In an incredible opening weekend of college football, and it was filled with drama in big game showdowns. The standouts were Texas, Wisconsin and then the flexed muscles of Alabama. But the biggest story is the slippage of the SEC. The league is down, with lots of hot seats. The state of Texas, with the Aggies, ‘Horns and Houston posting impressive victories.
Now Alabama has a quarterback who can run it and throw it. For all of the glory of the Nick Saban era, the 52-6 blowout of Southern Cal in Arlington goes down as one of the Tide’s most impressive victories. Ever.
Things got a little nervous for Clemson down on the plains, but the Tigers prevailed over Auburn 19-13. DeShaun Watson is the best QB in the country and has lots of weapons. Clemson has a very difficult schedule.
The Cougars posted one of the big wins in program history, dominating Oklahoma. On the heels of the Chick-Fil-A Peach Bowl win over Florida State, Houston and Tom Herman are soaring. Lamar will have a tough go this coming weekend.
Jim Harbaugh’s Wolverines sharpened their claws with a beat down of Hawaii. Michigan should handle Central Florida this Saturday, then things toughen up a bit with a visit from Colorado.
5. OHIO STATE
The Buckeyes gave up an early pick-six to Bowling Green, but then J.T. Barrett and the offense got cooking. Ohio State is two weeks away from a major showdown with the now- desperate Sooners.
6. FLORIDA STATE
The Seminoles off the short week host Charleston Southern. Florida State has dreams of making it back to the playoff and the ‘Noles have the talent to put together another outstanding season.
It was an impressive season-opening victory for the Cardinal over Kansas State on the farm. Christian McCaffery is one of the best players in the country … Duh … And it looks as though they have upgraded at quarterback.
8. TEXAS A&M
Kevin Sumlin’s team pulled out an overtime thriller over UCLA, averting what would have been a disastrous 15-point blown fourth quarter lead. The Aggie receivers could be the best group in the country.
The Cardinals are off the charts in every offensive statistical category after blowing out Charlotte. They are a major factor in the ACC, fighting Clemson and Florida State for a spot in the conference title game.
At this moment, the 17-16 victory over LSU at Lambeau Field has to go down as one of the biggest wins in Badgers history Their defense is tough, and Wiscy is now the favorite on their side of the Big Ten.
What a win for Charley Strong and the Longhorns. It was an instant classic in a battle of two blue-bloods, as Texas topped Notre Dame 50-47 in double overtime in Austin. The Irish have inflicted a lot of hurt on the ‘Horns through the years.
It was a sterling debut for Kirby Smart as the Bulldogs head coach, with Georgia rallying from a 10-point third quarter deficit to topple North Carolina 33-24. Nick Chubb had a Heisman-caliber performance. Nicholls State is in Athens Saturday.
The Huskies got an impressive 48-13 win over Rutgers and should make it 2-0 with a visit from bordering Idaho. Chris Peterson is one of the best coaches in the land and has the Huskies back in the PAC-12 mix.
The Horned Frogs outran the Jackrabbits of South Dakota State 59-41 in a 100 point game. Gary Patterson is certainly fretting about his defense. It’s a big one with the Hogs Saturday in Fort Worth, where a big longhorn named Patrone is smiling.
15. NOTRE DAME
It was a heartbreaker for the Fighting Irish in Austin. When they blocked the PAT to tie it, the Irish had all the momentum. Nevada comes to South Bend, then the big one with Michigan State.
In a premier season-opening showdown, the Sooners went down by 10 to Houston at Reliant Stadium. Oklahoma has to regroup. The Big XII title is well within their grasp, but the Houston loss is a stinger.
17. MICHIGAN STATE
What an outstanding job Mark Dantanio has done in East Lansing. The Spartans have a lot of talent to replace, but have become one of those teams that you can plug into the top 25 every season.
The Bayou Bengals are in shock. As always, there is a tremendous amount of talent on the bayou, but the offense has some major issues once again at quarterback. The Tigers faithful are snarling.
19. WEST VIRGINIA
The Mountaineers are one of the teams to beat in the Big XII. It was an impressive opening victory over Mizzou 26-11. Next up Youngstown St. in Morgantown. That defense has to be better to win the league.
20. OLE MISS
It is a short week for the Rebels, and Wofford could be dangerous coming off the Monday night affair with Florida State and Alabama on deck. Overcoming the loss of three first round draft picks is quite a challenge.
21. BOISE STATE
The Broncos keep on rolling, beating Louisiana- Lafayette 45-10. Next up is a big one with Washington State. Anytime Boise State can get a PAC-12 victory, it is extra sweet for a true western College Football powerhouse.
Mark Richt’s Hurricanes blasted Florida A&M 70-3. Next up are the Owls of Florida Atlantic and then a trip to Appalachian State for a dangerous game. Though their scare of Tennessee will have the Canes on alert.
The Volunteers had visions of a horrible start to a promising season, but found a way to hold off Appalachian State, which had won 17 of its last 19 games, on Rocky Top in overtime. Virginia Tech will be hungry with a record crowd on hand in Bristol.
The Bruins looked dead and gone in College Station, but rallied back to force overtime. The Aggies came up with the stop though. Josh Rosen has to cut down on the picks. UCLA is a big factor in the PAC-12 South.
25. NORTH CAROLINA
Mitch Trubisky is a standout quarterback and the Tar Heels will make a lot of noise in the ACC. The loss to Georgia is a stinger, as the Heels had a 24-14 third quarter lead in the Georgia Dome.
The Tigers defensive line is amongst the best in college football. Auburn was looking for some magic against Clemson, but came up just short. Gus Malzahn is searching for offensive consistency.