Group of 5 Week Two Review

CFB ROUNDUP: Week 5 – Oklahoma Ratt-led

CFB ROUNDUP: Week 5 – Oklahoma Ratt-led

Week 5 is in the books, and college football did not disappoint. The shock winners in Week 4 were Mississippi State. This week, they were the victims of an upset at the hands of Arkansas. The Razorbacks were 0-20 against SEC opposition before their victory over Mike Leach’s Bulldogs. LSU recovered from their embarrassing Week 4 loss to ease past Vanderbilt, whilst ‘Bama won another game with ease. The most anticipated game of the night was between Georgia and Auburn, with the Bulldogs making light work of their opponents.

There was an early Week 5 shock in Austin, where Texas fell to TCU in the Big XII. In an even greater turn of events, Oklahoma went 1-2 with a defeat to Iowa State.

Friday Night Lights

On Friday night, there were wins for BYU and Wake Forest in games that both were expected to win. Wake Forest handed a 66-14 defeat to Campbell. The Fighting Camels could not hang with the Demon Deacons, and were terrorised by running back Christian Beal-Smith (20 carries, 130 yards, 3 TDs). Kenneth Walker III also had a productive day with the ball, his 11 carries resulting in 105 yards and a TD. The Demon Deacons must also thank its defensive unit for its first W of the season, with 3 sacks and 2 interceptions. Zion Keith recovered a fumble and returned an interception for 6 points in a dominant display.

Zach Wilson led the BYU Cougars to a 45-14 win over Louisiana Tech. The Junior QB had 325 yards and 2 touchdowns in the air, with an additional 43 yards and 3 TDs on the ground. Sophomore RB Tyler Allgeier had 93 yards and a TD from just 10 carries, and wideout Gunner Romney had 101 receiving yards and a touchdown, too. BYU are now 3-0 for the season, and have put up 45 points or more in each fixture.

Enough of the Friday night lights. Let’s see how the big boys of college football got on in Week 5.

Week 5: SEC

South Carolina 24-38 Florida (3)
Missouri 12-35 Tennessee (21)
Texas A&M (13) 24-52 Alabama (2)
Ole Miss 42-41 Kentucky
Auburn (7) 6-27 Georgia (4)
Arkansas 21-14 Mississippi State (16)
LSU (20) 41-7 Vanderbilt

Missouri 12-35 Tennessee (21)

Have we underestimated the Volunteers? After a close win against the South Carolina Gamecocks in the season opener, they blew away a sorry Missouri team in Knoxville. They quickly ran out to a 14-0 lead, and led 21-6 at the half. In truth, Missouri were never in this game. Running backs Eric Gray and Ty Chandler had 195 yards and 2 touchdowns between them. Quarterback Jarrett Guarantano also had a promising day, throwing 190 yards and a touchdown, but also taking two more to the house with his feet. Unsurprisingly, Nick Bolton led the Missouri defence in tackles.

Tennessee faces a real test next week when they visit Athens, Georgia. Lineman Cade Mays will return to his old home after his transfer was granted in order to start immediately for the Volunteers. If Tennessee can pull off a shock against the Bulldogs, you can expect plenty of play-off talk to come.

Auburn (7) 6-27 Georgia (4)

There were only three spots in the rankings between these sides in Week 5, but light years on the field in Athens. JT Daniels was rested, with Stetson Bennett preferred to start. Bennett got the nod due to his escapability in the pocket, but he also showcased his arm strength. He threw for 240 yards and a touchdown in a performance that will give Kirby Smart a selection headache at the QB position. Bennett, who had previously transferred to junior college in order to get game time, is now the favoured candidate for the job ahead of Daniels.

Georgia had a healthy lead at the end of the 1st, leading 10-0. A Zamir White 1 yard TD run gave his side the lead as the 1st quarter came to a close. White, who now seems fully recovered from a knee injury, dominated in the run game. He had 19 of the Bulldogs’ 45 carries for 98 yards. George Pickens made it 17-0 with a 21 yard TD catch from Bennett in the 2nd Q. Another White TD for just a yard was punched in, giving Georgia a 24-0 lead over the sorry Tigers. A chip shot FG gave Auburn 3 points before the half to almost give the game a semblance of respectability.

Nought for Nix

A second field goal made it 24-6, but Bo Nix would have been disappointed not to score a touchdown on the opening possession of the second half. Georgia replied with a field goal of their own to make it 27-6 late in the 3rd. In the last play of the quarter, Nix was intercepted on 4th and 12, and Auburn’s defeat was rubber stamped. It was an uneventful 4th quarter, as the Georgia defence snuffed any opportunity by the Tigers to get back into the game. The Bulldogs move on to 2-0 after this convincing victory over an Auburn side that were clearly not at their best.

Week 5: Big 12

Baylor 21-27 West Virginia
TCU 33-31 Texas (9)
Texas Tech 21-31 Kansas State
Oklahoma State (17) 47-7 Kansas
Oklahoma (18) 30-37 Iowa State

TCU 33-31 Texas (9)

The Horned Frogs produced an early upset against the much-fancied Longhorns in Austin. In a game plagued by penalty flags, Max Duggan led the visiting side to an unlikely victory with a late go-ahead touchdown. In his first start of the season, Duggan completed 67% of his passes for 231 yards, and ran for another 79. Two of his 17 carries resulted in touchdowns for Gary Patterson’s side.

Texas will almost certainly slide out of the top ten when the AP poll is published next week. Sam Ehlinger did what he could to keep the Longhorns in the game, but didn’t hit the heights of previous weeks. Ehlinger completed just 47% of his passes for 236 yards. He did keep up his impressive number of passing touchdowns, and added another 4 to his total for the season.

It’s a game of inches 

The Texas defence struggled to contain TCU’s rush-heavy attack. The ejection of Juwan Mitchell for a late hit on Duggan seemed harsh, but within the letter of the law.

This game ultimately hinged on a goal-line attempt from Keontay Ingram. Had he made it over the line, we’d be talking about another nail-biting Texas victory. Instead, he fumbled before crossing the plane of the goal line, fumbling the ball to the opposition. This gave the Horned Frogs the ball back with 2:32 left on the clock.

TCU are now 7-2 against Texas since joining the Big 12. Any hopes of a playoff run for the Longhorns now seems a distant memory.

Oklahoma (18) 30-37 Iowa State

Last week’s defeat to Kansas State can be put on Spencer Rattler’s inability to take care of the ball. The same can’t be said for this Week 5 defeat, which the Sooners dominated for the most part. Rattler showed off his arm strength with a deep pass to Charleston Rambo, but he had to settle for an early field goal. Iowa State replied with one of their own, as the game initially struggled to get out of first gear.. Rattler got the first touchdown of the game with a keeper run to make it 10-3. He had 9 carries for 20 yards on the day. Another Cyclone field goal made it 10-6 at the start of the 2nd quarter. Rattler continued to impress, with a completion to Austin Stogner on 3rd and 11 on the next drive. He threw his first TD pass of the game to Jeremiah Hall.

Iowa State seemed to kick start into life on a trick play, when Tight End Dyland Soehner completed a 23 yard pass to fellow Tight End Chase Allen. It proved to be the highlight of the first half for Iowa State, which resulted in a touchdown run in by Breece Hall (his 5th in three games).

Turning Point

The two teams traded field goals to start the second half, and the scores were close at 20-16. Although the Cyclones were within a score, Oklahoma looked comfortable. That was until Brock Purdy unleashed a 65 yard TD pass to Xavier Hutchinson for Iowa State’s first lead of the game (23-20). The game now seemed in the balance, and a Purdy fumble gifted possession back to Lincoln Riley’s men. It was a rare example of productivity on defence for the favourites with ten minutes to go. The Sooners defence had just 49 tackles in the game to Iowa State’s 79. Though Purdy was on the winning side in this game, his 50% completion rate and lost fumble leave question marks hanging over his draft stock.

Rattler had another TD pass to Jeremiah Hall for 3 yards and a 30-23 lead. With just 8 minutes left on the clock, it seemed that Riley was going to avoid back-to-back defeats. That thought was immediately quashed by an 85 yard kickoff return from Kene Nwangwu to the Sooner 13 yard line. That led to a Purdy rushing touchdown to tie the scores once more.

Ratt-led 

Rattler was sacked on 3rd and 11 on the next possession, and it seemed as though momentum had shifted against Lincoln Riley and his redshirt freshman. A huge run from Breece Hall on the Cyclones’ next possession, where he broke two tackles to take it to the red zone, confirmed that Iowa State were now firmly in a position to win. Hall stayed on his feet again, breaking yet more tackles for an 8 yard rushing score. Hall had another outstanding day, with 139 yards from 28 carries (5.0 per) and 2 touchdowns. Iowa State were back on top (37-30) with just 4 minutes to go, only their second lead of the night.

The result was confirmed when Rattler intercepted in the end zone with a minute left on the clock. For the young QB, this performance was better than last week’s showing, but Coach Riley should be concerned that he couldn’t lead his team to victory in a very winnable game. It was a close one, where both teams had just over 400 yards of offence and one turn over. In a game that could have gone either way, Lady Luck smiled on the Cyclones in Week 5.

Iowa got their first win over Oklahoma since the 1960s, and the Sooners lost back-to-back games for the first time this century.

Week 5: ACC

NC State 30-29 Pittsburgh (24)
UNC (12) 26-22 Boston College
Jacksonville State 21-44 Florida State
Virginia Tech 38-31 Duke
Virginia 23-41 Clemson (1)

NC State 30-29 Pittsburgh (24)

Texas wasn’t the only ranked team to lose to an underdog this weekend. Pitt were expected to come out on top against a 1-1 NC State side. It was an even-sided, topsy turvy affair which Pitt will feel aggrieved to leave empty handed. The lead changed hands six times, and the victory was assured with just 23 seconds left on the clock. On 4th down with no timeouts left, Wolfpack QB Devin Leary completed a 13 yard pass to Emeka Emezie for a late score to seal victory.

Tight End Cary Angline enjoyed another impressive outing, scoring two touchdowns on 4 receptions. Senior WR Emezie led the team in receptions, and had 101 yards and 2 touchdowns. Leary led his side to a surprising victory, showing impressive poise in the 4th quarter of the game to hand the Panthers their first loss of the season.

Pitt managed over 500 yards of offence, with QB Kenny Pickett throwing for 411. 15 carries for 40 yards and 2 touchdowns brought the Panthers close to a 4-0 start to the year, but the defence couldn’t keep NC State out of the end zone when it mattered most.

UNC (12) 26-22 Boston College

UNC should enter the CFB top 10 after this hard fought win over the Eagles. It was another promising showing from Boston College, who are making a habit of ruining bet slips on both sides of the Atlantic. The Tar Heels were 14 point favourites, but had to earn their victory over a stubborn Boston team that fell to its first loss of the season in Week 5.

The Eagles relied on AJ Dillon in 2019, but have utilised the passing game on offence to great effect so far this year. Phil Jurkovec had 313 yards and 2 touchdown passes in this game, completing 66% of his passes. Less impressively, the sophomore QB ran the ball 8 times for a total of 0 yards.

Sam Howell continues to share the love on offence, throwing to 8 different receivers in the game. Dyami Brown led the side in catches, but had just 4 receptions for 60 yards. On the ground, Michael Carter had 121 yards from 16 carries. Fellow Running Back Javonte Williams had a touchdown from 11 touches and 57 yards.

The UNC D 

On defence, converted QB Chazz Surratt (brother of Sage) continued to impress at linebacker, with 8 total tackles and a sack. His draft stock continues to rise after a promising start to the year. However, it was another Tar Heel that would grab the highlights as the game drew to a close. A late CJ Lewis catch put Boston to within two, but on the resulting 2 point conversion, disaster struck. Jurkovec’s pass was picked by Trey Morrison for a 98 yard return touchdown. Instead of tying the game, Jurkovec had sealed his team’s defeat with the interception. On any other snap, it would earn his team 6 points, but on this occasion he had to settle for two.

The Tar Heels held on to finish Week 5 at 2-0 to in this rearranged fixture. UNC seem like an obvious challenger to the juggernaut in South Carolina this year.

Week 5: Best of the Rest

USF 7-28 Cincinnati (15)
Memphis (25) 27-30 SMU 
Tulsa 34-26 UCF (11)
Navy 7-40 Air Force
NDSU 39-28 Central Arkansas

NDSU 39-28 Central Arkansas

Week 5 brought us a sighting of the lesser-spotted NDSU Bison, who played their only season fixture against Central Arkansas. A multitude of NFL scouts were in attendance to cast their eyes over exciting QB prospect Trey Lance.

It wasn’t the lights out performance that many expected, and it was clear that Lance was suffering from ring rust. In reality, he was in a lose-lose scenario. A victory over Central Arkansas takes nothing away from the “small sample size, poor opposition argument”. Further evidence against him would be provided if he performed poorly. When Lance threw the first interception of his college career, you could already hear the furious hammering from the keyboards of Lance truthers.

Knives out for Lance 

The redshirt sophomore QB completed just 50% of his passes, an historic concern about his suitability at the NFL level. He did manage to throw two touchdown passes, but threw for just 149 yards. In the ground, he was his usual self, electrifying the game with his powerful running style. He had 15 carries for 143 yards and a further two touchdowns.

Sophomore Fullback Hunter Luepke is also deserving of a mention, ending the day with a rushing and receiving touchdown. The first score, a 23 yard touchdown reception, gave the Bison a 32-28 lead. The second, a 13 yard run, confirmed the victory for his side. Fullbacks matter.

Lance’s Left Tackle Dillon Radunz had the more memorable outing. Radunz will be going to the Senior Bowl, a well-earned accolade for the FCS’s best lineman. Looking at the remainder of that NDSU offensive line, Trey Lance might be persuaded to enter the draft process early. His own health might depend on it.

Bison fans will be hoping that Lance defers his entry into the league until 2022, so that he might extend their FCS record, 38 game winning streak.

Final Words

There are no certainties in the weird world of college football. You were wrong if you thought LSU were cooked, or that Oklahoma would bounce back in Week 5. Mississippi State couldn’t build on Week 4’s historic win, but there were wins for Georgia, Alabama and Florida.

There is already speculation as to the teams that will make the playoffs. Alabama and Clemson seem to have the first two spots tied up. After that, who knows? Florida and Georgia will have their eyes on the postseason, as will UNC. Then there’s the small matter of the return of Big Ten football in three weeks’ time. It’s going to be a hell of a ride, and we hope to have you alongside us for it.

Week 5 is over, but over at @5yardcollege, every Saturday is for rushing.

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