College Football Update, September 28

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College Football Update, September 28 park

College Football Update, Sept. 28, 2015

Week four of the college football season is complete and the key games out west were all blowout victories by the road teams, while the SEC and Big 12 are now heading into the meat of their conference schedules. See below brief look back at the key games as well as previews of this week's top games and other college football related information.

Allstate Sugar Bowl Match-Up

This year's Allstate Sugar Bowl will be the first as the official destination for the top available teams from the Big 12 and the SEC. The Sugar Bowl will feature the champions of each league unless one or both are selected for the College Football Playoff. In that case, the top non-playoff teams from those leagues will square off in New Orleans. This match-up is locked in for eight of the next 11 years. In the other three years (2017, 2020 and 2023), the Allstate Sugar Bowl will serve as a College Football Playoff Semifinal.

Key Games from the SEC

No. 8 LSU 34, Syracuse 24: LSU's defense holds the Orange to just 281 yards of offense while Leonard Fournette runs for a career-high 244 yards – his third straight game establishing a new career-high – as the Tigers won their 50th straight non-conference game (best in the nation), a streak dating back to 2002.

Florida 28, Tennessee 27: Will Grier connected with Antonio Callaway for a 63-yard scoring strike with 1:26 remaining and then the Volunteers missed a 55-yard field goal as the Gators defeated Tennessee for the 11th straight time – it also marked the second game this year that the Vols have coughed up a double digit lead in the fourth quarter.

No. 14 Texas A&M 28, Arkansas 21: Myles Garrett, the nation's sack leader, picked up his only sack of the game for the Aggies with just over a minute left in regulation, forcing a critical fumble which gave them a chance for a game-winning field goal in regulation. Despite not converting the field goal, Kyle Allen capped off his career-best day in passing yards (358) with a 20-yard touchdown on the second play of overtime as Arkansas dropped to 0-10 in games decided by less than 10 points under Bret Bielema.

Kentucky 21, No. 25 Missouri 13: Patrick Towles threw for a pair of touchdowns and ran for another to key a huge victory for the Wildcats – the win snapped an 18-game losing streak against ranked opponents and also snapped Missouri's 11-game road winning streak.

Key Games from the Big 12

No. 5 Baylor 70, Rice 17: Corey Coleman caught three of Seth Russell's school-record six touchdown passes and Shock Linwood ran for 158 yards as the Bears extended their home winning streak to 18 games, the longest in the nation.

No. 24 Oklahoma State 30, Texas 27: The Cowboys' Ben Grogan booted a 41-yard field goal to knot the game at 27 with 1:33 to go, then the Longhorns botched a late punt attempt – after a fumbled snap, they only managed a 10-yard punt to give Grogan another immediate attempt, and he nailed the 40-yarder to stun Texas.

No. 3 TCU 55, Texas Tech 52: TCU had one last chance to remain perfect on the year. Trailing by four points on fourth-and-goal from the four yard line with 23 seconds to go, Trevone Boykin fired to star receiver Josh Doctson (who already had 18 catches) in the end zone, but the pass was too high, deflecting off Doctson's fingertips. However, as Red Raider fans began to celebrate a breakthrough victory, TCU running back Aaron Green dove for the loose ball, snagging it for the game-winning touchdown.

Other Top Games From Around the Country

No. 9 UCLA 56, No. 16 Arizona 30: Throughout the week, this game was billed as a showdown of top Pac-12 South foes. However, freshman quarterback Josh Rosen (19-of-28, 284 yards, 2 TDs) and a tenacious Bruin defense (three forced turnovers) helped UCLA jump to a 42-14 halftime advantage as they dominated the Wildcats.

No. 18 Utah 62, No. 13 Oregon 20: Travis Wilson, returned from a shoulder injury, and completed 18 of 30 passes, hitting nine receivers, while running for 100 yards and another score as Utah shocked the Ducks with a dominant performance – Oregon hadn't lost so badly at home since falling 54-0 to Washington in 1977.

Other SEC Scores

No. 7 Georgia 48, Southern 6: Nick Chubb ran for 131 yards and two touchdowns while also collecting a receiving score and Greyson Lambert completed 9-of-10 passes – his second straight week having just one incomplete pass – as the Bulldogs cruised over the FCS Jaguars.

South Carolina 31, UCF 14: After starting slow, the Gamecocks broke open the game with 20 unanswered points in the third quarter, including a 29-yard touchdown run and a 35-yard reception from Pharoh Cooper.

No. 12 Alabama 34, UL Monroe 0: The Crimson Tide turned in a dominating performance, allowing just 92 total yards and holding the Warhawks without a first down for the first 23 minutes of the game as Nick Saban picks up the 16th shutout of his Alabama tenure.

No. 3 Ole Miss 27, Vanderbilt 16: The Rebel defense held the Commodores to just 322 yards and running back Jaylen Walton turned in a big day, running for 133 yards, including the clinching TD run late in the game, to offset a sloppy overall offensive performance in a letdown after last week's huge victory over Alabama.

Mississippi State 17, Auburn 9: Dak Prescott threw for a pair of touchdowns and the Bulldogs made four key stops in the red zone as Auburn continued its disastrous start to the 2015 season.

Other Big 12 Scores

Rutgers 27, Kansas 14: The rebuilding Jayhawks continue to struggle, managing just 342 yards of offense as they drop their 32nd straight road game.

West Virginia 45, Maryland 6: Skyler Howard threw four touchdown passes, Wendell Howard ran for a career-best 147 yards and the Mountaineer defense, which has allowed a total of 23 points in three games, snagged five interceptions.

Sugar Bowl Spotlight Event

In addition to the Allstate Sugar Bowl Football Classic, the bowl is involved with over 50 other events throughout the year. Each week, we will spotlight one event in the weekly recap. This week's spotlight event is the Allstate Sugar Bowl Track & Field Classic, which is contested every spring at Tad Gormley Stadium in New Orleans' City Park. The event, recognized as one of the top high school meets in the southeast has hosted an estimated 15,000 athletes in the last decade. Some of the prominent football players to compete in the meet include Pro Bowl receiver Julio Jones, who won the long jump at the meet in 2008 when he was a star at Foley (Ala.) High School; T.J. Graham, another NFL receiver, who set the 200-meter dash record in 2008 while running for Wakefield (N.C.) High School; Speedy Noil, known as one of the fastest players in college football at Texas A&M, who helped Edna Karr High School set the 4×100 meter relay record at the 2013 Track & Field Classic; and Leonard Fournette, the Heisman frontrunner from LSU, who competed for St. Augustine High in the 2013 event.

Bowl Projections

Allstate Sugar Bowl, January 1, 2016
ESPN (Schlabach): LSU vs. Oklahoma (replaces Texas A&M vs. Baylor)
ESPN (Brett McMurphy): LSU vs. TCU (replaces Georgia vs. Baylor)

CBS Sports (Palm): Baylor vs. LSU (no change)

SB Nation (Kirk): Oklahoma vs. Alabama (no change)

Fox Sports (Mandel): Ole Miss vs. Baylor (no change)

Sporting News (Bender): Alabama vs. Baylor (no change)

Campus Insiders (Fiutak): Baylor vs. Georgia (no change)

USA Today (Smith): Baylor vs. Georgia – updates Wednesday

YouTube Clips of the Week

Each week the Allstate Sugar Bowl will make its YouTube Picks of the Week, including impressive off-field performances, great games, illuminating features and top highlights. This week's clips include:

— TCU's miraculous game-winning play against Texas Tech when Aaron Green caught a pass that deflected off the intended receiver's hands.

– The ESPN GameDay feature on Leonard Fournette, narrated by Trombone Shorty.

– A very impressive 66-yard touchdown run by Michigan's De'Veon Smith in the Wolverines win over BYU.

The Allstate Sugar Bowl will be giving away two free tickets to the 2016 Allstate Sugar Bowl. Fans can sign up at the official website of the Allstate Sugar Bowl. One lucky winner will be chosen to receive two free tickets to this year's Allstate Sugar Bowl to be played on Friday, January 1, 2016 at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Prize includes two tickets to the game only. Parking, accommodations and any other expenses related to the game are the responsibility of the winner. Contest will continue until Thursday, Dec. 10 when a winner will be selected and contacted by an Allstate Sugar Bowl representative.

Manning Award

The Manning Award, sponsored and coordinated by the Allstate Sugar Bowl, will be recognizing its 12th winner following the 2015 season. Each week, the Bowl selects eight "Stars of the Week" and fans can vote on their overall "Quarterback of the Week" on the Allstate Sugar Bowl Facebook page.

Manning Award Stars of the Week

Kyle Allen, Texas A&M
(21-of-28, 358 yards, 2 TDs, 0 INT, QBR: 90.1)
Allen, who records his first career 300-yard game, connects on a 20-yard touchdown pass on the second play of overtime to put the Aggies on top for good in an exciting 28-21 win over Arkansas at Cowboys Stadium.

Trevone Boykin, TCU
(34-of-54, 485 yards, 4 TDs, 0 INT, QBR: 72.4)
Boykin caps off a huge passing day by converting a fourth-down pass play in unorthodox fashion – his running back caught a tipped ball in the back of the end zone – for a thrilling 55-52 Big 12 road win over previously undefeated Texas Tech.

Brandon Doughty, Western Kentucky
(33-of-41, 457 yards, 6 TDs, 0 INT, QBR: 95.8)
Doughty logs a dominant first half with 381 yards and five touchdown passes as the Hilltoppers jump all over Miami (Ohio) in a 56-14 victory.

Matt Johnson, Bowling Green
(43-of-59, 402 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT, QBR: 81.0)
Johnson registers his fourth straight 400-yard game as he leads the Falcons to their second win over a Big Ten team this year, 35-28 victory over Purdue on the road.

Cody Kessler, USC
(19-of-33, 375 yards, 5 TDs, 1 INT, QBR: 96.4)
Kessler, tallies his 10th career 300-yard game, as he leads the Trojans to a 28-point second-quarter outburst as they break open the game en route to an impressive 42-14 Pac-12 victory over Arizona State.

Seth Russell, Baylor
(12-of-16, 277 yards, 6 TDs, 0 INT, QBR: 94.3)
Russell matches the school record for touchdown passes, including five in the first half, while playing less than three quarters as the Bears roll over Rice, 70-17.

Greg Ward, Jr., Houston
(17-of-21, 274 yards, 4 TDs, 0 INT, QBR: 96.8)
Ward, who sets a career-best for TD passes, also rushes for a game-high 91 yards and a pair of touchdowns as he helps the Cougars remain undefeated with a decisive 59-14 victory over Texas State.

Travis Wilson, Utah
(18-of-30, 227 yards, 4 TDs, 0 INT, QBR: 97.3)
Wilson, who was returning from an injured shoulder, also runs for 100 yards on just six carries, including a short TD run, as the Utes win 62-20 to hand No. 13 Oregon its worst home loss since 1977.
 

Top Upcoming Games

All times are Central. Rankings are the AP Rankings from this week.

No. 23 West Virginia at No. 15 Oklahoma (11 a.m., Fox Sports 1): The Mountaineers, coming off a convincing win over Maryland, lead the country in scoring defense (7.7 points per game) and have quietly climbed into the top 25; that defense will be seriously tested by the Sooners and quarterback Baker Mayfield and their 41.3 points per game.

Texas at No. 3 TCU (11 a.m., ABC): With its defense decimated by injuries, the Horned Frogs have been forced to outscore their foes – and thus far, behind the efforts of quarterback Trevone Boykin (367 yards per game) and receiver Josh Doctson (18 catches in Texas Tech win), they have averaged 51 points per game. Texas continues to reel from special teams miscues, but could prove dangerous if the mistakes are eliminated.

No. 13 Alabama at No. 8 Georgia (2:30 p.m., CBS): For the first time in 73 games, Alabama is an underdog (last time was the 2009 SEC title game against Florida) – and the key reasons for that are a Georgia defense which is allowing just 13.5 points per game and star Bulldog running back Nick Chubb, who can break Herschel Walker's school record with a 13th straight 100-yard rushing game.

No. 1 Ohio State at Indiana (2:30 p.m., ABC/ESPN2): Ohio State has remained atop the major polls, despite some inconsistencies, but Indiana is one of the surprise teams of the year thus far. While their schedule hasn't been tough, the Hoosiers are still 4-0 for the first time since 1990 as star running back Jordan Howard, a transfer from UAB, ranks second in the nation in rushing.

Texas Tech at No. 5 Baylor (2:30 p.m., ABC/ESPN2): The Red Raiders were denied a breakthrough victory on Saturday against TCU as a last-second pass was deflected into the hands of an unintended receiver in the end zone; now they take on another high-octane Big 12 team (nation's best 64 points per game) which is making a bid to qualify for the College Football Playoff.

Kansas State at No. 20 Oklahoma State (3 p.m., Fox Sports 1): The Wildcats and the Cowboys are both undefeated, though both have played lower-end competition – this will be Kansas State's first true challenge, while the Cowboys hope to build on their last-second victory over Texas from Saturday.

No. 3 Ole Miss at No. 25 Florida (6 p.m., ESPN): Though its three games against legitimate FBS foes have all been close (decided by a total of 13 points), new head coach Jim McElwain has the Gators ranked at a perfect 4-0, including 2-0 against SEC East foes. Ole Miss, which might have the best win of any team in the country (over Alabama), won ugly against Vandy on Saturday to keep itself at No. 3 in the country.

No. 21 Mississippi State at No. 14 Texas A&M (6:30 p.m., SEC Network): Many picked the Bulldogs and Aggies to bring up the rear of the SEC West, but instead, both teams are now ranked. Another win for Texas A&M could put them in the CFP talk, while Mississippi State needs a win to stay in the mix for an SEC title.

Arizona State at No. 7 UCLA (6:30 p.m., TV TBA): The highly-touted Bruins and their standout rookie quarterback Josh Rosen have won back-to-back games over ranked opponents, including Saturday's blowout of Arizona, and now they host a Sun Devil team that had high hopes entering the season but it has already been blown out twice – 38-17 in the opener against Texas A&M and 42-14 this past Saturday against Stanford.

No. 6 Notre Dame at No. 11 Clemson (7 p.m., ABC): While a pair of Notre Dame's key early victories have lost some luster (Georgia Tech lost to Duke, Virginia was thumped by Boise State), the Fighting Irish have still established themselves as a title contender; though their first trip to Clemson since 1977 (with Joe Montana) could be their biggest challenge yet as Tiger quarterback Deshaun Watson is a potential Heisman contender.

2015-09-28T00:00:00+00:00