Two weeks down in the first season of the College Football Playoff. There were a couple big games this weekend: Oregon came back to beat Michigan State, Virginia Tech upset Ohio State in front of the biggest crowd ever in Columbus, USC once again upset Stanford, and Arkansas snapped their 10-game losing streak. That last one might not be that big of a deal to most people, but here in Fayetteville, it’s HUGE. Let’s get right to it then, onto the games of week 2!
How I Fared: (4-2, 9-3)
3Oregon 46 7Michigan State 27; Going into the half Michigan State was leading Oregon 24-18 and it looked like Sparty might actually be able to win this game. But a nine-point lead is never something to be comfortable with when you are playing a team that can score as quickly as the Ducks. All of MSU’s scoring came in the span of 15 minutes of game time: 24 points in the second quarter and a FG in the beginning of the 3rd. QB Connor Cook was 29/47 for 343 yard, 2TDs and 2INTs (both of which led to TDs for the Ducks). Toney Lippett had 133 receiving yards and a TD with Josiah Price catching the other. Jeremy Langford also rushed for a TD for the Spartans. After a FG early in the 3rd quarter, Oregon rattled off 28 unanswered points. Duck’s QB Marcus Mariota was 17/28 for 318 yards and 3TDs. The leading receiver was Devon Allen with 3 receptions for 110 yards and 2TDs (one for 70 yards and the other for 24 yards). Keanon Lowe also caught a TD pass. On the ground, Royce Freeman rushed for 2TDs in the 4th quarter and Thomas Tyner ran in the first score of the game. Cook’s second INT came in the 4th quarter at the Oregon 4-yard line. The Ducks drove 96 yards in an unheard of (for Oregon) 6 and a half minute drive for the final dagger to the Spartans. This game is a big one when it comes down to the playoff. Even though Michigan State lost, if they finish their season unbeaten they could be put into the playoff over another team with a weak non-conference schedule.
Virginia Tech 35 8Ohio State 21; Ohio State becomes this season’s first ranked team to fall to an unranked opponent. Though this was an upset, it really wasn’t that surprising. After losing Heisman hopeful QB Braxton Miller, many people’s expectations for Ohio State took a hit. The Buckeyes started slow for the second week in a row, going into the half facing a 14-point deficit. It seemed they would be able to pull out the win, evening the score at 21 early in the 4th, but they were unable to take the lead. Hokie QB Michael Brewer was 23/36 for 199 yards, 2TDs and 2INTs. The first passing TD went to Sam Rogers with less than a minute to go in the first half and the second went to Bucky Hodges to take the lead in the 4th quarter. Shai McKenzie and Marshawn Williams each had rushing TDs in the first quarter for the Hokies. On the other side, OSU QB JT Barrett was 9/29 for 219 yards, a 53-yard TD to Michael Thomas, 3INTs and a rush TD. Ezekiel Elliott ran for the game-tying TD in the 4th quarter for the Buckeyes. The game sealing play for the Hokies came with a little less than a minute left in the game. Donovan Riley picked off JT Barrett and took it 63 yards for the TD. If this game is any indicator for the coming season of Ohio State, things aren’t looking too good in Columbus.
11UCLA 42 Memphis 35; For the second week in a row, UCLA came very close to being upset. Do they really deserve to be ranked in the top 15? The people who make the AP Poll still say they do, but if they don’t make a statement against a hurting Texas team, they might start dropping. The Bruins and Tigers went back and forth the whole game. It seemed that Memphis might take the game after gaining momentum from a pick 6 by Fritz Etienne that tied the game early in the 4th quarter, but UCLA QB Brett Hundley hit Thomas Duarte for a 33-yard TD that would turn out to be the game winner. Hundley was 33/44 for 396 yards, 3TDs and an INT. Thomas Duarte had 4 receptions for 110 yards and 2TDs and Kenneth Walker caught a 62-yard TD as well. Paul Perkins rushed for 2TDs and Myles Jack added another rushing score. For the Tigers, QB Paxton Lynch was 27/41 for 305 yards, a TD pass to Brandon Hayes and a rush TD. Doroland Dorceus and Sam Craft each added rush TDs for Memphis. Each team was significantly penalized: UCLA had 9 for 85 yards and Memphis had 10 for 110 yards. It is yet to be seen if UCLA is really as good as their ranking. Maybe we will find out next weekend.
14USC 13 Stanford 10; Once again, USC beats Stanford. I didn’t see this one because it was on at the same time as the Arkansas game, so I didn’t see any of the Pat Haden stuff live. And while that’s slightly interesting, I don’t watch football to see ADs argue with refs. So let’s talk about the actual game. It wasn’t a high octane scoring game, but it could have major implications. Stanford had a few missed chances in this game. USC was able to make the big plays and came out with the win. Trojan QB Cody Kessler was 15/22 for 135 yards, Javorius Allen rushed for 154 yards on 23 carries, but the Trojans only TD came from Justin Davis in the 1st quarter. Kicker Andre Heidari was 2/2 on FGs: the first at the end of the 3rd quarter and the second, that would turn out to be the game winner, with 2:30 left to play from 53 yards. All of Stanford’s points came in the 2nd quarter. QB Kevin Hogan was 22/30 for 285 yards and the Cardinal’s lone TD on a 2-yard rush by Patrick Skov. Kicker Jordan Williamson hit a 33-yard FG right before the half, but missed a 49 yarder in the 1st quarter and a 26 yarder in the 4th. Kevin Hogan also fumbled twice: one came courtesy of JR Tavai with 19 seconds left in the game. Stanford also had a chance in the 3rd quarter when they had 4th and 1 at the USC 3 yard line, but couldn’t convert. Stanford kind of gave this one away, but USC made the plays they needed to.
20Kansas State 32 Iowa State 28; The Cyclones got beat by FCS school North Dakota State by 20 last weekend. It is possible that the Buffaloes are really that good, but it makes me worry about this Kansas State team. The Wildcats took a 13-0 lead then allowed 4 unanswered TDs (3 of which Jarvis West was a part of). KSU did end the game with 3 consecutive TDs of their own to win the game by 4 points. But I guess if you had to choose a half to do better in, it would be the second half. Wildcat QB Jake Waters (who grew up rooting for the Cyclones) was 16/29 for 239 yards and 138 rush yards with 2TDs. Charles Jones also scored two TDs on the ground. Tyler Lockett had 136 receiving yards as well. Randall Evans made a key INT with only 9:15 left in the game. Iowa State QB Sam Richardson was 21/30 for 185 yards, a TD and an INT. Jarvis West threw a TD to Allen Lazard, caught a TD and ran a punt back 82 yards for a score. DeVondrick Nealy rushed for a TD for Iowa State too. Kansas State is off next week and will need to make some adjustments.
21South Carolina 33 East Carolina 23; This was South Carolina head coach Steve Spurrier’s 200th SEC win. The Gamecocks were able to bounce back from last week’s embarrassing loss to Texas A&M. I wouldn’t really call this a great win, but it’s still a win. This team has a long way to go though. SCAR got off to a slow start and went into the half only leading by 4. They outscored ECU 13-7 in the second half to secure their win. The player of the game for the Gamecocks was kicker Elliot Fry who was 4/4 on FGs and hit 3PATs, scoring a total of 15 points. QB Dylan Thompson was 25/38 for 266 yards, a TD and an INT. KJ Brent caught the TD and Mike Davis rushed for 101 yards and 2 scores. For the Pirates, QB Shane Carden was 32/46 for 321 yards, a TD and 2INTs. Cam Worthy caught the TD pass and the leading receiver was Justin Hardy with 133 receiving yards. Chris Hairston rushed for a TD and kicker Warren Harvey was 3/4 on FGs. The two INTs led to 10 points for South Carolina in the 3rd quarter. I’m really worried about the offense of this South Carolina team. I don’t think they are going to do to well in the SEC this season if they don’t start scoring more points.
21North Carolina 31 San Diego State 27; My Mountain West favorite is starting off the year in a very good way. While they did lose this game, they hung with the 21st ranked team in the country until 14 seconds left. I’ve been high on the Aztecs since last season, and I’m glad they got some good exposure this past weekend. Unfortunately QB Quinn Kaehler had an off night, throwing 3INTs, one going for a 100-yard pick-6 and another coming in the endzone with 14 seconds left in the game by Tim Scott. Besides that, he was 23/39 for 341 yards and a 56-yard TD to Eric Judge. Donnel Pumphrey rushed for 100 yards and 2TDs. Kicker Donny Hageman was 2/2 on FGs from 49 and 40 yards. For UNC, QB Marquise Williams was 20/29 for 255 and 2TDs. Mack Hollins had 2 receptions for 110 yards (one was a 91-yard TD). The other TD was caught by Quinshad Davis with Eligha Hood also rushing for a TD. The Aztecs outgained the Tar Heels 509-394 yards and out-possessed them 37:26 to 22:34. I’m looking for SDSU to have a very good season. And I don’t think this win is going to hurt UNC too bad.
Arizona 26 UTSA 23 (Thurs); A Thursday night thriller in San Antonio. Kind of. At least it looks like it was. It was just a 4-point lead for Arizona at the half. The Wildcats would build on that in the 3rd and it would be just enough to come out on top. Arizona QB Anu Solomon was 17/32 for 231 yards and an 85-yard TD to Cayleb Jones who had 143 total receiving yards. Nick Wilson carried the ball 30 times for 174 yards and a TD. Kicker Casey Skowron hit 4 FGs on the night to secure the game for Arizona. For the Roadrunners, QB Tucker Carter was 22/33 for 228 yards, a TD and an INT with 1:20 left in the game. David Morgan II caught the TD with Kam Jones and David Glasco II each running for a TD. UTSA also recorded a safety in the second quarter. This close win by Arizona coupled with a 1-point win over Northern Colorado makes me extremely worried for this season’s UNLV team.
Texas Tech 30 UTEP 26; If you are wondering if I am doing this game mainly to scout Texas Tech, you are absolutely right. It just also happened to be have been a close game. After barely beating Central Arkansas last week, I was wondering if it was a fluke, but it turns out it wasn’t. Texas Tech is not as good as I thought they were going to be. My biggest concern for when the Hogs go to Lubbock is that the Red Raiders like to throw the ball, and we don’t do too well against the long passes. But that’s a story for next week. This week the UTEP Miners came close to beating Texas Tech. It took a TD with just over 2 and a half minutes left and UTEP turning the ball over on downs at the 29-yard line with1:23 left for TTU to get the win on the road. TTU QB Davis Webb was 17/31 for 278 yards and 3TD, all to Bradley Marquez. Jakeem Grant tallied up 150 receiving yards and Justin Stockton rushed for 135 yards, including a 75-yard TD run. UTEP QB Jameill Showers was 9/25 for 116 yards with Aaron Jones rushing for 147 yards and 2TDs. Jeremiah Laufasa also rushed for a TD. Another close game to not that great of an opponent doesn’t bode well for the Red Raiders.
New Mexico State 34 Georgia State 31; If this is your first season reading, there is something I need to tell you: I have a soft spot for the Sun Belt. I think they are underrated and never get any coverage and that makes me sad. So I try to do a lot of SBC games. (I don’t really understand why the SBC now contains New Mexico State and Idaho, but hey, why not?) This conference game pitted the Aggies of NMSt against the Panthers of GSU. And it was a good one. The Panthers had a 24-17 lead going into the 4th quarter but the Aggies were able to win this one at the wire, when QB Tyler Rogers hit Teldrick Morgan for an 11-yard TD with 15 seconds left in the game. For the game, Tyler Rogers was 25/44 for 241 yards, 3TDs and an INT. Teldrick Morgan had another receiving TD to go along with the game-winner and Joseph Matthews caught the other TD. Kicker Maxwell Johnson was 2/2 on FGs from 41 and 30 yards. For Georgia State QB Nick Arbuckle was 21/37 for 294 yards, a 63-yard TD to Donovan Harden, an INT and a rush TD. Krysten Hammon had 25 carries for 123 yards and 2TDs. Kicker Will Lutz hit a 38-yard FG early in the game for the Panthers. Look out for a good year in the Sun Belt, you’ll at least be a little familiar with the teams when I’m done with you.
Washington 59 Eastern Washington 52; A shootout in Washington. Big time. Eastern Washington’s QB might have thrown 7TDs, but the one Washington’s QB threw was the difference. Huskies QB Cyler Miles was 14/24 for 180 yards and a TD to John Ross and 3 rush TDs. Lavon Coleman rushed for 118 yards and a TD, Shaq Thompson rushed for a TD and Dwayne Washington ran for two scores. The Eagles’ QB Vernon Adams Jr. was 31/46 for 475 yards and 7TDs. Cooper Kupp had 145 receiving yards and 3TDs, Kendrick Bourne had 114 receiving yards and a TD, Corey Mitchell had 2TDs on 2 receptions and the final TD went to Zach Wimberly. The Eagles had two fumbles in this game and one came with 12:47 left to play when they were on the Washington 32-yard line. Eastern Washington came very close to taking down their second Pac 12 opponent in as many weeks.
Arkansas 73 Nicholls State 7; Honestly, there really isn’t much to say about this game. I feel bad that Nicholls State had to take the beating, but it had to be someone. The Hogs are no longer on a losing streak! They are on a winning streak. But the defense didn’t look too good in the second half, but I’m sure it’s hard to get up for the second half when the score is already 56-0. The Hogs had 4 scoring “drives” that were 15 seconds or less and 8 that were less than 1:30. From Keon Hatcher’s 82-yard TD run on the Hog’s first play to Austin Allen’s 5-yard run with 3:33 left, there was never a doubt who would win this game. QB Brandon Allen was 4/5 for 4TDs to Jared Cornelius, Drew Morgan, Cody Hollister and Keon Hatcher. Jonathan Williams had 4 carries for 143 yards and a TD and Alex Collins rushed for 131 yards and 3TDs. The Razorbacks ended up with 495 rushing yards and 684 total yards. Nicholls State did score a TD on a pass from Kalen Henderson to Keenan Cantry. This was a much-needed big win for Arkansas. It had been 357 days since the last time the Razorbacks won a football game. Next week the Hogs go to Lubbock to take on Texas Tech.
1Florida State 37 Citadel 12
2Alabama 41 Florida Atlantic 0
4Oklahoma 52 Tulsa 7
5Auburn 59 San Jose State 13
9Texas A&M 73 Lamar 3
10Baylor 70 Northwestern State 6
12LSU 56 Sam Houston State 0
15Ole Miss 41 Vanderbilt 3
16Notre Dame 31 Michigan 0
17Arizona State 58 New Mexico 23
18Wisconsin 37 Western Illinois 3
19Nebraska 31 McNeese State 24
23Clemson 73 South Carolina State 7
24Missouri 49 Toledo 24
25Louisville 66 Murray State 21
Georgia Southern 83 Savannah State 9
Appalachian State 66 Campbell 0
Florida 65 Eastern Michigan 0
Nevada 24 Washington State 13 (Fri)
BYU 41 Texas 7
Wyoming 17 Air Force 13
UNLV 13 Northern Colorado 12
Northern Illinois 23 Northwestern 15
Central Michigan 38 Purdue 17
Oregon State 38 Hawai’i 30
Connecticut 19 Stony Brook 16
Illinois 42 Western Kentucky 34
Mississippi State 47 UAB 34
Maryland 24 USF 17
Stats and Scores from ESPN.com