Another crazy weekend of college football is in the books.
Upsets ruled the day as three top 10 teams fell.
Here are some of the winners and losers of another exciting week.
The Bayou Bengals’ season hit a rough patch after a blowout loss to Mississippi State and an embarrassing homecoming loss to Troy. However, LSU has rallied and returned to the top 25 after defeating #10 Auburn 27-23. LSU fell behind 20-0 and it looked like Ed Orgeron’s seat was about to heat up, but they clawed back and held on for the victory. LSU is a cut below Alabama, but there’s nobody else in the division they can’t beat.
The Sun Devils under head coach Todd Graham haven’t been anything close to a defensive stalwart. While Arizona State routinely displays potent offenses, the defenses constantly struggle. But this week, Arizona State won a defensive battle against #5 Washington 13-7. The Huskies, one of last year’s playoff participants, came into the game averaging 43 points, but could only muster a touchdown. With only one conference loss, Arizona State could be a factor in PAC-12 South if USC falters.
The Aggies’ season got off to an abysmal start after blowing a 44-10 lead to UCLA. But other than a close loss to juggernaut Alabama, the Aggies have rallied around embattled head coach Kevin Sumlin and won their other five games. The latest gritty victory came against a tough Florida Gators defense in the Swamp. A&M trailed the whole way, but put together a late drive and kicked a field goal to win 19-17. Having already faced the Alabama monster, A&M is in a decent position to finish strong in conference play and claim a good bowl bid.
The Cornhuskers were once so synonymous with dominance; “Nebraska” became a verb that meant to rout the opponent embarrassingly. Those days are long gone. This weekend Nebraska lost to Ohio State 56-14, the school’s worst home loss in almost 70 years. Head coach Mike Riley has to be a lame duck at this point, seeing as how the AD that extended him was fired mid-season. There’s already speculation that UCF head coach Scott Frost, a Nebraska alum who led the team to their last championship in 1997, could take over the reins. Regardless, the Mike Riley era in Nebraska seems to be on its last legs.
The Washington State vs. Cal game almost got canceled due to air quality concerns as a result of the tragic Northern California forest fires. Cougars head coach Mike Leach wishes the game had been canceled as he watched his 8th ranked squad lose 37-3. The Cougars’ prolific offense couldn’t generate anything, committing 7 turnovers and getting sacked 9 times. The tone for the game was set early when Washington State returned the opening kickoff for a touchdown but had it called back because of a penalty. A few players late, quarterback Luke Falk threw his first of 5 interceptions. As potent as Mike Leach’s offenses are, he’s good for at least one stinker per season. The previous two seasons, Leach dropped an early game to an FCS opponent. For the sake of Cougar fans, one should hope this loss to Cal is Leach’s perennial dud.
The defending champions had been riding high after a string of impressive wins, but that all came crashing down on Friday the 13th in Syracuse’s Carrier Dome. The Tigers fell to the Orange 27-24 despite being a 24-point favorite. The night was summed up by a botched fake punt in the 4th quarter when Clemson was trying to mount a comeback. The punter was supposed to execute a rugby-style punt by running to his right, and only throwing if the receiver was wide open. He wasn’t. The punter threw the ball into heavy coverage, and Syracuse took over in good field position. Head coach Dabo Swinney ripped his punter on the sideline but took responsibility after the game for not coaching him up well enough. It wasn’t the only questionable decision Swinney made; Dabo elected to play hobbled quarterback Kelly Bryant who didn’t have his normal electric mobility. As a result, Bryant walked into a sack and got body-slammed to the turf. Bryant suffered a brutal concussion and lay motionless on the ground for what seemed like an interminable amount of time. Hopefully, Bryant can recover quickly from his ailments so Clemson’s season doesn’t go down the drain.
Clemson qb Kelly Bryant appears to be knocked out https://t.co/4zg8FKzWDG