College Football: Week 8 Review

College Football: Week 8 Review
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Updated: Oct 24, 2022

#14 Syracuse @ #5 Clemson

Both the Orange and the Tigers came into this game unbeaten. While that was expected of Clemson, it was not expected at all for Syracuse, who are 6-0 for the first time since 1987. 

Clemson scored first, though a 1 yard Will Shipley run. Syracuse then quickly replied, with Quarterback Garret Shrader throwing a ’12-yard touchdown. At the end of the 1st quarter, a Clemson pass was intercepted by Syracuse. The Tiger’s issues with ball security would not end there. During the second quarter, Clemson drove the ball up to the Syracuse 4-yard line. 

It was looking like an upset was on the cards, when Shrader ran the ball into the end zone to put the Orange 14 points up on Clemson. The deficit would be slightly cut when the Tigers scored a 44-yard field goal just before the half, but still, Clemson was behind, primarily due to Syracuse taking advantage of the Tigers’ mistakes. 

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Syracuse would struggle to get any offense drive going during the third period. But, that was not an issue for them, as their defense stepped up to the plate, causing Shipley to fumble the ball, losing possession. On Clemson’s next drive, new Quarterback DJ Uiagalelei was intercepted, recording the Tiger’s 4th turnover of the game. Could Syracuse actually beat Clemson?

Clemson would finally get the ball moving near the end of the third quarter, in an 80-yard drive which resulted in a touchdown. Clemson would score another on their next drive, giving them back the lead. The pressure was now on Syracuse, who could not get a drive going. A final 44-yard field goal further cemented Clemson’s 27-21 victory, which continues their streak of home victories, now at 37, a new ACC record. Clemson goes to 8-0, and are idle next week, while Syracuse loses their first game of the season, and will face Notre Dame next week.

#9 UCLA @ #10 Oregon

On paper, this matchup could have been seen as the game of the week. On the field, both teams delivered. The number 9-ranked UCLA Bruins came into this match unbeaten, could their streak continue against the number 10-ranked Oregon Ducks in Eugene?

The game started with parity. A 53-yard drive from the Ducks ended with a Camden Lewis 44-yard field goal. This was followed by a 46-yard drive from the Bruins, which ended with a Nicholas Barr-Mira 47-yard field goal. Parity continued on the next set of drives. A 17-yard pass from Ducks quarterback Bo Nix to Terrance Ferguson put the Ducks into the lead. This was directly followed by a 36-yard pass from Bruins quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson to Keegan Jones, to level to scores at 10-10. The scoring would continue on the next drive, as Bo Nix found Troy Franklin for a 49-yard touchdown pass. Would parity continue with another Bruins touchdown?

No. What happened was more bizarre. Oregon attempted an onside kick, which was successful, and the Duck retained possession. With this possession, the Ducks would score on a 2-yard Jordan James run, breaking the parity. The Bruins would respond, not with a touchdown, but with a 44-yard field goal. On their next play (stop me if you have heard this one before), Oregon would score a touchdown. A 2-yard pass from Bo Nix found Troy Franklin, to increase the Ducks’ lead to 18 points at halftime. 

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The second half would be just like the first half. A UCLA drive stalled at the Duck’s 16-yard line, resulting in a 33-yard field goal, to cut Oregon’s lead to 15 points. 

In every drive so far, the Ducks had scored points. This next drive would not change anything. A 17-yard Bo Nix throw to Cam McCornick would give Nix his fourth touchdown of the game. UCLA would reply with a touchdown of their own, with Zach Charbonnet scoring from the 1-yard line. Oregon would get back the ball, and score another touchdown. Bo Nix would this time throw a 37-yard pass to Bucky Irving, for his fifth of the game. 

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We would finally get some defensive highlights in the middle of the fourth quarter when UCLA quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson was intercepted. What could Oregon do with this possession? Nothing. For the first time in the game, an Oregon drive ended with no points, as they had to punt. Thompson-Robinson redeemed himself for his interception, by throwing a 22-yard touchdown pass to Jake Bobo. But, it had no effect on the result of the game, as Oregon would win 45-30, go to 6-1 on the season, and face California in Berkley next week. UCLA’s undefeated streak is over, and next week they welcome Stanford to Pasadena.

#7 Ole Miss @ LSU

The number 7 ranked Ole Miss Rebels came into their game against LSU unbeaten. But no trip to Baton Rouge is easy. 

On the first drive of the game, the Rebels running back Quinshon Judkins scored a 6-yard touchdown, during a drive aided by a 37-yard pass from Quarterback Jaxon Dart. LSU would reply with a fast-moving drive on their own, getting the ball down to the Ole Miss 6-yard line. LSU quarterback Jayden Daniels however would not find a receiver, and the Tigers had to settle for a field goal. The past would repeat itself next, as Quinshon Judkins would score his second touchdown of the game, and LSU would have a 42-yard field goal attempt. This attempt they would miss. An Ole Miss 32-yard field goal would mean that at the end of the first period, the Rebels would be up 17-3 on the Tigers. 

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The scoring would continue into the second quarter, as Jayden Daniels would finally find the end zone on a 34-yard touchdown pass to Jaray Jenkins. Daniels would score again on the next drive, with a 3-yard rushing touchdown for himself to level the scores at 17-17. A 48-yard field goal from Jonathan Cruz would give Ole Miss the lead going into the half. 

The tide would turn in the second half. LSU would score 4 touchdowns for 4 successive drives, with Jayden Daniels rushing for two of these. Ole Miss could not get anything going, scoring no points in the second half, and losing their unbeaten record (and probably their top 10 rankings). With this win, the Tigers go to 6-2 on the season and will be idle next week before they face Alabama the week after, while Ole Miss head to College Station next week, to face Texas A&M. 

#17 Kansas State @ #8 TCU

The number 8 ranked TCU were another team who came into their game with an unbeaten record. With the losses to Ole Miss and UCLA, they could rise up the College Football Rankings with a win against the number 17 ranked Kansas State Wildcats. 

TCU struck first when quarterback Max Duggan threw a 65-yard touchdown pass to Derius Davis. Kansas State quickly responded to this with a touchdown of their own. The Wildcat’s quarterback Will Howard passed to Kade Warner for a 28-yard touchdown to tie the scores up 7-7. TCU soon took back the lead through a Griffin Kell 43-yard field goal. Then, the Kansas State Wildcats became the Oregon Ducks. In their next three drives, they scored 3 successive touchdowns, with the pick of the bunch being a Deuce Vaughn 47-yard run into the end zone. While Kansas State was scoring for fun, TCU struggled to get the ball moving. Their scoring drought ended near the end of the first half, as a Max Duggan pass to Jared Wiley found the end zone for a 4-yard touchdown, to bring the scores to 28-17 Kansas State at the half. 

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TCU started the second half as they finished the first. A 77-yard drive ended with a Kendre Miller 2-yard touchdown run, to bring the gap to 4 points. Kansas State then missed a 44-yard field goal, handing a TCU side now with the momentum the ball. They took full advantage of this, and  Quentin Johnston scored a touchdown off a 55-yard throw from Max Duggan to give TCU the lead. Things went from bad to worst for Kansas State. On their next drive, they were intercepted, and a 9-yard Kendre Miller touchdown would seal a come-from-behind victory for TCU, who keep their undefeated record. The Bearcats will hope to improve in their next game, against the Oklahoma State Cowboys, while TCU has to go to West Virginia. 

#20 Texas @ #11 Oklahoma State

The number 20-ranked Texas Longhorns have had a mixed season so far. This being said, they went into their clash with the number 11 ranked Oklahoma State Cowboys as favorites to win. 

The Longhorns had the ball to begin the game, but they quickly gave it away. Texas Quarterback Quinn Ewers was intercepted and gave the Cowboys a very good field position. However, Oklahoma State quarterback Spencer Sanders could not move the ball resulting in a 48-yard field goal being scored for the Cowboys. The Longhorns then made up for their initial mistake, as Bijan Robinson rushed into the endzone for a 42-yard touchdown. The Cowboys then quickly replied with a rushing touchdown for their own, as Dominic Richardson scored a 4-yard touchdown. 

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It was then Oklahoma State who had the error. A three-and-out drive for the Longhorns resulted in a punt, which was fumbled by the Oklahoma State returner, and scooped up by the Longhorns. Ewers could not do anything with this however, the subsequent drive had a failed 4th down attempt, returning possession back to the Cowboys. Texas would soon take the lead again, as Quinn Ewers found Xavier Worthy for a 12-yard touchdown. They would score again soon after, a 41-yard Ewers pass to Bijan Robinson found the endzone and put Texas 2 scores up. 

This was short-lived. On their next drive, Oklahoma State scored off a 1-yard Dominic Richardson touchdown. Texas would then increase the lead to 10 points, through a 37-yard field goal. A Spencer Sanders interception would lead to another Longhorns touchdown, with Roschon Johnson rushing for 52 yards and finding the end zone. Richardson would score another touchdown for Oklahoma State just before the half, to bring Texas’s lead to 7 points, with the score being 31-24 at halftime. 

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The second half began with a celebration of kicking, with every drive in the third quarter ending in either a punt or a field goal (of which both teams scored one of). The kicking festival in Stillwater, OK, was broken by the home side. A 10-yard Spencer Sanders pass to Brennan Presley found the end zone and tied the game up by 34 points apiece. Midway through the fourth, the Longhorns would miss a 46-yard field goal. On the next drive, the Cowboys would score a 41-yard touchdown, giving them the lead. In their response, Quinn Ewers was intercepted twice in two minutes, to give the Oklahoma State Cowboys the win. Texas go to 5-3, and are idle next week, while Oklahoma State is now 6-1, and will face Kansas State next week. 

How did the other ranked teams fare?

Iowa @ #2 Ohio State

The number 2 ranked Ohio State Buckeyes were unbeaten coming into their game with Iowa. While the scores were close for much of the first half, Ohio State scored 4 unanswered touchdowns in the second half, in a game where the Hawkeyes quarterback only threw for 49 yards. In the end, Ohio State would comfortably beat Iowa 54-10, and continue their unbeaten record.

UT Martin @ #3 Tennessee

After last week’s victory against Alabama in probably one the best college football games of the last 10 yards, the number 3 ranked Tennessee Volunteers and their new goalposts, faced an easy task in UT Martin. It is safe to say that their new goalposts were used, as Tenneese were up 52-7 on UT Martin at halftime. A fairly low scoring (by this game’s standards) second half gave Tennessee a 65-24 win, to remain unbeaten. The question to ask, however, will the Volunteers keep their top 4 rankings having played much weaker opposition than the teams around them.

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#24 Mississippi State @ #6 Alabama

After losing to Tennessee last week, the number 6-ranked Alabama faced the number 24-ranked Mississippi State. It was business as usual for Nick Saban’s team completely dominated Mississippi State both on offense and defense. The Bulldogs would find the end zone at the end of the match, but it would not matter, as the Alabama Crimson Tide cruised to a 30-6 win.

Boston College @ #13 Wake Forest

It was the Sam Hartman show in Wake Forest, as the number 13 ranked Demon Deacons demolished the Boston College Eagles 43-15. Hartman scored 6 touchdowns (5 passing, 1 rushing) and threw for 313 yards, in a game in which Wake Forest never looked like they would lose.

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Minnesota @ #16 Penn State

The Minnesota Golden Gophers started this season well. They were 4-0. Then they started playing the teams in the Big 10 and lost their last two games. This losing streak would continue against number 16-ranked Penn State. The Nittany Lions would concede are early field goal, to begin with, but once they took the lead, they never looked back. Quarterback Sean Clifford scored 4 touchdowns in the Nittany Lions’ 45-17 win over Minnesota.

#21 Cincinnati @ SMU

Last year’s College Football Playoff participant and current number 21-ranked Cincinnati Bearcats faced a late comeback from the SMU Mustangs in their match. Going into the fourth quarter, the Bearcats were leading 29-14. But two touchdowns for the Mustangs would not be enough, as they came two points short of securing an upset win.

Memphis @ #25 Tulane

If you would like a literal tale of two halves, look no further than the matchup between Memphis and number 25-ranked Tulane. The first half was all Tulane, where they scored 5 touchdowns and prevented Memphis from even finding the endzone. The second half was the complete opposite. Memphis scored 4 touchdowns, but it was not enough, as Tulane held on for a 38-28 victory.

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