Nov 19, 2022; College Station, Texas, USA; Massachusetts Minutemen running back Ellis Merriweather (7) is tackled by Texas A&M Aggies linebacker Edgerrin Cooper (45) and defensive lineman LT Overton (18) during the first quarter at Kyle Field. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Texas A&M beats UMass to snap six-game slide

Freshman Conner Weigman passed for 191 yards and a touchdown as Texas A&M defeated UMass 20-3 and snapped a six-game losing streak on Saturday in College Station, Texas.

Weigman found Noah Thomas for 22-yard TD reception in the second quarter in his third career start for the Aggies (4-7), who had not won since Sept. 24.

Le’Veon Moss rushed for 72 yards with a 12-yard score — his first career touchdown — with 5:10 left in regulation and Randy Bond kicked a pair of field goals to round out the Texas A&M scoring.

Moose Muhammad made three catches for 75 yards after being suspended last week. Weigman completed 11 of 19 passes and also rushed for 66 yards.

Brady Olson was 9-of-22 passing for 55 yards, Isaac Ross caught four passes for 25 yards, and Kay’Ron Adams rushed for 58 yards for UMass (1-10).

While the Aggies had a 398-168 advantage in total yardage, the Minutemen recovered three fumbles, sacked Weigman three times and broke up four passes. Jalen Mackie had eight tackles and a sack for UMass.

UMass stopped the run early on the opening series, but a pair of 20-plus-yard Weigman tosses allowed Texas A&M to score first on Bond’s 27-yard field goal.

Cameron Carson kicked a tying 25-yard field goal for UMass early in the second, capping a 13-play, 72-yard drive.

Texas A&M began the second quarter with a fumble and a three-and-out. UMass also went three-and-out twice before Weigman’s 22-yard scramble set up the Thomas score to put the Aggies up 10-3.

Making up for a 47-yard miss at the end of the first half, Bond drilled a 35-yard field goal to make it a two-score game with 7:49 left in the third.

Bond’s 45-yard kick with 12:38 left was no good, ending the first drive of the final quarter. The Moss touchdown run came four plays after the Minutemen failed to convert a pass on fourth-and-7.

–Field Level Media

Florida State Seminoles running back Jashaun Corbin (0) looks over his shoulder as he makes his way down the field. The Florida State Seminoles leads the Massachusetts Minutemen 38-3 at the half Saturday, Oct. 23, 2021.

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Florida State runs over UMass with 59 unanswered points

Five different players scored rushing touchdowns as host Florida State ran for 365 yards in a 59-3 blowout victory against Massachusetts in a non-conference contest Saturday afternoon in Tallahassee, Fla.

The Seminoles (3-4) have their first three-game winning streak since the end of the 2017 season while the Minutemen (1-6) lost for the 23rd time in their past 25 games just two weeks after snapping a 16-game losing streak.

FSU’s rushing output was its highest since running for 478 yards in a victory over South Florida on Sept. 24, 2016.

It was the first time the Seminoles had five rushers score touchdowns in a game since 2013 against Nevada. The Seminoles finished with seven runs of 20 or more yards and 15 rushes of 10 or more yards. FSU finished with 586 total yards, compared to 241 for UMass.

Jashaun Corbin led the attack with 127 yards and a touchdown on 11 carries. FSU starting quarterback Jordan Travis ran for 78 yards and a touchdown on nine attempts and completed 5 of 10 passes for 123 yards.

A fumble on the game’s opening kickoff set up the Minutemen’s lone score on a 45-yard field goal by Cameron Carson. The Seminoles responded with 59 unanswered points.

UMass had a chance to cut Florida State’s lead to 17-10, but Jammie Robinson intercepted Minutemen starting quarterback Brady Olson in his own end zone with 9:48 left in the second quarter. The Seminoles put the game out of reach with 28 points in the second quarter.

They capped the first half with Jarvis Brownlee Jr.’s second career interception, which he returned 70 yards for a touchdown.

Zamar Wise started the second half at quarterback and led the Minutemen on the ground with 60 yards on 12 carries. Olson completed 12 of 27 passes for 110 yards, but threw two interceptions.

Florida State redshirt freshman quarterback Chubba Purdy took his first snaps of the season in the second half and completed all five of his pass attempts for 98 yards and two touchdowns.

–Field Level Media

Nov 21, 2020; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA;  Pittsburgh Panthers quarterback Kenny Pickett (8) passes against the Virginia Tech Hokies during the second quarter at Heinz Field. Pittsburgh won 47-14. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

UMass brings 11-game losing streak to Pittsburgh

While it’s uncertain how vital Pittsburgh’s celebrated depth will prove to be, it should be showcased against a Massachusetts program that hasn’t won a game in nearly two years.

The Panthers open the season looking to hand the visiting Minutemen a 12th straight defeat on Saturday.

After going 6-5 last season, Pitt boasts 21 seniors, including 13 “super seniors,” those whose eligibility did not run out in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Panthers return roughly 11 starters from 2020.

“The culture here, I think, is great, and that’s why we’ve got guys that stick it out and play, and guys that come back and play a fifth year or sixth year or seventh year,” said coach Pat Narduzzi, who is 42-34 entering his seventh season at Pittsburgh.

Pitt averaged 29.0 points last season under quarterback Kenny Pickett, who enters his fourth year as a starter. He has completed 60.4 percent of his passes for 7,984 yards during his four seasons at Pitt, and matched a personal high with 13 touchdowns in 2020.

He threw eight of those touchdowns over five home games.

Defensively, the Panthers hope to show some improvement from a unit that allowed 30 or more points five times last season. Linebacker SirVocea Dennis was second on the team with 57 tackles last season, including 14 tackles for loss and four sacks.

According to the school, Pitt’s 97 recorded sacks during the 2019-20 seasons were the most in the nation over that span.

None of that likely bodes well for UMass, which posted one touchdown while being outscored 161-12 in the four games it played — against Georgia Southern, Marshall, Florida Atlantic and Liberty — last fall. The Minutemen return more than 10 starters from that group, but face a daunting task as an independent program with the likes of Boston College, Coastal Carolina, Florida State and Army also on the schedule.

UMass is 1-17 since Nov. 10, 2018, and has dropped 11 in a row since a 37-29 home win over Akron on Sept. 28, 2019.

“We’ve got to do a nice job putting our players in position to make plays,” head coach Walt Bell said. “Utilize our personnel groups where we have strength.”

Colorado transfer Tyler Lytle is slated to start at quarterback for the Minuteman. The senior attempted just 13 passes in six games during his three seasons with the Buffaloes.

This will be the first meeting between the schools.

–Field Level Media

Nov 7, 2020; Huntington, West Virginia, USA; Marshall Thundering Herd quarterback Grant Wells (8) throws a pass during the second quarter against the Massachusetts Minutemen at Joan C. Edwards Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Ben Queen-USA TODAY Sports

No. 16 Marshall routs UMass, 51-10

Brenden Knox rushed for 118 yards and two touchdowns, and Grant Wells threw for 228 yards and three scores as unbeaten No. 16 Marshall routed the visiting Massachusetts Minutemen 51-10 in their nonconference matchup in Huntington, W.Va., on Saturday.

Knox had 105 yards by halftime, topping 100 for his fifth straight game, as Marshall improved to 6-0.

The Minutemen (0-2), an FBS independent, entered as 43.5-point underdogs and are trying to put together a season after initially canceling their slate of games. They lost to Georgia Southern 41-0 on Oct. 17.

UMass freshman quarterback Will Koch went 12 of 18 passing for 99 yards and a touchdown. Samuel Emilus caught six passes but only for 29 yards, including a touchdown. The Minutemen had only 41 yards rushing.

Marshall scored on five of its seven first-half possessions, capped by a six-play drive completed in only two minutes. Sheldon Evans’ 11-yard touchdown run with 38 seconds left before intermission extended the Herd’s lead to 31-10.

On its first possession of the second half, Marshall marched 80 yards on 11 plays, finishing it off on a 13-yard pass to Xavier Gaines. The failed conversion kept the lead at 37-10, but not for long.

Koch fumbled on UMass’ next possession after a hit by defensive lineman Jamare Edwards. It was the only turnover of the game. Two plays later, Wells and Gaines connected again, this time for a 16-yard score, pushing the lead to 44-10.

Marshall wasted little time getting on the board, needing only four plays to cover 75 yards on the game’s first possession. The last 45 of those yards came on a romp off the left side by Knox for a 7-0 lead just 1:32 into the game.

The Minutemen tied the score on their second possession, going 80 yards on six plays, helped mightily by a 37-yard pass from Koch to Taylor Edwards after a double-handoff. Koch’s 2-yard toss to Emilus gave UMass its first points of the season.

Artie Henry caught five passes for 71 yards, and Gaines had seven for 66 yards for Marshall, which piled up 495 yards in total offense to 190 for UMass. The Herd entered the game allowing 9.4 points and 265 yards per game.

The Herd (3-0 Conference USA) are scheduled to return to league action on Nov. 14 against visiting Middle Tennessee.

–Field Level Media