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Texas Tech defeats Kansas, 41-34

  • 11 a.m., Nov. 10, 2012
  • Jones AT&T Stadium, Lubbock, TX

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Just out of reach: KU comes up short in 41-34 double-OT loss to Texas Tech

On the final play of the game safety D.J. Johnson (12) tips a pass in the endzone to Kansas receiver Tre' Parmalee (11) during the second overtime on Saturday, Nov. 10, 2012 at Jones AT&T Stadium in Lubbock, Texas. At right is Texas Tech defensive back Bruce Jones. The Jayhawks lost the game 41-34.

On the final play of the game safety D.J. Johnson (12) tips a pass in the endzone to Kansas receiver Tre' Parmalee (11) during the second overtime on Saturday, Nov. 10, 2012 at Jones AT&T Stadium in Lubbock, Texas. At right is Texas Tech defensive back Bruce Jones. The Jayhawks lost the game 41-34.

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Podcast episode

Press Conferences & Post-Game Interviews

KU coach Charlie Weis talks after 2OT loss to Texas Tech

KU coach Charlie Weis talks after his team's 41-34 double-overtime loss to Texas Tech on Nov. 10, 2012.

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Box score

KU-Texas Tech

— On the fifth play of an improbable overtime at Jones AT&T Stadium, Kansas University quarterback Michael Cummings drifted back and fired a pass to running back James Sims, who stabbed it with two hands at the goal line and gave the Jayhawks their first lead of the day.

With the clock no longer running and Kansas needing just one more stop from a defense that delivered them all afternoon, Cummings celebrated his second touchdown pass of the game with a slide step and celebratory slap of the Texas Tech turf.

“I thought the game was over after that,” said Cummings. “I thought we would wrap the game up on defense.”

There was good reason for KU’s red-shirt freshman quarterback to have such faith. After all, in front of an announced crowd of 55,052 on Texas Tech’s Senior Day, KU’s defense held Tech’s high-powered offense to just six points in the second half and even forced TTU quarterback Seth Doege into some uncomfortable situations and uncharacteristic mistakes.

But after pushing the Red Raiders (7-3 overall, 4-3 Big 12) to a third-and-long situation in the initial overtime, the home team broke through, first tying the game on a one-yard TD run from tailback Eric Stephens and, one possession later, winning on a three-yard Stephens pass. Texas Tech 41, Kansas 34, in double OT.

“It was definitely fun,” said KU senior Bradley McDougald, whose game-changing interception midway through the first half turned a potential 28-7 lead for Texas Tech into a more manageable 21-17 halftime deficit for Kansas. “Close games, you gotta love ’em. But it hurt, at the same time, to see my seniors still not get that win that we’ve been fighting for.”

KU’s most recent loss was a wild affair that featured contrasting offenses and defenses that were nearly helpless to stop them.

While Doege (45-of-59 passing for 476 yards and three touchdowns) and the Red Raiders’ offense threw the ball at will on the Jayhawks, Texas Tech’s defense had no answer for the KU rushing attack, which roared to 390 yards, the most ever by a Kansas team in the Big 12 era.

In addition to rolling to an impressive team total, Sims, KU’s emerging junior tailback, recorded a school-record sixth straight game with 100 yards or more. He churned for 127 yards and two TDs on 30 carries behind what KU coach Charlie Weis dubbed “hard yards.” But for the first time in quite some time, Sims actually had some help.

Sophomore Tony Pierson used his elite speed to explode for 202 yards on just 16 carries. Even Cummings, who ran KU’s option attack to near perfection, added 41 yards on the ground, as 88 percent of KU’s total offense (419 yards) came from those three players carrying the football.

“I think it says a lot about a lot of people,” Weis said. “Obviously, you can start with James and Tony. But Michael had some yards in there, and you’d have to think that the offensive line did a heck of a job in run blocking. You don’t get numbers like that without a lot of people being involved.”

While Sims’ production has come to be expected and Cummings’ effort was merely a bonus, Pierson’s big day nearly changed the game. The sophomore from East St. Louis, Ill., who started the season hot but then missed time and struggled to regain his form because of an elbow injury, ripped off runs of 49 and 69 yards while averaging 12.6 yards per carry.

“It felt good because coach Weis had been calling me out all week saying I’ve been missing the action for a whole month because of my elbow,” Pierson said. “So I just came out today with a different mind-set and just worried about playing football.”

It worked. Pierson was excellent out of KU’s option package, and he also darted to the outside on routine handoffs, making life miserable for a Texas Tech defense that came in ranked 18th in total defense.

“When they call an outside run, my eyes light up because that’s my specialty,” Pierson said.

Sims was particularly appreciative of Pierson’s big day because, after gashing the Red Raiders up the middle on KU’s first scoring drive of the day, Tech began to stack the line of scrimmage to prevent Sims from beating them.

“Tony Pierson is a great back, and he’s great in the open field,” Sims said. “If he makes one person miss, it can be a house call.”

While the offense rolled even without the threat of a passing game, KU’s defense came up with stops at crucial times to keep the Jayhawks in it. A Ryan Bustin field goal with 28 seconds to play in the third quarter gave Tech a 24-17 lead, and, despite reaching the KU 10-yard line on their next drive, the Red Raiders settled for another field goal early in the fourth to push their lead to 27-17.

Down by two scores for the first time since early in the second quarter, KU responded with a three-play TD drive, sparked by Pierson’s 69-yard sprint up the middle that Sims capped with a three-yard TD run after Pierson was caught from behind for the first time in his life.

“That was kind of new to me,” he said shaking his head. “I should’ve never said never.”

The dubious first for Pierson did nothing to hurt KU’s momentum. Trailing by just three, KU’s defense held Stephens to a one-yard gain on a fourth and two from the Kansas 12-yard line, and that allowed Cummings to lead a game-tying drive.

Sims did most of the heavy lifting on KU’s final drive of regulation, rushing six times for 30 yards. But Cummings’ 44-yard gain off of an option keeper on fourth and four set up Nick Prolago’s 32-yard field goal that forced overtime.

“We talked to the offensive line, five guys up front, and just said, ‘Hey, just win the line of scrimmage,’” recalled Sims of the conversation in the huddle before the drive. “’If you win the line of scrimmage and get us running backs to the safeties, then we should be fine.’”

That set the stage for the double-overtime heartbreaker, in which KU momentarily led. After Tech gutted out back-to-back touchdown drives to reclaim the lead, KU’s final chance went awry when TTU’s defense finally got a stop in the run game.

Sims gained two yards on first down, and Cummings added three on second. But on third and five, Pierson lost four yards on an option pitch to the short side, setting up a desperation fourth and nine with the game on the line. Weis said he liked the play call, but noted that the protection broke down, forcing Cummings to throw early. The ball was batted away from freshman Tre’ Parmalee in the end zone, and KU (1-9, 0-7) was called for an illegal shift at the same time, putting an end to KU’s best effort of the season and adding another defeat onto KU’s painful stretch of 19 straight conference losses.

“Look, am I disappointed we lost?” Weis asked. “You betcha. Are they disappointed? You betcha. But at the end of the day, our team played like a legitimate team trying to gut it out through a complete four quarters.”

Comments

Kenneth Hillman 1 year, 5 months ago

Not seeing much talk about this. Why didn't Charlie challenge that muffed punt?

REAL proud of our Hawks. Getting closer every game. I predict a win before the end of the season...

RCJH

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neworleans 1 year, 5 months ago

Great game; KU doing much better; ok; now tear up Iowa this weekend....

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jsaz 1 year, 5 months ago

Putting a positive spin on the loss is OK, but what about the defense? I know that is another article, but a lead article on a game should include boths sides of the ball. Between llittle pressure on the QB, and WR's running free in the secondary it is hard to watch. I'd like to see it changed up, I don't think dropping 7 or dropping 8 into coiverage is a change. They didn't get beat deep they just got beat short time after time. On the offense I would like to see a real zone read option, I think Cummings would have had space to run, a zone read look without the QB pulling the ball out and running doesn't fool defenses for long. And Heaps isn't the answer unless he has improved by watching.

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Steve Brown 1 year, 5 months ago

See this, Run OU 1971triple option, Sims up middle Pierson outside off the pitch or Cummings keeper around the end. Sooner, Jerry Tagge undefeated ranked 1inUSA, didn't pass a lick. Admit may need more than one week to implement. Ha!

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Steve Brown 1 year, 5 months ago

Jayhawks rising! Mighty proud of these boys Wishing we had more games this year and TCU home late, rather than early. Most years can't wait for BB this is different, seeing weekly improvement. Darn glad we have HCCW, Camps and this coach set. Boys are responding, sad for them in the record, yet hope they take pride in the visible improvement. This year is the foundation for our turnaround. Coaches nationally will earn big pay days after Charlie crew is thru here. Coaches are key. Kansas football on right track, long time to say that. Sad Miz beat Vols. Glad K.State is headed for undefeated season, suppose they will get hosed for title game. Few more days here in sunny Santa Barbara then back to Kansas. RCJHGOKU!

1

Jayhawker111 1 year, 5 months ago

It is hard to believe that KU was even in the game with these statistics

3rd down efficiency 3 for 14

M. Cummings 6 for 15 29yards 1.9 yard average 2 touchdowns

It is a plus for Cummings that he did not turn the ball over, but if a Quarterback cannot hit 50% of passes and the team cannot convert third downs, then most of the time it will lose.

Iowa state will put 9 players on the line and dare KU to pass next week.

I do not see how KU can win without the pass.

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bigtex 1 year, 5 months ago

The passing game going to Parmale on the first read was the very evident. (very poor decision). Tre is a 5'8" receiver with average speed, and a 5'7" corner was defending him. We all know that Tre is Weis's recruit and Weis coached with Tre's dad. It is not time to give out personal favors to friends. Why not have the taller receivers like Truzeli or Omegie, even Ford in that mismatch spot? The bad thing about the passing game is Cummings has no time to go through his progressions. Charlie Weis's imagination as an offensive coordinator is not very impressive. Have we ever thrown the ball on 1st down just to change things up? It is very hard to quarterbacks and receivers to look good on third and long because the defense knows every time what you are going to do. Pick is so reliable with catching the ball. Why not go to Pick, the kid is open a lot. I would definitely make him the first read on third or fourth down situations. It was nice to keep our starting offensive line together this week, it showed in the running game. Zlatnik was not rotating and did well. I don't think Martin even traveled? I didn't see him on the sidelines. Pierson and Sims played their butts off. Nice to see them get their yards. Defense played great .

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justinryman 1 year, 5 months ago

Speaking of Texas Tech and coaches on peoples wish leist to take over for former coach Gill. Here is an interesting ready:

http://espn.go.com/college-football/story/_/id/8618108/marquess-wilson-washington-state-cougars-leaves-team-alleges-abuse-coaching-staff

Now this kid could be using Leach's past as an issue or is bringing into light what typ of coach he really is.

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90sHawk 1 year, 5 months ago

I can envision an ISU win, but very hard to do the same in Morgantown, especially with them fighting for bowl eligibility.

1

Chris1955 1 year, 5 months ago

This was a great game to watch, except for the final outcome. KU is learning how to win, and we may yet see the results in the last two games of the season. I'd have to guess that word has gone around the conference that this isn't the same patsy KU team which has shown up the past 2 seasons.

Dave Campo has to be in consideration for Defensive Coordinator of the year in the Big 12, if there is such an award. He has been able to work wonders with this group.

I see the pressure on other teams to beat KU (the automatic victory) increasing. Tommy slapped his assistant coach during a bonehead substitution situation.

Question. Does KU's first Big 12 football victory since the Colorado victory 2 years ago trigger a head coach losing his job? Do we beat Iowa State or West Virginia, or both in the final 2 games?

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NCFCHawk 1 year, 5 months ago

I agree, I don't usu pick on Coach's play calling but I would have run it on all the plays that series. The incomplete pass I think really hurt us b/c they could stack against the run. The pass to the corner was never open from what I saw and it was silly to try it again. Go with what got us there. If we would have chewed away a few yards a play, I would hope he would have gone for it on a fourth and a couple (jump pass play would have been perfect!).

With that said I am so proud of this team. No quit. Improvement as the year as gone on. I wish I could get there next week for Iowa State game and I sure hope there is a great crowd at the game as these guys deserve it. Go 'Hawks!!! I think we are headed in the right direction!

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Mike Barnhart 1 year, 5 months ago

GREAT EFFORT but ... Charlie knew it, I knew it and anyone who knows anything about college football knew it ... a touchdown on our last drive in regulation was the only shot at victory! Matching Tech score for score from 25 yards out would have been a miracle. But, Charlie had to show faith in his team by not rolling the dice on 4th and 5 with a minute left!

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JHWKDW 1 year, 5 months ago

I hated to lose to Coach Seifert uhh I mean Tuberville LOL! Nah Sorry Tuberville looks like former SF 49er Coach George Seifert so much!

Anyway! Regardless of wind or whatever you got to give coach Weis, and his coaching staff a big thumbs up for the job they have done! Yeah a loss is a loss, I know we lost, but if you told me we would play that close of a game against Dreaded Texas Longhorns, and Texas Tech, I wouldn't have thought we would have played them this close.We have played close in so many of the games this season, we are proud of KU so far. Hey Sims is looking like a NFL caliber back! Coach Grunhard has done one hell of a job getting that Offensive line to play well, And Dave Campo has done a doggone good job with what talent he has here, I think he has overachieved in terms of this team so far!

Keep up the good work, I think the wins will come next season!

0

mojayhawk 1 year, 5 months ago

Best 1-9 team in the country. These men are competing, and improving. Good effort guys.

1

nostradavid 1 year, 5 months ago

We really scared the Longhorns and the RRaiders. We would be kicking butt in a lesser league. Great job players and coaches.

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BringBackMark 1 year, 5 months ago

I hope everyone is right about Heaps but I won't hold my breath. What I do see is that if Cummings had been able to develop some confidence and experience against the early opponents I think we would be very excited about the last two games. We've shown we can compete with about everyone in the Big 12 with the exception of KSU and OU.

Campo has done an incredible job considering where the defense was last year. The offensive play calling still seems suspect at times.

1

Jeff Soisson 1 year, 5 months ago

Beat Iowa State, stun West Virginia = great season! OK, just win one.

1

jayhawkintx1973 1 year, 5 months ago

The Red Raiders run defense was rated 3rd in the nation, until today.

2

troutsee 1 year, 5 months ago

No quit, indeed. Proud of the performance. 25 point underdogs. Their QB was very accurate and that saved them. I just hope we have O linemen in the wings that can replace this senior laden group. Tech has a very good passing game that has given a lot of teams fits. Still two games to go and both very winnable.

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990 1 year, 5 months ago

Tech has a very good run defense and they knew we would run, but they could not stop us. The HOGS upfront were impressive and I look forward to next week. Congrats senior o-lineman, love the smashmouth no quit effort.

3

Doug Roberts 1 year, 5 months ago

To everyone saying if only Heaps was quarterback we'd be in a bowl game this year I say I'll Believe it When I See It. If only we had Crist last year we could've gone bowling, right? Real Deals are proven, not predicted.

2

okiedave 1 year, 5 months ago

Even though we lost, I felt pretty satisfied with the team. They really are a very good offensive team. The defensive secondary needs some work, but I feel very positive about our next game and next year. Weis is going to turn this thing around.

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Boouk 1 year, 5 months ago

If Heaps was our QB this year we're 6-4 or 7-3 right now. Our offense would be a top 30 offense with an average QB, and Heaps will probably be better than average, even though he might not look like it because of an average WR group.

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ahpersecoachingexperience 1 year, 5 months ago

This victory was "wind dated" just as the okie state game was "hurricane sandy jr dated".

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actorman 1 year, 5 months ago

I was thinking before that last possession in double OT how incredibly proud I was of the team, win or lose. What a monumental effort they gave as a 25-point underdog! The signs of improvement are there all over the place, and the future looks brighter than it has in quite a while.

One thing I'm curious about: Did anyone else have problems seeing the score box in the upper lefthand corner? Every time this particular channel has the game (I don't know which network it is, but it's channel 36 (or cable channel 6) in the Bay Area), the score box is virtually completely cutoff and all I can see is the clock. Has anyone else experienced that? And would anyone know who/where I could write to about it? It's incredibly irritating to have that come up time after time.

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Mike Bratisax 1 year, 5 months ago

It wasn't that long ago I said that Kansas football should drop out of Division I. I was completely wrong. If the team that has played the last three games had started the season playing as they are now, I sincerely think they would be a team going to a bowl. Even without getting over the hurdle of winning on the road, that was a very impressive Kansas team. Who ever (Turner Gill?)recruited Pierce and Sims deserves a lot of credit. The offensive line will lose a few key players as will the defense but plenty of skill positions will be returning. Looking forward to next year. Kansas football is looking up!

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