No. 7 Georgia 52, South Carolina 20
A guy who couldn't hack it at Virginia lit the South Carolina secondary on fire. Greyson Lambert set an NCAA record by completing all but one of his 25 passes on his way to throwing for 330 yards and three touchdowns. The Gamecock defense cannot tackle in space, they can't adjust in the air, and they can't move their hips succinctly. Its run defense is not sustainable over a whole game. The corners rarely offer any kind of challenge and the safeties can't manage the backend or cover space. The defense is the problem again and the offense isn't much better. Injuries have already occurred on an already thin and average offensive line. The rushing attack is often mismanaged, no matter what personnel South Carolina puts in the backfield. The receiving corps outside of Pharoh Cooper seems to have separation issues. Saturday was honestly one of the saddest USC performances I have ever watched. They should get a win this weekend against UCF and maybe a road win at Missouri will breathe some life into the program but for now, it looks like another overhyped season - even with 7-5 expectations.
No. 22 Missouri 9, Connecticut 6
The ugliest performance of the weekend goes to Missouri. You can play ugly and still win, I don't think you can play sadly and still win. For a while there the score was ‘UCONN 3, Missouri 2.' The Tigers blocked a punt into the back of the end zone for a safety and UCONN connected on a field goal. Missouri's offense got out to another sluggish start where they were unable to finish drives. The ineptitude lasted basically the entire game until Maty Mauk ran for a score at the end of the third quarter, helping the Tigers take the lead for good. Kentrall Brothers has had 16-16-10 tackle performances to start the year and now leads the country in the statistic. The final meaningful play perfectly described this game: a UCONN pass thrown into triple coverage and intercepted by Missouri on the Huskies' fake field goal attempt.
No. 17 Texas A&M 44, Nevada 27
Texas A&M continues to roll this season and in nonconference play. Their win over Nevada was their 19th consecutive win over a nonconference opponent, the longest active streak in the FBS. Kyle Allen threw four touchdown passes and ran for another score while the defense strangled the opposing team once again. Myles Garrett tied a career-high with a 3 ½ sacks and set a career high with four tackles for loss. As a whole, A&M combined for five sacks and 16 tackles for loss on Saturday. Christian Kirk showed his explosiveness once again, gaining 120 yards on six receptions. There's life in Speedy Noil, who has been slowed by injuries but earned his first touchdown of the season last week.
No. 13 LSU 45, No. 15 Auburn 21
There is not a more perplexing story in college football this season than Jeremy Johnson and his play. Gus Malzahn and Rhett Lashlee have crowed about Johnson's talent for two years. Combine that with the impressive, but small, on-field sample we got during those years and everyone was buying in entering the year. And we were all wrong. He once again laid an egg and helped get his team slaughtered in Death Valley. Leonard Fournette was his accessory, breaking a career-high, one he had just set the week before, with 228 yards rushing. The Tigers ran for 411 yards on Auburn and Will Muschamp's defense is surrendering 29.7 points and 442.7 yards per game so far. LSU hasn't asked Brandon Harris to do much but they'll have to at some point, it may just not be until the Tigers play Alabama.
Mississippi State 62, Northwestern State 13
Dak Prescott continued making his mark in Starkville as he became the school's all-time leader in career passing yards this weekend. As he threw for 227 yards and two touchdowns on Saturday, Prescott now owns every major passing record in Mississippi State history. He is the program's best player of all-time, something that is very cool to witness. Prescott led the Bulldogs to a school record 647 yards of total offense as well. Gabe Myles, a versatile sophomore, who the coaching staff has expected to jump on the scene, caught a touchdown pass and ran for a score on Saturday.
Vanderbilt 47, Austin Peay 7
Johnny McCrary and the Vanderbilt offense had a record-breaking performance after a couple frustrating weeks to start the year. McCrary finished 28-of-33 with 368 yards passing and at one point the junior quarterback completed 11 straight throws. His 84.8 completion percentage set the school record, one that had stood for 54 years. On the receiving end of McCrary's big day was mainly Trent Sherfield. He put up a stat line we may not see the rest of the season by any wideout: 16 catches, 240 yards. Sherfield's 240 receiving yards broke Earl Bennett's 223-yard performance in 2007 versus Richmond.
Texas Tech 35, Arkansas 24
Kliff Kingsbury's big win and big statement afterwards is the leading story in college football this week. His quarterback Patrick Mahomes seems to have the offense rolling like we all expected KK's offense to move when he arrived in Lubbock. It wasn't last year's rushing performance but Alex Collins still put up 170 yards, although it was on 28 carries. The Razorbacks offense continues to struggle in the red zone. Good offenses execute on third down and in the red zone. Arkansas is average in one category and horrific in the other. Hey good luck, you got A&M next.
Tennessee 55, Western Carolina 10
Tennessee completely dominated Western Carolina after the Vols suffered their largest blown lead ever in a home loss to Oklahoma the week before. With his courageous, and famous, older brother Eric Berry in the stands, Evan Berry returned a kickoff 88 yards to the house. The Vols special teams supplied more points as Alvin Kamara also returned a punt for a touchdown. He ran in a score as well, becoming the first Tennessee player in 40 years to have a punt return touchdown and a touchdown from scrimmage in the same game. After a shaky game against Oklahoma, Joshua Dobbs rebounded to go 15-of-21 for 144 yards and led a 31-3 second quarter for the Volunteers.
Florida 14, Kentucky 9
Looks like Jim McElwain may have found himself a quarterback. Will Grier made his second consecutive start for the Gators and, with the help of his extremely talented defense, led them to hard-fought SEC road victory. Grier was a pedestrian 13-of-22 for 125 yards but he did rush for 61 yards, including one dash that ended in one of Florida's two touchdowns. Grier showed incredible effort and heart to dig out that rushing touchdown in a goal-to-go situation. Patrick Towles struggled, going 8-of-24 for 126 yards but the Gators defense was fierce on Saturday night. They gathered six sacks and held a productive UK rushing attack to just 115 yards on the ground. Florida's win extends their winning streak over Kentucky to 29 games, the longest winning streak ever for one SEC team over another.
No. 15 Ole Miss 43, Alabama 37
Hugh Freeze has led Ole Miss to their first win in Tuscaloosa since 1988 and their second consecutive win a historically lopsided series. That's an impressive feat but I'm more enthralled by what he has done to the culture in Oxford. He's taken Ole Miss and made them believe that they belong and then he brought in the talent to put them up with the best and beat them. The Rebels beat the Tide without Laremy Tunsil, their best pro prospect. Chad Kelly's 341 yards and three touchdowns helped give Alabama its earliest loss in 12 years. Kelly's prayer of a touchdown to Quincy Adeboyejo will forever be a part of Ole Miss lore. Nick Saban and Lane Kiffin devised a plan to make their quarterback more of a threat in this ballgame. With more situations involving a QB run or a QB moving outside of the pocket to make his throw, Cooper Bateman and his athletic ability was the obvious choice. Coker hadn't played poorly this season, and I get the wrinkle Saban and Kiffin were going for, but I'll never understand the decision to not start him so abruptly. Down 30-10, Coker led an Alabama run in the fourth quarter, including two touchdown drives in a span of 2:03, but the Rebels just always appeared to make one more play than the Tide, counteracting any potential Bama comeback. The Tide's playoff and SEC hopes are still alive, which further convinces me that we may end up with a two-loss SEC West champ.