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Fourth & Long: News and Notes From an Incredible Saturday of College Football

I know I was excited for college football this past Saturday, but I did not know it was going to be this incredible. We had two real stunners, and a possible game of the year candidate. Let’s dive right in starting with the stunners that echoed across the college football world.

Kansas State 38 (3) Oklahoma 35

  • Well folks, this is not the same Oklahoma team that Kyler Murray or Baker Mayfield played with. Their defense is worse than ever, and for at least a weekend we can scratch Spencer Rattler’s name off the Heisman chase. Not that Rattler had a terrible game, but with this being a weird season already, I would be surprised to see anyone put up Heisman votes for him after this week. Oklahoma started the game with a couple touchdowns, and looked poised to crush Kansas State hopes. However Kansas state powered back. Let us also not forget this is a Kansas State team that lost their opener Arkansas state, and who’s roster is depleted because of COVID-19. The Wildcats fought back from 21-down, to finally hit a field goal to put the Wildcats up by three and that proved to be the final score. Wildcats coach Chris Kleiman didn’t know until Friday if he would have enough players in every position to play the game. Kansas State quarterback Skylar Thompson passed for 334-yards and ran into the end zone three times to help Kansas State keep the game close until they found the right spot to put the game on ice. What does this mean for Kansas State? Well nothing really. Kansas State will win a couple games in the conference and will always remember they have beaten Oklahoma two years in a row. For Oklahoma, this might mean that they are eliminated from the College Football Playoff. They won’t have any non-conference games to boast their one-loss record, if it even stays at one loss. Spencer Rattler is still a budding prospect, but he is nowhere near as good Mayfield or Murray. This is bad for head coach Lincoln Riley. They have gotten rocked in the CFP two years in a row, and many were calling for Oklahoma to be out of the race. Well this year, folks, it may very well happen. It will be hard for the CFP committee to include a one loss Oklahoma team over maybe a one-loss Ohio State, or an undefeated Cincinnati team. Boy this was a fun one to follow.

Mississippi State 44 (6) LSU 34

Game of the Year?: (8) Texas 63 Texas Tech 56

  • No Texas is still not back as it took a late comeback from the Longhorns to send Texas Tech packing. Both quarterbacks had great games as the long time captain Sam Ehlinger was 27-40 with five touchdowns and only one interception. On the other side signal caller Alan Bowman was 31/52 with 325-yard and five scores. Bowman did throw three interceptions which came back and bit the Red Raiders in the butt. The Longhorns also used their running game to some success. Running back Keontay Ingram carried the ball 12-times for 89-yards. Another back in Texas’ log jam filled backfield Roschon Johnson added a touchdown on the ground. Ehlinger also scored one touchdown running the ball. All in all this was an incredible back and forth affair.
  • Highlights From Texas V. Texas Tech

Other Notable Games:

(5) Florida 51 Ole Miss 35

  • Florida Quarterback Kyle Trask put his name in the hat for Heisman contention. Trask was 30-42 throwing the ball for 416-yards and six touchdowns. Four of those touchdowns were caught by receiver/tight end Kyle Pitts, who may also have thrown in the hat for Heisman contention. Dan Mullen and Florida looked ready to play from the beginning. It also must be said the its crazy a school like Ole Miss can’t recruit a true quarter back. The Rebels played two quarterbacks, and neither looked very good. However, look for Ole Miss to be in a lot of shootouts this year. Their offense can score, but their defense is putrid. Florida will host a one-loss South Carolina team next weekend.

(2) Alabama 38 Missouri 19

  • Well, Alabama has reloaded and is definitely not rebuilding. Mac Jones was 18/24 for 249-yards and two touchdowns. Alabama did return guys like Dylan Moses, who miss last year with an injury, and wide outs Jaylen Waddle and Devonta Smith. Oh yeah they also still have tailback Najee Harris who they rely on in the run game. He had 17-carries for 98-yards and three touchdowns. We will see how good Alabama really is next week when they host a strong (13) Texas A&M team. For now, though, yes, Alabama is still really damn good.

(4) Georgia 37 Arkansas 10

  • All off-season the hype around Georgia was based on two transfer quarterbacks. JT Daniels from USC and Jamie Newman from Wake Forest. However neither of them saw the field saturday, as Stetson Wallace led the team in passing by going 20/29 for 211-yards and two touchdowns. It turns out that Jamie Newman opted out of playing this year because of concern of COVID-19. On top of that JT Daniels, who suffered a torn ACL last year at USC, is still not ready to go just yet. So that is why Stetson Wallace was the signal caller Saturday. The Bulldogs relied on their ground game and defense to blow out a lowly Arkansas team, who also has a new head coach, Sam Pittman. Future top-10 pick Richard LeCounte has two interceptions and Eric Stokes picked off a ball, and took it all the way back to the end zone. Arkansas also started Florida transfer Felipe Franks at quarterback. He had a rough game, going 19/36 for 200-yards and a touchdown, along with those two interceptions. Georgia will surely be more tested next week when they host an Auburn tam that is coming off a big win versus Kentucky. First top-10 match-up of the year. Let’s get excited.

(8) Auburn 29 (23) Kentucky 13

  • It was not easy for Auburn and head coach Gus Malzahn, but they headed to Lexington and took down the Wildcats. True sophomore quarterback Bo Nix, looked much more comfortable running the challenging Auburn offense, than he did last year. He was 16/27 for 233-yards and three touchdowns and no interceptions. Nix also carried the ball for 34-yards. Running back D.J Williams had the long rushing touchdown for the Tigers. For Kentucky, life without Lynn Bowden Jr. did not go exactly as planned. Quarterback Terry Wilson was 24/37 for 239-yards and one touchdown. However, Wilson also threw a costly interception and lost a fumble for the Wildcats. Next week Auburn goes Between the Hedges to take on a stacked Georgia team. If Bo Nix has a great game next week, look for him to gain Heisman hype.

(10) Texas A&M 17 Vanderbilt 12

  • Well what do we have here? No way a hyped up Texas A&M team could struggle to beat lowly Vanderbilt. At least, that is what we thought. Kellen Mond was not very consistent on Saturday throwing 17/28 for 189-yards and one touchdown. Isiah was the real play-maker for the Aggies on Saturday. He only rushed the ball eight times but those eight rushes went for 117-yards. Texas A&M will be more than tested next weekend as they head to Tuscaloosa, to take on the Crimson Tide. Can’t say I see a way that the Aggies take down Alabama. Sorry, just facts.

(12) Miami (FL) 52 Florida State 10

  • Miami may have just ended Florida State’s football program. The Hurricanes came out at home and dominated the Seminoles in every facet of the game. It seems this D’Eriq King guy is the real deal. He passed 29/40 for 267-yards and two touchdowns. He also rushed the ball eight times for 65-yards. The Canes’ took a 28-3 lead into halftime and never looked back. Mark Pope for the Hurricanes caught the ball five times for 60-yards. Florida State was without their head coach Mike Norvell, who did not attend the game because of COVID-19. Look for King and Miami to rise in the rankings and in King’s case he will get some Heisman hype after this week. It looks like Miami is off next week, so look for them to get some rest and be ready to challenge Florida for the Kings of the Sunshine State.
  • 7th Floor Crew Song (NSFW) (Kind of)

(13) UCF 51 East Carolina 28

  • Another college football weekend come and gone and UCF still thinks they are a CFP contender. Sorry guys, you were never National Champs, even though you claim it. Honestly I’m pretty sick of the UCF chatter. They play a super easy schedule, and no one can convince me that they could play with a team like Florida or Ohio State. Not a chance. UCF quarterback Dillon Gabriel was 32/47 for 408-yards and four touchdowns. Jaylon Robinson seemed to be Gabriel’s go to guy as he caught nine balls for 150-yards and two touchdowns. UCF hosts Tulsa next weekend, so it looks like the UCF hype train will continue to grow. That sucks.

(14) Cincinnati 24 (22) Army 10

  • It is not easy to play against a team like Army in the beginning of the season. The Black Knights run the triple-option on offense and that means Cincinnati’s defense had to be very disciplined. Disciplined they were, as Army’s only touchdown came on a turnover from Cincinnati quarterback Desmond Ridder. However after that turnover, Ridder had a solid game throwing the ball as he went 18/33 for 258-yards and two touchdowns. Everyone wants to talk about UCF making the playoff, but I like Cincinnati over UCF any day. Like I said, its not easy for a coach like Luke Fickell to play against the triple option. You get one week to practice for it, and it seems Fickell had his game plan perfected before the game. Look for Fickell to be a hot name coach in the off-season. Believe me when I say this, Cincinnati and head coach Luke Fickell are the real deal this year.

(15) Oklahoma State 27 West Virginia 13

  • Oklahoma State was able to pull out a win at home over West Virginia. Oklahoma State was without stud quarterback Zac Robinson because of injury, but Heisman hopeful Chuba Hubbard carried the offense on the way to this win. Head Coach Mike Gundy and the Cowboys controlled time of possession and were able to get a defensive touchdown to pull out the win. Hubbard ran the ball 22-times for 101-yards and one touchdown. Backup quarterback Shane Illingworth was 15/21 for 139-yards and one interception. You would think that Oklahoma State would crush a team like West Virginia, but not this time as the Cowboys had to make some big plays to win the game. Head Coach Mike Gundy said he didn’t have any new updates on starter Zac Robinson. However, after Oklahoma lost to Kansas State, are the Cowboys the kings of Oklahoma? It’s possible, just as anything is possible in this weird college football season. Gotta love it.

(16) Tennessee 31 South Carolina 27

  • Here they come. The Tennessee fans that think by beating South Carolina means they are fully back and ready to contend for the CFP. Honestly, lets take a step back here. Calm down Tennessee fans, South Carolina clearly isn’t very good this year. However going into Bryce-Williams Stadium and coming out with a win, is nothing to laugh at. Tennessee quarterback Jarett Guarantano was solid in this game going 19/31 for 259 yards and a touchdown without any interceptions. Henry To’o To’o intercepted a pass and took it back all the way for a 32-yard touchdown. Tennessee fans will surely be excited after this win on the road. South Carolina faces another daunting task next weekend as they travel to Gainesville to face a hot Florida team. As for Tennessee, they host Missouri next weekend, which should be a pretty simple task for the Volunteers. That only means one thing: stay away from Tennessee fans until they lose or just hop on the hype train that is the Volunteers season.

(18) BYU 48 Troy 7

  • BYU dominated this game in every way. The Cougars and quarterback Zach Wilson threw for 392-yards and two touchdowns. Dax Milne was clearly open all game as he caught the ball seven times for 140-yards and a touchdown. BYU will host Louisiana Tech next Friday, October 2nd, in what should be a more exciting match-up than this dud in Provo.

Other Top-25 Games

  • (19) Louisiana 20 Georgia Southern 18 (Louisiana stays Undefeated to start the season)
  • (20) Virginia Tech 45 NC State 24 (Va Tech straight dominated this game in every possible way)
  • (21) Pittsburgh 23 (24) Louisville 20 (Pittsburgh was led by their ferocious defense which forced three Louisville Turnovers)
  • *(7) Notre Dame vs Wake Forest was postponed because of COVID-19

Heismanology: (This will now include the B1G and Pac-12 along with my Bottom 5)

  1. Trevor Lawrence, QB, Clemson: It is kind of shocking that Lawrence hasn’t won the Heisman yet. Until Clemson’s loss to LSU in the National Championship, Lawrence had won every game in his college career.
  2. Justin Fields, QB, Ohio State: Rumor on the block is that Justin Fields has gone to a vegan diet and is leaner and faster than ever before. Justin Fields, faster than he was last year? I’ll take that all day.
  3. K.J Costello, QB, Mississippi State: In his first start for the Bulldogs of State all he did was break the record for passing yards in the SEC. Hey, 623-yards on a vaunted LSU defense deserves a spot in the top-5 of the Heisman race.
  4. Kyle Trask, QB, Florida: Trask absolutely picked apart Ole Miss on Saturday. He had five touchdowns, including to four to possible Heisman contender in the future Kyle Pitts (Who might receive Heisman hype if he keeps up his outstanding play.
  5. *Sam Ehlinger, QB, Texas: Ehlinger led the Longhorns to a comeback win versus Texas Tech. He had five throwing touchdowns along with one running.

*I had said I think a defensive player will be in New York, well I am backtracking on that. It’s too short of a season for Linebacker Micah Parsons of Penn State. The other defensive player I had that could possibly create Heisman buzz Derek Stingley Jr. missed the Mississippi State game with an illness, and with how bad the secondary got beat up on Saturday without Stingley Jr. shows how important he is the that defense. But as for Heisman hype, if you don’t play pretty much every game in this weird season, it’s going to be tough to climb back up in Heismanology.

Takeaways From Saturday

  • Georgia has been dominant in the SEC East for a couple years now, but they better watch out because Florida is the real deal this year. Without Newman and possibly Daniels for the season it’s going to be tough for Georgia to take down Florida and their high-powered offense. However, that being said, that game will be awesome. Florida’s powerful offense versus Georgia’s dominant defense, who comes out on top? I already can’t wait for that showdown!
  • For the past five-six years Clemson has absolutely dominated the ACC competition, but they need to take this year more seriously as there are some serious contenders in the ACC this year. North Carolina and true sophomore quarterback Sam Howell will be a tough test, but the Tar Heels travel to Death Valley (2) this year. However, Miami (FL) seems to be the real deal and Virginia Tech rocked NC State on Saturday. I’m not saying Clemson won’t get through this gauntlet undefeated, but it is just going to be more of a challenge than in the past.
  • I hate to say it, no I don’t, I actually love it, but this weekend it was the same old Oklahoma that can’t stop anything, let alone a patient Kansas State team. I see no way Oklahoma sneaks into the playoffs again. They have tried to recruit better defensive players and athletes that can stick with the Big 12’s speed but in the end it’s the same old Oklahoma. Look for Lincoln Riley to be a hot name in the NFL this off-season.
  • The B1G from now on will be ranked with all other teams who have already played. I don’t really agree with it but look for Ohio State to drop right in at number two, behind only Clemson. I wouldn’t be surprised to see OSU at three behind Clemson and Alabama, but they will surely be a top-5 team. The Buckeyes will be joined by teams like Wisconsin, Penn State, Michigan, Iowa, and Minnesota in the top-25.
  • In this weird college football season we have seen a little bit of how the COVID-19 virus is affecting it. Mike Norvell, head coach at Florida State, came down with the virus and missed his team getting blown out by the Hurricanes. Also Wake Forest versus Notre Dame, was postponed because of the virus. It hasn’t taken a big toll on college football, yet. However, we need the schools to be on their best behavior and careful around campus, so that we won’t have anymore problems with the virus. Yes, i know that is pretty much impossible, but a man can dream right?

Bottom 5:

5. LSU: Fellas, fellas, fellas, yes you won the national championship last year. You also lost a lot of firepower like Grant Delpit at Safety, Joe Burrow at Quarterback, and wide out Justin Jefferson to the NFL, so I do have some sympathy for you. However, LSU can never be called DBU ever again after that embarrassing blow out on Saturday.

4. The entire Pac-12 Conference: The Pac-12 was with the B1G and was not going to play football this fall. However, the Pac-12 is basically playing such a short season that they shouldn’t be able to compete for the CFP. Oh and all you did was basically copy the B1G. Frauds

3.Texas Tech QB Alan Bowman: Bowman did the one thing that is going to haunt him forever. After scoring to add to the Red Raiders lead, Bowman put up the “horns down” sign. Big mistake my friend, as right after that the Red Raiders imploded and collapsed at the hands of the Longhorns. Big mistake for the sophomore.

2. Lane Kiffin: Lane, my man, how can you not recruit a real quarterback while playing in the SEC. Ole Miss does have many explosive play-makers on offense, but their two-quarterback system was a joke as neither John Rhys Plumlee or Matt Corral was effective through the air. Look for Kiffin to bring in a pocket passer this off-season. Whether it be through the transfer portal or on the road recruiting. Be better Lane. The Ole Miss versus Mississippi State game should be a war. Lane Kiffin versus Mike Leach. Two completely different personalities. My mouth is already watering.

  1. Oklahoma: I could put this loss on the shoulders of head coach Lincoln Riley and defensive coordinator Alex Grinch, but I won’t because I truly believe this is good for college football. Oklahoma was clearly weaker this year than they have been in the past. With no non-conference games to strengthen their schedule, it looks like Oklahoma will miss the playoffs. That means someone new might sneak in, such as Florida, or Penn State. The Red River Shootout should be a good one, as we’ll see Oklahoma come in as an underdog most likely. For now, though, Oklahoma is cancelled. No Boomer Sooner. No way. No how.

My Top 10:

  1. Clemson
  2. Ohio State
  3. Alabama
  4. Florida
  5. Georgia
  6. Auburn
  7. Texas
  8. Miami (FL)
  9. Mississippi State
  10. Texas A&M

Three Big Games Next Weekend:

(13) Texas A&M at (2) Alabama(3:30 Kick on CBS): A&M will need everything to go right for them to stay in this game. Johnny Football isn’t putting on a Texas A&M jersey for this one.

(7) Auburn at (4) Georgia(7:30 Kick on ESPN): The first top-10 match-up this year, and this one should be a good one. Auburn’s complex offense versus Georgia’s dominant defense. Look for LeCounte from Georgia to force at least one turnover in this game.

(18) Oklahoma at Iowa State (7:30 Kick on ABC): This game really intrigues me. Can Oklahoma bounce back? How good is Iowa State head coach Matt Campbell? Campbell has been generating NFL buzz for a while now, let’s see if he can take down a struggling Oklahoma team at home.

Follow Me on Twitter: @BrownlojCLE

Key:

CFP: College Football Playoff

*I hope to be starting a college football podcast in the coming weeks, so be ready for that, as it will be funny and very entertaining and informative.

*I’ve been thinking about Ohio State’s loss to Clemson in the semi-final last year, one bad pass ended it for the Buckeyes. However, screw it, we don’t want Clemson, we NEED Clemson. I think they will play this year in the CFP whether it be another semi-final or the game for it all. Justin Fields vs Trevor Lawrence. Ryan Day vs. Dabo Swinney. B1G vs the ACC. What a match-up that will be. Two quarterbacks from Georgia putting it all on the line for teams that aren’t Georgia. Get a grip Kirby Smart. Be better. However, book the date, I think it will be Clemson vs Ohio State for all the marbles and it would be legendary.

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