Birthday Victory For Tuberville, 42-14
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September 19, 2002
QB Daniel Cobb
STARKVILLE, Miss. (AP) -- Daniel Cobb threw three touchdown passes in the second quarter and Carnell Williams rushed for two TDs in the fourth as Auburn beat Mississippi State 42-14 Thursday night.
Cobb was 1-of-9 in the first quarter for the Tigers (3-1, 2-0 Southeastern Conference), who have won three straight.
The senior, who has had an up-and-down career, also caught an early break when an interception returned for a touchdown by Mississippi State was nullified when the play was blown dead because of an Auburn penalty.
But Cobb settled down and finished 10-of-21 for a season-high 183 yards with no interceptions.
Kevin Fant passed well when he had time to throw for Mississippi State (1-2, 0-1). He was 19-of-31 for 215 yards with an interception and two fumbles while facing steady pressure from the Tigers.
The Bulldogs turned the ball over six times.
Fant's second fumble was caused and recovered by Reggie Torbor and gave Auburn the ball at the Bulldogs' 17 with 10:30 left in the fourth quarter. About a minute later Williams went off tackle to the left for a 5-yard touchdown that made it 35-14.
Williams, who came in averaging 7.4 yards per carry, never broke a big run, but showed off his toughness with 106 yards on 28 carries.
Cobb also showed some grit in the third quarter.
He was scrambling away from a rush when he was cut down by Jason Clark and finished off by 299-pound Ronald Fields, who landed on top of him. Cobb left the game for one play with a bruised left shoulder but returned for the Tigers' next series.
Dontae Walker had two 1-yard touchdown runs to cap long drives by Mississippi State. The first started the scoring late in the first quarter. The other completed a 16-play, 65-yard march on the first possession of the second half to cut Auburn's lead to 21-14.
The Tigers tied it at 7 in the second quarter when 6-5 Anthony Mix reached over 5-10 Richard Ball to grab Cobb's pass in the end zone for a 16-yard score
Ball was also involved in the Tigers' second score as the Bulldogs collapsed in the final five minutes of the half.
Damon Duval's punt took a backward bounce deep in Mississippi State territory and glanced off Ball's heel as he was facing the other direction. Auburn picked up the muff at the 13.
Three plays and an Auburn penalty later, Cobb hit Marcel Willis on a slant and the receiver carried a tackler into the end zone for a 17-yard score. That gave the Tigers a 14-7 lead with 4:07 left in the second quarter.
Cobb's third TD pass came right before halftime.
The Tigers took over at the Bulldogs' 47 with 28 seconds left. On their second play, Cobb found Ben Obomanu streaking down the right sideline against single coverage for a 45-yard touchdown and 21-7 lead.