Manziel shines as Texas A&M outguns Louisiana Tech
Shreveport, LA (Sports Network) - Johnny Manziel set an SEC record with 576 yards of total offense and accounted for six touchdowns as No. 22 Texas A&M outlasted No. 23 Louisiana Tech, 59-57, in a non-conference shootout on Saturday.
Manziel threw for 395 yards, three touchdowns and one interception on 24-of-40 passing and added 181 yards and three scores on 19 carries for the Aggies (5-1), who have won five straight games.
"He is a very special player," Louisiana Tech coach Sonny Dykes said of Manziel. "We knew coming in he was going to be hard to stop. We just couldn't stop him in critical situations. That's what good players do, they make plays."
Colby Cameron finished with 449 yards and five touchdowns on 44-of-58 efficiency and Quinton Patton hauled in an astounding 21 passes for 233 yards and four scores in a losing effort as Louisiana Tech (5-1) suffered its first setback of the season.
The Aggies jumped out to an early 27-0 lead and held a 23-point edge at the break, but the Bulldogs battled back on their second drive of the third quarter as Cameron went 9-for-9 on a 12-play, 74-yard trek, which culminated in a 2-yard scoring strike to Patton.
Manziel answered with a 2-yard rushing score, but Cameron's 5-yard touchdown pass to Patton made it a 46-30 contest late in the third.
Louisiana Tech inched closer on its first drive of the fourth, as Kenneth Dixon broke free for a 21-yard score before Cameron 2-yard scramble on the two-point conversion cut the margin to 46-38.
After back-to-back penalties pushed the Aggies back to their own 10, Manziel felt the pressure in his own end zone and his ill-advised pass was intercepted by Shakeil Lucas, who took it seven yards into the end zone.
The game-tying, two-point conversion failed and Manziel quickly made it a two- score game as he found Thomas Johnson three different times, with the third resulting in a 17-yard touchdown to extend the margin to 53-44.
Texas A&M forced the Bulldogs to punt on their next drive and Manziel used his legs to break the game open as he scampered 72 yards for the score.
The extra point was blocked and Cameron responded on the first play of the ensuing drive as he found Patton, who broke a tackle and raced 62 yards to the end zone to make it a one-score game with just over two minutes left.
The Bulldogs executed the onside kick to perfection as they pounced on the loose ball at their own 46-yard line.
Cameron then connected on his next four passes, including a 13-yard touchdown pass to Ray Holley with 38 seconds left, but Cameron's two-point conversion attempt was off the mark.
Louisiana Tech tried another onside kick, but the Aggies secured the ball to escape with the victory.
"That's a good football team," Texas A&M coach Kevin Sumlin said of the Bulldogs. "We needed to get out of here and get back home. We were lucky to get out of here. It was a great game."
Texas A&M built its lead with scores on each of its first seven possessions.
Christine Michael broke free for a 40-yard rushing score on the fifth play from scrimmage and after a Louisiana Tech three-and-out, Manziel tossed a 20- yard scoring strike to LeKendrick Williams.
The Aggies' next touch resulted in a Manziel 15-yard touchdown run and Taylor Bertolet followed with a 26-yard field goal early in the second.
Bertolet added a 54-yarder later in the second and after Cameron's 11-yard TD pass to Patton got the Bulldogs on the board, Manziel's next throw landed in the arms of Mike Evans, who took it 75 yards for a touchdown.
Louisiana Tech answered with a 6-yard scoring run from Dixon, but the extra point was blocked and Dustin Harris took it the other way for a defensive two- point conversion.
Bertolet added a 28-yard field goal late in the half, but Matt Nelson countered with a 43-yarder of his own to send the Bulldogs into the locker room trailing 39-16.
The game was originally scheduled to be the season opener for both teams on Aug. 30, but was delayed due to the effects of Hurricane Isaac ... Louisiana Tech had won its last 12 regular-season games ... Dixon finished with 111 yards on 18 carries for Louisiana Tech ... Evans tallied 137 yards on four catches for the Aggies.
10/14 03:27:25 ET