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ALLAN MALAMUD

Notes on a Scorecard

October 10, 1994

I didn't think I would be writing about a hat trick Sunday, but that sure was a dandy by Terry McDaniel. . . .

The Raider cornerback's three interceptions against the New England Patriots were one shy of the NFL single-game record set by Sammy Baugh, the quarterback, in 1943 and last equaled by Deron Cherry in 1985. . . .

In his seventh season, McDaniel is on his way to a third consecutive appearance in the Pro Bowl and must be considered his team's best defensive player. . . .

The Raiders didn't exactly put it all together on a day when they padded their league lead in penalties and Jeff Hostetler made about as many poor decisions as all last season. . . .

However, this was a victory they needed to improve their playoff chances and they were able to pressure New England's talented young quarterback, Drew Bledsoe, into a sub-par performance. . . .

They might have been in a prevent defense during the Patriots' last possession, but they were smart enough to keep a good rush on Bledsoe. . . .

Early in the game, NBC analyst Paul Maguire wondered aloud when the last time the Raiders were 1-4. Not since all the way back in 1992. . . .

As usual, the Rams were punchless in the second half during their come-from-ahead defeat to Green Bay. . . .

In the second halves of six games, they have scored 28 points. . . .

The Jackie Slater-Reggie White matchup was fascinating, the 19-year veteran offensive tackle having the edge early and the perennial All-Pro defensive lineman finishing strong. . . .

Any more questions about the Chargers' legitimacy?. . . . Don't count the Buffalo Bills out of anything, including a fifth consecutive Super Bowl. . . .

*

The difference this week was that USC didn't panic against an Oregon team. . . .

Unlike the previous Saturday when the Trojans went to the air after falling behind Oregon, they ran twice as often as they passed after trailing Oregon State, 13-2, midway through the first quarter. . . .

The two points came courtesy of the craziest rule in the NCAA book. . . .

Micah Phillips returned a blocked conversion kick attempt 70 yards. . . .

It was an exciting play, but the fact that a team can score during a rival's point-after-touchdown attempt makes absolutely no sense. . . .

The coaches must have been out to lunch when the rule was passed in 1988. . . .

Brad Otton was outstanding in place of Rob Johnson during USC's 27-19 victory, but there shouldn't be any talk of a quarterback controversy now. . . .

Johnson, who was off to a slow start this year before suffering an ankle injury against Oregon, has done too many good things during his career not to get his starting job back Saturday against Stanford at Palo Alto. . . .

*

UCLA has had a lot of adversity this year--and isn't reacting to it very well. . . .

The Bruins seemed dispirited at Berkeley, where things went from bad to worse. . . .

In contrast, Cal lost starting quarterback Dave Barr in the second quarter, but substitute Kerry McGonigal, a walk-on, promptly led the Bears on a 60-yard touchdown drive. . . . It was only a matter of time until Arizona's lack of firepower caught up with it. . . .

The architect of Colorado State's 21-16 upset victory in Tucson, Sonny Lubick, has become a coach-of-the-year candidate. . . .

Lubick, in his second season with the Rams, was defensive coordinator for Miami's national championship teams in 1989 and 1991. . . .

The most improbable battle of unbeatens this year could come Oct. 22 when Colorado State plays Utah at Ft. Collins, Colo. . . .

You've got to like Washington State's chances against Arizona in what might be the Rose Bowl decider Saturday at Pullman. . . .

Better put a hold on Ron Powlus' Heisman Trophy. . . .

When Boston College is too physical for Notre Dame, maybe there's hope for USC. . . .

Saturday night owls who watch Hawaii games on Prime Ticket find it hard to believe that the Rainbows beat Cal at Berkeley. . . .

Kansas State quarterback Chad May, a transfer from Cal State Fullerton, looked terrific against Kansas last Thursday and will test Nebraska's vulnerable defense Saturday in Manhattan. . . .

Michigan running back Tshimanga Biakabutuka was born in Zaire in 1974, the same year that the Rumble in the Jungle between Muhammad Ali and George Foreman was held there. . . .

Florida State misses Charlie Ward.

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