Archive for Sunday, September 2, 2001

Roundup: Hokies hammer Huskies, lose Suggs

Nation’s leading scorer tears knee ligaments in Tech’s 52-10 victory over UConn

September 2, 2001


— Virginia Tech found a replacement for Michael Vick. The ninth-ranked Hokies might need to find one for running back Lee Suggs.

Grant Noel threw three touchdown passes in a near-perfect debut as Vick's replacement Saturday, but Virginia Tech lost Suggs to an injured left knee in a 52-10 win over Connecticut.

Suggs, the nation's leading scorer last season, has both a torn anterior cruciate ligament and medial meniscus. He is scheduled to have arthroscopic surgery Monday to repair the meniscus and determine if the ACL tear is new.

If the ACL tear is an old injury, Suggs could return this season and wait until January to have surgery to repair it. If it is not, Suggs will be out for the season.

"When you lose the best tailback in school history whether it's for a few weeks or the season that's a tough loss," coach Frank Beamer said.

Suggs gained 99 yards on 12 carries, including scoring runs of 1 and 49 yards before hurting the knee with about nine minutes left in the third quarter.

Otherwise, the hurting was put on the Huskies. Noel finished 16-for-20 for 267 yards.

"I came out today and proved how well I've been coached," he said. "As far as today, I couldn't be happier."

Noel completed his first pass, a screen that Andre Davis turned into a 47-yard touchdown 1:52 into the game, and was 8-for-8 for 129 yards when he finally threw a ball away under pressure.

Davis, who caught another scoring pass from 19 yards before the half was over, matched his TD reception total of last season.

Noel also hit Jarrett Ferguson with an 8-yard scoring throw, helping to build a 35-10 halftime lead, and was pulled in the third quarter. The victory was Beamer's 100th as the Hokies coach.

Before getting sidelined, Suggs became the school's career TDs leader with 32.

The Huskies (0-1), led by freshman quarterback Keron Henry, put up a fight early against a Hokies defense that has nine starters back. Connecticut drove 41 yards to Marc Hickok's career-best 42-yard field goal on its first possession, and when Henry ran in from 15 yards the next time the Huskies had the ball, it was 14-10 late in the first quarter.

After that, the Hokies defense stiffened, and Beamer had his 13th consecutive home victory.

No. 1 Florida 49, Marshall 14

Gainesville, Fla. Rex Grossman set his career high by halftime and finished with 375 yards passing. The sophomore threw for three touchdowns and Earnest Graham scored three times as the Gators improved to 12-0 in openers under coach Steve Spurrier. Marshall played without four key players because of NCAA suspensions.

No. 2 Miami 33,

Penn State 7

State College, Pa. Ken Dorsey threw three first-half touchdown passes and Miami scored on six of its first seven possessions in a dominating win over Penn State.

The Hurricanes kept Nittany Lions coach Joe Paterno at 322 career wins one shy of Bear Bryant's major-college record. They did it by equaling the largest margin of victory over Penn State at home in Paterno's 26 seasons as head coach.

On an emotional night inside Beaver Stadium, a record crowd of 109,313 stood and cheered as once-paralyzed Adam Taliaferro walked onto the field before the game. Taliaferro, wearing his No. 43 jersey, was injured against Ohio State last season and it was feared he might never walk again.

No. 6 Florida St. 55, Duke 13

Durham, N.C. Chris Rix eased into the post-Chris Weinke era with two TD passes, and Florida State blocked two punts. The Seminoles scored 31 points in the first half, but Rix had just 93 yards and finished 9-of-18 for 135 yards throwing to a depleted group of receivers.

No. 7 Oregon 31,

No. 22 Wisconsin 28

Eugene, Ore. Joey Harrington threw two touchdown passes and ran for another score, a 1-yard leap on fourth down with 4:03 left as Oregon rallied to beat Wisconsin. The Ducks won their 21st straight home game. The Badgers' chances ended when quarterback Jim Sorgi fumbled after being hit by Quinn Dorsey with 3:34 left. Oregon's Kevin Mitchell recovered at the Wisconsin 33.

No. 8 Tennessee 33, Syracuse 9

Knoxville, Tenn. Casey Clausen threw a 37-yard TD pass to Donte Stallworth on Tennessee's first play from scrimmage, and John Henderson recovered a fumble to set up another score. Tennesse's Travis Stephens had a career-high 111 yards on 14 carries.

No. 11 Georgia Tech 35, The Citadel 7

Atlanta George Godsey passed for 224 yards and two TDs. He completed his first 11 passes and was 14-of-16 when he left with 8:50 remaining in the second quarter and Tech up 28-0. He threw TD pass of 40 yards to Jonathan Smith and 13 yards to Kerry Watkins. The Jackets got two TDs from Joe Burns on runs of 1 and 7 yards. Luke Manget made five extra points to break the ACC record for consecutive PATs with 97.

No. 12 Michigan 31, Miami (Ohio) 13

Ann Arbor, Mich. John Navarre completed 19 of 32 passes for 205 yards and a TD as Michigan, already the victory leader in Division I-A football, won its 806th game to tie Yale for the most wins in any division. B.J. Askew had 20 carries for 94 yards and a touchdown. Miami freshman Ben Roethlisberger was 18-of-35 for 193 yards with two touchdowns and three interceptions.

No. 14 LSU 48, Tulane 17

Baton Rouge, La. LaBrandon Toefield scored three touchdowns and Rohan Davey passed for two more as LSU opened the season with a victory over Tulane.

No. 17 UCLA 20,

No. 25 Alabama 17

Tuscaloosa, Ala. Deshaun Foster rushed for 110 yards and Cory Paus threw a 53-yard touchdown pass to Tab Perry as UCLA beat Alabama. UCLA overcame an early 10-0 deficit and spoiled Dennis Franchione's Alabama coaching debut with the Bruins' second straight season-opening victory over the Tide. UCLA converted two Alabama turnovers into 10 points, didn't commit any penalties and had a fourth-quarter goal-line stand.

No. 19 Clemson 21, Central Florida 13

Clemson, S.C. Woody Dantzler was 15-of-25 for 152 yards and ran for 46 yards as Clemson beat Central Florida. UCF's Ryan Schneider completed 29 of 48 passes for 297 yards, but the Knights had just 35 yards rushing.

No. 21 S. Carolina 32, Boise St. 13

Columbia, S.C. South Carolina tailback Derek Watson had a 16-yard touchdown catch to start South Carolina's scoring and a 6-yard TD run in the third quarter as the Gamecocks opened with a victory. Phil Petty was 18-of-25 for 220 yards and two touchdowns.

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