Danny O’Brien threw for a career-high 417 yards and four scores, all to Torrey Smith, and Maryland denied No. 21 North Carolina State a spot in the Atlantic Coast Conference title game by beating the Wolfpack, 38-31, yesterday in College Park, Md.
Needing a victory to win the league’s Atlantic Division, N.C. State (8-4, 5-3) scored touchdowns on its first two possessions to take a 14-0 lead. But the Terrapins (8-4, 5-3) rallied behind O’Brien, who made up for a running game that finished with negative yardage.
N.C. State ended up in a second-place tie with Maryland behind Florida State, which will face Virginia Tech in the championship game Saturday in Charlotte, N.C.
Smith had a career-high 14 catches for 224 yards and became the first Maryland player with four touchdown receptions in a game. The last came with 6:26 left after Maryland’s Drew Gloster sacked Russell Wilson on a fourth-down play from the Maryland 8 with the Terrapins ahead, 31-17.
Wilson scored on a 1-yard run with 2:39 remaining. The Wolfpack recovered the onside kick and Wilson threw a TD pass with 1:16 left, but Maryland pounced on the ensuing onside kick.
Florida St. 31, Florida 7 — Christian Ponder threw for 221 yards and three touchdowns in Tallahassee, Fla., as the 22d-ranked Seminoles snapped a six-game losing streak in the series against the Gators.
Florida State (9-3) put the game away with a 21-point second quarter, getting three touchdowns in just over nine minutes to take a 24-7 halftime lead.
Florida (7-5) capped its worst regular season under Urban Meyer with its first loss to FSU since Meyer took over in 2005.
Virginia Tech 37, Virginia 7 — In Blacksburg, Va., Ryan Williams ran for two touchdowns, and the 13th-ranked Hokies won their 10th consecutive game, and seventh in a row over the Cavaliers.
Tyrod Taylor threw for 176 yards and a touchdown and became the career passing yardage leader for the Hokies (10-2, 8-0). Virginia Tech also became the first team to finish the regular season unbeaten in ACC play since Florida State in 2000.
The Hokies will meet the Seminoles in the conference championship game. It will be Tech’s fourth appearance in six years.
The game ended a difficult first season under coach Mike London for Virginia (4-8, 1-7).
South Florida 23, Miami 20 — Demetris Murray had a 1-yard touchdown run in overtime, and the Bulls stunned the host Hurricanes, who fired coach Randy Shannon hours after the game ended.
Bobby Eveld tied the game with a 1-yard run with two minutes left in regulation, then got South Florida (7-4) back to the 1 in overtime. Murray went over the top one play later.
Miami had a chance to win in regulation, but Jacory Harris threw an interception — with the Hurricanes in field goal range — with five seconds left.
Miami fired Shannon after the Hurricanes finished 7-5. Shannon, who received a four-year extension just before the start of the 2010 season, was 28-22 in four seasons at Miami.
Georgia 42, Georgia Tech 34 — The host Bulldogs (6-6) got the victory they needed to become bowl eligible, with Aaron Murray burning the Yellow Jackets (6-6) for three TD passes.
Georgia Tech was poised to tie the game at 35 after Anthony Allen bulled into the end zone with 4:57 remaining, but Scott Blair yanked the extra point wide left, and Georgia added a clinching TD.
South Carolina 29, Clemson 7 — The No. 18 Gamecocks (9-3) geared up for next weekend’s SEC title game by routing the host Tigers (6-6). Stephen Garcia threw for two scores.
North Carolina 24, Duke 19 — T.J. Yates threw for 264 yards and a touchdown as the Tar Heels (7-5, 4-4) held off the Blue Devils (3-9, 1-7) in Durham, N.C.
Wake Forest 34, Vanderbilt 13 — Josh Harris ran for 138 yards as the Demon Deacons (3-9) beat the host Commodores (2-10).