Southern Miss 42, Louisville 24
HATTIESBURG, Miss. (AP) _ Sherrod Gideon had his third straight 100-yard receiving game, including a 67-yard touchdown, as Southern Mississippi continued its dominance over Louisville, 42-24 Saturday night.
Lee Roberts threw two touchdowns passes in the second quarter, hitting Gideon in stride for the first one, and Southern Miss (3-2) also converted three turnovers into scores in the Conference USA opener for both teams.
Harold Shaw rushed for 103 yards and two touchdowns, including a 3-yard score in the first quarter that put Southern Miss in the lead for good.
Louisville (1-5), which has gone from being one of the nation’s best defenses to one of the worst, has lost 12 of its last 14 games to Southern Miss and is off to its worst start since 1985.
Shaw’s first touchdown came four plays after Southern Miss linebacker Adalius Thomas forced a fumble by Louisville quarterback Chris Redman. Robert Brown made the recovery at the Louisville 9.
Shaw plunged over from the 1 in the fourth quarter three plays after Larry Watts intercepted Redman’s pass at the 38.
Gideon caught five passes for 122 yards, giving the sophomore 22 catches for 433 yards the past three games. In 10 career starts, Gideon has had four 100-yard receiving games. No other receiver in school history has more than two.
Louisville converted Don Bibb’s interception in the second quarter into Jon Hilbert’s 32-yard field goal. Southern Miss then scored three straight touchdowns to take a 28-3 halftime lead.
The Golden Eagles led 21-3 after Maurice Gowdy recovered a botched Louisville punt in the end zone. Punter Jeremy Borseth never recovered after a bad snap, and fumbled along the goal line while trying to move into position for a kick.
Roberts added a 21-yard TD pass to Eric Booth before halftime.
The Cardinals drove 94 yards on 14 plays in the third quarter, Redman throwing a 17-yard TD pass to Arnold Jackson to make it 28-10. Southern Miss responded with a 58-yard scoring drive, Tyrone Bolware powering in for a 2-yard TD run.
Louisville scored twice in the final minute of the game. Jackson caught a 17-yard TD from backup quarterback Mike Watkins, and John Fuqua returned a fumble 26 yards on Southern Miss’ first play after the ensuing kickoff.