Afternoon Snaps: Everyone is bad at football
Snap Judgments from the Week 5 swing shift. For today's early Snaps, click here.
• Auburn 16, No. 10 South Carolina 13: It's time to have some concerns about South Carolina's presumed fitness to contend for a second consecutive SEC East title -- if you didn't have them already. (And the way Florida's playing against Alabama, at least early, the natural order in the division may have been restored while we were all slobbering over Marcus Lattimore and Jadeveon Clowney.)
It's so difficult to pick a favorite portion of a game that featured four turnovers per team, eight combined sacks and two Auburn interceptions thrown by non-quarterbacks, but I think my favorite sequence was the one where Stephen Garcia threw an interception, Barrett Trotter threw it back three plays later and then C.C. Whitlock, the South Carolina player who caught the pick, fumbled the ball right back. If you saw just the last four minutes of the third quarter, you saw all you needed to see of this game. Auburn didn't so much "win" as "manage to be the last team hanging onto the ball without committing a game-breaking turnover."
You'll see a lot of chatter about the end of the game, and while it did look like Bruce Ellington was down on the field with two seconds remaining ... let's all just be happy it's over, and pretend this entire game was a bad dream. (RECAP | BOX)
• Kansas State 36, No. 15 Baylor 35: When are 346 passing yards and five touchdowns not a good enough quarterbacking performance to merit a win? Tragically, it appears Robert Griffin III lost this game by virtue of not being able to pass to himself or play defense for Baylor. Kansas State scored three times in the first quarter to mount a surprising if tenuous 13-7 lead, then shut out the Bears entirely in the fourth quarter. Griffin threw a dagger of an interception late, his first of the year, that led directly to the Wildcats' final field goal and the fatal one-point lead. (RECAP | BOX)
• Michigan State 10, Ohio State 7: This wasn't even as close as it looked; Joe Bauserman managed a 33-yard touchdown pass to Evan Spencer with 10 seconds remaining in the game. Hyped blue-chip freshman Braxton Miller got the starting nod, but completed just five of his 10 pass attempts and finished with negative 25 rushing yards. Prepare to hear a lot of ill-considered Spartan metaphors dribbling from your television at the news that the Buckeyes were held to 178 yards of total offense, including just 35 on the ground. Pregnant women and nursing mothers, avert your eyes: Those 35 yards were gained on 39 rushing attempts. (RECAP | BOX)
• No. 4 Boise State 30, Nevada 10: It's not quite a resounding rout to make up for the Pack snapping the Broncos' national title run in 2010, but No. 4 Boise State remains undefeated and will likely retain its top five ranking. All of Nevada's points were scored in the fourth quarter, with the game very much in hand. Boise State's points were neatly distributed, with Kellen Moore recording two touchdown passes in 21 minutes before Doug Martin took over for two rushing scores. (RECAP | BOX)
• No. 22 West Virginia 55, Bowling Green 10: Dana Holgorsen continues his quest to force West Virginia fans to snatch themselves bald in solidarity, with a typically slow start that left the Mountaineers holding a mere 17-10 lead at the end of the first quarter. From there on out, the WVU defense played shutout ball and the ground game put up surprising numbers for a Holgo team. The 'Eers amassed 360 rushing yards that came mostly from Dustin Garrison's 291-yard, 32-touch performance. (RECAP | BOX)
• SMU 40, No. 20 TCU 33 (OT): If they were not torpedoed by Baylor already, TCU's BCS-bustin' chances are now well and truly skewered. Even if the Horned Frogs had managed to pull out the win, having to rally back from a 33-17 deficit against a Conference USA opponent might have been enough to lead snooty pollsters to ding TCU's ranking in and of itself. That TCU managed to rally, then fell short in overtime, is going to be unforgivable. (RECAP | BOX)
• No. 21 Georgia Tech 45, NC State 35: Posting this here just to point out that a) NC State scored 21 points in the fourth quarter, and b) Georgia Tech's 410 yards of offense is actually its lowest one-game output in 2011 by almost 90 yards. (RECAP | BOX | HIGHLIGHTS)
• USC 48, Arizona 41: Six Arizona players recorded at least 40 receiving yards, which would be an impressive stat until stacked against those of Robert Woods and Marqise Lee. Matt Barkley completed 32-of-29 passes for 464 yards and four touchdowns, and most of his darts landed in the outstretched hands of Woods (14 receptions, 252 yards) and Lee (8 catches, 143 yards). (RECAP | BOX | HIGHLIGHTS)Vandals (RECAP | BOX)