Herald-Advertiser, Oct. 23, 1971
KALAMAZOO, Mich. -- Slumbering Western Michigan woke up in the second half and stormed to a 37-0 football victory over Marshall University's Young Thundering Herd Saturday afternoon at Waldo Stadium.
The Western Michigan Homecoming crowd of 21,200, largest home crowd of the season at Western and fifth largest in school history, was unduly alarmed when the Broncos could manage but a 6-0 halftime lead.
Western scored the two times it had the ball in the third period and then broke it wide open with three touchdowns in the first three and one-half minutes of the fourth quarter.
When Ed Ferguson kicked a 39-yard field goal with 8:08 left in the third period, it was still very much a football game as the Broncos held only a 9-0 lead against the slinging Herd.
However, the next time the Broncos got the ball they drove 67 yards for a score with Ted Grignon hitting Dave Hallabrin for 34 yards and a score. It was the first touchdown pass of the season for the Bronco offense.
After Hallabrin's score, Western coach Bill Doolittle sent in his second unit and the quarter ended with WMU on the Marshall 19 from where it scored in two plays. Back up quarterback Bill Screws went the final seven yards for the TD.
Western scored its next two touchdowns following fumbles by Marshall.
Bob Crawford fumbled the kickoff after Screws' score with Western getting it on the 25. The Broncos scored in four plays with Barry Worman going 12 yards.
On the first play after the next kickoff, the Herd fumbled with Western again coming up with the ball. This time on the 33.
Screws passed 11 yards to Danny Susto for the score on a wild scramble play in which he was apparently trapped in the vicinity of the 20.
Western rolled up 542 yards total offense, 349 on the ground, while Marshall had 179. The Young Herd had 186 yards passing, but was held to minus seven yards on the ground.
Jim Gordon finished with eight catches for 52 yards for the Herd and Randy Kerr had six for 49 yards. Gordon's total is the second best single game total for a Marshall player.
Oliver finished with 18 completions in 35 attempts for 165 yards while Roger Lawson had 105 yards in 20 carries for the Broncos and Grignon had 48 yards in seven carries.
The Broncos had to move which set up the Western score, Marshall had gained possession when Pete Diabo blocked Ferguson's 27-yard field goal attempt with Chuck Henry falling on the ball at the 33. Oliver hit tight end Randy Kerr for five yards before Brown's interception.
Diabo was also responsible for stopping Western on its first series of downs. The Broncos had taken the opening kickoff on their 18 and marched to the Herd 40 when Cates fumbled with Diabo falling on the ball.
Four plays later, however, Marshall turned the ball back over when a pitchout went awry with Brown falling on the ball at the 16.
This was one of three first half turnovers for Marshall. In addition to Brown's interception, linebacker Greg Igaz picked off a stray aerial in the first period on the Marshall 49 and returned it to the 15. On fourth down, Diabo blocked the attempted field goal to snuff out that threat.
Marshall moved the ball with consistency in the first half, racking up nine first downs as Oliver passed for 148 yards, hitting 15 of 25 passes with Kerr catching five for 46 yards and Gordon six for 40.
Gordon is a freshman wide receiver from Toledo, Ohio, who was dressing for his first varsity game. He had appeared in both of Marshall's junior varsity games this season.
The Herd's deepest penetration in the first half came in the second period when it drove from its own 20 to the Bronco 22 only to be stopped on downs.
The drive started with an incomplete pass. Oliver then picked up four and hit Roy Tabb for 21 yards and a first down at the 45.
Two completions to Gordon put the ball on the 44, but Oliver lost 11 when Tom Elias blitzed from his linebacker position. However, Olivere came right back to hit Terry Gardner in the left flat and the Portsmouth, Ohio, freshman rambled 26 yards to the Western 29.
The drive bogged down as two passes fell incomplete and Oliver lost four yards on another play before hitting Kerr for 11 yards.