Louisville 24 – Kentucky 17: In a battle for the “Governor’s Cup” and bragging rights in the Bluegrass State, it was the Cardinals fending off a 4th quarter rally by the Cats to move both teams to 2-1. Coming into the game both teams had looked rather pedestrian on offense but it was the Cardinals who found their footing first and jumped out to a 14-3 lead late in the 2nd qtr. The Cards never trailed but lost QB Will Stein to a shoulder injury in the 1st half. Freshman back-up QB Teddy Bridgewater stepped in and threw 2 TD passes and passed for 106 yds. The offense was not spectacular but they did just enough to manage a victory. As for the Cats, their offensive woes continue as Morgan Newton threw for 255 and 2 TDs but faced constant pressure all game long from the young Cardinal defense. The Cats could get nothing on the ground and that left Newton looking at a lot of 3rd and longs. His caused was not aided as early in the game his receivers continued to drop passes. The Cats played pretty good on defense, but are spending way to much time on the field because of the inept offense. Right now, the offensive line is struggling in blocking whether it is run or pass. They have to figure out something as they will welcome in the Florida Gators this Saturday to Commonwealth.
Clemson 38 – Auburn 24: The nation’s longest current winning streak came to an end on Saturday as the Auburn Tigers went to Death Valley and were hammered by the Clemson Tigers. Auburn jumped out to a quick 14-0 lead behind the running of Michael Dyer (52 yd TD run, 16 carries for 151 yds & 2 TD) and it seemed as if the SEC Tigers would run away from the ACC Tigers. But Clemson found itself in the 2nd qtr. behind QB TJ Boyd who finished the game with 386 passing yds and 4 TD; Clemson put up 21 2nd qtr points to tie the game at 21 going into the half. Clemson owned the 2nd stanza as Auburn’s defense was on the field way too much while the offense stalled. QB Barrett Trotter had a rough game passing for just 198 yds w/ 1 TD & 1 INT. Auburn’s secondary was severely exploited by Clemson’s aerial attack and that must be addressed going forward.
Vanderbilt 30 – Ole Miss 7: Coach Jeff Franklin has brought Nashville something it sorely needed…..a shot of enthusiasm. He has the Commodores sitting at 3-0, 1-0 and looking like a bowl team. They raced out to a 21-0 half-time lead against the hapless Rebels and were never threatened. RB Zack Stacey rip the Rebel defense to the tune of 169 yds on just 11 carries and Vandy took advantage of several Rebel miscues including 5 INTs off of Rebel QB, Zack Stoudt. The Rebels we held to less than 250 yds of total offense and the fans in Oxford are starting to sour on Houston Nutt.
Georgia 59 – Coastal Carolina 0: Mark Richt’s Bulldogs finally got a win, although it came against a FCS opponent. QB Aaron Murray threw for just 188 yds but he tossed 3 TD passes and RB Isiah Crowell ran for 86 yds and 1 TD. While this win certainly didn’t dissolve the disappointment the Bulldog faithful have suffered the previous two weeks, it does give the young ‘Dawgs’ something to build off of as they head down to Oxford this weekend to battle Ole Miss.
LSU 19 – Mississippi St. 6: Last Thursday it was the LSU Tigers heading into hostile territory when they went to Starkville to battle the Bulldogs. In what was expected to be a physical, hard-hitting, defensive battle neither team disappointed. But the ‘Bayou Bengals’ seemed to have the biggest hits and they certainly had the better offense on this night. The game’s only TD was score in the 4th qtr when Jarrett Lee hit Rueben Randle with a 19 yd TD pass. Aside from that, both team’s place-kickers were the main scoring threats. The Bulldogs were limited to less than 225 yds of offense and looked like a team that was just outmatched on offense. LSU’s offense just grinded the game out but did manage over 300 yds while punishing the Bulldog defense with physical line play. LSU will face another road test when they head to Morgantown Saturday to play W. Virginia.
Florida 33 – Tennessee 23: The Will Muschamp era at Florida notched its first meaningful win as the host Gators throttled the visiting Volunteers. The Gators led 30-13 after 3 qtrs thanks in part to a baffling defense that had QB Tyler Bray hesitant and confused for much of the night. It didn’t help that early in the 1st qtr, Vol WR Justin Harper left with an apparent knee injury. Without one of his weapons, Bray (288 passing, 3 TDs & 2 INTs) just did not look like himself against a tenacious Florida defense. The ground game for Tennessee never showed as RB Taurean Poole had 18 yds on 9 carries. Meanwhile, Gator QB John Brantley was efficient with 213 passing and 2 TDs; RB Chris Rainey ran for 108 yds and he also had two receptions for 104 and 1 TD.
South Carolina 24 – Navy 21: The Midshipmen pulled into Columbia on Saturday and almost pulled off a stunning upset. The Gamecocks needed a 4th qtr. TD run by Marcus Lattimore and then a couple of late defensive stands to hold off Navy. The Midshipmen battered the Gamecock defense with their triple option while their on defense played a good game. The difference was Lattimore who scored all 3 TDs for Spurrier’s club while running 37 times for 246 yds. QB Stephen Garcia was largely in effective so Spurrier decided that the best chance to win was on the legs of Lattimore. The Gamecocks will have to play better than that as they host Vanderbilt on Saturday.
Arkansas 38 – Troy 28: Bobby Petrino’s club raced out to a 24-7 halftime lead (as they have led by double-digits at the half in the first two games) but this time they almost fell asleep as Troy didn’t quit. Troy pulled to within 10 late in the 3rd but Arkansas was able to hold them off behind RB, Ronnie Wingo (20 carries, 109 yds & 2 TD) QB Tyler Wilson passing for 303 yds, 2 TDs & 1 INT. Troy QB C. Robinson shredded the Razorback secondary for 373 yds & 3 TDs but they could not get a ground game established to provide him with some balance. The Razorbacks have to be sharp as they will visit Tuscaloosa on Saturday to play Alabama.
Alabama 41 – North Texas 0: It was all Tide as Trent Richardson ran for a career best 167 yds and 3 TDs while the defense held North Texas to less than 200 total yds. This was just a tune-up for Nick Saban’s club as they will host Arkansas this weekend. If nothing, else, you know Arkansas can score points.