CHRIS DAVIS TAKES A MISSED ‘BAMA FG 100 YARDS TO WIN THE IRON BOWL! That’s the biggest thing that happened this weekend. Maybe the biggest thing that happened any weekend. I still can’t believe it actually happened. I don’t know if anyone does. That wasn’t the only thing that happened though.
A BCS buster got busted, Penn State beat 15Wisconsin, Mississippi State got bowl eligible by beating Ole Miss in OT, Georgia came from 20 down to beat Georgia Tech in 2OT, Iowa State came back from 24 down and beat West Virginia in 3OT and Arkansas almost knocked off 17LSU in Baton Rouge. Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving!
How I Fared: This week I ended up 7-4, bringing me to 57-33 overall. That is a total of 90, meaning I’ll pick 10 more next week to get to an even 100 games. Next week is conference championship week, meaning we are almost finished with college football. Hopefully we’ll get some more excitement next weekend.
4Auburn 34 1Alabama 28; If you didn’t see the ending to this game, just watch Sports Center for about 10 minutes. This was the most exciting ending to a game I have ever seen, and maybe the most exciting ending to a college football game ever. Chris Davis’ 100-yard return of a missed Alabama FG at the end of regulation is something I still don’t really believe happened. Before I get into my analysis, I want to say I think Auburn earned that win because of how they played, not because of Alabama mistakes. But… Alabama made a lot of mistakes. Cade Foster did miss 3 field goals, but I definitely don’t fault him for the loss. If I had to put the blame on someone, it would be Nick Saban. In my opinion, that was the worst I’ve seen him coach. His biggest mistake was being at the Auburn 13 yard line with a 4th and 1 and not kicking a field goal. Three points there would have put the Tide up 10 points with 5 and a half minutes to play. Because there is no such thing as “what could have been,” who knows if that would have meant a win for Alabama. What we do know is that it would have put a lot more pressure on Auburn. I also don’t understand attempting a 57-yard FG instead of putting the ball in the hands of your 2-time National Champion Senior QB with 1 second on the clock. A second that wouldn’t even be a factor if TJ Yeldon had taken about one tenth of a second longer to go out of bounds. It’s always fun to speculate. AJ McCarron had an amazing game and, at least to me, made a great case for the Heisman. The biggest play being a 99-yard TD to Amari Cooper pass after Auburn pinned them on their own one-yard line. This game became an instant classic, so if you didn’t get the chance to see it, I’m sure you’ll have plenty of chances. What a game.
3Ohio State 42 Michigan 41; Lucky Bucks. Right now they are celebrating a very possible National Championship bid because of Auburn’s big win. But they were so close to being out of it. As you can see by the score, this was a close game. Michigan was almost able to pull the second biggest update of the day. Much like Nick Saban’s decision will be questioned, so will Brady Hoke’s. With 32 seconds left in the 4th quarter, Devin Gardner hit Devin Funchess for a 2-yard score and put the Wolverines a PAT away from overtime with the number three team in the country. But the offense stayed on the field and decided to go for the win instead of the tie. Unfortunately for Michigan, the conversion was no good, leaving Michigan one point down with 30 seconds left. The Wolverines were unable to recover the onside kick, meaning all Ohio State had to do was take a knee and the game was over. Braxton Miller was 6/15 for 133 yards, 2TD and an INT and rushed for 153 yards and 3TD. Carlos Hyde also had 226 yards rushing and a TD. Devin Smith and Jeff Heuerman each caught TD passes for the Buckeyes. Devin Gardner was 32/45 for for 451 yards and 4TDs and a rush TD. Jeremy Gallon, Jake Butt, Drew Dileo and Devin Funchess all caught TD passes. Fitzgerald Toussaint also rushed for a TD. Michigan outgained Ohio State 603 yards to 526 yards. The decision to go for two will be questioned for a long time, but in my opinion, I think it was the right thing to do, but it might have been a little too reckless with so much on the line.
5Missouri 28 21Texas A&M 21; Missouri’s win over Texas A&M secured their berth in the SEC Championship game. This was made easier because of Johnny Manziel’s very un-Manziel game. He was 24/35 for only 195 yards and a TD to Derel Walker. It was his worst statistical game of his career. Mizzou QB James Franklin had a very good game, going 18/28 for 233 yards and 2TDs. Missouri was able to outgain Texas A&M but almost 100 yards. Dorial Green-Beckham and L’Damian Washington were on the receiving end of those two touchdowns, with Henry Josey and Marcus Murphy each rushed for TDs for the Tigers. Tra Carson and Ben Malena provided rushing TDs for the Aggies. The last two games of the Aggie’s regular season were losses and were also very unimpressive statistically for Manziel. The chances for him to win the Heisman have fallen greatly. Missouri will face Auburn in the SEC Championship game on Saturday. They have a talented team and a good chance to win, of course, that is barring another Auburn Miracle.
San Jose State 62 16Fresno State 52 (Friday); A BCS buster got busted. Leaving only Northern Illinois left to be the last busters. The quarterbacks in this game had some amazing numbers. SJSU QB David Fales was 37/45 for 547 yards and 6TDs and he also rushed for a TD. Fresno State QB Derek Carr was 38/50 for 519 yards, 6TDs and an INT. This game clearly wasn’t for those who liked defense. The Spartans outgained the Bulldogs by almost 100 yards (736-646). Most of the scoring happened in the first half. SJSU was up 42-41 at the break. Fresno State receiver Davante Adams had 264 receiving yards and 3TDs. While this loss doesn’t take Fresno State out of the MWC Championship game, it does take them out of the BCS. This was another exciting game that highlighted the weekend.
Mississippi State 17 Ole Miss 10 OT (Thursday); This was a great Egg Bowl, especially if you are a Mississippi State fan. The Bulldogs had to win this game to get bowl eligible. They also had to win last week to have a chance and they were able to beat Arkansas in OT. Since that worked so well for them, they decided to do it once again. Maybe one of the most interesting statistics of the game belongs to Bo Wallace, the Ole Miss QB. He threw 3INTs in the first half. He had only thrown 6 this season prior to this game. The only Ole Miss TD came when Anthony Standifer recovered a blocked punt in the end zone. Each kicker was 1/2 in the game. Mississippi State’s miss came at the end of regulation for a second week in a row. In OT, the Bulldog’s Dak Prescott rushed for a TD, and Bo Wallace fumbled the ball to end the game. This means Mississippi State is bowl eligible and Ole Miss’s season that started so well will end in disappointment.
Georgia 41 Georgia Tech 34 2OT; When I saw the final score of this game, I was amazed. Halfway through the second quarter, Georgia Tech was up 20-0 and I thought there was no way Georgia could come back with a back up QB at the helm. But I was wrong. Georgia scored 17 unanswered points before the Yellow Jackets scored again. It was now a 10-point game with 10:34 to play in regulation. After a Todd Gurley rush TD, Georgia was able to pick of GT QB Vad Lee, and that led to the game tying FG with 4:17 to go. That score would hold and the game would go into OT. Gurley would be the hero for Georgia, scoring on a 6-yard run in the first OT and on a 25-yard run in the 2nd. Georgia Tech would make it to the Georgia 6 in but were unable to come up with a TD, giving Georgia a huge rivalry win. Senior QB Aaron Murray didn’t play in this game and won’t be able to play in a bowl because of his torn ACL.
17LSU 31 Arkansas 27 (Friday); I don’t even know how to describe how proud I am of this Arkansas team. My roommate’s family and I made the trip to Baton Rouge to see this game. This game is only second to the 2010 Alabama game in games I’ve been to. Had the Hogs played like this all season, I’m sure they would have beat Rutgers, Florida, Ole Miss and possibly Texas A&M. The team that took the field had a spark that makes me believe there is something special about them. They knew they could beat this team, and they came so close. It was great to be there for the seniors’ last game. This senior class has been through the best of times and the worst of times. They were freshmen when the Hogs went to the Sugar Bowl and nearly beat Ohio State, sophomores when the Razorbacks took down Kansas State in the Cotton Bowl, juniors when it all came crashing down, and now seniors who have helped start the rebuilding process. I want to say thank you to all of the awesome seniors, you will be missed. And also thanks for teaching the underclassmen what Razorback football is all about.
Now, as far as this game goes, the Hogs were firing on all cylinders. The biggest thing I saw in this game that I hadn’t seen in a while was how strong they went into the half. In the last few games, they had been close but had given up a score right before the break. In this game, Zach Hocker kicked a FG to put Arkansas up 17-14 as the second quarter expired. Kiero Small ran for a TD in the first quarter and Brandon Allen hit Hunter Henry for a 9-yard TD in the 2nd. Hocker also kicked a FG in the third and Henry caught another TD. Sadly, both of Hocker’s FGs were 20 and 28 yards. Brandon Allen threw a costly INT in the end zone after Korliss Marshall set up the Hogs in LSU territory with a 32-yard rush. Arkansas would cause a fumble and get to the LSU 3, but ended up kicking a FG. Going into the 4th quarter, Arkansas was up 27-21. That score held for 10 minutes before LSU had to kick a FG after QB Zach Mettenberger got hurt. When I saw the way he got up, I wanted to cry. I was almost positive he had torn his ACL (which was later confirmed). I hated to see that happen, especially to a senior. And, yes, I am an Arkansas fan, and it might sound strange that I was sad that the star QB for LSU got hurt. But I also know how a team and fans respond when a star goes down with the game on the line. The crowd finally got deafening with about 5 minutes to go in the game and I had a sinking feeling that there was no way LSU was going to lose. And, unfortunately, that feeling was right. Even after pinning the Tigers on their own 1, LSU had plays of 16, 11 and then backup QB Anthony Jennings broke a 21-yard run to the Arkansas 49 yard line. 1st and 10: incomplete pass. 2nd and 10: completed pass for no gain. Timeout LSU with 1:22 on the clock and the Arkansas fans are as loud as they’ve been the whole game. 3rd and 10 from the Arkansas 49: 49-yard TD pass from Anthony Jennings to Travin Dural… and the crowd goes wild. Arkansas would fumble on their next possession, securing the win for the 17th ranked Tigers and a 0-8 SEC season for the Hogs. Almost every Razorback fan stayed as the team left the field. We sang the fight song and alma mater and let the team know how proud we were. The long drive was worth it, and I would have sat in a car for 11 more hours to see that game.
One last thing, I should not have gone to Bryant Denny Stadium first. It ruined all other stadiums (except DWRRS, which is my favorite) for me.
2Florida State 37 Florida 7
10South Carolina 31 6Clemson 17
8Stanford 27 25Notre Dame 20
9Baylor 41 TCU 38
11Michigan State 14 Minnesota 3
12Arizona State 58 Arizona 21
13Oregon 36 Oregon State 35 (Friday)
14Northern Illinois 33 Western Michigan 14
Penn State 31 15Wisconsin 24
19UCF 23 USF 20
22UCLA 35 23USC 14
UNLV 45 San Diego State 19
Washington 27 Washington State 17 (Friday)
Marshall 59 East Carolina 28 (Friday)
Iowa 38 Nebraska 17 (Friday)
Akron 31 Toledo 28 (Friday)
Iowa State 52 West Virginia 44 3OT
Tennessee 27 Kentucky 14
Vanderbilt 23 Wake Forest 21
Southern Miss 62 UAB 27
Virginia Tech 16 Virginia 6
Northwestern 37 Illinois 34
Western Kentucky 34 Arkansas State 31
Stats and Scores from ESPN.com