Connecticut beats Syracuse 56-31Nov 28, 2009 - 9:06 PM By PAT EATON-ROBB Associated Press Writer
EAST HARTFORD, Conn.(AP) -- Connecticut's tailback tandem of Jordan Todman and Andre Dixon combined for 196 yards rushing and four touchdowns as the Huskies beat Syracuse 56-31 Saturday to become bowl eligible.
UConn (6-5, 2-4 Big East), which lost three in a row after the stabbing death of cornerback Jasper Howard, followed up its 33-30 double-overtime win against Notre Dame by going over .500 for the first time since the Oct. 18 tragedy.
Todman ran for 123 yards and a score, while Dixon had three touchdowns and 73 yards rushing.
Greg Paulus threw for 296 yards and two touchdowns in his final game for Syracuse (4-8, 1-6).
Syracuse had 489 yards of offense, but fell behind early and could not quite catch up.
Trailing 42-31, the Orange moved from their 4-yard line into UConn territory, but failed to convert a fourth-and-7, when Alec Lemon dropped a pass. The Huskies then added two late touchdowns.
UConn led 28-17 at halftime thanks to several big plays that overcame Syracuse's advantage in time of possession. The biggest was an 80-yard kickoff return for a touchdown by Mike Lang after a seven-minute Syracuse drive ended in a field goal.
It was the third time in four games the Huskies have taken a kickoff for a score.
UConn also capitalized after recovering a fumbled pitch by Delone Carter. Two plays later, Todman ran a draw up the middle for a 37-yard touchdown and 21-10 lead.
The play gave Todman over 1,000 yards rushing for the season.
Carter also passed the 1,000-yard mark, with 102 yards on 20 carries for the Orange.
Dixon had two first-half touchdowns. His 4-yard run made it 7-0 after a 13-yard Syracuse punt.
He scored again with 6 seconds left in the half on a 3-yard plunge that was set up by a 42-yard, one-handed catch by Marcus Easley down the right sideline.
Paulus completed 10 of 12 first-half passes, including a 3-yard touchdown to Lemon that cut the UConn lead to 21-17 with just over a minute left in the second quarter.
Ryan Nassib completed 7 of 9 passes for 64 yards in splitting time with Paulus. He connected on a 4-yard touchdown to tight end Mike Owen.
Zach Frazer hit Easley for an 8-yard touchdown to open the second half, capping a 15-play, 80-yard drive. Syracuse coach Doug Marrone refused a 15-yard penalty that would have given UConn a third-and-21 at its 41. UConn instead converted a fourth-and-5 and scored two plays later, when Easley caught an 8-yard pass over the middle.
Paulus ended his one-year career at Syracuse breaking the school record for completions and completion rate.
Connecticut's Lawrence Wilson had 17 tackles and a sack.
- NCAAF FINAL
1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
--- --- --- --- -----
SYRACUSE 3 14 0 14 31
UCONN 14 14 7 21 56 FINAL
1ST QUARTER: CONNECTICU - TD, ANDRE DIXON 4 YD RUN (DAVE
TEGGART KICK), 5:13. UCONN 7-0
SYRACUSE - FG, RYAN LICHTENSTEIN 26 YD,
12:11. UCONN 7-3
CONNECTICU - TD, MIKE LANG 80 YD KICKOFF
RETURN (DAVE T
Nov 28 3:37 PM
UCONN 56 0:00 LEFT, 4TH QTR
Nov 28 3:37 PM
UCONN 56 0:08 LEFT, 4TH QTR
Syracuse 31, Connecticut 56 4th - 0:08Nov 28 3:36 PM
UCONN 49 0:47 LEFT, 4TH QTR
Syracuse 31, Connecticut 49 4th - 0:47Nov 28 3:31 PM
UCONN 42 9:27 LEFT, 4TH QTR
Syracuse 31, Connecticut 42 4th - 9:27Nov 28 3:04 PM
UCONN 42 12:37 LEFT, 4TH QTR
Syracuse 24, Connecticut 42 4th - 12:37Nov 28 2:54 PM
UCONN 35 14:55 LEFT, 4TH QTR
Syracuse 24, Connecticut 35 4th - 14:55Nov 28 2:49 PM
UCONN 35 0:00 LEFT, 3RD QTR
Nov 28 2:44 PM
UCONN 35 8:10 LEFT, 3RD QTR
Syracuse 17, Connecticut 35 3rd - 8:10Nov 28 2:23 PM
UCONN 28 0:00 LEFT, 2ND QTR
Nov 28 1:48 PM
UCONN 28 0:06 LEFT, 2ND QTR
Syracuse 17, Connecticut 28 2nd - 0:06Nov 28 1:47 PM
UCONN 21 1:08 LEFT, 2ND QTR
Syracuse 17, Connecticut 21 2nd - 1:08Nov 28 1:36 PM
UCONN 21 7:15 LEFT, 2ND QTR
Syracuse 10, Connecticut 21 2nd - 7:15Nov 28 1:22 PM
UCONN 14 13:38 LEFT, 2ND QTR
Syracuse 10, Connecticut 14 2nd - 13:38Nov 28 12:54 PM
UCONN 14 0:00 LEFT, 1ST QTR
Nov 28 12:50 PM
UCONN 14 2:37 LEFT, 1ST QTR
Syracuse 3, Connecticut 14 1st - 2:37Nov 28 12:47 PM
UCONN 7 2:49 LEFT, 1ST QTR
Syracuse 3, Connecticut 7 1st - 2:49Nov 28 12:38 PM
UCONN 7 9:47 LEFT, 1ST QTR
Syracuse 0, Connecticut 7 1st - 9:47Nov 28 12:21 PM
- Diaco fires up UConn's NYC base with promise of progress May 18
- Diaco agrees to two-year contract extension at UConn May 16
- Minnesota picks Mark Coyle from Syracuse as AD May 11
- Former Syracuse player facing harsher charges in stabbings May 6
- Offense a priority this spring for ACC's Atlantic Division Apr 25
- 2 Syracuse football players stabbed in campus altercation Apr 18
- Dino Babers gives Syracuse fans 1st glimpse of new offense Apr 2
- Syracuse TB Devante McFarlane leaves football program Mar 1
- Benedict says UConn's caliber of play at Power Five level Mar 1
- Boston College adds former Syracuse coach Paul Pasqualoni Feb 5
- Syracuse dismisses 2 football players for rules violations Feb 4
- ACC football recruiting team capsules Feb 3