With just a few weeks to go in the season (and, thankfully, 2020) it’s time for Week Fourteen Midweek Musings.
Let’s start with some love for the non-Power Five. This game came together within days, after Liberty had to back out of their match-up with Coastal due to COVID. BYU stepped in, and kudos to them for making the trip happen so quickly. The logistics of that could not have been simple. And you know what? The teams gave us one of the best games I’ve seen all year.
Coastal didn’t have much luck with the passing game, managing just 85 yards, but they ran all over the Cougars. CJ Marable led the team with 132 yards and two scores. BYU was more balanced on offense, as RB Tyler Allgeier and WR Dax Milne both hit the 100-yard mark. All in all, these are two very good teams and it was a very entertaining game. The Chanticleers currently have the second-longest active win streak in the nation at 11 games, behind only Notre Dame.
Sticking with the Group of Five, this may have been the most surprising result of the weekend. Marshall, ranked #21, came into this game with a 7-1 record. They were a 23-point favorite over 2-2 Rice. Herd quarterback Grant Wells had thrown four interceptions all year.
He threw five against Rice. The underdog Owls won 20-0.
There was another five-turnover game this weekend, as TCU lost four fumbles and quarterback Max Duggan threw an interception against Oklahoma State. And yet somehow, the unranked Horned Frogs upset the #15 Cowboys, 29-22.
Ohio State-Michigan State
The Buckeyes were down 23 players and their head coach for this game. Ripe for an upset? Not exactly. Even with their left guard playing center, and the issues with snaps you’d expect in that situation, the Buckeyes romped over Sparty, 52-12.
In the second quarter, Michigan State had to call a defensive timeout because there were only 10 players on the field. On the next snap, they were penalized for having 12. That was the game in a nutshell for the Spartans.
A week after an underwhelming win over LSU, the Aggies racked up 509 yards of offense against Auburn, including 174 rushing yards before halftime. They also held the ball for 38 minutes, and had 29 first downs to the Tigers’ 16. It’s striking to see how good A&M is on both sides of the ball, and then remember that they lost to Alabama 52-24. Not much of a mystery why the Tide sits atop the polls.
The Golden Bears got into the win column, and may have knocked the Ducks out of the Top 25. It’s not every weekend that you see a team with a 12:06 advantage in time of possession rush for just 88 yards, and it’s even less common to see that team win the game, but that’s exactly what happened on Saturday in Berkeley.
There were two categories in which the Ducks had the edge: turnovers (two) and penalties (nine, for 60 yards).
Still on for now, but keep an eye on Indiana @ Purdue, as the Hoosiers have paused activities due to positive tests.
Michigan @ Ohio State: Canceled
#8 Cincinnati @ #24 Tulsa: Canceled
Ohio @ Kent State: Canceled
Ole Miss @ #5 Texas A&M: Postponed to Dec. 19 if possible; Ole Miss is currently scheduled to face LSU that day.