College Football Recap, Nov. 11 park
Here's a brief look at the results of the Top 25 from this past weekend. The rankings used in this recap are the BCS standings entering the games.
#8 Missouri 48, Kentucky 17: Maty Mauk throws for five touchdowns, including four to Dorial Green-Beckham, and the Tigers score 21 unanswered points in the second quarter to roll over struggling Kentucky to remain College Football News' pick to play in the Sugar Bowl – against Oregon.
#9 Auburn 55, Tennessee 23: Auburn, picked by multiple media outlets to be a Sugar Bowl participant, continues its amazing resurgence, rolling to a blowout victory of Tennessee on the road as quarterback Nick Marshall runs for 214 yards and two touchdowns and running back Tre Mason adds 117 yards and three scores.
#15 Texas A&M 51, Mississippi State 41: Despite throwing three interceptions, Johnny Manziel, playing in perhaps his final game at Kyle Field, tallies 446 passing yards and five touchdowns, setting the school record for single-season TD deliveries with 31, as he keeps the Aggies in the mix for a Sugar Bowl bid.
#16 Fresno State 48, Wyoming 10: Mark Schlabach from ESPN.com changes up and predicts the Bulldogs to the Sugar Bowl after star quarterback Derek Carr throws for 360 yards, his seventh 300-yard game of the year, in a road blowout of Wyoming.
#21 UCF 19, Houston 14: Storm Johnson rushes for 127 yards and the Golden Knights' defense has a game-winning goal line stand in the final seconds to hold the high-scoring Cougars well below their season scoring average (41.1 points per game) and to remain a popular projection for the Sugar Bowl.
#24 Wisconsin 27, BYU 17: James White rushes for two scores and catches another while the tough Badger defense holds BYU star quarterback Taysom Hill 97 yards below his average for total offense to remain a Sugar Bowl pick for ESPN.com's Brad Edwards.
TOP TEAM TILTS
#5 Stanford 26, #3 Oregon 20: The stout Stanford defense holds the high-octane Ducks scoreless for three quarters, then squashes a furious comeback attempt as workhorse Tyler Gaffney runs 45 times for 157 yards to help the Cardinal dominate time of possession, 42:34-17:26.
#6 Baylor 41, #10 Oklahoma 12: A win by the Bears is not surprising, but a dominant defensive performance is less expected – Baylor holds the Sooners to just 237 total yards while Bryce Petty tallies five touchdowns (three passing, two rushing) and third-string running back Shock Linwood tallied a career-best 182 rushing yards.
#1 Alabama 38, #13 LSU 17: The Tigers battled the Tide for a little more than a half, but after tying the score at 17, they saw Bama close the game with three unanswered touchdowns as AJ McCarron threw for three scores and T.J. Yeldon ran for 133 yards and a pair of TDs.
BROKEN BY BLUNDERS
Virginia Tech 42, #11 Miami 24: The Hurricanes are victimized by a fumbled punt return, a fumbled kickoff return and a critical punting error as the Hokies snap a two-game losing streak in impressive fashion behind an excellent game from Logan Thomas (25-of-31, 366 yards, two TDs).
Pittsburgh 28, #23 Notre Dame 21: The Fighting Irish turn the ball over three times, including a pair of fourth-quarter interceptions as Pitt evens the game on a 63-yard touchdown pass by Tom Savage and pulls ahead on a fourth-quarter run by James Conner.
Kansas State 49, #25 Texas Tech 26: The Red Raiders, who had climbed to No. 10 in the nation, throw three interceptions as they drop their third straight game to a Wildcat team led by the quarterback duo of Jake Waters (2 rushing TDs, 1 passing TD) and Slidell's Daniel Sams (two rushing scores).
#19 UCLA 31, Arizona 26: Ishmael Adams snares an interception on fourth down with 1:46 to go to stymie a Wildcat comeback attempt, while standout freshman linebacker Myles Jack (eight tackles, fumble recovery in the end zone) makes his first six carries on offense, finishing with 120 yards, including a 66-yard TD run.
#22 Arizona State at Utah: Trailing 19-7 entering the fourth quarter, the Sun Devils rally as Taylor Kelly throws a pair of touchdown passes and 305-pound lineman Will Sutton snags his first career interception with under two minutes to go to clinch the win.
#2 Florida State 59, Wake Forest 3: The Seminoles continue their dominance, breaking the Wake Forest stadium record for points while tallying six interceptions and returning back-to-back turnovers for touchdowns.
#14 Oklahoma State 42, Kansas 6: Justin Gilbert returns the opening kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown and the Cowboys cruise to their fifth straight win to remain very much in the mix for a BCS bid while sending Charlie Weis' Jayhawks to their 27th straight Big 12 loss (14 straight under Weis).
#20 Louisville 31, Connecticut 10: The Cardinals don't click on all cylinders, but still have little trouble with the Huskies as Louisville forces five turnovers and Teddy Bridgewater passes for 288 yards.
UPDATED BOWL PREDICTIONS
Allstate Sugar Bowl, January 2, 2014
Vote for Manning Stars
College football fans, be sure to "like" the official Allstate Sugar Bowl Facebook page (linked above) and vote each week for the Manning Award Player of the Week. The top quarterback performances from each week will be posted giving you the chance to vote for that you think was the best effort each week of the college football season.
Manning Award Stars of the Week
While 30 quarterbacks are on the Manning Award Watch List, every quarterback in the country remains eligible for the honor. Here's a look at some of this week's top quarterback performances:
Shane Carden, East Carolina
Taylor Heinicke, Old Dominion
Nick Marshall, Auburn
Maty Mauk, Missouri
Keenan Reynolds, Navy
Logan Thomas, Virginia Tech
Bo Wallace, Ole Miss
Keith Wenning, Ball State
Top Upcoming Games
(current BCS rankings, all times Central)
Ball State at #15 Northern Illinois (Wednesday, 7 p.m., ESPN2): This is the top game of the year in Mid-American Conference; in fact, it is one of the biggest regular season games in MAC history as undefeated Northern Illinois hosts one-loss Ball State in a critical showdown for the BCS picture – a loss will most likely knock the Huskies out of the picture.
Georgia Tech at #8 Clemson (Thursday, 6:30 p.m., ESPN): Clemson continues to climb back into the upper echelons of the national rankings after its loss to Florida State, but Georgia Tech needs a win to ensure it remains in the mix for the ACC Coastal title.
#16 Michigan State at Nebraska (2:30 p.m., ABC/ESPN2): The Spartans and their daunting defense travel to Lincoln in a game which will likely decide the Big Ten Legends Division to set up a possible championship match with Ohio State, assuming it takes care of its own business the rest of the way.
#25 Georgia at #7 Auburn (2:30 p.m., CBS): Head coach Gus Malzahn continues his amazing debut at the helm of the Tigers, while the resilient Bulldogs have somehow weathered major injury issues to climb back into the Top 25.
#12 Oklahoma State at #24 Texas (2:30 p.m., Fox): Written off as a non-contender after a 1-2 start, Mack Brown and the Longhorns have won six straight, remain undefeated in Big 12 play and have climbed back into the rankings; however, the Cowboys, who have won five in a row themselves, will provide a much bigger challenge.
Florida at #10 South Carolina (6 p.m., ESPN2): Steve Spurrier still has his sights set on an SEC Championship, but he needs to keep winning, including this meeting with his alma mater.
Texas Tech vs. #5 Baylor (Cowboys Stadium, 6 p.m., Fox): Baylor continues to roll through its schedule but after its impressive win over Oklahoma last week needs to avoid a letdown against the reeling Red Raiders, who have dropped three straight to tumble from the rankings.
Utah at #6 Oregon (3 p.m., Fox Sports 1): The Ducks most likely had their national championship hopes dashed with their loss to Stanford, but they need to avoid any hangover against Utah, which handed the Cardinal its only loss, to remain in the BCS picture.
#4 Stanford at USC (7 p.m., ABC): Stanford had one of the biggest wins of the year with their defeat of Oregon this past Thursday, but the Cardinal has to avoid any letdown on the road against a resurgent USC team which has won four out of five games by an average of 17.5 points since the firing of Lane Kiffin.