Did You See That? CFB is Back; Week 1 in the Big Ten and CFB
College football is officially back and not a moment too soon. We often lament Purdue football around here and how we’re not as excited as we used to be, but I know for me, having CFB back in general is just fantastic.
This week 1 was roundly lauded as perhaps the best opening weekend of college football ever. CBS Sports begs to differ. But hey, it was pretty good. Perhaps the only downside was that it was also a holiday weekend, meaning many people had plans with family and friends and maybe couldn’t sit in front of a TV for 12 hours straight on Saturday.
So what happened? Let’s take a look.
In the Big Ten
Indiana 34, Florida International 13 – A three touchdown win for the Hoosiers, but the fun part here was that Fla Int led 13-12 in the fourth quarter. Some tight sphincters in Bloomington until two offensive TDs and a pick-six ended the threat.
Minnesota 30, Oregon State 23 – A fun, back and forth game in Minneapolis, but something interesting to watch here…Minnesota scored two TDs in the fourth to win this game, but on the second one – leading by 7 – they elected to go for two. I guess the idea was to put it out of reach but in failing to convert, you certain give the opposition some life. It worked out for the Gophers but let’s see how many questionable decisions Tracy Claeys makes this year. (Also, is there a more visually-appropriate coach to be in Minnesota?)
MSU 28, Furman 13 – The Spartans gently put the overmatched Furmanites to bed.
Wisconsin 16, LSU 14 – This was one of those games where if Wisconsin loses, then I laugh at them. If they win, the SEC loses. LSU had the ball back late with plenty of time but then threw a game-sealing INT. And then this happened:
If that’s not suspendable, I don’t know what is. Just brutal.
OSU 77, Bowling Green 10 – The team that beat David Blough in his first start last year lost by 67 to the Buckeyes. It’s worth noting that Ohio State was still passing for TDs when they were up 56-10 in the fourth quarter.
Michigan 63, Hawaii 3 – Another whupping.
Washington 48, Rutgers 13 – Well, that’s a tough start for Rutgers, heading out to the pacific northwest to start their season. Add to that the fact that Washington is good and Chris Ash had a tough debut.
Iowa 45, Miami OH 21 – Who cares? Does anyone take Iowa seriously.
Maryland 52, Howard 13 – Purdue and Maryland in a month looks like it’s going to be a battle of offensive juggernauts if you ask me.
Western Michigan 22, Northwestern 21 – Doesn’t it seem like Northwestern, for all their reasonable success recently, always finds a stinker like this on in the bag somewhere? The Mildcats only ran up 319 yards of total offense and 15 first downs, which is kind of… weak against a MAC team.
Penn State 33, Kent State 13 – Let’s all continue to enjoy the slow-motion downfall of James Franklin at PSU. I think reasonable Penn State fans know they’re not going anywhere with this guy, but… oh wait, did I just say “reasonable Penn State fans”? Ha, sorry, I’ll stop now.
Illinois 52, Murray State 3 – The Lovie Smith era is off to a good start as Aneesh weeps silently.
Nebraska 43, Fresno State 10 – The Huskers played their first game since the death of their punter, Sam Foltz. As you’ve no doubt seen by now, for Nebraska’s first punt attempt, they lined up with only ten men and left the punter spot empty. The clock ticked down and they took a delay of game to thunderous, goose-bump-inducing applause. And then in an understated show of class, Fresno declined the penalty (you’ll also see the Bulldog players applauding and telling the crowd to get up). A fantastic football salute to young men (Mike Sadler also died in the crash) gone far too soon.
Tennessee 20, Appalachian State 13 (OT) – Butch Jones, who semi-famously flirted with Purdue to get a better offer from Tennessee, almost fell hard on his dumb face this weekend. His Volunteers, who are somehow ranked #9, really deserved to lose to the FCS Mountaineers. But for some reason App State played a weirdly conservative, play-not-to-lose style down the stretch and a suspect kicking game ultimately did them in. I know I, for one, look forward to another 6-6 Tennessee season.
Alabama 52, USC 6 – Once again, Lane Kiffin does damage to the Trojans. (I know I’m likely not the first one to make that joke.) But seriously, is this just the result of USC getting an undeserved ranking? Or is Alabama somehow getting even better?
Houston 33, Oklahoma 23 – The Cougs are for real, everyone. They beat Oklahoma in pretty much every way. They’ll be a nice addition to the Big 12 when it happens.
TCU 59, SDSU 41 – What? 13th-ranked TCU was in a shootout with the Jackrabbits. Well, the Big 12 hasn’t been known for defense of late.
Texas A&M 31, UCLA 24 – Kevin Sumlin gets off to a good start with a win over a ranked opponent, perhaps dashing the hopes of those who think he’ll be fired from A&M and replace Darrell Hazell in time for the Bucket game.
Texas 50, Notre Dame 47 (OT) – As it was happening, Twitter was abuzz about this perhaps already being the best game of the college football season. It might turn out to be, but the memory will have faded by November when the great rivalry games are happening. Regardless, this was such a fun game made even more fun by Notre Dame losing in painful fashion. I would love to see Charlie Strong succeed at Texas but I do get worried by the way he and his players celebrate wins like they’re national championships. I can’t see Saban allowing himself to be tossed in the air like it’s the hava nagila.
Florida State 45, Mississippi 34 – I went to bed at halftime of what had been a pretty boring game to that point. FSU had just cut it to 28-13 and as much as I wanted to see Jimbo Fisher in his mumu lose, I wasn’t that invested. And then I wake up to see that the Rebels found a way to choke that one away. Nice work, again, SEC. (Hey, if you hilljacks are going to cheer for whichever SEC team is winning during bowl season, you also get to be mocked when a bunch of them fall on their low-SAT-score faces, too.)