Oct. 30, 2010
AP Photo Gallery
ATHENS, Ohio- Boo Jackson set the all-time program mark for touchdown passes in a 38-31 win over the visiting Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns on Saturday at Peden Stadium. The redshirt senior completed 16 passes on 22 attempts, throwing for 240 yards, three touchdowns and four interceptions on the day. Ohio's defense did a very good job of getting into Louisiana's backfield, accumulating six sacks. Stafford Gatling (Burlington, N.C.) had three, Hilton Dawson III (Compton, Calif.) had two and Curtis Meyers (Harrison, Ohio) earned one. Wide receiver Steven Goulet (Irmo, S.C.) caught five passes for a career-high 126 yards.
With the win, Ohio improves to 6-3 (4-1 Mid-American Conference) while the Ragin' Cajuns drop to 2-6 (2-3 Sun Belt). The Bobcats are now bowl eligible for the fourth time in six years under head coach Frank Solich.
The `Cats struck first when Jackson (Gardena, Calif.) capped off a nine-play, 69-yard drive with a seven-yard touchdown scamper, his sixth of the season. The rushing touchdown was also the eighth of Jackson's career. Jackson rushed three times for 31 yards on the drive which put the Bobcats up 7-0 with 7:55 remaining in the first quarter.
Not to be outdone, Ohio's defense came up with a big play on Louisiana's next drive when Steven Jackson (Austin, Texas) stepped in front of a Brad McGuire pass to collect his third interception of the season (sixth of his career). The Ragin' Cajuns answered back on Ohio's next drive with an interception of their own when Cooper Gerami picked off a pass from Jackson which was intended for wideout Riley Dunlop (Liberty Township, Ohio).
This interception for the visitors sparked a nine-play, 68-yard drive which resulted in a 20-yard touchdown pass when McGuire found Aaron Spikes in the end zone to level the scores at seven apiece 68 seconds into the second quarter.
Ohio's defense came up with a huge stop on Louisiana's next drive, holding the Ragin' Cajuns on an important fourth-and-one near midfield. McGuire attempted a quarterback keeper but was met by Chad Clemens (Dayton, Ohio) and Tremayne Scott (Ocala, Fla.) who stood him up for no gain.
Louisiana took its first lead of the day with 7:07 remaining in the first half when Spikes capped off a six-play 74-yard drive with a seven-yard touchdown run. The ensuing PAT made the score 14-7 in favor of the visitors.
Ryan Clark (Macedonia, Ohio) gave the Green and White a shot of energy near the end of the half when he returned a Louisiana punt for 21 yards, putting his teammates in very good field position. The offense was able to take advantage of this by setting up Matt Weller (Twinsburg, Ohio) for a successful 34-yard field goal which cut the deficit to four points at 14-10. The field goal was the 29th of Weller's career, placing him in sole possession of second place all-time in Ohio's record books.
The Ragin' Cajuns shocked the Peden Stadium crowd at the start of the second half by kicking and recovering an onside kick. Louisiana began the second half with possession of the ball at its own 41-yard line. The visitors put together an imposing drive, getting all the way to Ohio's three-yard line before the Bobcats made a solid stand on third down, forcing a field goal. With 8:26 remaining in the third quarter, the Ragin' Cajuns led by a score of 17-10.
Ohio appeared to be stopped on its next drive before an eight-yard rush (on a fake punt) by punter Paul Hershey (Fremont, Ohio) gained the Bobcats the necessary yardage to keep the chains moving. Then, with 3:43 remaining in the third quarter, Jackson found Jordan Thompson (Rockford, Ohio) on a three-yard touchdown pass to set Ohio's all-time passing touchdowns mark (30). The ensuing PAT was not converted, however, keeping the Ragin' Cajuns ahead by a slim one-point margin at 17-16.
The Bobcats found the end zone again on their next two possessions. First came a 13-yard touchdown pass from Jackson to Terrence McCrae (Vanderbilt, Pa.). The `Cats then attempted and successfully converted a two-point conversion, making the score 24-17. On its next drive, Ohio leapt out to a 31-17 lead on a 24-yard pass from Jackson to Bakari Bussey (West Chester, Ohio). The touchdown grab was the first of Bussey's career.
Louisiana came back with a touchdown drive of its own in the middle of the fourth quarter, scoring on a one-yard run by Spikes to make the score 31-24 with 5:21 remaining in the contest.
Ohio answered back with a score on its next drive, riding a 20-yard touchdown run by Ryan Boykin (Woodstock, Georgia) to push the lead back up to 14 at 38-24. Notable on this drive was a career-long 56-yard catch by Goulet to put the Bobcats in scoring position.
The visitors were not content with this score line and drove quickly down the field to score another touchdown, this time on a three-yard pass from McGuire Ladarius Green. With 1:36 remaining in the game and trailing by seven, Louisiana ran another successful onside kick, gaining possession at its own 44. The Bobcat defense did not allow any further points on this final possession, stopping the drive when Gatling earned his third sack of the day on a fourth-and-three from the Ohio 15-yard line.
Ohio will next be in action on Thursday, November 4 when it hosts MAC East rival Buffalo. The game is set for 7:30 pm and will be televised nationally on ESPNU.