College Football Recap, October 9
Here’s a brief look at the latest rankings, recaps and previews of top games and bowl projections, as well as the eight Manning Award Stars of the Week. This year’s Allstate Sugar Bowl will double as a College Football Playoff Semifinal and will be played on January 1, 2018.
BETTER THAN ANYONE?
No. 1 Alabama 27, Texas A&M 19: The Crimson Tide struggled with the 26.5 points underdog Aggies (despite Texas A&M being 4-1 and playing at home), but Damian Harris ran for 124 yards and a score and Jalen Hurts ran for one score and passed for another before the Tide defense picked up big fourth-quarter plays including a Minkah Fitzpatrick interception and a pair of sacks.
No. 2 Clemson 28, Wake Forest 14: Kelly Bryant threw for 200 yards and a touchdown before leaving the game with an ankle injury in the third quarter and the Tiger defense held the 4-1 Deacon Demons scoreless through three quarters as Clemson improves to 6-0 for the third straight season.
Iowa State 38, No. 3 Oklahoma: Kyle Kempt, a walk-on senior quarterback making his first career start, threw for 343 yards and three touchdowns, including the game-winning 25-yard delivery to Allen Lazard with 2:19 to go as the Cyclones snap an 18-game losing streak against the Sooners. Other stats of note regarding the shocking upset: Since 2004, AP top-3 teams had been 207-0 when holding a 14-point lead at home; it was the first loss by an AP top-3 team at home to an under .500 team since 2007 (when Pittsburgh upended No. 2 West Virginia); and it was the Cyclones first ever victory on the road against a top-3 team.
No. 8 TCU 31, No. 23 West Virginia 24: Kenny Hill lunged for a three-yard rushing score with 2:53 to go to snap 24-24 tie – Hill had also passed for a touchdown and scored on a 48-yard catch-and-run from KaVontae Turpin for the Horned Frogs.
No. 13 Miami 24, Florida State 20: After true freshman James Blackmon tossed a 20-yard touchdown pass to give the Seminoles a 20-17 advantage with 1:24 to go, Hurricane quarterback Malik Rosier found Darrell Lingham for a 23-yard game-winning touchdown with six seconds remaining in a game which featured five fourth-quarter lead changes.
LSU 17, No. 21 Florida 16: The Tigers took a 17-3 lead on a Danny Etling touchdown pass with 10:56 to go and then the Gators mounted a furious rally keyed by a pair of Lamical Perine TD runs, but LSU managed to hold on thanks to a missed extra point in the third quarter.
DEFENSE GETS IT DONE
No. 4 Penn State 31, Northwestern 7: Trace McSorley threw for 245 yards and a touchdown, Saquon Barkley had a pair of second-half scores and the Nittany Lion defense forced three turnovers while holding the Wildcats to just 265 total yards.
No. 6 Washington 38, California 7: The Huskies allowed just 93 total yards, the fifth fewest in school history and the fewest since 1991, while Jake Browning passed for two touchdowns and ran for another.
Michigan State 14, No. 7 Michigan 10: The Spartans forced five turnovers to offset an offense which didn’t manage a first-down in the second-half until its final drive as Michigan State defeated its archrivals for the eighth time in the last 10 years.
No. 11 Washington State 33, Oregon 10: Luke Falk threw for three touchdowns and Erik Powell booted four field goals while the Cougar defense held Oregon to 277 yards of offense and 10 points – the Ducks entered the game averaging 537.4 yards per game and 49.6 points per game.
No. 14 USC 38, Oregon State 10: The Trojans, who forced three turnovers and blocked a field goal, allowed 10 or fewer points to a Pac-12 opponent for the first time since 2014 while Sam Darnold passed for 316 yards and three touchdowns and Ronald Jones II ran for 79 yards and a touchdown.
No. 16 Virginia Tech 23, Boston College 10: Josh Jackson passed for 322 yards and a touchdown and the Hokies held the Eagles to just a field-goal until late in the fourth quarter when Boston College finally found the end zone.
RUNNING BACKS ON THE RUN
No. 5 Georgia 45, Vanderbilt 14: The Bulldogs ran for 423 yards, including 150 yards and a TD from Sony Michel and 138 yards and two scores from Nick Chubb as Georgia is off to its best start since 2005.
No. 9 Wisconsin 38, Nebraska 17: Freshman Jonathan Taylor ran for a career-best 249 yards and two touchdowns, including a 75-yard run, as the Badgers scored 21 unanswered points after Nebraska knotted the game on a pick-six early in the second half.
No. 12 Auburn 44, Ole Miss 23: Kerryon Johnson rushed for a career-high 204 yards and three touchdowns (giving him 11 touchdowns in the last three games), Jarrett Stidham threw for 235 yards and two scores and kicker Daniel Carlson connected on three field goals to become the SEC’s career scoring leader.
No. 19 San Diego State 41, UNLV 10: Rashaad Penny recorded his sixth straight 100-yard game, finishing with 170 yards and two touchdowns, while the Aztec defense allowed just 283 total yards.
No. 21 Notre Dame 33, North Carolina 10: Josh Adams ran for 118 yards, including a 73-yard touchdown, before leaving the game due to dehydration, but backup Deon McIntosh came on to rush for 124 yards and two more ground scores as the Fighting Irish, playing without injured starting quarterback Brandon Wimbush, won their third straight road game against a power-five opponent.
UNDERDOGS NOT UNDONE
No. 24 N.C. State 39, No. 17 Louisville 25: Ryan Finley threw for 367 yards and a touchdown, Nyheim Hines ran for 102 yards and two touchdowns while adding a key 48-yard kickoff return in the fourth quarter and the Wolfpack defense kept Lamar Jackson somewhat contained – despite him running for two scores and passing for another, he was sacked four times and threw a late-game pick-six to seal the game for N.C. State.
Stanford 23, No. 20 Utah 20: Star running back Bryce Love was held mostly in check until his 18th touch, when he broke free for a 68-yard touchdown to put the Cardinals up 23-13 with 12:02 remaining. Two fourth-quarter interceptions wrapped up the win for Stanford, sending Utah to its first loss.
TDS BY THE TON
No. 10 Ohio State 62, Maryland 14: J.T. Barrett threw for three touchdowns and ran for another, J.K. Dobbins ran for 96 yards and one of the Buckeyes’ five rushing touchdowns and the Ohio State defense held the Terrapins to just 66 total yards.
No. 25 UCF 51, Cincinnati 23: McKenzie Milton threw a career-high five touchdown passes and Tre’Quan Smith caught three TD passes while running for another as the Knights were dominant in their first game as a ranked team since 2013.
Allstate Sugar Bowl Projections:
ESPN (Kyle Bonagura): Alabama vs. Washington (replaces Clemson vs. Oklahoma)
ESPN (David Hale): Clemson vs. TCU (replaces Alabama vs. Penn State)
CBS Sports (Jerry Palm): Alabama vs. Penn State (Penn State replaces Ohio State)
SB Nation (Jason Kirk): Clemson vs. Washington (Washington replaces Wisconsin)
College Football News (Pete Fiutak): Alabama vs. Ohio State (Ohio State replaces Michigan)
The All-American (Stewart Mandel): Clemson vs. Washington (no change)
Sporting News (Bill Bender): Alabama vs. Washington (Washington replaces Oklahoma)
Sports Illustrated (Eric Single): Alabama vs. Penn State (no change)
USA Today (Erick Smith): Alabama vs. Washington (no change)
Random Stats of the Week
3 – Times in the past 10 seasons that at least two Associated Press top-10 teams lost at home to unranked opponents; No. 3 Oklahoma (to Iowa State) and No. 7 Michigan (to Michigan State) both lost on Saturday.
0-7 – Louisville’s all-time record on the road in ranked match-ups, and four of those losses came when they were the higher-ranked team, including Thursday’s 39-25 loss to No. 24 NC State.
34 – Years since a ranked Miami team played an unranked Florida State team. The last time was 1983, the year the Hurricanes won their first national title.
18-0 – TCU’s record at home when it’s been ranked in the top-10 under coach Gary Patterson – the Horned Frogs topped West Virginia, 31-24, on Saturday.
14 – Most points allowed by Auburn in a game this year until Ole Miss managed 23 points on Saturday. The Tigers had been the only team in the FBS that had not allowed more than 14 points in a game.
62 – Points scored by Tulane in their AAC victory over Tulsa; it’s the most points scored by the Green Wave since it rolled to a 72-20 win over UL-Lafayette during the undefeated 2008 season.
18 – Losses in a row for Iowa State against Oklahoma until the Cyclones shocked the No. 3 Sooners, 38-31, in Norman.
11 – Touchdowns in the last three games for Auburn running back Kerryon Johnson. The junior had one TD in the Tigers’ opener, then missed two games with injury, but since then scored five times against Missouri and three each against Mississippi State and Ole Miss.
4 – Players who have punted for Eastern Michigan this year. They have used two designated punters as well as their place kicker and their quarterback, Brandon Roback, who actually leads the team, averaging 46.9 yards on nine punts.
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. Below are our selections for the top eight quarterback performances of the past week. Click here to be redirected to Facebook for voting.
Zach Abey, Navy (4-of-11, 86 yards, 2 TDs, 0 INT, QBR: 73.2)
Abey rushes 29 times for 214 yards and two touchdowns and then delivers a 16-yard touchdown pass with 15 seconds remaining to lift the Midshipmen to a thrilling 48-45 win over Air Force.
Drew Anderson, Buffalo (35-of-61, 597 yards, 7 TDs, 0 INT, QBR: 85.0)
Anderson, making his second career-start, records massive passing statistics, as well as rushing for a TD, while leading the Bulls to the FBS record for points in a losing effort as they fall 71-68 to Western Michigan in seven overtimes.
Caleb Evans, UL Monroe (24-of-37, 433 yards, 3 TDs, 0 INT, QBR: 87.0)
Evans, who also runs for a score, posts career-highs in passing yards and touchdowns as he leads the Warhawks to a 45-27 Sun Belt road win over Texas State.
Riley Ferguson, Memphis (34-of-48, 431 yards, 7 TDs, 0 INT, QBR: 82.4)
Ferguson registers career-highs in passing yards and touchdowns, matching the school and AAC record in TDs, as he leads the Tigers to a 70-31 blowout of Connecticut on the road in AAC action.
Ryan Finley, N.C. State (20-of-31, 367 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT, QBR: 87.4)
Finley directs an offense that included three different receivers with 99 or more yards as the Wolfpack posts an impressive 39-25 victory over No. 17 Louisville in ACC action.
Kyle Kempt, Iowa State (18-of-24, 343 yards, 3 TDs, 0 INT, QBR: 96.8)
Kempt, a redshirt senior walk-on, makes his first career start (he had thrown two career passes) and leads the Cyclones to a shocking 38-31 upset of No. 3 Oklahoma on the road in Big 12 play.
McKenzie Milton, UCF (16-of-19, 374 yards, 5 TDs, 0 INT, QBR: 98.9)
Milton tallies career-highs in passing yards and touchdowns in three quarters of action as he leads the Knights, who are 4-0 for the first time since 1988, to scores on every possession in a 51-23 AAC road win over Cincinnati.
Khalil Tate, Arizona (12-of-13, 154 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT, QBR: 100.0)
Tate comes off the bench to replace the Wildcats’ injured starter and proceeds to set the FBS record for rushing yards by a quarterback, tallying 327 yards on just 14 carries (23.4 yards per carry), including TD runs of 58, 28, 47 and 75 yards, in a 45-42 Pac-12 road victory over Colorado.
Top Upcoming Games
(Rankings are this week’s AP Rankings; All Times Central, please check local listings)
No. 2 Clemson at Syracuse (Friday, 6 p.m., ESPN): Tiger fans hope that an ankle injury suffered by quarterback Kelly Bryant is minor as the defending national champions go on the road looking for their 12th straight win – Syracuse has been strong offensively with 467 yards and 32 points per game, but Clemson is only allowing 11.3 points per game.
No. 6 TCU at Kansas State (11 a.m., FS1): The Horned Frogs quietly climbed in the rankings, but Saturday’s key win over then-No. 23 West Virginia coupled with Oklahoma’s upset loss launched TCU into the favorite position in the Big 12. They will look to avoid a letdown on the road against Bill Snyder’s solid Wildcat squad.
No. 10 Auburn at LSU (2:30 p.m., CBS): Auburn has been red-hot on offense (Kerryon Johnson has scored 11 touchdowns in the last three games) and defense (allowing just 13.0 points per game) while LSU picked up a big win over Florida, but is still struggling to get its offense clicking.
Georgia Tech at No. 11 Miami (2:30 p.m., ABC): The Hurricanes have been very impressive this year outscoring opponents by nearly 20 points per game, but the Yellow Jackets triple-option offense can give foes fits – and they have won three straight by an average of 23.7 points per game.
Arkansas at No. 1 Alabama (6:15 p.m., ESPN): The Crimson Tide was held below 41 points for the first time this season and only won by eight points against Texas A&M, but it still was fully in control of the game throughout. Despite 2-3 Arkansas’ struggles this year, Alabama can’t afford a letdown in SEC play.
Utah at No. 13 USC (7 p.m., ABC): While USC tends to dominate the national media covering the Pac-12, the Utes have been one of the more consistent programs from the conference – they are 32-12 since 2014 while the Trojans are 32-14 in the same period. These two teams are considered the favorites in the Pac-12 South.
No. 5 Washington at Arizona State (9:45 p.m., ESPN): The Huskies are one of nine undefeated teams left from the Power-Five conferences, but due to a weaker-perceived non-league schedule, they likely need to continue to roll over Pac-12 foes (they have won their first three league games by a 117-24 margin) to remain fully in the College Football Playoff picture.