2018 College Football Week 9 Scores: The Closing Argument
Another top ten loser this week.
You just watched the end of 2018 College Football Week 9. We all know what we saw and now we have to talk about it.
In a week in which we got some unexpected ranked-on-ranked games (Iowa vs. Penn State), and others we thought would be monsters but were more like shadows (Clemson vs. Florida State), there is a lot to unpack. Oh, by the way, the College Football Playoff rankings come out on Tuesday night.
2018 College Football Week 9 Scores: Before We Begin…
Let’s spend a moment on the upcoming College Football Playoff rankings. It will potentially have two SEC teams in it. This is more of a mental exercise and in no way a concrete predictor of the future.
I’m looking at you, LSU. If the Tigers lose to Alabama, they’re gone. If Alabama loses, hell, the committee would still probably get them in somehow. The point is, both control their destiny, but only one is going to win their upcoming game. Then enter Michigan and other possible one-loss conference champions. The bottom line is that if Alabama wins out, the SEC is not getting two teams in the field unless a few conferences collapse in November.
We try to project how the rest of the season will go based on how the preceding weeks have gone. Note that the last time we did this, we only had one SEC participant. It’s too soon to worry, anyway, as 2014 Ohio State wasn’t even in the top ten when the first CFP poll dropped. Take it for what it’s worth and move on with your life.
2018 College Football Week 9 Scores: Clemson vs. Florida State
Remember the start of the season, when people thought this might be the game of this week? Hell, maybe even College Gameday would go there, these fans thought. Oh no, oh no. As it turns out, Florida State is still a dumpster fire (at least, as much of a dumpster fire as you can be at Florida State). So was their game against the visiting Clemson Tigers.
A 49-point spanking, it was the Seminoles’ worst loss at home in history. (Link: ESPN) It will stay with them a lot longer than it will with Clemson, who are on to the next game and are actually playing for something of value. It’s another year in which FSU (at least some) appears to have quit when faced with adversity. Good luck, Willie Taggart.
Take This Away From CLEM vs. FSU: Clemson is every bit as good as you think they are. They went from slamming a ranked team last week to one that started the season that way. Florida State is at best mediocre and if they get the Independence Bowl again, they should be fortunate.
2018 College Football Week 9 Scores: Florida vs. Georgia
Georgia had a hiccup in their last game, but they sacked up and took care of business convincingly against Florida. Jake Fromm and his teammates answered the bell in their 36-17 victory, running away and hiding in the second half. The Gators were only in the game as far as the scoreboard saying it was close at the half. When all was said and done, the Bulldogs outgained Florida 429 to 275 and were plus-three in turnovers.
Florida shot up quickly in the rankings, but showed they could not hack it in this rivalry game. It was their first loss in three tries against ranked opponents this year, so they get a pass, but it also means the end for their national ambitions.
Take This Away From UF vs. UGA: Jake Fromm is the starting quarterback of Georgia and you can take that to the bank.
2018 College Football Week 9 Scores: Iowa vs. Penn State
On a sloppy day in State College, Pennsylvania, the Iowa Hawkeyes had a chance to win a football game the same way they like to make games: slow and grinding. They did not. Nate Stanley was awful and the Hawkeyes committed too many mistakes, causing their early lead to evaporate. Iowa was hardly a factor in the second half, and a hurt Trace McSorley was effective enough to win the game in sub-prime conditions.
While it was a needed boost for Penn State, who are still trying to keep up with Michigan and Ohio State, it was a gut punch for Iowa, who could have taken command of their division.
Take This Away From IOWA vs. PSU: Penn State can still do something special in the Big Ten this season. Oh, wait, not if Michigan keeps winning. Iowa might still win their division but blew it on Saturday. They were both tussling for Outback Bowl positioning.
2018 College Football Week 9 Scores: Texas vs. Oklahoma State
Homecoming night is a special one at Stillwater when Barry Sanders is in the house. It also helps when the home team wins. They upset Texas by a 38-35 score, in a game that was much more out of hand for the Longhorns than the score would indicate.
Taylor Cornelius, quarterback for Texas, was brilliant in throwing three touchdown passes. Texas, on the other hand, sustained a huge hit as they try to rise up in the Big 12. Despite the fact that they beat Oklahoma, it’s the Sooners who once again look like they are assuming the position of frontrunner.
Take This Away From TEX vs. OKST: Texas is not going to make the College Football Playoff. They would have to do it as the first-ever two-loss team.
2018 College Football Week 9 Scores: Washington State vs. Stanford
The Cougars went down to the Bay Area with a chance to keep their roll going. Stanford was one of the most major foes lying in their path to a Pac-12 North title. After an insane performance by quarterback Gardner Minshew, Wazzu found a way to get out of Palo Alto with a 41-38 win.
KJ Costello for Stanford was almost as good in what turned out to be a slugfest. It was Minshew, however, who led his team back from a deficit and eventually to victory. This Washington State team means serious business, and Minshew is becoming a hot commodity on the NFL Draft circuit. (Link: CougCenter)
Take This Away From WSU vs. STAN: Washington State is the best team in the Pac-12.
2018 College Football Week 9 Scores: Quick Hitters
#12 Kentucky defeats Missouri, 15-14. It appeared as though Kentucky’s dream season was about to end, but a defensive penalty caused an untimed down. The rest is history, as Kentucky scored the game-winning touchdown with zeroes on the clock.
Houston defeats #21 South Florida, 57-36. The perfect season is over for USF and Houston is now the team chasing UCF in the American.
Northwestern defeats #20 Wisconsin, 31-17. Wisconsin was a preseason College Football Playoff contender, which tells you there is always at least one team every year that is going to spit the bit. The Wildcats had their way in this game.
Mississippi State defeats #16 Texas A&M, 28-13. The Aggies fell flat in Stark Vegas, and Nick Fitzgerald looked like a new man.
Syracuse defeats #22 NC State, 51-41. The two best teams in the ACC Atlantic behind Clemson might now be Syracuse and Boston College, like we all expected.
#8 Oklahoma defeats Kansas State, 51-14. The Sooners have been on a mission since the Texas loss.
Kansas defeats TCU, 27-26. That’s right, the Jayhawks won a Big 12 game. TCU is having an awful season.
Army defeats Eastern Michigan, 37-22. For the first time in history, Army football is bowl-eligible in three straight seasons.
Arizona State defeats USC, 38-35. The Fighting Herms are 4-4 — as are USC, a team a lot of people liked when the season began.
Georgia Southern defeats #25 Appalachian State, 34-14. The Mountaineers go one week and done as a ranked team after getting blown out in Georgia.
Boston College defeats Miami, 27-14. The Eagles are 6-2, which is their best eight-game start to a season since 2007. Meanwhile, Miami’s chances in the ACC Coastal suffered.
#23 Utah defeats UCLA, 41-10. The Utes are on a roll, and are the certain team to beat in the Pac-12 South.
California defeats #15 Washington, 12-10. Ugly loss for the Huskies, who are not only out of national title contention, but are slipping behind in the Pac-12.
Oregon State defeats Colorado, 41-34 (OT). The Beavers roared back from a 28-point deficit to stun the Buffs.
2018 College Football Week 9 Scores: The Big Winner
How you doing, Clemson? A week after they nuked North Carolina State from orbit, they put an even bigger beatdown on Florida State. Life is good for this team that has grand designs on a return to the College Football Playoff. People are already thinking about the prospect of Clemson vs. Alabama IV.
They are very safe for positioning in the first rankings release on Tuesday.
2018 College Football Week 9 Scores: The Big Loser
Sorry, Missouri, we have to do it. The Tigers had the game won, scoring a huge upset over Kentucky as the clock hit zero…until they didn’t. Kentucky had a first and goal at the 10 with four seconds left. Terry Wilson threw the ball incomplete to Ahmad Wagner, and the game should have been over, except for the Missouri pass interference. Kentucky received one untimed down from the two yard line, and scored on a touchdown pass to CJ Conrad.
Instead of being a season-defining victory, it was a kick in the huevos for Missouri. They’re our big loser of the week.