SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Jason Smith threw for 210 yards and scored the go-ahead touchdown in the third quarter Saturday as Sacramento State defeated Northern Arizona 27-24.
Smith found Brandyn Reed for a 42-yard scoring strike in the first quarter and Sam McCowan ran for a 6-yard touchdown as the Hornets (3-5, 3-3 Big Sky) built a 17-7 lead. But the Lumberjacks (5-3, 4-2) came back to lead 24-17 at the half on Alex Henderson's 2-yard TD run, a 52-yard pass from Michael Herrick to Austin Shanks and Matt Myers' 31-yard field goal.
But Sacramento State shut out Northern Arizona after halftime, and Smith's 1-yard run ended the scoring.
McCowan finished with 130 yards on 27 carries for the Hornets.
Herrick threw for 376 yards and two TDs and Henderson ran for 98 yards for the Lumberjacks, who missed a chance to tie when Myers missed a 55-yard field-goal attempt as time ran out.
Michigan State's roster is largely built of interchangeable parts, but they don't make many parts that fit the mold of Malik McDowell.
In 100 days, the ACC will face an unusually important opening weekend, with its two top national contenders facing huge nonconference tests.
Nick Chubb continued to rehab is knee but is apparently ahead of schedule. Still, the staff is going to be very cautious with his return this fall.
Michigan has a number of contenders for "most indispensable" status, but one stands out for being more difficult to replace than any of the others.
Are Oklahoma's Josh Heupel and TCU's Trevone Boykin among the top five quarterbacks in Big 12 history? A case can be made for both players.
NC State has been transfer-quarterback heavy since Dave Doeren took over, with Boise State's Ryan Finley the latest transfer to come aboard.