User ID
Password
  Forgot User ID
or Register Today!
VegasInsider.com
Follow Us on Facebook Follow Us on Twitter Follow Us on Google+ VI Mobile Scores and Betting Odds
Home
NFL
NBA
NHL
MLB
NCAA FB
NCAA BK
Golf
Auto Racing
Horses
Boxing/MMA
More
Betting Tools

 
N. Illinois 38, Arkansas St. 20

New Sportsbook.ag customers: Make your 1st bet, get your 2nd bet free, 100%, winnings paid in cash.
Join Now

Already have an account? Click here to view new Exclusive Rewards!

MOBILE, Ala. (AP) - The game couldn't have started much better for Arkansas State. Unfortunately, it couldn't have ended much worse.

Advertisement
The Red Wolves took an early 13-point lead at the GoDaddy.com Bowl on Sunday night only to watch Northern Illinois score 31 unanswered points in a 38-20 loss at Ladd-Peebles Stadium.

``We had a couple of big plays early,'' Arkansas State receiver Taylor Stockemer said. ``But we just made a couple mistakes and got out of rhythm and I don't think we ever got it back.''

The loss ended Arkansas State's (10-3) nine-game winning streak. The Sun Belt champions couldn't overcome five turnovers - including three interceptions thrown by Ryan Aplin.

Aplin completed 30 of 58 passes for 353 yards and one touchdown. Stockemer caught 11 passes for 185 yards and a touchdown.

Northern Illinois' Martel Moore caught eight passes for 224 yards and a touchdown. The 6-foot-2, 182-pound junior from San Antonio, Texas, had 523 yards receiving all season until Sunday's monster performance. Quarterback Chandler Harnish was more than happy to cede the spotlight.

``This is a storybook ending,'' Harnish said. ``The way we came out and beat a great Arkansas State team is something we ought to be proud of.''

The late-night game ended with a midnight celebration for the Huskies at midfield. It sure didn't start so well.

It was the third time this season Northern Illinois (11-3) rallied from a double-digit deficit to win.

Harnish completed 18 of 36 passes for 274 yards and two touchdowns in his final college game. He came in as the nation's top rushing quarterback, averaging 106.3 yards per game, but was limited to minus-3 yards on the ground because of an ankle injury he sustained in the second quarter.

Arkansas State jumped out early, but the score was almost disappointing considering the Red Wolves had to settle for two short field goals instead of touchdowns. Brian Davis connected on kicks from 32 and 36 yards before Aplin scored on a 2-yard run.

The missed opportunities kept Northern Illinois close, and after some early trouble on offense, the Huskies made their move.

``We stopped beating ourselves and started playing our game,'' NIU coach Dave Doeren said. ``Our coaches called an aggressive game and we made a couple of plays that swung the momentum. Two scores is nothing for us. We've been down way more than that this year.''

Harnish hit Perez Ashford on a 9-yard touchdown pass two plays after a disputed spot on fourth down kept the drive alive, pulling the Huskies to 13-7 just before the end of the first quarter.

The Huskies briefly lost Harnish because of his injured left ankle early in the second quarter, but backup Jordan Lynch engineered a seven-play, 78-yard drive that ended with his 3-yard touchdown run. That gave NIU a 14-13 lead with 4:49 left in the first half.

Harnish returned to lead the Huskies on another touchdown drive just before halftime. Doeren gambled on the final play of the drive, going for the touchdown with 2 seconds remaining instead of a point-blank field goal try. It worked, as Jamal Womble plowed forward for a 1-yard touchdown that gave Northern Illinois a 21-13 halftime lead.

Arkansas State was called for a pivotal roughing-the-kicker penalty on a fourth down that extended the drive.

Arkansas State was coached by David Gunn, who took over in an interim role after Hugh Freeze left for Mississippi. Both Freeze and the Red Wolves' new coach - former Auburn offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn - watched the game at Ladd-Peebles Stadium, but were powerless to help as Northern Illinois rallied for the victory.

``Our kids came ready to play, and I am proud of them,'' Gunn said. ``Many things have transpired over the last 30 days, but these young men have shown great resolve over that period of time.''

Arkansas State briefly regained momentum early in the third quarter after Chaz Scales intercepted Harnish's pass, but Northern Illinois got the ball back three plays later when Jhony Faustin intercepted Aplin. On the next play, Harnish threw a 43-yard touchdown pass to Moore to extend the lead to 28-13.

Arkansas State briefly pulled within 31-20 on Aplin's 16-yard touchdown pass to Stockemer, but Northern Illinois responded with an interception that Dechane Durante returned for a touchdown to put the game out of reach.

Northern Illinois' victory helped the MAC finish with a 4-1 record in bowl games.

-----

Follow David Brandt on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/davidbrandtAP

AP NEWS
The Associated Press News Service

Copyright 2014
The Associated Press
All Rights Reserved

  
HEADLINES
Edwards: Pressing Mississippi State
Lawrence: 2014 MWC Preview
Edwards: Top 20 QB Changes
News: LVH posts Conference Odds
Nine 'Noles on preseason all-ACC team
Oregon Pac-12 fave after Mariota's return
OK State preparing early for Winston
Utah State's Keeton getting Heisman hype
C-USA commish sees bright future
MORE HEADLINES
 
Why Buy Picks From VegasInsider.com
NCAAFB College Football Handicapper Sports Picks Records
VegasInsider.com Gold Membership
2013 CFB SEASON PICK RECORDS
Money Leaders
Handicapper Money
Joe Williams + 1921
Joe Nelson + 1446
Bruce Marshall + 1350
Last Week's Leaders
Handicapper Money
No Games Last Week  
   
   
Percentage Leaders
Handicapper Pct
Joe Nelson 60 %
Doc's Sports 57 %
Joe Williams 57 %
Guaranteed Leaders
Handicapper Money
Joe Williams + 1312
Brian Edwards + 580
James Manos + 443
Over-Under Leaders
Handicapper Money
Joe Williams + 1283
Jimmy Boyd + 966
James Manos + 756
Member Leaders
Handicapper Money
Mike Rose + 1100
Doc's Sports + 1090
Joe Nelson + 940
MORE PICK RECORDS
  
corner graphic
With a VI Gold Membership, you can SAVE 10% off a Live Odds subscription, SAVE 20% off Daily Pick packages, and receive access to up to 1,000 Member Plays each month!