TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — Tua Tagovailoa passed for three touchdowns and ran 25 yards for a fourth, all in the first half of No. 2 Alabama's 62-10 victory over New Mexico State Saturday.
The Crimson Tide (2-0) was off to the races starting with the game's first play, when Henry Ruggs III collected a lateral and sprinted 75 yards for a touchdown. It didn't get any better for the Aggies (0-2) after that in sweltering conditions that contributed to thousands of empty seats at Bryant-Denny Stadium.
Alabama receiver Jerry Jeudy tied the school record with three touchdown catches, covering 21, 23 and 19 yards. He caught eight passes for 103 yards in his second straight big game .
Ruggs also caught a 10-yard touchdown pass in a game that started under a 95-degree temperature with a triple-digit heat index.
There was just the right amount of drama for a Tide team facing 55 1/2-point underdogs: Zero.
Tagovailoa played one series into the third quarter before exiting, but not before becoming the eighth Tide quarterback with 5,000 career passing yards. He also darted up the middle for the scoring run and finished 16-of-24 passing for 227 yards.
Alabama outgained New Mexico State 603-262 in total yards.
The Tide backups delivered big plays as well. Mac Jones hit Jeudy for that 19-yard score and freshman tailback Keilan Robinson raced 74 yards for a touchdown.
The Aggies scored on Jason Huntley's 4-yard catch from Josh Adkins in the third quarter, set up by Adkin's 44-yarder to Tony Nicholson.
South Carolina 72, Charleston Southern 10
COLUMBIA, S.C. — Freshman quarterback Ryan Hilinski completed 24 of 30 passes for 282 yards and two touchdowns in his first start for South Carolina, leading the Gamecocks to a 72-10 win over Charleston Southern on Saturday.
South Carolina (1-1) mostly kept it simple for Hilinski against the FCS Buccaneers with plenty of screens, short passes and handoffs.
Hilinski did hit Bryan Edwards in stride for a 60-yard touchdown pass and looked like a freshman in the third quarter when he was rushed and sailed a pass for his one interception.
But overall, it was a fine debut for the freshman, who took over for senior Jake Bentley after the senior broke his foot on the final play of last week's loss to North Carolina . Things get exponentially harder next week with No. 2 Alabama coming to town.
South Carolina coach Will Muschamp said they didn't use a vanilla game plan because it was Hilinski's first start.
"The guy can handle what we're doing. He's extremely bright," Muschamp said.
Hilinski is the younger brother of the late Tyler Hilinski, the Washington State quarterback who killed himself last year. The crowd chanted "Let's go Ryan!" during his first two drives.
Muschamp said dealing with the pain and struggle of what happened to his brother helps the freshman quarterback deal with social media and the crucible of now being a starting quarterback in the Southeastern Conference.
Edwards caught five passes for 112 yards. Mon Denson ran nine times for 118 yards and a touchdown, Rico Dowdle had 10 carries for 87 yards and two touchdowns and Kevin Harris ran six times for 147 yards and three TDs, all in second half mop up time.
The Gamecocks set a school record gaining 775 yards. The 493 yards rushing is also now a school record.
South Carolina's defense held the Buccaneers (0-2) to 267 yards — just 85 of them coming in the first half. Charleston Southern lost yards on the opening play of four of its seven first half drives.
The Gamecocks put in reserves after leading 44-3 at the break. At one point in the third quarter, they played four freshmen in the defensive backfield, including Shilo Sanders, son of NFL great Deion Sanders.
Purdue 42, Vanderbilt 24
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Elijah Sindelar passed for 509 yards and five touchdowns and ran for another TD in Purdue's 42-24 victory over Vanderbilt on Saturday. Purdue speedy sophomore Rondale Moore caught 13 passes for 220 yards, both career highs.
The Boilermakers scored quickly after taking the second-half kickoff to take a 21-10 edge. Jared Sparks hauled in a wide-open 50-yard TD pass from Sindelar as one Vanderbilt defender fell down on the coverage. It was junior Sparks' first TD and the longest catch of his career.
Sindelar's 20-yard TD pass to Brycen Hopkins, from Nashville, pushed the lead to 28-10. The play was set up after a 15-yard penalty for helmet targeting by Vanderbilt cornerback Randall Haynie, who was disqualified.
Vanderbilt closed the deficit to 28-16 on Riley Neal's 10-yard touchdown pass to Cam Johnson early in the fourth quarter.
Moore's 34-yard TD grab gave Purdue a 35-16 lead.
Vandy's final score came on Neal's 75-yard TD pass to Chris Pierce and a two-point conversion, closing the deficit to 35-24.
Neal set up Vanderbilt's opening score in the first quarter with a 49-yard pass to Karlija Lipscomb, putting the ball on the Purdue 4. Ke'Shawn Vaughn scored on a 1-yard TD.
Sindelar connected with Hopkins for a 12-yard touchdown pass to tie the game at 7-all.
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Mississippi State 38, Southern Miss 15
STARKVILLE, Miss. — STARKVILLE, Miss. (AP) - Kylin Hill rushed for 123 yards and one touchdown to lead Mississippi State to a 38-14 win over Southern Miss Saturday at Davis Wade Stadium.
Hill was injured late in the first half but returned in the second half and totaled 67 yards and his touchdown run in the second half. The Bulldogs (2-0) finished with 386 yards of total offense and collected 210 yards on the ground.
Southern Miss (1-1) was held scoreless in the first 40 minutes of action. The Golden Eagles got their first touchdown on a Jack Abraham 28-yard touchdown pass to Jaylond Adams. Abraham also connected with Jordan Mitchell in the final quarter on a 65-yard scoring toss.
Mississippi State was efficient in the first half on offense and held a 21-0 lead at halftime. Quarterback Tommy Stevens opened the game 9-of-9 passing before being injured late in the second quarter. Stevens had touchdown passes to Osirus Mitchell and Stephen Guidry before exiting the game.
The Bulldogs added a Nick Gibson 13-yard touchdown run with 42 seconds left in the first half. But the first half was costly for Mississippi State as Stevens did not return to action in the second half.
Georgia 63, Murray State 17
ATHENS, Ga. — D'Andre Swift ran for two touchdowns, Jake Fromm threw for 166 yards and a score, and No. 3 Georgia broke loose in the second quarter Saturday on the way to a 63-17 blowout of FCS school Murray State.
With temperatures climbing into the mid-90s, Georgia (2-0) got off to a sluggish start and went to the second quarter tied at 7 after giving up a long touchdown pass to the Racers (1-1).
But the Bulldogs finally erupted for a 35-point barrage in the second period.
Brian Herrien ran 2 yards for the go-ahead score. J.R. Reed scooped up a fumble and went 14 yards for a touchdown. Swift tacked on a 10-yard TD run. Fromm hooked up with freshman George Pickens on a 15-yard scoring play. Finally, redshirt freshman Zamir White darted for a 6-yard score, sending Georgia to the locker room with a 42-7 lead.
Fromm and most of the starters were able to take the rest of the day off, giving Georgia a chance to give some of its young prospects their first extensive playing time.
Fromm completed his last nine passes and finished 10 of 11. Swift rushed for 67 yards on just six carries. Pickens hauled in a 43-yard catch with a diving, somersaulting effort and finished with four receptions for 78 yards.
Preston Rice was effective against Georgia's defense, completing 20 of 25 for 216 yards.
The Bulldogs had 269 yards on the ground, led by White with 72 yards on eight carries. Freshman Kenny Atkinson showed off the backfield depth with nine carries for 61 yards.
Georgia jumped ahead less than 2 minutes into the game, ripping off a four-play, 56-yard drive that was aided by a pass interference penalty. Swift powered over from 3 yards out.
The Bulldogs were forced to punt on their second possession, and Murray State stunned the crowd when Price hit DaQuon Green on a slant cutting over the middle. He beat one man and outran two others for a 60-yard TD that tied the game.
There were nervous groans when Georgia fumbled the ball away on its next possession, but it was only a matter of time before the overwhelming talent advantage took its toll on the Ohio Valley Conference school.
Murray State's added a TD in the third quarter off another Georgia mistake. Nigel Walton intercepted a pass by backup quarterback Stetson Bennett, returning it 35 yards to the end zone.