Another game produced more ridiculous numbers from Northern Illinois senior quarterback Jordan Lynch.
With NIU needing a win to remain in the chase for a second consecutive BCS bid and needing a big game to maintain his Heisman hopes, Lynch delivered Tuesday night, rushing for 321 yards and three touchdowns and throwing a TD pass as the Huskies beat Western Michigan 33-14. It was NIU's sixth consecutive win by at least 18 points and its ninth this season by double digits.
The rushing yardage was a NCAA single-game record by a FBS quarterback; Lynch had set the old record of 316 against Central Michigan on Oct. 19. Too bad there are no more Michigan schools on NIU's schedule: In a win over Eastern Michigan on Oct. 26, Lynch threw four TD passes, ran for a score and also caught a TD pass.
Lynch -- the only player in the FBS ranks with two 300-yard rushing games this season -- became the fifth quarterback in FBS history with 5,000 career passing yards and 4,000 career rushing yards. The others: Nevada's Colin Kaepernick, Michigan's Denard Robinson, Missouri's Brad Smith and West Virginia's Pat White. Lynch has started for only two seasons; the others were four-year starters.
Robinson holds the NCAA record for rushing yards by a quarterback with 4,495. Lynch, who has two games left in his career, is at 4,278.
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It was Lynch's seventh 100-yard game of the season and the seventh consecutive game in which he has at least one rushing touchdown. He is third nationally with 20 rushing touchdowns.
"I think Jordan Lynch is the best college player in football, I really believe that," Western Michigan coach P.J. Fleck said in his postgame news conference. "It's no disrespect to anyone else. I think he's a heck of a player. I say that because he makes every single guy around him better. ... I don't know what else to say about him, but I will end it with that he deserves to be in New York City."
Northern Illinois (12-0) is 14th in this week's BCS standings. NIU has won 26 in a row at home, the nation's longest current streak. The Huskies also have won 25 consecutive Mid-American Conference games, also the longest such winning streak in the nation.
Temperature at kickoff was 26, and there was a strong wind. The wind-chill factor for most of the game hovered around 5 degrees.
"Obviously, the elements played a huge factor in the game," Huskies coach Rod Carey said in his postgame news conference. "It was tough for both teams to throw and kick."
Lynch was on "The Dan Patrick Show" on Wednesday morning and said if he had a Heisman vote, he'd vote for himself. He also discussed his NFL future. Most analysts think he is too short (he's listed at 6 feet) and lacks the arm strength necessary to play quarterback at the next level. What about playing another position, Patrick asked.
"I would tell them, 'I'm a quarterback first.' But if that doesn't work out, whatever my best shot is," Lynch answered.