STANFORD, Calif. -- The much-ballyhooed father-son series of Elway vs. Elway came to a dramatic end Saturday, and no one was happier than the two principals involved.
San Jose State, led by coach Jack Elway and featuring the passing and receiving of Steve Clarkson and Tim Kearse, beat Stanford led by quarterback-son John Elway, 35-31.
In the four years of the series featuring the two Elways, the score now is all even at 2-2.
Clarkson, overshadowed by John Elway, passed three times for touchdowns to Kearse and scored the winning touchdown on a 3-yard run with 3:52 remaining to give San Jose State its second victory of the season, both over Pacific-10 Conference teams.
Kearse, a quick-stepping split end, accounted for the other San Jose State TD when he took a lateral from Clarkson and combined with Tony Smith on an 84-yard play.
John Elway passed for two touchdowns while completing 24 of 36 throws for 382 yards. The two TDs gave him six for the season and extended his Pac-10 career record to 59. Clarkson completed 21 of 40 for 285 yards and, while he was intercepted three times, Elway had no interceptions.
'This was a real roller-coaster ride,' said Jack Elway. 'It was an interesting and entertaining ball game, and I'm glad it's over with. I thought John had a great day, and I was very proud of him.'
John Elway was not as happy as his father, and mostly because he was on the losing end.
'It hurts because we lost,' he said. 'It's tough to reflect on my performance, but I'm glad I'll never have to play against my father again.
'I've been around him so long that I knew we'd have to play well to beat him. He's got so many trick plays under his sleeve.'
The Spartans needed only three plays to jump to a 14-0 lead, but Stanford battled back for three touchdowns with Elway throwing 45 yards to Vincent White and 48 to Emile Harry, and White running 2 yards. But Kearse's second touchdown grab enabled San Jose State to tie the score at 21 by the intermission.
A 46-yard field goal by Mark Herman put Stanford in front at 24-21 in the third period and set the stage for a wild final quarter.
Clarkson hooked up with Kearse on a 32-yard scoring play to give the Spartans the lead again at 28-24, but then Stanford scored with 9:05 left as White grabbed a 12-yard pass from backup quarterback Steve Cottrell.
Cottrell went into the game because Elway had the wind knocked out of him after taking a 12-yad pass from Harry to set up the TD.
Stanford was buried in its own end and trying to run down the clock when White darted through the line for what appeared to be a first down only to fumble the ball with Dirk Hunter-Ellis grabbing the ball and running it to the 4. Two plays later Clarkson went over for the TD and victory.