Week 7 is in the books and it gave fans several thrillers, playoff-altering chaos, and a very clear picture of the playoff hunt moving forward. Here are the top five studs and duds from a chaotic Week 7.
Stud: The Louisville Cardinals
Louisville locked up their biggest win of the season in a shootout victory on the road over no. 19 Wake Forest. The Cardinals put on an offensive clinic, racking up 520 yards of offense in 62-59 thriller. The most impressive part of their offensive attack on Saturday is the fact that they did it without having a true breakout star. Seven different players were responsible for touchdowns, four players had 30+ rushing yards, and the team saw three different players throw a pass.
Dud: The Virginia Cavaliers
Virginia was upset by a very suspect Miami Hurricanes team and the Cavaliers ranked status is likely over as a result. The Cavalier’s offense was never able to find the end zone and their defense wasn’t dominant enough to carry the load. The ACC Coastal (and the right to lose to Clemson in the ACC championship) is now wide open.
Stud: Oklahoma’s Defense
Oklahoma did something fans never thought they would in a million years, beat a top-ranked team with unrelenting defense. The Sooners held the Texas Longhorns under 30 points, which is quite impressive considering it was against one of the better teams in the Big 12. Longhorns quarterback Sam Ehlinger was sacked nine times and Texas wasn’t able to muster much of anything till the fourth quarter.
Dud: The Maryland Terrapins
Remember when Maryland Terrapins were ranked in the AP Poll and boasting one of the best offenses in college football? That was only a month ago, but it already feels like ancient history. Since then they’ve been beaten by Temple, shut out 59-0 by Penn State, and blown out by a weak Purdue team missing several of its key players. At least they beat Rutgers?
Stud: The Baylor Bears
It doesn’t make a ton of sense, but Baylor football is back. The Bears survived a double-overtime thriller over Texas Tech and it took effort from all three phases of the game. The offense racked up 525 yards, the defense had five sacks and forced three turnovers, and Josh Mayers forced overtime with a clutch field goal.
Dud: Kirby Smart
The Georgia Bulldogs suffered a shocking loss at home to the South Carolina Gamecocks and head coach Kirby Smart has a lot of questions to answer. There is plenty of blame to go around, Jake Fromm threw three ugly interceptions (one in overtime), the run game faded as the game went on, Rodrigo Blankenship missed two critical field goals. The team’s worst offense, however, was abysmal fourth quarter and overtime play calling by Kirby Smart. From his decision, not to kick at the end of regulation to his horrible SC penalty preventing timeout in the overtime, he simply lost it down the stretch.
Stud: Penn State’s Defense
The Nittany Lions won their first road game against an AP Top 25 opponent of the James Franklin era thanks to a spectacular defensive performance. Iowa kept the game close the entire night, but Penn State’s front four was too much for the Hawkeyes to overcome. Penn State forced three fumbles, intercepted Nate Stanley once, and held Iowa to only 12 points.
Dud: Flordia’s Fourth Quarter Play-calling
LSU and Florida engaged in a back and forth Saturday night thriller that saw Florida fade down the stretch due to questionable fourth-quarter play calling. Despite a multitude of chances late in the game, the Gators outsmarted themselves in the final minutes. From trick passes too questionable options, it was a confusing final quarter.
Stud: Jayden Daniels
Arizona State quarterback Jayden Daniels led the newly ranked Sun Devils to victory with an epic game-winning in the game’s final minutes. He finished with 363 passing yards and three touchdowns. The Sun Devils have emerged as a surprise contender in the Pac 12 South.
Dud: Poor Officiating
Referees are only human, but poor officiating plagued numerous college football games this weekend. Most notably in the Big 12, overtime between Baylor and Texas Tech saw a botched fumble call and delayed whistle in a five-minute span. The Big Ten saw a head-scratching touchdown overturned in the Penn-State Iowa and there were quite a few suspect penalties in the SEC’s three key matchups.