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College Football Random Thoughts From Around the Country: Photo Finishes

The wild, wacky, and wonderful world of College Football!

Marvin Gentry-USA TODAY Sports

Parity reigned supreme this week as many unranked teams upset their ranked counterparts. We also saw fair share of last second victories that could have gone either way.

Washington 44 Stanford 6 - For a few weeks now, nobody really knew if the Huskies were worthy of the preseason hype surrounding them. Friday night, they answered that query by a total domination of the Cardinal. Stanford was held to a measly 213 total yards that included a microscopic 29 on the ground. Christian McCaffrey was stifled on 12 rushes for 49 yards and was denied the end zone.

On offense, UW does not have any big flashy stars, just a balanced efficient offense that doesn't make mistakes.

Washington head coach Chris Petersen better have UCLA's Jim Mora and OC Kennedy Polamalu on his Christmas card list for they laid the groundwork on how to defeat Stanford by bottling up McCaffrey.

Big props go out to the Huskies faithful. They had that stadium rocking which in no small part, likely aided the Trees 11 penalties for 100 yards.

Clemson 42 Louisville 36 - The Tigers jumped out to a 28-10 lead only to see the Cards fight back to score the next 26. In the fourth quarter, Deshaun Watson's third interception of the night was followed up by a pair of touchdown drives on their final two possessions to take the lead.

Lamar Jackson had 295 yards passing with 1 TD, 1 INT and carried 31 times for an additional 162 yards and 2 TD. Even with the loss, the national media is still in love with Jackson and his team.

It was not the prettiest of games. Penalties (CU 6-61; UL 11-104) and turnovers (CU 5; UL 3) were plentiful. Both teams had over 500 yards of offense.

Tennessee 34 Georgia 31 - Everything was going according to script. A week after ending their 11 game losing streak to their nemesis Florida, the Vols came out flat allowing UGA to score the first 17 points of the game. Then the Maurice Smith led defense began to falter allowing 20 points in the fourth quarter alone.

Jacob Eason set Dawgs hearts aflutter when he connected with Riley Ridley for 47 yards for the go-ahead TD with 10 seconds remaining. The good times were short lived when a helmetless Rico McGraw was called for unsportsmanlike conduct for running off the bench to celebrate on the field. A 20 yard return on the shortened kickoff and a UGA offsides penalty was just enough for Joshua Dobbs to throw a prayer into the end zone, answered by a UT receiver and poor defensive positioning.

North Carolina 37 Florida State 35 - The Tar Heels snapped FSU's 22-game home win streak with 54-yard field goal as time expired. Nick Weiler, had been 4 for 7 on field goal tries on the season and had a blocked PAT on UNC's previous possession.

Deondre Francois led FSU on a 9 play 75 yard drive to seemingly score the game winner with 23 ticks left on the clock. But a Mitch Trubisky 23 yard pass and a pass interference penalty got the Heels into position for the field goal try.

The 'Noles look like a shadow of the team that defeated Ole Miss in Week 1, as they sit squarely in last place in the ACC at 0-2. Dalvin Cook rushed 29 times for 140 and three scores but it is the defense that continues to let Florida State down. They are giving up 35.4 points per game, good for 105th in the nation.

Michigan 14 Wisconsin 7 - Poor little Wisky. Always a bridesmaid. The Badgers had 88 yards passing, 71 rushing, 8 first downs, threw three picks, and punted 9 times. Although Michigan got the W, two different Wolverines kickers missed three field goals of 31, 43, and 40 yards.


Indiana 24 Michigan State 21 (OT) - an inexcusable loss.
Oklahoma State 49 Texas 31 - "But hey! We beat Notre Dame!"
Virginia 34 Duke 20 - "But hey! We beat Notre Dame!"
Washington State 51 Oregon 33 - WOW, what has happened to the Ducks?
Oklahoma 52 TCU 46 - The bipolar dysfunctional soap opera continues in the B12 land.

SEC logo

Alabama 34 Kentucky 6 - 488 yards to 161. Stanley "Boom" Williams who had a combined 304 rushing yards in the past two games, managed only 22 against the Tide.
Florida 13 Vanderbilt 6 - The Gators really need Luke Del Rio back.
Ole Miss 48 Memphis 28 - The Rebs got their revenge from last season but still gave up 28. They are 77th in the nation in scoring defense allowing 29.6 per game. It was still a 6 point game late in the third quarter.
Texas A&M 24 South Carolina 13 - Not a big score but it's a win.
Auburn 58 Louisiana Monroe 7 - The Tigers could be a little dangerous.
LSU 42 Missouri 7 - Are you surprised that LSU routed Mizzou? You shouldn't be. Mizzou is bad and LSU is... well LSU! Are you shocked that Derrius Guice and Darrel Williams combined for 293 yards rushing and 6 TDs in Leonard Fournette's absence? Well yeah, maybe a little bit. Coach O is great at rallying the troops, making things fun and getting his team fired up, but that is a short-lived gimmick. They still have a long way to go.

slow clap

Houston 42 UConn 14 - Wake me when November 17 rolls around.
Arkansas 52 Alcorn State 10 - Arky figured out how to put an end to the Little Rock Curse: schedule a bad FCS team. The Hogs snap a four game losing streak in the mausoleum they call Memorial Stadium.
Ohio State 58 Rutgers 0 - The Buckeyes keep rolling along.
Baylor 45 Iowa State 42 - This win impresses nobody.


Miami 35 Georgia Tech 21 - Everything with Mark Richt is shiny and new. The Hurricanes fans are thinking big thoughts. But we know better. This is Mark Richt.
Nebraska 31 Illinois 16 - The 'Huskers are 5-0 against a weakish schedule. They should move to 7-0 with Indy and Purdue up next. Then it gets real with Wisky and anOSU back-to-back.
Cal 28 Utah 23 - Nobody will accuse the Bears of a dominating defense but on Saturday they stuffed a Ute running back on 4th and goal as the clock hit zeroes.


ronnie harrison drop

You may recall the latest, strangest phenomena going around of guys dropping the ball just before crossing the goal line. If you still have the Bama-UK game on DVR, take a look at the scoop-and-score by Tide safety Ronnie Harrison and let me know if you think he dropped it too soon. Unbelievable.


RANDOM THOUGHT: Overtime play needs an adjustment. Is starting at the 25 yard line really a fair measure of settling ties? I'd like to see the ball moved back to at least the 40 - out of field goal range for most kickers. What do you think?


alabama helmet


  • Southern Cal (2-3) rebounded to dominate Arizona State, 41-20. Fourteen of the Sun Devils points came in garbage time against the twos and threes.
  • WKU (3-2) The Hilltoppers trounced poor little Houston Baptist 50-3.
  • Chattanooga (5-0) The Mocs win at East Tennessee State 37-7. #3 ranked FCS team.
  • Kent State is gonna Kent State. Nick Saban's alma mater fell to 1-4 with a 31-27 loss to Akron.
  • Ole Miss, Tennessee, Auburn, LSU, TAMU, Arky all won.



  • Jacksonville State (3-1) has the week off. They remained the #4 FCS team.
  • South Alabama 42 San Diego State 24 - The Jags (3-2) made history with their first win over a ranked team. Three fourth quarter touchdowns sealed the upset for USA. Beware, LSU (Nov. 9)!
  • Colorado wins again, 47-6 over Oregon State. They play Southern Cal next.



  • Army (3-1) did not play.
  • Air Force 24 Navy 14 - Safety Weston Steelhammer (awesome name!) intercepted two passes while Timothy McVey (unfortunate name) hauled on a 62-yard TD pass to lead the Falcons (4-0) past the Middies (3-1).


GEORGIA – lost to Tennessee
MICHIGAN STATE – lost to Indi-freakin-ana.
MINNESOTA – it was only a matter of time.
TCU – lost to Okie

* crazier things



A way WAY too early look at the College Football Playoff (CFP) picture:

  • ACC - FSU is toast. Clemson takes a commanding lead but the flapping lips cannot get over their Louisville crush.
  • Big Ten - Wisconsin took a punch to the gut leaving the status quo Ohio State and Michigan in charge. Nebraska is 5-0 but they haven't really played anyone yet.
  • Big 12 - This song goes out to the B12.
  • PAC-12 - Washington decimated Stanford vaulting themselves to the top of the heap. If the score was closer, the Cardinal might still have a chance but some other teams are going to have to lose a lot of games for them to get back in the CFP hunt.
  • SEC - The Crimson Tide is still #1. Tennessee and Texas A&M are still alive but these three teams play each other in next couple of weeks.
  • Notre Dame



Krazy Kristi's "SHUT UP!" of the Week goes to San Diego State! How in the heck did the Aztecs get ranked #19? Before the USA game, SDSU had beaten New Hampshire, Cal, and Northern Illinois. Is that all it takes?



  • Nick Saban said Monday that he is "hopeful" that wide receiver ArDarius Stewart will play on Saturday against #16 Arkansas. No other Tide player has injury issues at this point.
  • Ed Orgeron not sure LSU running back Leonard Fournette will play against Florida
  • Michigan has lost their left tackle Grant Newsome for the season due to a "serious" knee injury against Wisconsin.
  • Texas running back Chris Warren was held out of the second half of the Oklahoma State game with a knee injury. He had 106 yards at that point. Fellow running back D'Onta Foreman left the game in the third quarter with an abdomen injury after accumulating 148 yards of his own.
  • Longhorns coach Charlie Strong is again playing some three-card monte trying to deflect attention/blame from himself in demoting defensive coordinator Vance Bedford. Texas gave up 49 points in a loss to the Cowboys and 50 to Cal the week before. One game into last season, Strong removed play-calling duties from offensive coordinator Shawn Watson and gave them to receivers coach Jay Norvell.

tiny football


byu toledo

BYU defeated Toledo 55-53.


BYU running back Squally Canada.


While it is still early to eliminate (especially with the silliness from last season), these teams are winless:

Arkansas State 0-4
Georgia State 0-4
Miami (OH) 0-5
Rice 0-5

Gump 4 Heisman

With the exception of TWO YEARS, the Heisman Trophy voting is basically a hype award. That being the case, we'll bring you "Who Will Win" and "Who Should Win".

  • Who Will Win - Even with the loss to Clemson, Lamar Jackson and Louisville are still getting A LOT of love. Despite winning the game, interceptions are piling up for Clemson QB Deshaun Watson. He had three on Saturday and seven in five games this season. ABC and ESPN look just plain stupid after the Christian McCaffrey overdrive hype only to see him get shut down in Seattle on Friday. But he is not out of it yet. The Cardinal face some really soft defenses the rest of the way. DB/KR Jabrill Peppers is still a darkhorse.
  • Who Should Win - Jackson is still the leader. He has the tenth most passing yards (1,625) and is the nation's third leading rusher (688). He has amassed 84 points, 22 more than the next closest competitor. Plus, he finally performed against a top team.


No rant this week. You're welcome.

Times are CT/ET.

Wednesday, October 5
Georgia Southern at Arkansas State 7/8pm ESPN2 - If you are not into the NL Wild Card.

Thursday, October 6
Temple at Memphis 7pm/8pm ESPN ESPN - This was a good game last season. This year? Not so much.
Western Kentucky at Louisiana Tech 7pm/8pm CBSSN - Bama SOS.

Friday, October 7
Clemson at Boston College 6:30/7:30 ESPN ESPN - It's the ACC, y'all. That's what you get.

Saturday, October 8


LSU at Florida 11am/noon ESPN ESPN - Can the Tigers keep the Coach O Mo going?
Auburn at Mississippi State 11am/noon SECN- Whoda thunk Aubie would be favored in this one?
Tennessee at Texas A&M 2:30pm/3:30pm CBS- Game 3 of the Vols four game SEC gauntlet.
Vanderbilt at Kentucky 3pm/4pm SECN- The Battle to stay out of the Basement!
Georgia at South Carolina 6:30/7:30 SECN- UGA needs to shake off their hangover. SC has given the Dawgs fits over the years.


Texas at Oklahoma 11am/noon FS1 - Two desperate teams face off in the Red River Shootout in the Cotton Bowl stadium in Dallas.
Notre Dame at NC State 11am/noon ABCABC- Some Vegas casinos have the Wolfpack as a -1 fave. Others have it as a pick 'em. Wow.
Houston at Navy 2pm/3pm CBSSN - Come on, Middies!
Virginia Tech at North Carolina 2:30pm/3:30pm ABC or ESPN2 - meh, also-rans.
Colorado at Southern Cal 3pm/4pm PAC12 - The Trojans are 10-0 all time vs. the Buffs.
Washington at Oregon 6:30/7:30 FOX FOX wordmark.svg - The Huskies have not defeated the Ducks since 2003.
Florida State at Miam 7pm/8pm ABCABC- Despite the Noles troubles, this will be a slobber-knocker.
Cal at Oregon State 8pm/9pm PAC12 - Cal is 2-0 vs ranked teams and 1-2 vs unranked and 0-2 in non-neutral road games. Bears QB Davis Webb is the nation's leading passer with 2,143 yards and 22 TDs.

(Nothing else worth mentioning.)


Washington State at Stanford 9:30/10:30 ESPNESPN - Can the Pirate shock the Trees. Prolly not.
UCLA at Arizona State 9:30/10:30 ESPN2 - This was a good game... three seasons ago.

alabama logo script a 100x100


ALABAMA at Arkansas 6pm/7pm ESPN ESPN - HOORAY, we are spared from CBS's torture for one week at least. (I am guessing this will be a Brent Musburger and Jesse Palmer game.) Joe Tessitore, Todd Blackledge, Holly Rowe.

Alabama-Tennessee will be on CBS 2:30pm/3:30pm.