College football Week 8 recap

While Clemson surpassed Syracuse 17-0 in the fourth quarter after making a (temporary) change of quarterback to remain undefeated, Ole Miss and UCLA saw their perfect end to the season as the Rebels and Bruins each recorded 45 points in their respective losses allowed against LSU and Oregon.

Week 8 saw several major upsets, massive comebacks, big plays, and other defining moments that will change the face of the College Football Playoffs. We capture the best moments of the week for you.

Best celebration

Some penalties are well worth it, as Maryland offensive lineman Johari Branch showed Saturday.

A man of Branch’s stature – 6ft 3, 330 pounds – is often miscast for power and brawn alone. But the Terrapins center showed grace and flair after Maryland teammate Roman Hemby scored the 75-yard touchdown against Northwestern in the fourth quarter. An end zone camera caught Branch riding a perfect wheel across the goal line before celebrating with his teammates.

Officials imposed a 15-yard penalty for unsportsmanlike conduct, but Maryland held on to a 31-24 win to qualify for the Bowl.

Maryland coach Mike Locksley clearly didn’t like the penalty kick against Branch, but maybe he can capitalize on Branch’s tumbling talents in the future. That’s what Ohio did in 2019 when offensive lineman Hagen Meservy came on as a receiver and wheeled to distract the defense for a nice win on a passing play.

Bottom Line: Never let a great man’s talents go to waste.

– Adam Rittenberg

Best Mascot

It was all ducks all Saturday. Before the sun came up for Eugene for College Gameday, Puddles played and smashed a UCLA brand guitar (hopefully it wasn’t part of a NIL deal) before watching Lee Corso handle a real duck — or rather , abused …

…and select the ducks to the Bruins.

By the time the day was over and Oregon had won, Puddles had also logged a total of 168 table push-ups, including 45 in his final set — one for every point the Ducks scored. All in one working day.

– Paolo Uggetti

best catch

Since we switched to FCS, we haven’t had a lot of opportunities to check in with Idaho. It’s a shame considering how big the Kibbie Dome is. On Saturday, one of college football’s most revered venues was home to arguably the best catch of the weekend.

Hayden Hatten, bow. Not only was it an incredible display of focus, the catch came at a pivotal point in the game. Idaho led by just a point, and from there it edged Portland State 56-21 for its fifth straight win of the season. The Vandals are unbeaten against FCS competition — having lost only to Indiana and Washington State — and have a tremendous game at undefeated Sacramento State next week.

– Kyle Bonagura

best bye

The game was in good hands. No. 6 Alabama was on track to beat No. 24 Mississippi 30-6 in Tuscaloosa.

But on Saturday night at Bryant-Denny Stadium, there was a rare win-win moment near the end of the fourth quarter when the Preston brothers found themselves on the field at the same time.

Shawn Preston Jr., a senior Mississippi state defender, ducked for cover when a pass sailed incompletely toward Christian Leary. And who ran into the same area of ​​the field? Shazz Preston, a rarely used freshman receiver who followed the game.

Shazz appeared behind Shawn and caught his attention. Surprised, Shawn jumped, practically knocking his younger brother to the ground.



Alabama’s Shazz Preston and Mississippi’s Shawn Preston get excited when they realize they’re competing.

No flags were thrown.

The Louisiana natives were allowed to have a mini reunion before getting back to the task at hand.

There’s a chance Shawn will use his remaining year of eligibility and they can go head-to-head in Starkville next year.

But if that doesn’t happen, they must at least experience Saturday night.

– Alex Scarborough

Best comeback

It’s been a while for LSU, who has got used to collecting from sizeable deficits this season.

When No. 7 Ole Miss took a 17-3 lead at Tiger Stadium on Saturday, LSU never flinched, and for only the third time as an unranked team, the Tigers beat an AP top 10 opponent by 14 points or more . They rolled over the previously unbeaten Rebels in the last three quarters with a convincing 45-20 victory.

The last time LSU beat a top-10 opponent as an unranked team was in 1983 when the Tigers defeated No. 9 Washington (26 points). They beat No. 9 Florida in 1977 (22 points).

Despite Ole Miss finishing 7th, the odds makers had the game even before kick-off. LSU was also 17 points behind Auburn in the first half earlier this season but struggled to win on the Plains. This comeback was all the more impressive. After falling 17-3 in the opening seconds of the second quarter, LSU beat Ole Miss 42-3 the rest of the way. Quarterback Jayden Daniels is one of the best players in college football. He scored five touchdowns in the win over Ole Miss. That’s after six touchdowns the week before at the Florida road win.

– Chris Low


All credit goes to TCU’s Hypnotoad

TCU has been in tears for the past two weeks (the second half, at least) after beating Kansas State, their fourth straight win against a ranked team. The Horned Frogs became only the second team to win in the past 20 seasons (along with Tennessee in 2016) after losing more than 17 points to ranked teams in consecutive games, which they also did against Oklahoma State the week before.

Dare we say there’s a Hypnotoad that deserves a frog’s share of the credit?

First, a brief Hypnotoad story: The animated amphibian is a character on the show Futurama, described on the show’s wiki as “a large toad-like creature that has large, oscillating, multicolored eyes and emits a booming humming sound.” . His eyes light up all the time. The toad apparently uses these as a hypnotic power for people and animals in the area.”

It is also claimed that the frog “can hypnotize people into writing internet articles about ALL GLORY TO THE HYPNOTOAD”. Guilty as charged, I guess.

The Hypnotoad has been a theme in TCU games for the past several years, featured on the video board to infuriate Amon G. Carter’s followers.

But this week it entered the mainstream when it appeared on the hoodie of Sonny Dykes, the TCU coach who has never lost a single game there.

The true power of Hypnotoad’s impact came about five minutes from time in the third quarter. With Kansas State leading TCU 28-24 and facing a third-and-6 at TCU’s 30-yard line, the Hypnotoad appeared on screen. The crowd whipped up in foam and the pass rush reached Wildcats QB Will Howard, who climbed and was stopped just short of the first down. On the next play, kicker Chris Tennant missed a 44-yard field goal.

Four games later, Max Duggan hit Quentin Johnson for a 55-yard touchdown pass to give TCU their first 31-28 lead of the day. The frogs (and the Hypnotoad?) never looked back.

After the game, Duggan wore a “Frogs by 90” t-shirt with a Hypnotoad on it for his post-game press conference.

Coincidence. Hard to dismiss. ALL GLORY TO THE HYPNOTOAD.

– Dave Wilson

Ducks fly high… but can they fly higher?

If you watched Oregon’s season-opener with a 46-point loss to Georgia and thought the Ducks weren’t a team worth taking seriously, allow the Ducks to reintroduce themselves as the best team in the Pac-12. Not only has Dan Lanning’s team won every game since losing to their former team, but the Ducks easily won UCLA’s Conference Feeling of the Week on Saturday.

Every facet of the Ducks’ game seemed to roll against the Bruins, even special teams. A surprise onside kick in the second quarter turned the tide and gave us a glimpse of just how much Lanning is coming to himself as the new head coach. Likewise, Bo Nix has made the most of his cross-country move from Alabama to Eugene. Under Kenny Dillingham, his former quarterbacks coach and current offensive coordinator, Nix seemed more comfortable as the game progressed. Surrounded by talents in the skill positions, he embraced his role and limited his mistakes.

Plenty of games remain, including a tough matchup against Utah, but for now, the Ducks are firmly back in the spotlight.

– Uggetti College football Week 8 recap

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