winner.
The Buffaloes drove to the Oklahoma State 46 on their final drive, but a last-second pass on the run fell incomplete.
Colorado had beaten the Cowboys, 3-0 in the Big 12, eight straight times.
Nebraska 49, Baylor 21
WACO, Texas -- Ahman Green scored four touchdowns and rushed for 158 yards as No. 3 Nebraska (5-0, 2-0) overwhelmed Baylor (1-4, 0-2) in a rain-drenched Big 12 game.
Green, unfazed by the occasional rain and slick artificial turf, scored on runs of 3, 58, 2, and 30 yards as the nation's top-ranked offense had its way with the NCAA's 94th-rated defense.
Green, who rushed for four touchdowns last week against Kansas State, has had four consecutive games of 100 or more yards rushing and has scored 11 touchdowns for the season. He already has 692 yards.
Florida State 51, Duke 27
DURHAM, N.C. -- Thad Busby ran for two touchdowns and threw for a score as No. 4 Florida State took advantage of second-half turnovers in an Atlantic Coast Conference victory over Duke (2-4, 0-3).
Florida State (5-0, 3-0) entered the game with the nation's top-ranked defense (186.5 yards per game) but gave up 246 yards to the ACC's third-worst offense.
N. Carolina 30, Wake Forest 12
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. -- No. 5 North Carolina was bailed out by two Wake Forest miscues as the Tar Heels converted a fumble and blocked punt into two quick third-quarter scores.
The Tar Heels (6-0) went 3-0 in the ACC for the first time since 1983. They now have beaten the Demon Deacons (2-4, 1-3) for the eighth straight time.
But the game was much closer than the last three meetings in which North Carolina outscored Wake Forest by a combined 126-13.
Michigan 23, Northwestern 6
ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- Brian Griese tossed two touchdown passes to Jerame Tuman and the Michigan defense held an opponent without a touchdown for the fourth time in five games as the No. 6 Wolverines (5-0, 2-0) beat Northwestern (2-5, 0-3) in the Big Ten.
Michigan's offense rolled up 385 yards. The defense, stingiest in the country against scoring, held Northwestern to 170 yards while coming up with one interception and one fumble recovery. Michigan has not allowed a point in the fourth quarter this season.
Griese completed 23 of 36 passes for 244 yards without an interception. Northwestern's Tim Hughes completed 16 of 22 for 135 yards.
Auburn 49, Louisiana Tech 13
AUBURN, Ala. -- Dameyune Craig became the first Auburn quarterback to surpass 300 yards in four straight games and matched a school record with four touchdown passes as the No. 8 Tigers (6-0) cruised past Louisiana Tech (4-2).
With a 355-yard performance, Craig also broke Pat Sullivan's school record with his sixth 300-yard passing game. Craig reached the mark in 15 fewer starts than did the 1971 Heisman Trophy winner.
Craig had three passes intercepted, two after Auburn had taken a 35-6 lead midway through the second quarter. He finished 20 for 32 and also ran for 50 yards before coming out early in the fourth quarter.
Washington 30, California 3
BERKELEY, Calif. -- Rashaan Shehee ran for 123 yards and two scores and No. 10 Washington held California without a touchdown in the Pacific-10 Conference.
Brock Huard, leading the nation in passing efficiency, also threw touchdown passes of 43 yards to Cameron Cleeland and 8 yards to Fred Coleman for Washington (4-1, 2-0). The Huskies have beaten Cal (2-3, 0-2) 15 straight times over the last 20 years.
Michigan St. 38, Indiana 6
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Sedrick Irvin rushed for a career-high 178 yards and two touchdowns and returned a punt 80 yards for a third score as No. 11 Michigan State (5-0, 2-0) beat Indiana (1-5, 0-3) in the Big Ten.
Irvin, a sophomore tailback, set up his first touchdown with a 51-yard run in the second quarter and scored his second TD on a career-long 56-yard run on the Spartans' first possession of the third period.
Texas A&M 56, Iowa St. 17
COLLEGE STATION, Texas -- Sirr Parker scored on an 80-yard run and a 78-yard kickoff return as 15th-ranked Texas A&M (5-0, 2-0) overwhelmed winless Iowa State (0-6, 0-3) in the Big 12.
Texas A&M scored three touchdowns in the first quarter and added three more in the second, building a 42-10 lead and amassing 386 yards in the first half alone. Brandon Stewart combined twice with tight end Derrick Spiller on scoring passes as the Aggies finished with 494 total yards.
UCLA 39, Oregon 31
EUGENE, Ore. -- Jim McElroy came back from a first-quarter concussion to catch a 40-yard pass for the go-ahead touchdown in the third quarter as 18th-ranked UCLA (4-2, 2-1) rallied for a Pacific-10 Conference victory over Oregon (3-3, 1-3).
Cade McNown, who rushed for two touchdowns and passed for one, also connected with McElroy on a 30-yard pass play to set up a fourth-quarter score for the Bruins.
Air Force 10, Navy 7
ANNAPOLIS, Md. -- Tim Curry recovered a blocked punt for a touchdown and a fumble with 62 seconds left to end a late threat as No. 19 Air Force (7-0) held off Navy (2-3).
Charlie Jackson blocked the kick and Curry fell on it with 10:13 left in the third period.
With Navy driving in the final minutes, Curry recovered Chris McCoy's fumble at the Air Force 42, sealing the Falcons' seventh straight victory.
Rice 27, Brigham Young 14
HOUSTON -- Benji Wood ran for 167 yards and two touchdowns as Rice (4-2, 2-1 upset No. 21 Brigham Young (3-2, 1-1) in the Western Athletic Conference, snapping the Cougars' 11-game league winning streak.
Michael Perry also had a big rushing game for Rice, which avenged last season's 49-0 loss to BYU. Perry gained 132 yards, including a 45-yard TD run.
The Owls gained 493 yards, and held BYU to 9 yards in the second half.
Kansas State 41, Missouri 11
MANHATTAN, Kan. -- Michael Bishop rushed for 196 yards and two touchdowns and threw a 44-yard touchdown pass as No. 22 Kansas State (4-1, 1-1) crushed Missouri (3-3, 1-2) in the Big 12.
Bishop carried 14 times and consistently found big holes up the middle as he set a Kansas State record for rushing yardage by a quarterback, breaking the record of 126 yards set by Darrell Ray Dickey against South Dakota on Sept. 12, 1981.
He found Darnell McDonald behind Missouri backs Shad Criss and Harold Piersey, and McDonald caught the ball on his fingertips as he dove into the end zone with 1:23 left in the third quarter for a 38-3 lead for the Wildcats.
Va. Tech 17, Boston College 7
BLACKSBURG, Va. -- Al Clark threw a 50-yard touchdown pass and scored on a 42-yard run as No. 23 Virginia Tech beat Boston College in the Big East.
Ken Oxendine had a career-high 33 carries for 122 yards as the Hokies (5-1, 4-0) gained 257 yards on the ground, almost exclusively between the tackles.
Boston College (2-4, 2-2) had a chance to pull within a touchdown with 3:23 remaining after Matt Hasselbeck hit Mike Cloud with a 60-yard pass, but Jason Maleki's 32-yard field-goal attempt was wide left.
Georgia Tech 27, N.C. State 17
ATLANTA -- Joe Hamilton raced 18 yards on a quarterback draw with 5:34 remaining to break a tie and No. 25 Georgia Tech (4-1, 3-0) went on to beat North Carolina State (3-3, 1-3) in the ACC.
Tech won its fourth in a row for the first time since 1991.
Hamilton passed for a career-high 293 yards and ran for 74. The sophomore completed 5 of 6 passes for 52 yards in the 76-yard go-ahead drive.