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BCS BUSTERS



Published: Sun, September 2, 2012 @ 12:00 a.m.

BCS BUSTERS

Stubbs helps YSU to biggest victory in a decade

By Joe scalzo

scalzo@vindy.com

Pittsburgh

Call it a program-changer. Call it a statement-maker. Call it Youngstown State’s biggest win in at least a decade.

Just don’t call it an upset.

Behind a breakout performance from lightning-quick freshman Andre Stubbs, a bevy of big defensive plays and a typically strong performance from Youngs-town State’s offense, the Penguins earned a decisive 31-17 win over Pittsburgh on Saturday night at Heinz Field.

“A lot of people said this was a far-fetched thing and it was very absurd, but we believed in the locker room that we could beat this Pitt team,” said junior quarterback Kurt Hess. “We really came out here and expected to win and I think that really helped us.”

The game’s key stretch came midway through the third quarter. Youngstown State led 21-10 but had just been held to its first three-and-out of the game. Pitt took over at its own 42 and drove 36 yards in seven plays to set up a fourth-and-1 at the YSU 21.

Pitt’s first-year coach, Paul Chryst, called for running back Isaac Bennett to run into the center of the Penguin defense, where he was stuffed for a 1-yard loss.

“We did that fourth-down stop with sophomores,” said senior defensive tackle Aronde Stanton. “I was out with cramps, [senior defensive tackle Nick] DeKraker was out with a knee injury and sophomores came in and stepped up.”

YSU then put together a 15-play, 78-yard drove that chewed up 8:34 off the clock and finished with a 13-yard touchdown run by Stubbs. Pitt answered with a touchdown drive of its own to cut the deficit to 28-17 with 9:17 left.

Then the Penguins did something they’ve been unable to do for much of the Wolford era — they put the game away.

Offensive coordinator Shane Montgomery, whose creative play-calling kept Pitt off-balance all night, called 11 straight running plays, mixing things up between Stubbs, workhorse senior Jamaine Cook and bulldozing junior Torrian Pace. The drive ate up more than six minutes and ended with David Brown’s 25-yard field goal.

“That was a championship drive,” Hess said. “Obviously, we would have liked to have punched it in but the defense had our backs.

“They got us the ball back and I told them I wanted to take the knee [to end the game]. They let me take a couple knees.”

Stubbs, who suffered a season-ending collarbone injury in Week 3 last year, caught four passes for 21 yards and a touchdown and ran six times for 71 yards and a TD for the Penguins, who became the first FCS team in history to win 20 games over FBS opponents.

“Andre Stubbs is a guy who is probably too short [5-foot-6] for most people to recruit,” YSU coach Eric Wolford said. “A lot of people get caught up in measurements and we don’t do that.

“We go by film and he’s an explosive player.”

Quarterback Kurt Hess completed 13 of 23 passes for 154 yards and two TDs while Cook ran 21 times for 84 yards. Cook also threw for a touchdown, hitting tight end Will Shaw (three catches, 51 yards, two TDs) for a 23-yard completion on fourth-and-1 early in the third quarter.

Add in two forced fumbles by YSU’s defense (including one with 1:10 left) and a 20:46-9:14 edge in second-half time of possession and it’s easy to see why the Penguins were able to get their first win over a BCS opponent since they started the annual games in 2005.

“My hat goes off to Youngstown State,” Chryst said. “They are very well-coached. They’re a good team. Tonight, they were the better team.

“They beat us tonight.”


Comments

1GoPens(397 comments)posted 1 year, 10 months ago

Way to go Penguins! Hopefully this is the beginning of a return of the glory years.

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2chuck_carney(499 comments)posted 1 year, 10 months ago

Let's try to keep things in perspective. Pitt suspended 6 players right before the game; I'm sure this had a major impact on the outcome. However, this is defintely a big win.

What did Hannon and Muransky mean that YSU could have beaten a lot of good teams last night. Did they mean BCS caliber teams or Division 2 teams?

Theres a big difference between Alabama and Northern Iowa

______________________

By Jerry DiPaola

Published: Saturday, September 1, 2012, 4:20 p.m.
Updated 10 hours ago

Six Pitt players, including starting defensive tackle Tyrone Ezell and freshman running back Rushel Shell, were suspended by coach Paul Chryst for undisclosed disciplinary reasons prior to the season-opening game Saturday against Youngstown State at Heinz Field.

Senior defensive end Shayne Hale, sophomore receiver Ronald Jones, sophomore safety Anthony Gonzalez and freshman receiver Chris Davis also were suspended. Chryst suspended offensive tackle Juantez Hollins for the season last month for violation of team policy.

Chryst declined to elaborate on the suspensions after the team’s 31-17 loss to Youngstown State on Saturday night. “I don’t plan on talking anymore about it,” he said.

— Jerry DiPaola

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3pneumaticman(3 comments)posted 1 year, 10 months ago

You can't excuse away this loss to our Penguins, Pitt had plenty of chances to win. I don't care who did or did not play for them, they lost and lost big. You cannot take away the David out of the David and Goliath story.

Nice win Guins!

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4GoPens(397 comments)posted 1 year, 10 months ago

Only one of the suspended players was a starter

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5badeepster(111 comments)posted 1 year, 10 months ago

Carney is a prime example of everything that is wrong with this miserable town. Something great happens and someone immediately wants to pour cold water on it. Crawl back into your shell (probably an O$U or ND athletic supporter) and let YSU celebrate a GREAT win. As the earlier poster said, only one suspended player was a starter. YSU kicked their you know whats.

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6OhioAtty666(19 comments)posted 1 year, 10 months ago

It would have been fun to have seen Rushel Shell, who was ranked as the #1 running back in the high school class of 2012, carry the ball, but this was just a good old butt-kicking from the Penguins to the Panthers. Anyone who doesn't understand that is as rock-stupid as the sportscaster on ESPN who said, "Youngstown State won the battle of Pennsylvania tonight."

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7IslandMike(740 comments)posted 1 year, 10 months ago

Nice win, but I wouldn't call it a "BCS Buster." Time will tell how good or bad each team is. One game does not make a season.

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8Heartfixx2(2 comments)posted 1 year, 10 months ago

The night was electric for the ''guins.. Early on, you could sense their confidence; the YSU fans sensed it as well. Pitt didn't play poorly, YSU played magnificently.

Thanks for a great game YSU.

Bah-hum-bug to all the naysayers. Shame on them.

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9rogirlapp(1 comment)posted 1 year, 10 months ago

Big ups to YSU. People give props where props are due great skilled players and fast defense they just out shined Pitt. Maybe Pitt should be in D3 and YSU in big eas.t Aint no fun when the rabbit got the gun. Thanks for the biggg check and the win.... in the YSU fans voice
all together
Y S U YSU Y S U YSU
no cupcakes here ladies hahahaha

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10walter_sobchak(1847 comments)posted 1 year, 10 months ago

Obviously, some of these commentors don't know college football. First, there is a substantial disparity between FCS and FBS schools. FBS schools have more scholarship players and they are typically much larger players that have at least the same speed. In the vast majority of cases, an FBS school should never lose to an FCS school. Second, this win should not be a big suprise since YSU has a veteran offense this year. Defense has been the problem and the addition of a top-flight coordinator may have changed things. If you look at the stats, YSU was very impressive and they were definitely the better of the two teams Saturday night!

Now, let's pack Stambaugh and support the program that we all worship, right vinytalk?

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11sweatpea(113 comments)posted 1 year, 10 months ago

I watched the entire game and loved every minute of it! Pitt may have a down year, but they were expected to beat YSU. The 6 suspensions reflected 1 starter and 1-2 possible subs. Perhaps they were a factor, perhaps not. Pitt decided to play short handed anyway!

Now here are the negatives as I saw them. The Penguins punt and kick coverage is terrible. Wolford will have them do it Tuesday and Wednesday this week and maybe nothing else! Defense is better, but they need better play from their linebackers.

The positives are the offensive and defensive lines were outstanding, and the back ups that rotated in played very well. The DB's played very well. The QB, RB's, K, WR's and TE's were as good as they could be at this stage of the season. I cannot wait to see them improve in the coming weeks! The QB needs to tweak his timing with the WR's on the long ball. If that happens, this team might be able to score on any play from anywhere on the field.

It just might be a very fun year down at the Ice Castle. Hope to see it packed again like it used to be.

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