Going in to week 6 in College Football, LSU were ranked number 5, unbeaten, and in the conversation for play off consideration. In the Tigers defeat to Florida they fell to 13 (unlucky for some) and with it became a selection committee after thought. With their upset win over Georgia headlining a WILD week 7, it may be time to think again…
Georgia don’t make the journey to Baton Rouge that often, not since 2008 have they played there. After going down 36-16 on Saturday night it’s safe to say they won’t want to be going back anytime soon. LSU combined a stifling defence and bold fourth down play calls to bring Georgia’s unbeaten run to an end in dramatic and entertaining style. Jake Fromm, one of the top quarterbacks this season, was sacked three times and threw two interceptions to limit the Bulldogs to two touchdowns and a field goal having scored 44, 43, 38 and 41 in their four previous games. Ed Orgeron dialled up four successful fourth down attempts for Joe Burrow and the LSU offence, maintaining momentum for the Tigers and allowing Burrow two rushing touchdowns on his way to a solid night. Add in 15 points for kicker Cole Tracy and LSU have re-written not only the story of their season but potentially the story of the play off race.
That game came smack bang in the middle of wild and nail biting week of College Football which started with a game winning Coby Weiss field goal with two seconds left in Tulsa to keep USF’s unbeaten record intact and ended in the LA Coliseum as USC took down Colorado and their hopes of a perfect season.
There were shocks everywhere you looked.
Penn State, who many still thought had an outside chance of making the playoffs, fell at home to Michigan State after a Lewerke to Davis connection with only 19 seconds to play gave the Spartans a touchdown and a 21-17 win.
Justin Herbert and Oregon welcomed number 7 Washington to Eugene and in a back and forth shootout which went the distance and in to overtime, a CJ Verdell six yard rushing touchdown gave the Ducks an unexpected 30-27 win.
UCLA went in to Cal without a win on the season under new coach Chip Kelly. Putting the ball in the hands of running back Joshua Kelley, combined with the Bruins defence gave Chip his first win of the season. Kelley carried the rock 30 times, rushed for 157 yards, and scored three touchdowns as UCLA ran out 37-7 winners.
In Evanston, Nebraska held the lead for large swathes of the game in the search for win number one but gave up a touchdown with just 12 seconds to spare, finally being defeated in overtime by a Drew Luckenbaugh 37 yard field goal.
Several of the undefeated teams going in to the week managed to squeeze their way in to week 8 with their records intact.
UCF and Notre Dame survived scares, The Knights snatched a 31-30 in Memphis and the Fighting Irish relied on the Ian Book to Miles Boykin connection to creep past Pitt 19-14. It was a shaky day for Book with two interceptions to two touchdowns which may effect the possibility of a top four ranking.
Ohio State went behind early to Minnesota but another offensive masterclass from Dwayne Haskins (412 yards, 3 touchdowns) ensured the Buckeyes are still perfect.
Alabama continued their dominance of College Football with a 39-10 over Missouri. Tua Tagovailoa added 265 yards and three touchdowns to his already outstanding resume but left the game in the third quarter after aggravating a knee injury on a slide.
With Cincinnati, Clemson and NC State all on a bye the final undefeated team to cover was West Virginia who travelled to Iowa State in what should have been a winnable game. Will Grier’s name is on everyone’s lips but it was Iowa quarterback Brock Purdy who rose to the occasion with three touchdowns in a 30-14 victory. The Cyclones defence had the West Virginia offence in a spin and Grier could only manage 100 yards and cancelled out a touchdown with an interception in what was arguably the shock of the weekend.
With so many unexpected outcomes in the week, the Top 25 are sure to get a shake up. Georgia will have a bye week to stew on their defeat before facing Florida in week 9. The Gators are, for me, one of the teams to watch out for from here on out alongside Michigan and Texas. All three teams were victorious this week, Michigan particularly impressive in a victory over Wisconsin. The Wolverines face off against Michigan State Spartans, who will be fired up after beating Penn State, in what could be the game of the week next week.
Join me then for another week of high drama, high scoring and high stakes in the wild world of College Football.
This article was written by the newest member of the Ninety-Nine Yards College Football team, Oli Hodgkinson. Oli follows Boston College. You can follow Oli on Twitter at @ojhodgkinson
photo credit : WSB-TV