SAN MARCOS, Texas — Trying to beat Louisiana Tech in a high-scoring game is one tough task.
Kenneth Dixon scored five touchdowns to set three single-season NCAA freshman record and No. 19 Louisiana Tech scored on all but two possessions to beat Texas State 62-55 on Saturday night.
“We’ve had a lot of this,” Louisiana Tech coach Sonny Dykes said. “It was just hard to get off the field on defense. When they’re scoring like they were, it’s hard to have a whole lot of confidence. Obviously we’ve got to play better and get better.”
The Bulldogs (9-1, 4-0) have won 10 straight in the Western Athletic Conference. They racked up 627 yards, while allowing 577, and kept slim hopes for a BCS bid alive.
“(A shootout) wasn’t the plan necessarily,” Bobcats coach Dennis Franchione said. “When you go from last week making 158 yards, as a coach you’re struggling a little bit to find out what we can put our hand on and say whether or not we’re going to be able to do this or that. Nothing really changed, our guys just started scoring.”
Texas State (3-6, 1-3) had a season high in points and total yardage (577), but it wasn’t enough against one of the NCAA’s most prolific offenses.
Louisiana Tech has scored at least 52 points in all but two games this season and its only loss was a 59-57 shootout to Texas A&M, which upset No. 1 Alabama earlier in the day.
The teams combined for 1,204 yards Saturday and the average scoring drive was only 2 minutes, 26 seconds.
The Bobcats (3-6, 1-3) scored a season high in points, but it wasn’t enough to overcome the record-setting efforts of Dixon and Colby Cameron.
Dixon set NCAA single-season records for touchdowns, rushing touchdowns (24) and total points (150) by a freshman. San Diego State’s Marshall Faulk set the record for TDs in 1991 with 23, and rushing TDs with 21, a mark that was matched by Virginia Tech’s Ryan Williams in 2009. Faulk had 140 points in 1991.
Cameron completed 31 for 45 passes and improved his current streak of passes without an interception to 419. He broke the NCAA of 379 set by North Carolina State’s Russell Wilson in 2008.
“He’s done a great job of taking care of the ball,” Dykes said. “When you do that, there’s so many people involved – the protection up front, it’s receivers catching the ball, it’s running backs catching the ball and a lot of it is Colby being accurate.”
A second effort gave Dixon the record after his initial leap was stopped on fourth-and-goal at the 1 with three minutes left in the first half. He lunged forward into the end zone after landing on a pile of linemen, giving the Bulldogs a 28-21 lead.
He also scored on runs of 4, 13 and 16 yards and had a 14-yard TD reception from Cameron.
Louisiana Tech needed just 25 seconds to take a 41-34 lead at the half. It was the 20th touchdown the Bulldogs have scored in one minute or less this season.
Texas State took an early 14-7 lead when Louisiana Tech struggled defending the option attack. The Bobcats rushed for 126 yards and two touchdowns on 12 carries in the opening quarter.
Terrence Franks opened the scoring with an 11-yard run for Texas State, and Marcus Curry scored six minutes later on a 55-yard run to make it 14-7.
Louisiana Tech kept pace behind Cameron, who threw two of his three touchdowns in the first quarter.
Curry rushed for 131 yards and two touchdowns and Franks had 34 yards and two touchdowns.
Shaun Rutherford finished 21 for 37 for 234 yards and two touchdowns.
Louisiana Tech kept pace behind Cameron, who threw two of his three touchdowns in the first quarter. In addition to his touchdown pass to Dixon, Cameron also had a 4-yarder to R.P. Stuart and a 49-yarder to D.J. Banks.