Week 13 has come to a close and the landscape has once against changed after two top ten teams met their demise. Here are the top studs and duds from Week 13.
Stud: Ohio State’s Stars
The Buckeyes have been the most dominant team in the country all season long, but they were finally tested this week when they hosted rival No. 8 Penn State. Ohio State won by 11, but the Nittany Lions gave them everything they could handle in the second half. Penn State came storming back after Ohio State claimed a 21-0 lead and had all of the momentum, but Ohio State’s stars rose to the occasion. Justin Fields made several unbelievable plays with both his arm and his legs, running back J.K. Dobbins racked up 157 yards and a pair of touchdowns, and defensive end Chase Young wreaked havoc all game long. LSU might have the best resume, but Ohio State is the best team in the country.
Stud: Jonathon Taylor
Another week, another 200-yard performance for Wisconsin running back Jonathon Taylor. This year’s Heisman award will likely go to a quarterback, but Taylor is one of several non-quarterbacks that will make the race more interesting.
Stud: Shea Patterson
It might be too little, too late for Michigan’s playoff hopes, but their offense looks like it has finally turned the corner. Josh Gattis’s spread offense was abysmal early in the year, but ever since the team’s win over Notre Dame, quarterback Shea Patterson has been lighting up the stat sheet. This week, he torched Indiana’s secondary with 366 yards and five touchdown passes.
Stud: Virginia Tech’s Defense
Virginia Tech and Pitt faced off in a critical ACC Coastal matchup, but the Hokies were the only ones ready for the moment. Virginia Tech shut out the Panthers in a dominant 28-0 performance. Virginia Tech’s showdown with Virginia net week will now determine who faces Clemson in the ACC championship.
Stud: Georgia’s Defense
The Texas A&M Aggies gave the Georgia Bulldogs a much tougher fight than anyone was expecting. Jake Fromm and the offense had another sluggish afternoon, but the defense was able to clamp down when it mattered most. They didn’t blow up the stat sheet, but they held the Aggies to 13 points and locked up a critical late-season win.
Stud: Kedon Slovis
No. 23 locked up a key win over rival UCLA thanks to yet another incredible performance by quarterback Kedon Slovis. Both defenses struggled all afternoon, but Slovis nonetheless tossed for 515 passing yards and four touchdowns.
Dud: The Texas Longhorns
No, Texas is not back. The last month has made it clear that Texas should not be in the playoff conversation and will likely not even reach the Big 12 championship. Following their lopsided loss to No. 14, Baylor however, it is clear that the Longhorns aren’t even a competitive team in the Big 12. Sam Ehlinger doesn’t look right and most of the team’s yardage is coming in garbage time. The Big 12 had four ranked teams this week and the Longhorns weren’t one of them.
Dud: SEC Scheduling
The SEC gets a lot of grief over their weak non-conference scheduling (a lot of it warranted) but it’s usually fine because it all goes down before conference play. We are currently in Week 13, however, so the SEC has no excuse for scheduling such a weak slate. In the regular season’s penultimate slate of games, the conference’s teams play against the likes of Western Carolina, Samford, UT Martin, East Tennessee, and Abilene Christian.
Dud: Oregon Ducks
The Pac 12’s playoff hopes have officially died thanks to Oregon’s upset loss at the hands of Arizona State. The Ducks’ usually-stout defense was gashed by Eno Benjamin on the ground (114 yards rushing) and the secondary was torched by ASU quarterback Jayden Daniels (408 passing yards and three touchdowns). Oregon made a major push in the fourth quarter and almost erased a 24-7 deficit, but it was too little too late.