Maroon football falls in offensive shootout at Centre 49-27

Burke Moser and Chandler Carroll
Burke Moser and Chandler Carroll

DANVILLE, Ky. – The University of Chicago football team fell behind by three touchdowns in the first quarter and couldn't make up the deficit in a 49-27 loss at Centre College on Saturday.

The afternoon contest turned into an offensive showcase as the Maroons (1-2 record) and the Colonels (4-0) combined for 1,119 yards of total offense – an average of 6.6 yards per play. The two starting quarterbacks accounted for 776 yards through the air.

UChicago quarterback Burke Moser put together one of his most prolific performances with both his arm and his legs. The senior threw for 355 yards – the second-best total of his career – with three passing touchdowns and one interception. He also ran for 67 yards and a touchdown. Moser's main target was junior running back Chandler Carroll, who established a new career best with 145 receiving yards on six catches along with two receiving touchdowns.

Centre made a statement on its opening play by completing a 47-yard pass into Maroon territory. The Colonels marched down the field for the rest of the quarter, scoring on all three of their drives spanning between 65 and 86 yards. UChicago found itself in a 21-0 hole to start the second quarter.

The visitors cut into the deficit early in the second quarter when Moser broke away for a 54-yard touchdown run. However, Centre responded with a nine-yard touchdown run of its own on the next possession to make the score 28-7.

A 13-yard touchdown pass with just over two minutes remaining before halftime pushed the Colonels to a 35-7 advantage. The Maroons got those seven points back with a quick strike drive of four plays and 80 yards in under a minute. Carroll hauled in a 27-yard catch to start and then finished it with a 37-yard touchdown reception. The score stood at 35-13 heading into halftime.

The teams exchanged touchdowns to start the third quarter. UChicago came out first with a 69-yard scoring hookup from Moser to Carroll. A big kickoff return of 66 yards put Centre in position to return the favor with a one-yard rushing touchdown.

The Maroons got the ball back and went 80 yards over 14 plays to the end zone. Carroll broke off a 19-yard run to get the offense into the red zone. Moser capped things off on fourth down with an 18-yard touchdown pass to freshman wide receiver Troy Reed, drawing UChicago to within 42-27.

The Colonels delivered the dagger with 4:31 left in the third quarter when the home team returned an interception 45 yards for the score. Those would be the final points of the game at 49-27.

UChicago's 506 yards of offense included 355 passing and 151 rushing. Centre passed for 421 and ran for 192 to total 613 yards. Carroll rushed the ball 21 times for 84 yards on the day. Senior wide receiver Syd Reynolds finished with 65 yards on two catches, and freshman wide receiver Dante Nepa grabbed five catches for 42 yards.

Junior cornerback Andrew Beytagh led the defense with 11 tackles and one interception. Senior linebacker Jackson Garrey finished with eight tackles and one fumble recovery. The Maroons posted three tackles for loss, with sophomore defensive end Stash Rowley collecting one sack.

NEXT GAME:

  • Saturday, Oct. 1 – Birmingham-Southern College at UChicago, Noon