We saw maybe the wildest college football Saturday yet. Four undefeated teams lost. South Carolina stunned top-five Georgia. LSU and Florida hit their over/under point total by halftime, and Minnesota—Minnesota!—remained undefeated with a rout of Nebraska. Meanwhile, Wisconsin continues to shut out opponents—fourth in six games!—and the Sooners’ defense was even more impressive than their offense.
Whew! Let’s get to our top 10 and the rest of The Rundown.
Top 10… Teams
Last week: 1
Last game: Beat Texas A&M 47–28
Next game: Saturday vs. Tennessee
Some expected the Crimson Tide to be on upset alert at Kyle Field. Those people were silly. Nick Saban’s club is allowing more points than normal, yes, but it is also averaging more than 50 points a game.
Last week: 2
Last game: Beat Florida 42–28
Next game: Saturday at Mississippi State
The Tigers continue to electrify opponents with a razor-sharp passing attack, and they did it Saturday against the best defense yet. The Gators stood no chance.
3. Ohio State
Last week: 3
Last game: Beat Michigan State 34–10 (in Week 6)
Next game: Friday at Northwestern
The only reason Justin Fields didn’t pass for four touchdowns and run for two is because the Buckeyes didn’t play this weekend. He’ll pick things back up next weekend.
Last week: 4
Last game: Beat Florida State 45–14
Next game: Saturday at Louisville
The last time we saw the Tigers they were nearly losing to North Carolina. They looked much, much different Saturday.
Last week: 6
Last game: Beat Texas 34–27
Next game: Saturday vs. West Virginia
The Sooners didn’t crack the 40-point mark—gasp! But this victory was even more impressive than their scoring bonanzas. Their D stood tall against the Horns.
Last week: 9
Last game: Beat Michigan State 38–0
Next game: Saturday at Illinois
Is there any team nationally playing better defense than the Badgers? They have shut out four of their first six opponents, which is quite good—yes, quite good indeed.
7. Penn State
Last week: 10
Last game: Beat Iowa 17–12
Next game: Saturday vs. Michigan
We’ve had the Nittany Lions in our top 10 for a few weeks, and the nation saw why in a win at Iowa on Saturday. Penn State is one of the best all-around teams we’ve seen this year.
Last week: NR
Last game: Beat Colorado 45–3
Next game: Saturday at Washington
Ducks! Welcome back to our top 10. They fell out with a loss to Auburn in the season opener, but Oregon is still very much in the chase for the Pac-12 title and has an outside shot of making the playoff.
Last week: 8
Last game: Lost to LSU 42–28
Next game: Saturday at South Carolina
The Gators ran lockstep with LSU for three-and-a-half quarters on Saturday. That’s impressive enough to keep them in the top 10.
10. Notre Dame
Last week: NR
Last game: Beat USC 30–27
Next game: Oct. 26 at Michigan
Yes, the Irish lost at Georgia, which lost at home Saturday to South Carolina, but who else would you put in this slot? We gave thought to putting the Bulldogs here or even Utah or Michigan, but for now it’s the Irish.
Top 9… Can’t-Miss Digits
Consecutive games in which Oregon’s defense has kept the opponent to single digits. Those five opponents have scored a combined 25 points.
Nick Saban’s record against his former assistants. He picked up No. 18 with a win over Jimbo Fisher and Texas A&M. He’ll pick up No. 19 next week over Jeremy Pruitt and Tennessee.
Cumulative first downs in Arizona State’s win over Washington State. Don’t look now, but Herm Edwards has the Sun Devils at 5–1.
Missed field goals in the final five possessions in South Carolina’s double-overtime win at Georgia. The Gamecocks missed a 57-yarder in regulation and a 33-yarder in the first overtime, and the Bulldogs missed a 42-yarder in the second overtime to seal a South Carolina victory.
The combined receiving yards for Alabama receiver Devonta Smith in his last two games. The Crimson Tide’s set of wideouts is probably the best in the game, and Smith is often forgotten. It’s time to remember him.
Seconds it took for Indiana—Indiana!—to go up 14–0 on Rutgers during their game Saturday.
Consecutive games Oklahoma WR CeeDee Lamb has with a touchdown catch. That is the longest in the nation.
Average yards per play for LSU in its 42–28 win over Florida. It is the most ever in a game against ranked teams.
Number of touchdowns scored by a Purdue freshman on Saturday. That’s also all of the touchdowns Purdue scored in a 40–14 victory over Maryland.
Top 8… You Need to Watch This
1. Snap signal
Texas’s field goal snapper has an interesting way of signaling for the snap. It involves his middle finger.
2. Behind the back
Jalen Hurts does everything.
3. Hurdling TD
Temple didn’t just hand Memphis its first loss on Saturday, but the Owls did it by hurdling into the end zone.
4. Hurdling TD No. 2
We wrote about Penn State receiver KJ Hamler a few weeks ago, and he’s made us look good since.
LSU fans gave the Gators the chomp on Saturday.
This poor game official in the Temple-Memphis game got a pigskin to the head.
7. Stepp on it
The Trojans might have lost, but RB Markese Stepp is a bright spot. He averaged nearly eight yards a carry at Notre Dame.
North Texas and Southern Miss got together and did a cool thing.
Top 7… Top Performers
If you’ve never heard of Jayden Daniels, let us here on the Rundown tell you about Jayden Daniels. Arizona State’s true freshman quarterback led a second game-winning touchdown drive of the season Saturday. Daniels scored on a 17-yard touchdown run with 34 seconds to lift the Sun Devils to a 38–34 win over Washington State. He passed for 363 yards and three touchdowns.
2. TD Tua
Another week, another Alabama passing record falls. QB Tua Tagovailoa broke A.J. McCarron’s mark for career scoring passes, tossing his 78 in the first quarter of the win at Texas A&M. He’d throw three more in the beatdown of the Aggies.
3. Trav’s back
Clemson RB Travis Etienne somewhat disappeared after opening the season with a 205-yard outing against Georgia Tech. He got going again Saturday with his first 100-yard game since that opener. He had 127 yards on 17 carries in the Tigers’ walloping of Florida State.
4. Hurting the Horns
OU QB Jalen Hurts accounted for 366 yards and four touchdowns in the Sooners’ win over Texas. It seems like it’s getting easier and easier for Hurts despite the competition getting better and better.
5. On the hunt
Utah QB Tyler Huntley misfired just three times and threw for 247 yards and two touchdowns in a win over Oregon State.
6. Joe Heisman
LSU QB Joe Burrow continues his march to the Heisman Trophy. He went 21-for-24 for 293 yards and three TDs.
7. Hot Rod
Rodney Smith, the Gophers senior running back, rolled up 139 yards and a touchdown to lead Minnesota to 6–0.
Top 6… First-Year Coaching Good Impressions
1. Scott Satterfield, Louisville
Satterfield has won four of his first six games at a place that won two of 12 games last season. The Cardinals stunned Wake Forest on Saturday in a 62-point output that included a 100-yard kick return
2. Ryan Day, Ohio State
Day still hasn’t lost a football game as Ohio State’s head coach. He is 9–0, three last year as the interim and six this season.
3. Eliah Drinkwitz, Appalachian State
The Mountaineers are one of 12 undefeated teams remaining in America. Drinkwitz, the former NC State offensive coordinator, hasn’t lost yet as a college head coach.
4. Tyson Helton, Western Kentucky
Also a first-year coach, Helton’s Hilltoppers have won three straight and are 4–2, in prime position to claim the Conference USA title.
5. Neal Brown, West Virginia
Despite the loss to Iowa State on Saturday, the Mountaineers are 3–3 with wins over NC State and a good JMU program. A bowl game was the ceiling for many this year in Morgantown.
6. Mel Tucker, Colorado
The Buffaloes were hammered by Oregon on Friday night, but that doesn’t mean the ex-Georgia defensive coordinator isn’t doing a nice job. His team has a victory over Nebraska and at Arizona State.
Top 5… Yes, They Are Still Undefeated
Before the season, who had the Golden Gophers being 6–0 in mid-October? Granted, their early-season schedule is no murderers’ row, but the Gophers took down Nebraska with authority on Saturday, winning 34–7.
The Bears have needed some heroics to get to 6–0 and that included an 11-play, 89-yard field goal drive to send the game into overtime, where Baylor beat Texas Tech in double OT.
The Mustangs had the weekend off. They’ll likely remain in the AP top 25, a poll in which they entered last week for the first time since 1986. The next month is not easy: a home game against Temple before road trips to Houston and Memphis.
4. Boise State
With a new quarterback and all, the Broncos continued to roll Saturday in a rout of Hawaii.
5. Appalachian State
The Mountaineers won a Sun Belt slugfest in Louisiana on Wednesday night to remain perfect.
Top 4… What the Heck’s Going on in
Mississippi State is one of the most disappointing teams in the nation this season. The Bulldogs dropped to 3–3 after losing at Tennessee. Sure, they’re relying heavily on a true freshman quarterback, but coach Joe Moorhead’s offense is not helping a rebuilding defense.
Minnesota’s quarterback completed eight—eight!—passes and still the Golden Gophers bludgeoned Nebraska on Saturday. The Cornhuskers were picked by some to claim the Big Ten West and now here they sit at 4–3.
UNLV entered the game against Vanderbilt having lost four straight games by an average of 25.7 points. The Rebels beat the Commodores by 24 points in one of the worst defeats of Derek Mason’s tenure. He’s in Year 6 in Nashville and has taken the ’Dores to two bowls in the last three years, but this won’t be a third. They’re 1–5.
4. East Lansing
In its three losses this season, Michigan State has scored a combined 17 points. The Spartans (4–3) finished Saturday’s 38–0 loss at Wisconsin with 149 yards. This is probably not what Mark Dantonio envisioned when he shuffled his offensive staff.
Top 3… Quotes
1. The ref in Texas-OU
The Horns and Sooners got into a pregame scuffle on the field, and Big 12 official Mike Defee would have none of it. During the coin toss, he told the captains, “You will play this game with sportsmanship. Are we clear?”
2. Rat poison
After Alabama’s win over Texas A&M, Nick Saban took everyone in the postgame news conference on a trip down memory lane. “This very seat is where 'rat poison' was born.”
3. Dream killers
During a pregame TV interview before kickoff in Baton Rouge, Ed Orgeron brought back a phrase Les Miles coined a few years ago. “Welcome to Death Valley, where opponents’ dreams come to die.”
Top 2… Spots This Weekend in Baton Rouge
1. Uncle Earl’s
This used to be a grimy college bar on Perkins Road, two miles from LSU’s campus, but the place has been completely renovated, with a great outdoor area and some wonderful TVs. Try the frozen drinks, too.
If you like pool and cheap beer, you’ll like Clicks.
Top 1… Game Next Week
1. Michigan at Penn State
This seems like an elimination game for the Big Ten East division. They’re expecting a white out in Happy Valley. Should be your typical Big Ten fistfight.