Here’s how the Top Ten fared last week:
- Ohio State Buckeyes – Defeated Maryland 49-28 in Columbus, Ohio: There had been a players-only meeting a week earlier that Terrapins Head Coach Randy Edsall didn’t know about & then there was the dreaded ‘vote of confidence’ by the administration earlier in the week even though reports were that Edsall would be canned after the game in Columbus. It makes you wonder how hard the Maryland players were going to play against the defending national champs. In typical 2015 Buckeyes fashion, Ohio State let the Terrapins hang around in the first half but then ran away from them in the second half to the tune of a 49-28 victory. It was the usual suspects getting into the end zone in this one with running back Ezekiel Elliot rushing for 2 touchdowns, quarterback Cardale Jones tossed 2 touchdowns, wide receiver Braxton Miller caught one of them and the other quarterback J.T. Barrett ran in 3 touchdowns. Just another ho-hum 21-point victory for the Buckeyes.
- TCU Horned Frogs – Defeated Kansas State 52-49 in Manhattan, Kansas: No one just waltzes into the ‘Little Apple’ and just waltzes back out with an easy win and that includes the 2nd ranked team in the country. The Wildcats put up four touchdowns in the second quarter alone to take a 35-17 halftime lead over TCU. A Joe Hubener pick six to start the 3rd quarter was the spark the Horned Frogs needed to come back and outscore the Wildcats 35-10 in the second half. Quarterback Trevone Boykin threw for 300 yards and two touchdowns while also leading the team in rushing with 124 yards and two more touchdowns. All world receiver Josh Doctson had a pretty good game as well with 8 catches for 155 yards and 2 scores. TCU put up almost 550 yards of offense but turned the ball over twice in the game.
- Baylor Bears – Defeated Kansas 66-7 in Lawrence, Kansas: When we saw this one on the schedule couple with how Kansas had been playing lately, we all knew this one was going to get ugly. The shock was that Kansas tied the game at 7-7 early in the 1st quarter before giving up 59 unanswered points afterwards. The Bears jumped out to a 24-7 first quarter lead & then to a 52-7 halftime lead before taking the shoulder pads away from their starters. No literally, the Baylor starters came out in the second half with intentions of going back out onto the field. Baylor racked up 644 total yards of offense while also holding Kansas to just 227 and also forced 3 turnovers. This was going to be an ugly game, it was an ugly game and we will now move on from this ugly game.
- Michigan State Spartans – Defeated Rutgers 31-24 in New Brunswick, New Jersey: How many times do the Spartans get to almost get beat by inferior teams before they wake up and earn their top ten ranking? Looking back on their season they really haven’t played a good team year and have nearly been beat by all of them but one. Saturday night in New Jersey, Sparty was in a dogfight with college football’s 2015 dumpster fire program, Rutgers. Michigan State trailed by a touchdown at the half but led heading into the 4th quarter before quickly giving up the lead again. They eventually retook the lead in the final minute on a 3-yard L.J. Scott touchdown run but Rutgers looked like they were moving the ball in the final drive until they spiked it on 4th down to end the game.
- Utah Utes – Defeated (23) California 30-24 in Salt Lake City, Utah: The Utes are in uncharted territory program-wise and were hosting upset minded California on Saturday night in one of the biggest games in school history as ESPN’s College Gameday was on campus. The Utah defense & rushing attack showed up forcing 5 Jared Goff interceptions and Utah running back Devonta Booker rushed for over 200 yards and 2 touchdowns. This was an entertaining game and both teams were very evenly matched but the 6 turnovers for California pretty much gave the Utes the game. Utah was outgained offensively 467 to 435 and turned the ball over 3 times themselves. Utah got the win but if not for the Cal turnovers they might have been beaten at home.
- Clemson Tigers – Defeated Georgia Tech 43-24 in Clemson, South Carolina: This was a classic trap game scenario for the Clemson Tigers who historically have stubbed their toes in situations just like this one. They were fresh off of a big win at home against Notre Dame with oddball Georgia Tech on the way the following week. Boy did the Tigers squash that thought process! Clemson jumped all over the Yellow Jackets from the very beginning and closed out the first quarter with a safety and taking a 19-3 lead. Defensively, Clemson turned in their best performance of the season as they held Georgia Tech to one 3rd down conversion all game and only 71 yards rushing, the fewest since Paul Johnson arrived in Atlanta. Clemson turned the ball over three times but still outgained Georgia Tech 538 to 230. Clemson, in my opinion, made a better argument for the College Football Playoff with this win than they did last week against Notre Dame.
- LSU Tigers – Defeated South Carolina 45-24 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana: This game was originally scheduled to take place in Columbia, South Carolina, but was moved to Death Valley during the week due to the massive amount of flooding in the Carolinas. The Gamecocks played about as well as could be expected given the circumstances and their overall skill level but in the end, LSU was just too much. Heisman hopeful running back Leonard Fournette finished the game with 158 yards and a touchdown but was out-rushed by freshman teammate Derrius Guice who finished with 161 yards and touchdown. Tigers quarterback Brandon Harris, for once, had a good game going 18-for-28 for 228 yards and 2 touchdowns with no interceptions. If Harris turns the corner, this is going to be a championship caliber team.
- Alabama Crimson Tide – Defeated Arkansas 27-14 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama: This game was a lot closer than it should have been for a lot longer than it should have been. The Crimson Tide scored on an 81-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Jakob Coker to rising star Calvin Ridley to take a 10-7 lead late in the 3rd quarter. Points were at a premium for the first three quarters on Saturday night in Tuscaloosa but Bama scored in a frenzy once the final quarter quickly jumping out to a 27-7 lead. Coker finished the game with 262 passing yards with 2 touchdowns but also threw 2 interceptions. Alabama did exactly what they’ve been doing all season long and that’s stop good running backs from getting many yards. Arkansas running back Alex Collins finished the game with only 26 yards on 12 carries with five yards being the longest rush of the day.
- Texas A&M Aggies – BYE WEEK
- Oklahoma Sooners – Lost 17-24 v. Texas in Dallas, Texas: Oh, Oklahoma. Just when you think that Bob Stoops has the Sooners back in the national championship discussion, they prove to us all why they are always the butt of the joke. The Longhorns came out and scored two quick touchdowns in the first quarter and the Sooners never mentally recovered. Oklahoma was held to 67 total rushing yards and without the rushing game, the Sooners’ offense looked very pedestrian and never for one moment during the game passed the eyeball test. From start to finish the Texas Longhorns gave more effort on every play than the Oklahoma Sooners. Once again, Bob Stoops & his team can’t seem to get out of their own way.
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