No. 1 Clemson got all it could handle at North Carolina, while other highly ranked teams like No. 2 Alabama, No. 5 Ohio State and No. 6 Oklahoma coasted to convincing wins.
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No. 1 Clemson 21, North Carolina 20
The Tar Heels suffered an embarrassing loss to Appalachian State at home last week, but they gave the top-ranked team in the country all they could handle this week.
The teams were tied 14-14 entering the fourth quarter, but Clemson’s defense made a big fourth-down stop and gave the Tigers the ball around midfield with 12:41 remaining. They took advantage with a 38-yard touchdown pass from Trevor Lawrence to Tee Higgins — their longest play from scrimmage — to take their first lead of the day.
North Carolina (2-2, 1-1 ACC) converted a fourth-and-2 from midfield and a fourth-and-4 on its next possession to get within Clemson’s 32-yard line with less than three minutes remaining. Then Javonte Williams broke loose for a 22-yard run on a third-and-2 play to make it first-and-goal at the 3. A pass completion on first down got the Tar Heels inside the 1-yard line. Williams scored on the next play with 1:14 to go.
The Tar Heels decided to go for two points, but QB Sam Howell was stopped short on the option play, and Clemson recovered the onside kick and ran out the clock.
FINAL: Clemson 21, North Carolina 20 pic.twitter.com/lc33sUG7RM— Yahoo Sports College Football (@YahooSportsCFB) September 28, 2019
North Carolina led 14-7 in the second quarter after a 10-yard TD pass from Howell to Beau Corrales, but Clemson evened the score on a 3-yard run by Lawrence in the final minute of the first half.
Howell connected with Dyami Brown on a 40-yard touchdown on the Tar Heels’ first drive of the game. The Tigers (5-0, 3-0) missed a field goal on their opening possession, but they finally found the end zone in the second quarter on a Travis Etienne 13-yard run to tie the score at 7-7. Etienne’s fumble led to UNC’s second TD.
No. 2 Alabama 59, Ole Miss 31
Tua Tagovailoa and the Tide (4-0, 1-0 SEC) needed a little over a minute to take the lead.
Tagovailoa threw a 74-yard TD pass to Devonta Smith just 1:10 into the game as the Tide built a 7-0 lead.
Ole Miss actually led 10-7 before Alabama got rolling. Tagovailoa threw three TD passes and ran for a score in the second quarter as the Tide built a 38-10 halftime lead.
And Smith had quite a first half for the Tide (click here for the Yahoo Sports report) and he scored again in the third quarter.
Good gracious. And not even the best WR on the team. https://t.co/ijb0L4KB5x— Pat Forde (@YahooForde) September 28, 2019
Ole Miss finally ended Alabama’s 38-point run with a TD pass from Plumlee to Jerrion Ealy. After missing a field goal, Alabama scored a touchdown on a blocked punt. The Tide were on cruise control from there.
No. 5 Ohio State 48, Nebraska 7
The Buckeyes (5-0, 2-0 Big Ten) picked off Cornhuskers quarterback Adrian Martinez three times already (3-2, 1-1), which is a big reason Ohio State jumped to a huge lead early and never looked back.
Hopes were quickly dashed for the hopeful Huskers fans in attendance.
Ohio State 31, Nebraska 0 pic.twitter.com/r0OaDb8bq5— Yahoo Sports College Football (@YahooSportsCFB) September 29, 2019
No. 6 Oklahoma 55, Texas Tech 16
The Red Raiders were hoping to snap a seven-game losing streak to the Sooners in the Big 12 opener for both teams.
Forget about it!
Jalen Hurts completed 17 of 24 passes for 415 yards and three touchdowns as the Sooners (4-0) grabbed a 34-10 halftime lead on their way to an easy victory. Hurts also rushed for 70 yards and a score for the Sooners.
Hurts and CeeDee Lamb hooked up for an early TD in the third quarter for a 41-10 lead. It was Lamb’s third score of the game. The Sooners led 48-16 after three quarters.
It was all OU from the start. Trey Sermon capped a five-play, 65-yard drive on the first possession with a 1-yard TD run for the early lead, and Hurts scored from a yard out to give the Sooners a 14-0 lead. WR Charleston Rambo had two catches for 122 yards on the two scoring drives.
Oklahoma's offense just isn't fair.— Yahoo Sports College Football (@YahooSportsCFB) September 28, 2019
Jalen Hurts to Charleston Rambo for a massive gain on 3rd & 17. pic.twitter.com/Zl031IfvZA
The lead grew to 17-0 before Texas Tech’s Armand Shyne scored on a 13-yard run. OU came right back with a 71-yard TD pass from Hurts to Lamb. Hurts and Lamb hooked up for another score as the Sooners led 31-10.
No. 7 Auburn 56, Mississippi State 23
The Tigers (5-0, 2-0 SEC) avenged last year’s loss to the Bulldogs (3-2, 1-1) in a big way.
Auburn QB Bo Nix threw for 316 yards and two touchdowns while also rushing for 56 yards and another score.
The most interesting part of this game might have been a scary moment when the Mississippi State Bulldog mascot (which is a real-life dog) was bumped into on the sideline during an Auburn touchdown run. Happy update: the dog is just fine!
LET THE DOG BE FINE LET THE DOG BE FINE LET THE DOG BE FINE LET THE DOG BE FINE https://t.co/5BlTjvS32w— Yahoo Sports College Football (@YahooSportsCFB) September 28, 2019
No. 8 Wisconsin 24, Northwestern 15
Coming off a big victory over Michigan, the Badgers were in a battle with the Wildcats.
Fortunately, the Badgers’ defense came to play — and the Wildcats made some questionable two-point conversion decisions — in a nine-point victory.
Wisconsin (4-0, 2-0 Big Ten) led just 7-3 at halftime before the Badgers forced a fumble from Northwestern QB Hunter Johnson. It was recovered by Matt Henningsen in the end zone for a TD and a 14-3 lead late in the third quarter.
The Badgers increased the lead to 17-3 on a fourth-quarter field goal — and then the defense struck again.
Noah Burks intercepted a pass from Northwestern QB Aidan Smith and returned it 66 yards for a score as Wisconsin’s lead grew to 24-3. Smith replaced Johnson, who suffered a knee injury earlier in the drive.
The Wildcats (1-3, 0-2) took advantage of a Badgers’ special teams turnover and scored on a 4-yard TD run by Drake Anderson to cut the lead to 24-9 with 8:45 left in the game. The two-point conversion attempt failed.
Northwestern then recovered the onside kick and was on the move before the Wisconsin defense forced a fumble from Smith to end the threat. But the Wildcats got the ball back and scored again on a 15-yard TD pass from Smith to JJ Jefferson. Another two-point conversion failed as the Badgers’ lead was still nine at 24-15.
Northwestern’s final drive ended deep in Wisconsin territory on downs.
No. 9 Florida 38, Towson 0
The Tigers (3-2), who are No. 5 in the FCS rankings, got a $500K payday for their first road trip to Gainesville. That will help with funding the athletic department, but it was their only win on this day.
QB Kyle Trask completed 18 of his first 20 passes for 188 yards and two TDs. He also ran for a score as the Gators coasted.
No. 10 Notre Dame 35, No. 18 Virginia 20
No ACC team has ever beaten a ranked Notre Dame team in South Bend, and Virginia couldn’t get it done, either.
Ian Book completed 17 of 25 passes but did not throw a TD pass. The story of the day was the Notre Dame defense, which forced five turnovers and had eight sacks.
Virginia (4-1) rallied from a 14-7 deficit to take a 17-14 halftime lead, but Notre Dame (3-1) took control with two third-quarter TDs — the second a defensive score after a fumble by QB Bryce Perkins.
The Cavs scored on their first possession of the game as Perkins threw a 6-yard TD pass to Joe Reed, but the Irish — a double-digit favorite — responded with a 5-yard TD run from Tony Jones Jr. and an 11-yard score from C'Borius Flemister.
No. 14 Iowa 48, Middle Tennessee 3
Iowa improved to 4-0 with an easy victory over Middle Tennessee (1-2).
Nate Stanley completed 17 of 25 passes for 276 yards and two TDs. Toren Young led the rushing attack with 131 yards on 11 carries.
The Hawkeyes scored on their opening drive — a nine-play, 65-yard march capped by a 4-yard TD run from Mekhi Sargent.
The Hawkeyes added a Keith Duncan field goal, a Stanley to Brandon Smith TD pass and a Brady Ross scoring run for a 24-0 halftime lead. They lost the shutout in the third quarter on a Middle Tennessee field goal.
No. 17 Washington 28, No. 21 USC 14
The Huskies (4-1, 1-1 Pac-12) looked good against BYU last week, and they picked right up where they left off against the Trojans (3-2, 2-1).
Washington took advantage of good field position on a five-play, 35-yard drive, capped by a 1-yard TD run by Richard Newton, for a 7-0 lead.
Then the Huskies got a break.
USC got on the board with 4:14 left in the first half on a 3-yard run from QB Matt Fink. The Huskies added a field goal as time expired in the first half and another early in the third quarter.
Salvon Ahmed reeled off an 89-yard touchdown run with 4:56 left in the third to give the Huskies a 21-point advantage before the Trojans answered with a TD pass from Fink to Michael Pittman Jr.
No. 19 Utah 38, Washington State 13
The Utes (4-1, 1-1 Pac-12) bounced back from last week’s disappointing loss in a big way, stifling the Cougars (3-2, 0-2) en route to a much-needed conference victory.
No. 20 Michigan 52, Rutgers 0
Michigan rebounded from its loss to Wisconsin with a rout over Rutgers.
Shea Patterson completed 17 of 26 passes for 276 yards with a touchdown and an interception. He also rushed for three scores as the Wolverines (3-1, 1-1 Big Ten) had no trouble with their offense against the Scarlet Knights (1-3, 0-2).
Patterson threw a 48-yard TD pass to Nico Collins on the Wolverines’ first drive. Rutgers has allowed touchdowns on all four opening drives this season.
But the ref may have been confused by one of Michigan’s scores.
Patterson added a pair of scoring run in the first half as Michigan built its lead to 24-0. The lead grew to 38-0 after three quarters on TD runs by Christian Turner and Patterson.
No. 22 UCF 56, UConn 21
Coming off a painful loss to Pitt a week ago, the Knights (4-1) took out all their frustration on the Huskies (1-3) and ran away with an easy victory.
No. 23 Texas A&M 31, Arkansas 27
The Aggies and Razorbacks went back and forth in this SEC showdown, but Texas A&M held on for the victory.
A&M (3-2, 1-1 SEC) struck first on a 9-yard TD pass from Kellen Mond to Ainias Smith and added a TD run from Isaiah Spiller for a 14-3 lead.
Arkansas (2-3, 0-2) responded with a defensive touchdown and a 13-yard TD pass from Ben Hicks to Mike Woods to take a 17-14 lead.
A&M struck with eight seconds left in the first half on a 22-yard TD pass from Mond to Quartney Davis for a 21-17 halftime lead.
Arkansas struck early in the third on an 11-yard TD run by Devwah Whaley for a 24-21 lead. There was no other scoring in the third quarter. A&M took the lead on a Mond to Davis TD pass for a 28-24 lead. The teams exchanged field goals as A&M took a 31-27 lead with 3:52 left in the game.
Arkansas fell short on its last drive.
Oklahoma State 26, No. 24 Kansas State 13
After a lengthy weather delay in Stillwater, Oklahoma, the Cowboys came out and dominated, handing the surprising Wildcats their first loss of the season.
No. 25 Michigan State 40, Indiana 31
Matt Coghlin kicked a 21-yard field goal with five seconds left to give the Spartans (4-1, 2-0 Big Ten) the victory over the Hoosiers (3-2, 0-2).
The Spartans recovered a fumble for a touchdown on the game’s final play for the final nine-point margin. The teams combined for 33 points in the final quarter.
Western Carolina punter shows return man speed in fake punt TD
It’s not often you see a punter zooming down the field and scoring a touchdown, but that was the scene playing out during FCS Western Carolina’s game against Chattanooga on Saturday.
Gabrielle Union honors late father of Nebraska football player
Gabrielle Union, a native of Omaha, was the guest picker on “College GameDay” on Saturday morning in Lincoln along with her husband, NBA legend Dwyane Wade.
And it was quite a show.
In case you missed it
No. 12 Penn State blows out Maryland (Friday)
Sean Clifford threw for 398 yards and three touchdowns, ran for a score and carried the Nittany Lions to a 59-0 victory over the Terrapins — a blowout that typified the one-sided nature of this regional series.
FINAL: Penn State 59, Maryland 0— Yahoo Sports College Football (@YahooSportsCFB) September 28, 2019
Penn State: 619
Maryland: 128 pic.twitter.com/JvqktAiTst
Arizona State stuns No. 15 Cal (Friday)
There are no unbeaten teams left in the Pac-12.
Entering Week 5, Cal was the only member of the Pac-12 without a loss. That status ended in Berkeley as the Golden Bears (4-1, 1-1 Pac-12) suffered a 24-17 loss to Arizona State (4-1, 1-1).
And to make matters worse, Cal lost starting quarterback Chase Garbers in the process.
Chase Garbers had to dodge some overzealous encouragement from his own teammate as he walked to the locker room pic.twitter.com/0Db7fxSqyj— Yahoo Sports College Football (@YahooSportsCFB) September 28, 2019
Hokies humbled by Duke
Things are not going well at Virginia Tech.
The Hokies were blown out 45-10 by Duke for the program’s worst home loss since 1974.