College Football Roundup: Week 9 Highlights and What to Watch

November 05, 2015

From triple overtime conference wins to “did that really happen?” finishes, Week 9 brought us another slate of amazing games. Let’s take a look back at some of the best of the week.

Cal v. Stanford Reincarnate, Pt. I
Cal v. Stanford Reincarnate, Pt. II

The Debatable Miami Miracle

After taking a 27-24 lead with 6 seconds left on the clock, the No. 22 Duke Blue Devils did the routine squib kick to run out the clock, and Miami began lateraling the ball back and forth to try to make something happen. Dallas Crawford initially fielded the kick before flipping it back to his teammate, and after SEVEN more laterals, the ball finally landed back in the Crawford’s hands. He darted down the sideline before cutting across the middle of the field and finally into the endzone to cap off possibly the most ridiculous finish to a game since the Stanford Band incident of 1982.

Goal Line Stand

Michigan’s Final Stand

From what we saw two weeks ago against Michigan State, it’s safe to say that the Michigan Wolverines have not had the best of luck in the dying seconds of games. But with just three feet to victory, the unranked Minnesota Gophers could almost taste the glory of an upset. After poor clock management (including a play that nearly let time expire with two pre-snap motions), the Gophers found themselves on the 1-yard line with two seconds to play down 29-26. Instead of kicking the field goal to send it into overtime, the Gophers rolled the dice and went for it all. The Wolverines defensive front got a big push and halted the Gophers on the goal line and narrowly escaped with a victory.

Pick for the Win

Irish Spoil Upset Attempt

In College Gameday’s game of the week, the No. 9 Notre Dame Irish fought back from a late fourth quarter deficit against No. 21 Temple to secure them a spot in the early playoff predictions. Temple took a 20-17 lead with a 36-yard field goal with 4:45 left, but Notre Dame Quarterback DeShone Kizer restored the Irish’s playoff hopes with a beautiful 17-yard touchdown pass to Will Fuller with just over two minutes on the clock. This forced Temple into a two-minute drill and a chance for potentially the biggest win in program history. Notre Dame’s defense rose to the occasion and on the fourth play of the drive, senior cornerback KeiVarae Russell came up with an interception to secure a big win for Notre Dame.

WIDE RIGHT

No. 8 Stanford Narrowly Escapes Upset

If you’re from the Pacific Northwest, you know that there’s a phrase that follows Washington State University Cougars athletics: anytime a mistake occurs in a crucial part of the game, you can hear disgruntled (or rival) fans say “they Coug’d it.” And that’s exactly what happened on Saturday night in Pullman, WA. Give credit where credit is due though - Washington State battled all game, including a 4 play 75-yard scoring drive that gave the Cougs a 22-10 lead and an 81-yard drive (but a failed 2-point conversion) to give them a late 28-27 lead. WSU’s defense also came up big against a high-powered Stanford offense, holding them to 312 total yards, compared to WSU’s 442. But with time expiring and a chance for one of the biggest wins in recent program history, WSU’s kicker Erik Powell missed wide right on a 43-yarder. After playing an amazing game on both sides of the ball, Washington State “Coug’d it” once again.

Who Needs Facemasks?

ACC Showdown in Pittsburgh

After losing their first game of the season, the University of North Carolina Tar Heels have won seven straight, including a big win over No. 23 Pittsburgh on Thursday night. Tar Heels’ quarterback Marquise Williams threw for a total of 270 passing yards and added 52 rushing yards of his own in an upset against ACC Coastal rival Pitt. UNC wide receiver Ryan Switzer hauled in 5 passes for 126 yards including a 71-yard bomb. After jumping out to a 10-3 lead in the second quarter, the Tar Heels would not look back all game as they led by at least 7 for the rest of game.

OT Pick to Win

PAC12 Triple Overtime Thriller

In an old fashioned Western Shootout in the Arizona desert, the Oregon Ducks needed three overtimes to pull out a victory over the Arizona State Sun Devils. Both teams combined for a whopping total of 116 points. The drama went on all game as both teams were neck in neck through regulation, and an 8-yard pass from Vernon Adams to Dwayne Stanford with 12 seconds left tied the game to send it into the first overtime. Then, on the first play of overtime Oregon’s Adams & Stanford connected again to set the tone for the rest of the overtime. After trading touchdowns again and again throughout the overtimes, ASU’s overthrown pass was intercepted in the endzone to finally end another PAC12 classic.

Week 10 Preview & First Playoff Predictions

With the season over halfway over, it’s time to start talking playoffs. If the playoffs started this week No. 1 Clemson and No. 4 Alabama would square off on one side of the bracket while No. 2 LSU and No. 3 Ohio State would battle it out on the other side. The first two out would be No. 5 Notre Dame and No. 6 Baylor with the remaining top 10 featuring Michigan State, TCU, Iowa & Florida.

With the new rankings up, this week’s matchup between No. 2 LSU & No. 4 Alabama will have heavy playoff implications and guarantees to be a great matchup. No. 8 TCU has another chance to prove their legitimacy against No. 14 Oklahoma State, if the Horned Frogs want to keep creeping up the rankings they’ll need a statement victory. Florida State looks to make another run towards playoffs as they have the opportunity to knock off No. 1 Clemson, but with the game on the road, the Seminoles will definitely have their hands full. After being just 18 inches away from upsetting Michigan last week, my bold upset pick of the week is the Minnesota Gophers against Ohio State. Look for the Gophers to come out with a purpose, and after being so close to a major upset last week, they’ll big looking for an even bigger one this week.

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