WEST POINT, N.Y. (AP) -- Austin Miller tried playing safety and
it didn't work out. He can still kick, though.
Miller made a 36-yard field goal in overtime to give Army a
17-14 victory over Kent State on Saturday.
He attempted to make the switch from kicker to safety in the
spring after coming back from a foot injury that wiped out his 2005
season. But when he realized he was too low on the depth chart to
make an impact, he approached coach Bobby Ross about kicking again.
"I said I think that'd be a very good idea," Ross said. "I'm
thankful that I didn't make that decision, he did. I'm very happy
that he did make that decision."
Miller had to compete in the preseason with Justin Koenig,
Army's incumbent place-kicker. But a pulled muscle put Koenig on
the sideline during summer camp and Miller moved into the starting
Army (1-1) gained possession after Kent State quarterback Julian
Edelman fumbled at the 22 on the Golden Flashes' second play of
overtime. Army took over at the 25 and ran three plays to set up
Miller's field goal from the right hash mark.
"To me, it really was just another kick. I've already kicked
that kick a million times in my head," Miller said. "Before the
game and during the game, I expect to have to kick a game winner.
That's just kind of the mentality you have to have as a kicker."
Kent State (0-2) lost its 11th consecutive game. Trailing 14-7,
the Golden Flashes tied it with 3:55 remaining in regulation when
Edelman lofted a 15-yard pass into the left corner of the end zone
to Najah Pruden.
Army erased a 7-0 deficit in the first half on two touchdown
runs by Tony Moore, a bruising 5-foot-11, 223-pound freshman.
Moore's second TD was a 6-yard run on fourth-and-2 that went off
left tackle with seven minutes remaining in the second quarter.
Wesley McMahand rushed 19 times for 90 yards to lead Army.
Center Pete Bier and left guard Dan Evans, both seniors, were in
the starting lineup for the Black Knights. The pair sat out last
week's season opener, a loss to Arkansas State, after rival Navy
questioned whether they lost a year of eligibility practicing with
an Army prep school team as freshmen. The NCAA reviewed the
situation and gave the OK for them to play on Thursday.
Army's David Pevoto began the game, going 11-for-12 with 89
yards, then went 3-for-16 for 15 yards and two interceptions.
Edelman led the Golden Flashes with 16 carries and 82 yards.
Kent State scored on a trick play on its first possession. The
Golden Flashes lined up for a 34-yard field goal attempt 8:17 into
the game, but holder Darren Rogers grabbed the long snap and ran
left, untouched into the end zone for a 17-yard score.
The Golden Flashes twice threatened inside the Army 20 in the
second half but could not score.
Cedrick Maxwell returned Pevoto's second consecutive
interception to the Army 11-yard line 4:22 into the third quarter.
But the Black Knight's defense held Kent State on a fourth-and-1 at
the Army 2.
Later, Edelman and running back Tony Howard moved the Golden
Flashes 80 yards in less than four minutes to start the fourth
quarter, but Reid Macko's 23-yard field goal attempt went wide
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Despite a 1-4 start to the season and a 7-11 record since taking over at Texas, coach Charlie Strong has ongoing support from school officials and key boosters, according to several sources.
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As much confidence as LSU coach Les Miles expresses in the abilities of his receivers, he has apparently decided to see if the threat of lost playing time sharpens their focus.
Michael Brewer, originally expected to miss eight to 10 weeks, broke his left collarbone in the Hokies' season-opening loss to No. 1 Ohio State.