A top-10 ACC team played a game Saturday in which both coaches agreed to a “mercy” rule to shorten the second half by six minutes.
The shocking thing is it COULD have been No. 2 Florida State against No. 10 Louisville.
The game that was actually shortened was Clemson vs. South Carolina State, a 45-0 beat-down at the half that ended, mercifully, 59-0.
Louisville’s 63-20 win was also everything short of crying "Uncle."
“We have to create better habits,” Florida State Coach Jimbo Fisher said. “It starts with me and ends with me as the head coach.”
Let’s just say highlights were not shown back in Tallahassee on the “Jimbo-tron.”
Saturday may have marked the beginning of Louisville and the end of people picking Florida State to win the national championship based on top-ranked recruiting classes.
Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson was Saturday’s break-out star; the Cardinals the day’s break-out team.
Jackson had put up ridiculous numbers in two previous games, but they were against pylons. Saturday's effort was the one that made Rankman inch forward in his seat.[membership level="0"] The rest of this article is available to subscribers only - to become a subscriber click here.[/membership] [membership]
Against a “legit” team, Jackson ran for four touchdowns and 146 yards passed for 216 and another score.
Stanford fans, brace yourselves for another second-place Heisman finish.
Granted, it may be too soon for that, and Christian McCaffrey did generate 260 total yards in his team’s win over USC, but never underestimate the possible anti-West coast disdain as the ground swell builds for Jackson.
“I try not to pay attention to that,” Jackson said of the Heisman conversation. “I’m just chill.”
There is also a strong case to be made, at this minute, that Louisville should be No.1 when Sunday’s polls are released.
Ohio State, which throttled Oklahoma deep into a weather-delayed Norman night, might have an argument, as does Alabama.
It was, otherwise, just your ordinary third Saturday\Sunday morning in September.
--Cal tops No. 11 Texas, 50-43, in Berkeley.
You mean Cal, which lost to San Diego State and posted its only win this year in KST (Kookaburra Standard Time), hung half-a-hundred points on a Texas team that was pronounced B-A-C-K in the saddle after that opening win against Notre Dame?
Yeah, this late night thriller came down to last minute in Berkeley and last call in Austin.
--Brigham Young falls to 1-2 in Pac 12 South Division after 17-14 loss to UCLA.
Wait, what!? We thought BYU was trying to get into the Big 12?
Yeah, well, BYU is probably never getting into either league but has now lost to Utah and UCLA after opening with a win over Arizona.
--North Dakota State defeated Iowa on a last-second field goal.
Didn’t Iowa win the Big Ten West last year and go to the Rose Bowl? And, for doing that, isn’t the ink still wet on Kirk Ferentz’ new contract.
Yeah, but, this was not that big a deal for ND State, which notched its sixth straight win over an FBS school.
--USC, Oklahoma and Notre Dame have six total losses on Sept. 17
Aren't there college football laws against that?
Yeah, well, there used to be.
--Western Michigan improved to 2-0 this year against the Big Ten with a 34-10 win over Illinois.
The Big Ten?
Yeah, but, this was also no big deal as the Broncos were actually three-point favorites.
--Miami beat Appalachian State, 45-0.
Wasn’t this the game everyone has been waiting for in Boone, N.C. Wasn’t this the same App State team that took Tennessee to overtime?
Yeah, but, Miami just basically clocked, clocked clocked the Mountaineers, who went from “Hot, Hot, Hot,” to “Not, Not, Not.” The town is named for Daniel Boone, but App State on Saturday sort of went out like Davy Crocket.
--Boston College lost at Virginia Tech, 49-0, the Eagles’ worst loss in 66 years. Doug Flutie was in South Bend, working Notre Dame’s loss to Michigan State. Had Flutie been in Miami, he might have heaved again.
-Alabama gave up 527 yards and 43 points in a 48-43 win at Mississippi.
Isn’t this the Alabama defense praised, week in and week out, for being tough and disciplined and always stocked with first-round NFL picks?
Yeah, maybe, but Alabama, these days, is just as much about Lane Kiffin’s offense. The Crimson Tide won last year’s national title giving up 40 points and half-a-thousand yards to Clemson.
--Oregon failed on four two-point conversions in Saturday’s 35-32 loss to the Cornhuskers in Lincoln.
Did the kicker get suspended for painting himself green and running naked through Phil Knight's rose garden?
No, it seems in communal Eugene coach Mark Helfrich lets his players decide, based on formation, whether to go for two after touchdowns.
Woody Hayes and Darrell Royal just rolled over in their graves.
We’d ask what they’re smoking in Eugene if we didn’t already know.
A coach can control at least two things during the course of game: how to use time outs and whether, or not, to go for two after scores.
And while Helfrich is a nice, decent, guy, it is also possible he just train-wrecked the season.
No coaching manual since Rutgers vs. Princeton in 1869 has ever suggested failing on four straight two-point conversation attempts.
Oregon’s decision making horror line:
--14-7 (two-point conversation failed)
--20-7 (two-point conversion failed)
--26-28 (two-point conversion failed)
--32-28 (two-point conversion failed)
Defeating Nebraska was going to be a tough-enough slog after star back Royce Freeman left the game early with an injury we’re positive Oregon may not ever acknowledge.
The quirky Ducks, if you follow them, always go for two after their first score. It’s sort of “their thing” and makes them look so innovative and cool (especially against UC Davis).
Saturday, though, was a “big boy” game and Helfrich helped give it away.
He explained afterward that he likes to be aggressive.
It was a huge, want-to-hug them win for Nebraska and second-year coach Mike Riley. You have to feel for a program and its coach that endured several tough losses last year and then the tragic death, this summer, of punter Sam Foltz.
Riley, at Oregon State, had gone 4-10 against arch-rival. His departure for Nebraska was surprising to most, but it seems clear now he wanted a chance to see if could compete with the Oregons of the world with Nebraska-caliber players.
Hey, lookie here: Riley, on Saturday, defeated a program just like Oregon's.
It must have felt pretty sweet for the Corvallis kid.[/membership]