8:00 PM ET, November 13, 2013
Huskie Stadium, Dekalb, IL
Jordan Lynch, Northern Illinois push past Ball State, stay undefeated
DEKALB, Ill. -- Northern Illinois coach Rod Carey thinks Huskies quarterback Jordan Lynch deserves to be mentioned in Heisman Trophy talk.
"If Jordan isn't in the conversation for the Heisman, I don't know what people are watching; they were asleep," Carey said. "In my estimation that trophy goes to the best player in the nation, and with the performance he had tonight, he dang sure should be in that conversation."
Playing in front of a national television audience, Lynch threw two touchdown passes and ran for two scores to help No. 15 Northern Illinois beat Ball State 48-27 on Wednesday night.
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Northern Illinois coach Rod Carey is clear: QB Jordan Lynch should be in the Heisman conversation, writes Matt Fortuna. Story
"I feel like I'm improving every week," Lynch said. "I still think the best is yet to come."
Lynch threw a 36-yard touchdown pass to Da'Ron Brown to break a tie with 5:49 left, and the Huskies (10-0, 6-0 Mid-American) ran the nation's longest active home winning streak to 25 and their conference run to 23. The 10-0 mark is their best since the 1963 team finished 10-0.
Lynch added a 16-yard touchdown run with 1:26 to go, and defensive end Joe Windsor scored on a 49-yard interception return with 46 seconds left.
Lynch was 26-of-32 for 345 yards and ran for 123 yards on 20 carries. Brown had 12 receptions for 209 yards, also catching a 58-yard touchdown pass in the first quarter.
"He's a very good player," Ball State coach Pete Lembo said. "He's fast, he's built like a linebacker, but he's got tailback speed. He's got a lot of savvy."
The victory preserved Northern Illinois' hopes for a second straight Bowl Championship Series appearance. The Huskies played in the Orange Bowl last season and are 15th in the BCS standings. They need to stay undefeated and pass Fresno State in the BCS to have a shot.
The loss ended the Cardinals' seven-game winning streak and 11-game MAC run.
The teams combined for three scores in the final 1:28 of the first half.
Edwards' 2-yard touchdown run -- his school-record 38th -- gave Ball State a 21-13 lead, but Lynch and Brown combined on a 58-yard touchdown strike with 1:13 left to make it 21-20.
Scott Secor lined a successful 43-yard field goal into the wind with 30 seconds to go, and Mathew Sims missed a 52-yard try with a second left, leaving the Cardinals up 24-20.
Ball State had the ball to start the second half but stalled at midfield and was forced to punt for only the second time.
Northern Illinois' subsequent drive included a key third-down, 10-yard pickup by Lynch as he escaped two defenders, a fourth-down keeper for a first down at the Cardinals' 47 and a fourth-and-goal touchdown run from the 1 by tailback Cameron Stingily for a 27-24 lead.
Northern Illinois stopped Ball State at the 1, forcing the Cardinals to settle for a 19-yard field goal that tied it at 27 with 3:07 to go in the third.
Ball State was held to three second-half points.
"We just couldn't keep the drives going," Lembo said. "We'd move the ball, have long drives and get on their side of the field, and then the drives would just kind of stall. I think that was the (difference) from the first half to the second half."
Lynch combined with Brown on a 54-yard pass to the Cardinals' 10 early in the fourth quarter, but Brown fumbled and Ball State safety Brian Jones recovered at the 13.
Lynch and Brown teamed again for the go-ahead score with 5:49 left.
The Huskies resume play next Wednesday night at Toledo.
Top 25 Overview
It was over when... NIU QB Jordan Lynch rumbled 16 yards for a touchdown late in Wednesday's fourth quarter.
Gameball goes to... Lynch. The star QB passed for 345 yards and two scores and ran for 123 yards and two TDs.
Stat of the game... 10. Lynch has 10 career games with at least 200 passing yards and 100 rushing yards.
Team Stat Comparison
|3rd Down Conversions||7-14||6-12|
|4th Down Conversions||0-1||2-2|
|FG||08:05||Mathew Sims 34 Yd||0||3|
|TD||03:01||Willie Snead 3 Yd Pass From Keith Wenning (Scott Secor Kick)||7||3|
|TD||13:53||Jordan Lynch 2 Yd Run (Mathew Sims Kick)||7||10|
|TD||10:08||Keith Wenning 1 Yd Run (Scott Secor Kick)||14||10|
|FG||05:00||Mathew Sims 20 Yd||14||13|
|TD||01:28||Jahwan Edwards 5 Yd Run (Scott Secor Kick)||21||13|
|TD||01:13||Da'Ron Brown 58 Yd Pass From Jordan Lynch (Mathew Sims Kick)||21||20|
|FG||00:25||Scott Secor 43 Yd||24||20|
|TD||08:31||Cameron Stingily 1 Yd Run (Mathew Sims Kick)||24||27|
|FG||03:07||Scott Secor 19 Yd||27||27|
|TD||05:49||Da'Ron Brown 36 Yd Pass From Jordan Lynch (Mathew Sims Kick)||27||34|
|TD||01:26||Jordan Lynch 16 Yd Run (Mathew Sims Kick)||27||41|
|TD||00:46||Joe Windsor 49 Yd Interception Return (Mathew Sims Kick)||27||48|
Jordan Lynch had 345 passing yards and 123 rushing yards against Ball State Wednesday. In 24 career starts, Jordan Lynch has had 10 games with at least 200 passing yards and 100 rushing yards, the most such games by an FBS player since the start of the 2004 season.[+]
With his score in the 2nd quarter against Ball State... Jordan Lynch has rushed for a TD in 17 games since the start of last season, most among FBS quarterbacks and 4th most among all FBS players over that span.
No doubt, Jordan Lynch is the "linchpin" to Northern Illinois' success... This season, the dual-threat QB has thrown for almost 19-hundred yards & 19 TDs, and rushed for more than 11-hundred yards with a dozen scores on the ground... Oh yeah -- he's caught a TD pass, too... All told, Lynch is 3rd in FBS points responsible for with 192, and 9th in total yards per game with 336.[+]
Jordan the Lynch-Pin - This Season
No. 15 Northern Illinois trails Ball State 7-3 at the end of the 1st quarter... It's the fewest points scored by NIU in the opening quarter since last season's Orange Bowl loss to Florida State.
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