Kansas Falls Short Against Northwestern, 20-17
Sept. 18, 2004
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EVANSTON, Ill. – Northwestern scored a late touchdown to hand Kansas its first loss of the season 20-17 in Evanston, Ill., on Saturday afternoon. The Jayhawks, who dropped to 2-1 on the season, will begin Big 12 play next weekend as they host Texas Tech at Memorial Stadium.
Early in the game, the defenses controlled the contest, as neither team was able to put any points on the scoreboard. The Wildcats (1-2) drew first blood in the contest when kicker Brian Huffman connected on a 23-yard field goal to put Northwestern on top 3-0.
The Jayhawks answered back before halftime, as Kansas moved the ball 66 yards in eight plays to put freshman Scott Webb in position for the game-tying 27-yard field goal, which sent the teams to the lockerroom at the half with the score knotted at 3-3.
“I thought our defense played very well,” said head coach Mark Mangino. “This was another very good outing by them and I am sure that they would love to have their (Northwestern’s) last drive back. We are going to have to be a more mature football team. We have to be able to deal with both success and failure. Today was a valuable experience for us and we will bounce back and be fine.”
On its second possession of the second half, Northwestern was sparked by a 38-yard run by Terrell Jordan on the first play of the drive and marched the ball 71 yards in 10 plays to score the game’s first touchdown. The drive was capped off by a 2-yard plunge by quarterback Brett Basanez into the end zone, to give the Wildcats the lead 10-3 with 4:58 remaining in the third quarter.
The Wildcats padded their lead on their next possession just over three minutes later, as Brian Huffman kicked a 21-yard field goal to push the Northwestern lead to 13-3.
Kansas was able to get its offense back on track following the field goal and held the ball for 4:51 on a 12 play, 75-yard scoring drive. The Jayhawks were able to get in the end zone on a seven-yard touchdown pass from sophomore quarterback Adam Barmann to senior receiver Brandon Rideau.
Barmann and Rideau connected again on the next KU possession on a 20-yard touchdown pass to get the Jayhawks their first lead of the game at 17-13. Barmann finished the game 30-of-48 passing for 294 yards and two touchdowns, while Rideau hauled in seven receptions for 84 yards and two scores.
Barmann, who completed more than 20 passes for the second-straight game, recorded career-highs with 30 pass completions and 48 passing attempts.
Northwestern took possession of the ball with only 6:45 remaining in the game and trailing by four. On the first play of the drive Basanez hit Mark Philmore on a 52-yard completion that gave the Wildcats a first down at the Kansas 29-yard line. Two plays later, Basanez connect with Brandon Horn on a 12-yard touchdown pass to regain the lead at 20-17.
Kansas had one final possession in the game and moved into possession for a potential game-tying field goal but senior Johnny Beck’s 43-yard field goal attempt sailed wide right.
“It was a hard-fought game by both teams,” Mangino said. “This was a good old fashion knock down drag out football game. We will look back and see some things we need to improve on. This is a good game for us to learn from and we will learn a lot from this game when we watch the tape. Our team will become better because of this game.”
Kansas and Texas Tech open Big 12 play next weekend at Memorial Stadium at 2:30 p.m. The game will be televised on Fox Sports Net.