Florida Shocks Tennessee on Hail Mary — College Football Week 3 Recap
Last-second wins and shocking upsets ruled the day in college football on Sunday. Here’s a recap of the day’s most interesting games.
Florida Beat Tennessee on a ‘Hail Mary’ Pass
Feleipe Franks threw a 63-yard touchdown pass to Tyrie Cleveland on the game’s final play, and No. 24 Florida shocked No. 23 Tennessee, 26-20, on Saturday afternoon. The desperation “Hail Mary” pass allowed the Gators to beat the Vols for the 12th time in 13 years.
After both offenses struggled for the first three quarters, the teams combined for 37 points in the fourth. Tennessee (2-1, 0-1) trailed for most of the game, but rallied to tie it up with a late field goal after a Franks interception set them up with great field position. Florida (1-1, 1-0) had under a minute left to win the game or force overtime. They opted for the former. Vols’ running back John Kelly carried 19 times for 141 yards and a touchdown. Both teams remain contenders for the SEC East title.
Walk-on Kicker Leads USC Past Texas
Freshman walk-on Chase McGrath kicked a 43-yard field goal and fourth-ranked USC beat unranked Texas, 27-24, in double-overtime on Saturday night. McGrath sent the game into overtime with his first career field goal as regulation time expired.
The teams each scored touchdowns in the first OT, but the Longhorns came up short when Trojans’ defender Christian Rector stripped Texas freshman quarterback Sam Ehlinger of the ball to set up McGrath’s heroics. Quarterback Sam Darnold threw for 397 yards and three touchdowns for USC (3-0). Deontay Burnett caught eight passes for two scores for the Trojans, who will finally have to play a road game next week at Cal.
Ehlinger threw for 298 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions for the Longhorns. He led a 91-yard touchdown drive late in the fourth quarter that nearly gave the win to Texas (1-2). Collin Johnson had seven catches for 191 yards for the Longhorns.
Clemson Buried Louisville & Lamar Jackson, Moved Up in Polls
Kelly Bryant threw for 316 yards and two touchdowns and ran for another score, as third-ranked Clemson crushed No. 14 Louisville, 47-21, on Saturday night. The Tigers sacked Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Lamar Jackson four times and marginalized his impact in the key Atlantic Coast Conference victory.
Jackson passed for 317 yards for the Cardinals, but most of that production came after Clemson (3-0, 1-0 ACC) already had control of the game. Louisville (2-1, 1-1 ACC) scored 14 points in the fourth quarter to narrow the margin. As a result of the dominating victory, the Tigers moved up to No. 2 in the new AP Top 25 poll.
Mason Rudolph & Oklahoma State Are Very Good
Mason Rudolph threw five first-half touchdown passes, and ninth-ranked Oklahoma State routed Pittsburgh, 59-21, on Saturday. The Cowboys (3-0) furthered their case as a contender for the college football playoff, while Rudolph built his Heisman resume, finishing 23-for-32 passing for 497 yards and the five scores.
The Panthers (1-2) gave up 49 points in the first half. Former USC quarterback Max Browne, a transfer, was replaced by sophomore Ben DiNucci before halftime but it didn’t help Pitt. Jalen McCleskey had seven catches for 162 yards and three touchdowns for Oklahoma State. Three other Cowboys had 100-yard receiving games: James Washington (124) Marcell Ateman (109) and Dillon Stoner (100).
Four Ranked Teams Lost to Unranked Teams
Four ranked teams — No. 12 LSU, No. 18 Kansas State, No. 19 Stanford and No. 25 UCLA — lost to unranked teams on Saturday. Only LSU remained in the new AP Top 25 announced Sunday afternoon.
Nick Fitzgerald threw for two touchdowns and ran for two other scores, and Mississippi State squashed No. 12 LSU, 37-7, on Saturday. The Bulldogs (3-0, 1-0) beat the Tigers (2-1, 0-1) for just the second time in 18 games. LSU has easy nonconference games against Syracuse and Troy to get themselves right before facing the remainder of their SEC schedule.
Unranked Vanderbilt stopped 18th-ranked Kansas State on a fourth-and-8 inside their 20-yard line in the fourth quarter, and the Commodores upset the Wildcats, 14-7, in Nashville on Saturday night. Kyle Shurmur’s 2-yard touchdown run with 8:23 left gave Vanderbilt (3-0) a huge non-conference win. The Commodores could soon land in the AP Top 25. Kansas State (2-1) fell out of the rankings after the loss.
Christian Chapman threw an 8-yard touchdown pass to David Wells with 54 seconds to play, and San Diego State upset No. 19 Stanford, 20-17, late Saturday night. The game was delayed for 25 minutes in the final quarter when the lights at 50-year-old Qualcomm Stadium went out. When they returned, the Aztecs concluded their improbable win over the Cardinal, their first over a ranked, nonconference opponent since 1981. Rashaad Penny ran for 175 yards a score for San Diego State (3-0), which found itself at No. 22 in the new Associated Press Top 25. Bryce Love carried 13 times for 184 yards and two touchdowns for Stanford (1-2).
Riley Ferguson threw for 398 yards and six touchdown passes, and Memphis beat No. 25 UCLA, 48-45, in a wild game on Saturday. Bruins quarterback Josh Rosen threw for 463 yards and four touchdowns, but his two interceptions — one of which was returned by the Tigers for a score — hurt his team’s chances. UCLA (2-1) led 45-41 with under 10 minutes left, but its dreadful defense allowed a 4-play, 81-yard drive capped by Ferguson’s sixth TD pass for Memphis (2-0). Tigers wide receiver Anthony Miller had nine receptions for 185 yards and two scores.