Week 8 of the college football season has come to a close and what a week it was! Upsets occurred left right and center. Sure, there were some blowouts as ranked teams beat up on lower ranked or unranked opponents, but there were some huge surprises as well.
Numbers 3, 6, 7 8, 9, 11, 15, and 20 were among that that group. In addition, #22 Florida lost to a higher ranked team and Northwestern (among the extra teams) lost to a lower ranking team. As a result, we can expect all kinds of movement in the upcoming poll.
The numbers on the right are for the Associated Press, the Coaches’ Poll, the BCS standings and the CBSSports.com 126. NR means that the team was Not Ranked by that particular poll.
1/1/1/1 Alabama (7-0) The Tide predictably whupped the Arkansas Razorbacks (3-5) 52-0. Nothing unexpected here, AJ McCarron tossed three TD passes in three quarters of play. Kenyan Drake rushed for two TDs on eight carries for 104 yards and freshman Derrick Henry rushed for 11 yards on six carries including one 80-yard TD run in the final minute. Alabama rolled up 532 net yards to Arkansas’ 256.
2/2/2/2 Oregon (7-0) The Ducks rolled over the Washington State Cougars (4-4) 62-38. Connor Halliday threw 89 passes and completed 58 of them for 557 yards and four touchdowns for the Cougars but even that wasn’t enough to slow down the Oregon juggernaut. His four INTs didn’t help. Marcus Mariota threw for 327 yards and two TDs and scored a third on the ground. He, too, proved fallible as he fumbled twice—his first two turnovers of the season—and both lead to first-half touchdowns for Wazzou. Xaviar Cooper returned one of those fumbles 29 yards for a score. Terrance Mitchell returned one of Halliday’s INTs 51 yards for an Oregon TD. Washington State ran 101 plays for a net 559 yards and Oregon ran 77 for 719 net yards in a game that must have resembled a tennis match.
3/4/3/5 Clemson (6-1) The Tigers got a whipping from the #5 Florida State Seminoles (6-0) 51-14. Jameis Winston completed 22 of 34 passes for 444 yards and three TDs and ran for another. Tajh Boyd lost a fumble in the first quarter that was returned by Mario Edwards 37 yards for a Seminole TD. Boyd also tossed two INTs as Florida State dominated on both sides of the line.
4/3/5/3 Ohio State (7-0) The Buckeyes continued their winning ways downing the Hawkeyes of Iowa (4-3) 34-24. The Buckeyes trailed 17-10 at the half but stormed back behind the running of Carlos Hyde who finished the day with 24 carries for 149 yards and two TDs. Braxton Miller tossed two TD passes as he completed 22 of 27 for 222 yards and also rushed for 102 yards on 18 carries.
5/5/4/6 Florida State (6-0) The Seminoles trashed the #3 Clemson Tigers (6-1) 51-14. See above for more.
6/8/6/20 LSU (6-2) The Tigers got upset by the Rebels of Ole Miss (4-3) 27-24 when Andrew Ritter converted on a 41-yard field goal as time expired. The Tigers trailed 17-0 early in the third quarter but managed to tie the game with 3:19 remaining when Zach Mettenberger connected with Jarvis Landry for a 4-yard TD. Mettenberger had a rough day as he tossed three INTs including two in the endzone during the first half when LSU did move the ball well against a very inexperienced Ole Miss defense. Seems the rebels learned just enough during that first half, however. Mettenberger finished the day 19 of 33 for 274 yards and the tying touchdown. Bo Wallace, completed 30 of 39 for 346 yards had no INTs or TDs. Jaylen Walton rushed for 105 yards and two Rebel TDs.
7/7/8/11 Texas A&M (5-2) The Aggies lost a close one to the #24 Auburn Tigers (6-1) 45-41. It was no surprise that Johnny Manzeil and the Aggies’ offense scored 41 points. And it shouldn’t have been a surprise that the Aggies’ defense gave up 45. That both happened on the same day did spell defeat for the Aggies. Manziel completed 28 of 38 passes for 454 yards and four TDs—all of them to Mike Evans who had 287 yards receiving on 11 catches. Manziel also had 48 yards rushing—once you deducted the yards lost in sacks—and scored once on the ground. (His two INTs didn’t help the Aggies’ cause.) Still, it wasn’t enough. Auburn’s Tre Mason rushed 27 times for 178 yards and one TD and Nick Marshall 20 times for 100 yards and two TDs. Marshall also completed 11 of 23 passes for 236 yards and two TDs. Manziel hurt his throwing shoulder when he was sacked early in the fourth quarter and sat out a series as the trainers worked on him. When he came back, it was obvious that he was in considerable pain, but he still orchestrated a 70-yard drive that put the Aggies ahead—albeit temporarily—by a score of 41-38.
8/6/9/7 Louisville (6-1) The Cardinals fell to the UCF Knights (5-1) 38-35 on Friday evening. Blake Bortles (who?) out dueled Teddy Bridgewater and tossed a 2-yard touchdown pass to Jeff Godfrey with 26 seconds remaining to carry the Knights over the Cardinals. UCF trailed 28-7 midway through the third quarter but scored three TDs in a little over 7 minutes to tie it and then took the lead on a 34-yard Shawn Moffitt field goal. Louisville went reclaimed the lead with three minutes to go when Dominique Brown scored his second TD of the night from 15 yards out. The Knights went 75 yards to re-retake the lead and then held off the Cardinals final desperate attempt. Bridgewater completed 29 of 38 for 341 yards and a pair of TDs and James Quick returned a fumble 30 yards for a Louisville score in the losing cause. UCF’s Storm Johnson (love that name!) had 18 carries for 109 yards and a TD and also scored on a 20-yard pass from Bortles. William Stanback also scored two rushing TDs for the Knights.
9/10/7/12 UCLA (5-1) The Bruins lost to the #13 Stanford Cardinal (6-1) …again…24-10. The Cardinal figured the best way to slow down the high scoring Bruins (averaging 45 points per game) was not to let them have the ball. To that end, they handed the ball to Tyler Gaffney again and again. Gaffney carried the ball 36 times for 171 yards and two TDs. Brett Hundley completed 24 of 39 passes for 192 yards, one TD and two INTs for the Bruins who had the ball for just 22:49 compared to the Cardinal 37:11.
10/11/11/13 Miami (Fla.) (6-0) The Hurricanes needed a TD with 16 seconds on the clock to defeat the North Carolina Tar Heels (1-5) 27-23 on Thursday night. Miami trailed 23-13 in the fourth quarter before Dallas Crawford (33 carries for 137 yards) scored twice on short runs. Ladarius Gunter returned a blocked field goal 67 yards in the second quarter for a Miami TD. Miami QB Stephen Morris completed 19 of 35 attempts for 322 yards but also had four TDs matching his season total. Marquise Williams (4 of 7 for 98 yards and one INT) and Bryn Renner (28 of 36 for 297 yards and one INT) each tossed a TD pass for the Tar Heels while Eric Ebron had eight receptions for 199 yards.
11/9/12/17 South Carolina (5-2) The Gamecocks lost on a final play field goal by Michael Palardy of the Tennessee Volunteers (4-3) 23-21. South Carolina’s Connor Shaw suffered a knee injury that resulted in his sitting on the sidelines during the final five minutes. Shaw had been just 7 of 21 for 161 yards, one TD and one INT and 19 carries for 78 yards and a TD up to that point. South Carolina trailed 17-7 at the half but rallied to take a 21-17 lead before Palardy kicked a 33-yard field goal to tie and the 19-yarder to win as time expired.
12/12/13/9 Baylor (6-0) The Bears routed the Cyclones of Iowa State (1-5) 71-7. The Cyclones lone score came with 47 second left on the clock. They then had to kick off. At which point Corey Coleman returned the kick 97 yards for the final TD of the game and giving the Bears the 70th of their 71 points. In five home games, Baylor has averaged 70.5 points per game. Levi Martin returned a punt 52 yards for a TD, Bryce Petty completed 23 of 31 passes for 343 yards and two TDs—both to Antwan Goodley—and rushed for a third, and Lache Seastrunk rushed 18 times for 112 yards and two TDs. Aaron Jones kicked three field goals and six extra points (Kyle Peterson kicked two and had one blocked) and seven different Bears scored TDs.
13/13/10/4 Stanford (6-1) The Cardinal beat the #9 UCLA Bruins (5-1) 24-10. More above.
14/14/14/22 Missouri (7-0) The Tigers roughed up the #22 Florida Gators (4-3) 36-17. The Tigers lost their starting QB James Franklin to a dislocated shoulder last week but his replacement, Maty Mauk was up to the job. His second pass completion (on his second attempt) went for a TD to Buddy Sasser. Mauk also ran for a 17-yard TD for the final Mizzou score. In between, Andrew Bagget connected on field goals of 43, 19, 39, 33, and 28 yards, Henry Josey rushed 18 times for 136 yards and a TD and the Tigers’ defense shut down the Florida offense limiting the Gators to just 151 net yards. Solomon Patton returned a kickoff 100 yards for a Gator TD.
15/16/15/8 Georgia (4-3) The Bulldogs fell to the Vanderbilt Commodores (4-3) 31-27. Trailing 27-14 in the fourth quarter, Vanderbilt reeled off 17 unanswered points. An already depleted Georgia squad lost one of its key defensive players on targeting call and had saw the final Vandy drive extended on another. (That player was allowed to remain in the game after review.) Shaq Wiggins had a TD on a 39-yard interception return and Aaron Murray scored twice on the ground for the Bulldogs. Vandy held Murray to just 16 of 28 passing for 114 yards and no TDs.
16/15/16/19 Texas Tech (7-0) The Red Raiders remained undefeated as they beat the Mountaineers of West Virginia (3-4) 37-27. In an up-and-down battle, the Red Raiders trailed 27-16 in the third quarter before scoring 21 unanswered points for the win. Davis Webb completed 36 of 50 for 462 yards and two TDs to Jace Amaro and scored on a pair of one-yard runs for Tech. Dreamius Smith scored twice on the ground for the Mountaineers.
17/19/20/20 Fresno State (6-0) The Bulldogs trounced the Rebels of UNLV (4-3) 38-14. Derek Carr completed 33 of 48 for 412 yards and four TDs to Devante Adams (8 catches for 221 yards). Carr became only the third Fresno QB with 10,000 yards passing and set career school records for completions (849) and touchdowns (85)—and they’ve six more regular season games to go.
18/18/17/14 Oklahoma (6-1) The Sooners had little trouble defeating the Kansas Jayhawks (2-4) 34-19. Sure, Kansas got out to a 13-0 lead in the second quarter, but after that…. The Sooners’ defense held Jake heaps to just five (5) completions on 13 pass attempts for 16 (!) yards. They also scored a safety. And the Sooners’ special teams’ Aaron Colvin returned a blocked extra point for two points. Blake Bell tossed two TD passes and wide receiver Lacoltan Bester tossed a 49-yard TD pass to wide receiver Sterling Shepard.
19/20/18/24 Virginia Tech (6-1) The Hokies had this weekend off.
20/25/24/16 Washington (4-3) The Huskies got demolished by the Sun Devils of Arizona State (6-2) 53-24. The Sun Devils’ defense held Bishop Sankey to just 22 yards and one TD on 13 carries while limiting Keith Price just 16 completions of 39 attempts for 217 yards and two TDs. Meanwhile Marion Grice gained 158 yards and scored two TDs—he got a third on a 15-yard Taylor Kelly pass—on 21 carries for Arizona State. Taylor Kelly scored on two one-yard runs and Zane Gonzalez connected on field goals of 26, 22, 36, and 21 yards.
21/17/21/25 Oklahoma State (6-1) The Cowboys beat the TCU Horned Frogs (3-4) 24-10. The Cowboys did NOT play a clean game. Starting QB J.W. Walsh threw two interceptions in the first half before being replaced by Clint Chef. Chef went 10 of 25 for 178 yards and threw an interception of his own but led the Cowboys on two scoring drives (one TD one field goal) in the second quarter. Added to Josh Stewart’s first quarter 95-yard punt return that gave the Cowboys a 17-0 halftime advantage that they would not relinquish.
22/22/22/18 Florida (4-3) The Gators got manhandled by the #14 Missouri Tigers (7-0) 36-17. See above for more.
23/23/19/23 Northern Illinois (7-0) The Huskies play at the home of the Central Michigan Chippewas (3-5) 38-17. Jordan Lynch rushed 32 times for 316 yards—a record for an FBS quarterback. He scored three TDs on the ground. He also completed 20 of 30 pass attempts for 155 yards and a TD.
24/NR/25/NR Auburn (6-1) The Tigers handed the #7 Aggies of Texas A&M (5-2) their second loss in a close one 45-41. See above for more.
25/NR/NR/NR Wisconsin (5-2) The Badgers had no problem beating the Fighting Illini of Illinois (3-3) 56-32. Melvin Gordon gained 142 yards and scored three touchdowns on 17 carries and James White scored two rushing TDs and one TD receiving for the Badgers.
NR/21/NR/NR Nebraska (5-1) The Cornhuskers had the week off.
NR/24/23/15 Michigan (6-1) The Wolverines outscored the Indiana Hoosiers (3-4) 63-47. Fitzgerald Toussaint scored on runs of 2, 7, 1, and 27 yards; Devin Gardner had TD runs of 13, 6 and 6 yards and also tossed TD passes to Jeremy Gallon of 21 and 50 yards for Michigan. Tre Roberson tossed TD passes of 33 and 5 yards (to Shane Wynn) and 67 yards to Kofi Hughes and ran for another TD for the Hoosiers.
NR/NR/NR/21 Northwestern (4-3) The Wildcats got beat by the Minnesota Gophers (5-2) 20-17. James Manuel’s 24-yard interception return gave the Gophers a third-quarter 14-7 lead they would never relinquish. David Cobb carried the ball 20 times for 103 yards for Minnesota.