College football back in full action
By Matt Haddad (TheLorian)
College football has been underway for some time now and this past week the rankings have really been shaken up. A couple of teams in the top 10 lost this past weekend and a lot of teams just made it out with a win. Starting off in the SEC with LSU traveling to Missouri due to Hurricane Delta, which also had a big impact on games too. LSU is a much different team than last year’s National Championship team. They only rushed for a total of 49 yards but made it up in the passing game throwing for 430 yards. The Missouri Tigers rushed for almost triple LSU’s rushing for 180 yards. And throwing for 406 yards. The Missouri Tigers win the game by 4, beating the 2020 National Champions 41-45.
Two QB’s who are Heisman favorites squared off this in a nail bitter this weekend down in college station Texas. Number 4 Florida faced off against Number 21 Texas A&M. Kevin Trask Quarterback for the Florida Gators threw 23/32 for 312 yards and 4 touchdowns. For Texas A&M, Kellen Mond threw 23/35 for 338 yards and 3 touchdowns. The game came down to a last-second 26-yard field goal by Texas A&M’s Kicker Seth Small to knock off number four Florida to win the game by a score of 41-38
Staying in the SEC, number 2 Alabama travels to Oxford Mississippi to take on Ole Miss. Alabama’s QB Mac Jones who is a senior this year and has some big shoes to fill this season. Jones threw 28/32 for 417 yards and two touchdowns. Ole Miss QB Matt Corral threw 21/28 for 365 yards and two touchdowns. Alabama’s promising running back Najee Harris who is also a Heisman favorite had 23 rushes for 206 yard and a whopping five touchdowns. Harris helped Alabama win the game 63-48. This is the most points that Alabama has let up against an unranked opponent since 1997. The defense certainly looked confused out there with their returning senior linebacker Dylan Mosses claiming that he was lost on defense and said that he thought that Ole Miss was stealing their play signals. Note, Lane Kiffin, who is Ole Miss Head coach, used to coach the offense at Alabama under Nick Saban from 2014-2016
Heading to the ACC where Virginia Tech traveled to North Carolina to take on the number 8 Tar Heels. Virginia Tech QB Hendon Hooker had a low passing percentage throwing for 13 passes and only completing seven of them. He also threw for only two touchdowns. The team collectively rushed for 260 yards and four touchdowns. The Tar Heels showed the Hookies and the college football world why they are number eight in the country. NC QB Sam Howell threw 18/23 for 257 yards and three touchdowns. NC collectively rushed for 399 yards and five touchdowns. This wasn’t a good look for Virginia Tech losing the game 45 -56.
The well-known number one team in the country Clemson Tigers hosted the Miami Hurricanes who are number seven in this week’s AP poll. This year Projected Heisman winner Trevor Lawrence threw 29/41 for 292 yards and three touchdowns for the Clemson Tigers. Travis Etienne rushed 17 times for 149 yards and two touchdowns. The Miami Hurricanes hyped-up QB D’Eriq King under-performed this weekend throwing 12/28 for only 121 yards and zero touchdowns. Also, note that King threw two interceptions in this game. The Tigers claim victory and won the game 42-17.
Jumping over to the Big 12 Conference where the annual Red River showdown happened this weekend number with 22 Texas Long Horns facing off against the highly-anticipated Oklahoma Sooners. Texas QB Sam Ehlingher has helped the Long Horns the past three years. He led them to a Big 12 championship a couple of years ago and made it to a couple of bowl games in his time at Texas. Ehlingher was 30/53 throwing for 287 yards and two touchdowns and two interceptions. He also rushed 23 times for 112 yards and scored four touchdowns with his legs. The Oklahoma Sooners have had a very impressive bloodline of QB’s the past three years going all the way back to Baker Mayfield to Kyler Murry both winning the Heisman and Jalen Hurts transferring from Alabama to Oklahoma finishing in the top 4 for the Heisman this past year losing to LSU Former QB Joe Burrow. This year the Sooners have a lot of faith and trust in Spencer Rattler. He threw 23/35 for 209 yards and 3 touchdowns only throwing one interception. Rattler would be taken out of the game and replaced with back up QB Tanner Mordecai. The game ended up going into 4 overtimes with the unranked Oklahoma Sooners upsetting the Texas Longhorns by a score of 53-45. This was also the highest-scoring game in the Red River Showdown.
Wow, what an unforgettable weekend in the College Football world. As fun and exciting this can be, COVID-19 has shown its effects not just in the stands but on the field too. Teams did not have a lot of time to practice during the off-season, and when given the okay to start practice, they were rushed to play games and lacked time to prepare adequately. This week has shown how COVID-19 played a significant role in defensive players. Teams are limited to tackling and sometimes aren’t even allowed to tackle during practice. In the six games that I covered, a total of 448 points were scored. Some may say that offenses are really taking off this year, but I think we all know that this is an impact that COVID-19 has left on college football.
Tune in at 7:30 p.m. next week where the number two Alabama Crimson Tide will host the number three Georgia Bulldogs. Nic Saban takes on another one of his former assistant coaches Kirby Smart Head Coach of the Georgia Bulldogs.