With two wins on the road against the Power Five in three weeks, No 23 Penn State took care of the business in September and set a path of nine or more wins during the regular season.
Saturday’s 41-12 win at Auburn included beauty points. First of all, winning by 29 points against a SEC opponent even as you are persecuted as the Tigers speaks for itself.
Add offense gained 477 yards, averaging 6.3 yards per carry and 10.1 yards per pass attempt. Two Novices running back with ultimate potential, Nicholas Singleton and Kaytron Allen, combined for 176 yards and four touchdowns—one, Singleton’s 54-yard score in the fourth quarter, made an impact in the SEC velocity concept.
Defensively, PSU forced four turnovers, injuring Auburn quarterback TJ Finley and stopping the Tigers’ running game at just 119 yards on 36 buggies.
More than winning a tight season opener in Purdue, the win validates Nittany Lions’ place in the US TODAY Sports AFCA Coaches poll and hints at the growing possibility that PSU could land in the New Year six.
To get into one of these key games, the Nittany Lions have to avoid getting stuck in the third and fourth tiers of the Big Ten — Northwestern, Indiana, Maryland, and the Rutgers — and earn a split in the four games that will determine whether they earn any kind of national respect: Michigan, Minnesota, and Ohio. and Michigan State.
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After two mediocre seasons under James Franklin, the win at least ensures that PSU deserves to be among the top teams in the conference. For Auburn, there is only one way this thing will end: a change in training.
Nittany Lions, Tigers and others top the list of winners and losers from Week Three of the 2022 season:
#24 Oregon would regain some credibility and earn a spot near the top of the pac 12 power ratings after handing Brigham Young #14 a 41-20 loss. Bo Nix and the Ducks’ offense was 439 yards, 24 first touchdowns and 11.4 yards per pass attempt, putting in a second very strong performance in two weeks after the start of the year with a blast loss to Georgia. While that defeat may linger in the minds of some voters, the Cougars’ three touchdown supremacy should cement Oregon’s standing as one of the teams to beat in the convention race.
Alabama, Georgia, etc.
Another weekend of matches against an unparalleled competition resulted in a series of lopsided victories for the best of the best in FBS. Four of Saturday afternoon’s top working teams — No. 1 Alabama, No. 2 Georgia, No. 5 Michigan and No. 6 Oklahoma — won by a combined score of 219-28. One week after struggling to keep the Texans off, Crimson Tide fought three non-offensive games in a 63-7 win over Louisiana Monroe.
The Husky family is no longer a secret after their 39-28 win over Michigan State No. 9. Sneaked under the radar after two uneven seasons under former head coach Jimmy Lake, the UW has been neglected after its easy wins over Kent State and Portland State but is headed into the top 25 this week. New coach Kalen DeBoer made an immediate impact on the quality of Husky’s attack, particularly on the quarterback: Michael Bencks Jr.’s move to Indiana, he had four hits against the Spartans, giving him 10 per season with just one interception.
It’s interesting to think about the atmosphere around LSU as the Tigers lost to Mississippi State and dropped to 1-2 in Brian Kelly’s first season. Not good, right? Instead, the Tigers scored 2-1 21 points in the fourth quarter and beat the Bulldogs 31-16 to secure Kelly’s first win in the SEC. With New Mexico and Auburn rising next, LSU should be 4-1 before meeting Tennessee on Oct.
On the same day the school hosted ESPN’s “College GameDay,” the Mountaineers had their best finish in the season’s opening month. With his side trailing their Sun Belt rival 28-26 with the ball still two seconds away and the ball close to midfield, the desperation of Appalachian State Chase Brice was swung by a group of Troy defenders and veered into the arms of wide receiver Kristan Horn, who caught the ball around the line 7 yards and weave it around the right side to complete an unlikely win. It’s been an unforgettable week for the Mountaineers, who upset Texas A&M last Saturday.
Jayhawks is the best story in college football. Now 3-0 after beating Houston 48-30, Kansas is ahead of the schedule under second-year coach Lance Leibold and within the program’s premiere range since 2008. This coaching staff has played a huge role in developing the third. Quarterback Jalon Daniels, who had 281 total offense yards, 123 feet off the ground, and five touchdowns in upsetting the Cougars. The rise in KU would put Leipold on the list for every important job in the Big Ten footprint, starting with Nebraska.
Team #22 Aggies managed to right the ship against the #13 seed in Miami (Florida), as the defense netted a 17-9 victory that brought back some optimism in a season that could have escaped the bars with a loss. Offense looked better at times behind new quarterback Max Johnson, the former LSU transfer who replaced the struggling Heinz King, but he was still hobbled by the call-up and often conservative and non-fictional playing determination. While the Hurricanes deserve some credit, the Aggies only gained 265 yards
Auburn head coach Brian Harsin is the upcoming Power Five coach who faces a very dangerous job security after the Tigers’ ugly loss at home. While the first loss of the Auburn season, Saturday’s performance comes just seven days after the Tigers struggled to keep San Jose, and just as the team turns to playing SEC. Auburn will face Missouri next weekend in a must-see match before facing LSU, Georgia and Mississippi.
It wasn’t nearly the first win of the Marcus Freeman era: Notre Dame managed to slip through California 24-17 after defeating a potential Golden Bears game in the end zone with the time out. While the win should relieve some of the pressure amid a very poor start to the year, issues related to the attack remain a major concern. Fighting Irish only gained 297 yards in 64 games against an opponent who ranked 50th nationally in yards allowed per game despite facing UC Davis and UNLV to open the year.
A win over Oregon would have given BYU two wins against teams that might end up winning the Power Five, joining last week’s double overtime win against No. 19 Baylor. This would have propelled the Cougars up in the coaches poll and in a position to them smashing the College Football Playoff with a regular undefeated season, especially with notable games still being played against Notre Dame and Arkansas. While still within a season’s range of nine wins, BYU won’t be a factor in the race for the top four.
With interim coach Mickey Joseph on the sidelines in place of Scott Frost, Nebraska scored its first and last points in its out-of-conference contention game against Oklahoma No. 6. Unfortunately, those two touchdowns trapped just a 49-point scoring barrage that represented the latest low point for this stumbling program. Led by another 100-yard game of running back Eric Gray, the Sooners put in 580 yards of total attack and had 31 first defeats while keeping Nebraska to just 4.3 yards per game.
Well, the Bulldog has given up on landing. It took until the final moments of the final quarter of South Carolina’s blast and involved back-up defenses, as Georgia picked up from touchdown free play to start the year in 179 minutes 7 seconds. The Bulldogs have now given up 10 points in three games. How embarrassing, isn’t it?