College Football Week 5 Reactions: Georgia is DOMINANT, Lots of Ranked Teams Lose

So four top-10 teams went down this weekend. This has been a really fun college football season, but the problem is the two teams at the top just look completely untouchable.

It now looks as if Bama and Georgia have just left the rest of the SEC behind. I know we always say the SEC is the best conference, and that’s true, but really the rest of the SEC is just as far behind Bama and Georgia as the other conferences are.

  1. Alabama, W, 42-21 vs. Ole Miss: Another week, another Bama win. Saban is now 24-0 against his former assistants. Bama has now won 19 straight games. It looks like they have transcended college football at this point. They’ve figured it all out. They are now officially too good for college football. I don’t know how they lose a game ever again at this point. They lost Mac Jones, Najee Harris, DeVonta Smith and Jaylen Waddle, and it doesn’t matter. They also lost Steve Sarkisian. Alabama is the McDonald’s of college football: it’s the same product every time. Every week, same Bama. Home game, road game–doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter who they play, either. They just dominate everyone. Only 7 more years until Saban retires, I guess.
  2. Georgia, W, 37-0 vs. Arkansas: Whoa. Arkansas didn’t even belong on the field. They couldn’t do a thing. At one point Arkansas’ defense had 3 different penalties on the same play, so hard was it for them to stop the Georgia offense. And Georgia’s defense? Forget it. Georgia has this dude, a defensive tackle named Jordan Davis (header photo), who looks like he’s about 6’6″ and 370 pounds. Absolute mammoth of a man. And he’s fast, too. Arkansas is going to have nightmares about that guy. The Dawgs went up 21-0 in the first quarter and that was basically a wrap. Georgia held Arkansas to 162 yards of total offense, and by the end of the game it was clear: Georgia is for real. They’re in Bama’s tier right now. Bama is the only team out there that’s a threat to Georgia. A lot of people are saying Georgia is the best team in the country, but I’m not going to put them over Bama until they prove they can finally beat Bama. I always bring this up but Georgia hasn’t beaten Alabama since 2007. That matters.
  3. Oregon, L, 31-24 at Stanford (OT): I was watching this game when Stanford was up, then when Oregon went up 24-17 and it looked like Stanford’s offense had stalled out, I flipped over to the Florida-Kentucky game. Big mistake on my part. Stanford was up 17-14 at the half, but couldn’t do a thing offensively for most of the second half. They managed to put a drive together at the very end and tie the game up for OT, but even that was a lot of luck. On 4th and 5 from the 5 yard line with 5 seconds to play, Stanford threw it up to the back of the endzone and the pass fell incomplete, but the refs flagged Oregon for DPI, and Stanford got one final untimed down to tie it up. They did. Stanford started with the ball in OT and converted a 3rd and 11 for a TD, then stopped Oregon on downs the next possession for the win. So another big upset this week. It really feels like it’s Bama and Georgia, and then everybody else. I still think Oregon is a really good team, top-5 worthy for sure, but there is a clear drop-off behind the top-2. And Oregon lost star running back CJ Verdell in this game, potentially for the season. That’s a huge blow.
  4. Penn State, W, 24-0 vs. Indiana: I didn’t watch this game. I watched Auburn-LSU instead. Penn State took care of business, dominant defensively. They held Michael Penix, who is a pretty good QB, to 10/22 passing for 118 yards with 1 INT and a -1.0 QBR. I didn’t even know you could go negative. MASSIVE game next week in Iowa City against the Hawkeyes. Early line: Iowa -2.5. It has already moved from -1.5, where it opened. I think that’s fair. These teams are pretty close, and Iowa is at home so they get the edge. But usually you get 3-3.5 just for being at home, sometimes more in college, so this line is actually giving Penn State a lot of respect. Being being anything less than a 3.5 dog on the road means Vegas actually thinks you’re the better team on a neutral site.
  5. Iowa, W, 51-14 at Maryland: Somehow Iowa was only a 3.5 point favorite going into this game. Both Iowa and Maryland were 4-0, but Maryland was clearly no match for Iowa. Taulia Tagovailoa, Tua’s little brother and the Maryland QB, had an absolutely miserable night throwing 5 interceptions. Then, when Maryland brought in their backup QB, Iowa picked him off as well for a total of 6 INTs on the night. It was just embarrassing. Maryland had the crowd blacked out, they were hyped for the Friday night game–and they just got pounded. It’s a great win going into the Penn State game–plus Iowa gets the extra day off. I think I like Iowa to win that game, and I’ve already locked in my bet on them at -2.5. I just think Iowa has been more impressive this season, and they have a really good roster from top to bottom including the best center in the nation, Tyler Linderbaum. However, Penn State has the clear edge at the QB position. ESPN FPI gives Iowa a 63% chance to win. Follow the line in this one throughout the week, and especially right before kickoff.
  6. Oklahoma, W, 37-31 vs. Kansas State: Oklahoma continues to be unimpressive, but they keep winning games. I keep saying they’re cruisin’ for a bruisin’ and I still believe that. They are going to lose to somebody soon. This is not a great team. I would say I hope they somehow go undefeated and win their conference just so they can get drilled in the playoff, but there’s only 4 spots in the playoff and one of them should not go to this Oklahoma team. If there’s a debate between them and Cincy at the end of the year, it will be a travesty if Oklahoma gets in over them.
  7. Cincinnati, W, 24-13 at Notre Dame: Wow, the Bearcats appear to be for real. The giveaway should have been that they were road favorites in this game, which I thought was surprising. A G5 team favored on the road at Notre Dame? That should tell you a lot about how much respect Vegas has for Cincy. They are legitimately good. They’re not on the Bama/Georgia level of course, but I feel like they’re right there with Iowa and Penn State. I absolutely believe Cincy should jump Oklahoma in the rankings. Cincy dominated ND in this game. It was 17-0 at halftime, and Notre Dame only got their first TD due to a fumble recovery that gave them a short field. Never at any point in this game did Notre Dame have a chance to win. Cincy was clearly the better team.
  8. Arkansas, L, 37-0 at Georgia: Look, there’s no way to really spin that game. They got smashed. Georgia was a way better team. Arkansas has had a nice little turnaround here under Sam Pittman, but they have a long way to go before they’re ready to truly compete with the big boys. It’s all about how they bounce back from this game. So now the two teams that lost to Bama and Georgia, Arkansas and Ole Miss, get to play next week in Oxford. Should be a fun one–two up-and-coming teams in the SEC West trying to bounce back and establish themselves.
  9. Notre Dame, L, 24-13 vs. Cincinnati: Maybe Notre Dame was drained coming off that big win over Wisconsin in Chicago, I don’t know. But they just got dominated in this game. Cincy was the much better team. Another loss against a top-10 team for Notre Dame. The Irish’s 26-game home winning streak now comes to an end. Now, in Notre Dame’s defense, they were missing starting QB Jack Coan and had to start Drew Pyne, but they were able to beat Wisconsin with Pyne last week (although I guess you could say they had 3 TDs from defense and special teams).
  10. Florida, L, 20-13 at Kentucky: The Gators only managed 3 points in the second half of the game. Kentucky might be legit. They’re undefeated. The Gators are just not there yet, despite playing Bama close a few weeks back. They’re not consistent enough to really make a run at an SEC Championship. They’re good, but they’re clearly not on the Bama/Georgia level.
  11. Ohio State, W, 52-13 at Rutgers: CJ Stroud came back and easily diced up the Rutgers defense. The game was 45-6 at halftime. I guess I was wrong last week when I said Rutgers was a program on the rise under Greg Schiano due to their close game against Michigan. I’m going to hold off on proclaiming that Ohio State’s defense is “fixed,” but it has looked significantly better the past couple of weeks. Ohio State looks like they’re back on track. Buckeye Nation treated a one-touchdown loss to Oregon like it was the end of the world, but while this Buckeye team isn’t good enough to beat Bama or Georgia, they definitely look like a team that belongs in the top 5-6. They just have so many young and inexperienced guys starting, though. You have a redshirt freshman QB, a true freshman running back Treyveon Henderson (who is a MONSTER, by the way), and basically the entire secondary is comprised of underclassmen.
  12. Ole Miss, L, 42-21 at Bama: Ole Miss has improved by leaps and bounds under Lane Kiffin, and they have a really good QB prospect in Matt Corrall, but they’re just not ready for Bama yet.
  13. BYU, W, 34-20 over Utah State: This game was on Friday night and I didn’t catch any of it. I was watching Iowa and the Houston-Tulsa game. But BYU keeps winning, I guess. They’re going to be a top-10 team, most likely, come the new rankings tomorrow. They’ve got wins over two teams that were ranked when they played them: Arizona State and Utah. ASU just beat UCLA pretty soundly. I guess BYU’s legit.
  14. Michigan, W, 38-10 at Wisconsin: This game was almost identical to last week’s Notre Dame-Wisconsin game. It was close in the first half, but then Wisconsin just unravels late. Wisconsin, though, is very offensively challenged and lost starting QB Graham Mertz during the game. I just need to see more from Michigan before I believe in them as a legit top-10 team. We have seen this story too many times: Michigan starts strong, beats up on a bunch of lesser teams, but then crashes and burns once they get to the hard part of their schedule. Big Ten schedules are generally back-loaded in terms of division play. Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State and Penn State usually all play each other towards the end of the season, and that’s how it’s set up this year. Michigan has looked good, but they need to prove it when it really matters.
  15. Texas A&M, L, 26-22 vs. Mississippi State: Losing to Mississippi State at home? Yeesh. Aggies now appear to be overrated, given how badly Arkansas just lost to Georgia. A&M was a top-10 team the first few weeks of the season, but that was clearly wrong. And if things aren’t bad enough, hey, guess what, A&M? You get to play Bama next week! Congrats on the third-straight L!
  16. Coastal Carolina, W, 59-6 vs. UL Monroe: I don’t know who’s going to challenge Coastal in that conference. Given how many losses we’re seeing in the top-25 on a week-to-week basis, I think Coastal will find themselves in the top-10 within the next few weeks here. Hell, six teams ahead of them lost just this week. They’re already going to be knocking on the door in the new rankings tomorrow.
  17. Michigan State, W, 48-31 vs. Western Kentucky: Easy win for Sparty. They probably won’t be challenged until October 30, when they host Michigan.
  18. Fresno State, L, 27-24 at Hawaii: I stayed up until about 1:45am watching this game, and I love the late-night Hawaii games even though they’re usually not entertaining. But this one was good. Hawaii was down 24-10, then stormed back to take a 3-point lead on a late field goal. Fresno then got the ball with a couple of minutes left, and looked as if they were going to be able to tie it up, driving the ball down into the red zone. But then, a tipped ball interception sealed the deal, and down goes Fresno. Fresno’s QB Jake Haener looked just devastated, and I felt bad for the kid because it really wasn’t his fault. Poor Fresno. Hawaii is a tough place to play.
  19. Oklahoma State, W, 24-14 vs. Baylor: It’s not a real college football season until Oklahoma State finds themselves in the 15-25 range in the rankings. I feel like they’re a fixture there. They solidified themselves with a win over ranked Baylor, and very quietly the Cowboys are now 5-0. They’ve got two straight wins over ranked teams, plus a win over Boise State as well. They’re on bye this week, but their biggest test of the season thus far comes right after that with a trip to Austin to play the Longhorns. Fortunately for Okie State, Texas plays Oklahoma this week, so the Cowboys get Texas coming off an emotional game one way or the other–plus two weeks to prepare.
  20. UCLA, L, 42-23 vs. Arizona State: Looks like we jumped the gun on the UCLA is back talk. Chip Kelly’s squad still isn’t ready for prime time. There was a point in this game, during I believe the late third quarter or early 4th, where UCLA had the ball on like the ASU 2 yard line, and it was 4th and goal, down 32-23, and for some reason Chip Kelly went for the TD instead of taking the points. They got stonewalled and turned the ball over. I didn’t like the decision, I thought Kelly should’ve taken the points and made it a one-score game. But maybe he just doesn’t trust his defense. They couldn’t get stops when they needed them.
  21. Baylor, L, 24-14 vs. Oklahoma State: I don’t know jack shit about Baylor, I’ll be honest. Their first three games were Texas State, Texas Southern and then Kansas, which might have been the easiest starting three games for any Power Five team. Kansas is unbelievably bad. Baylor got some respect for beating Iowa State last week, but Iowa State might not be that good. Baylor has a really tough stretch of games coming up: West Virginia, BYU, Texas, at TCU, Oklahoma, then at Kansas State. If somehow Baylor emerges on the other side of that with only 1-2 losses, then they’ll have earned a lot of respect. But that’s a big “if”.
  22. Auburn, W, 24-19 at LSU: Auburn really had to fight to win this one. Bo Nix, who at this point is basically a budget Johnny Manziel, made some great plays including one really spectacular escape, rollout and throw for a TD in the first half. Auburn was trailing all game long, but they had the playmaker at QB and LSU didn’t. It made the difference. LSU’s receiver had what looked to be a catch for a first down late in the game as LSU was driving to try to take the lead, but the refs reviewed it and overturned it, saying the ball was bobbled. LSU then failed to convert on 4th down and that was the game. I didn’t think the refs should’ve overturned the call, but it is what it is. Auburn escapes, and now they get to play Georgia. Good luck.
  23. NC State, W, 34-27 vs. Louisiana Tech: You’d prefer a ranked team to be more dominant against a team like Louisiana Tech, but a win’s a win I guess. Still, though, NC State is in the rankings because they beat Clemson, and Clemson looks worse and worse every week. Still not sold on the Wolfpack.
  24. Wake Forest, W, 37-34 vs. Louisville: Wake is another team I don’t know jack shit about. But hey, they’re undefeated. Of course, they haven’t really played anyone good, and they won’t until November 13 when they play NC State, and then Clemson the following week. So maybe Wake will go on a nice little run here. Other than this close win over Louisville, they’ve kinda blown everyone they’ve played out, which you have to respect. If you have a weak schedule, then you have to win impressively, and Wake has.
  25. Clemson, W, 19-13 vs. Boston College: Clemson won, but their offense is just bad. Other than their game against South Carolina State, which they won 49-3, the Clemson offense has now scored the following: 3, 14, 21 and 19 points. The 3 point game was obviously to Georgia, which Clemson only lost because they threw a pick-six. I want to say Clemson sucks, but I can’t completely dismiss the Georgia game. Outside of that pick six, they were dead even with Georgia, and Georgia looks incredible. But Clemson’s offense is just broken, and there’s no way around that. They are struggling week in and week out with every ACC team they play. These are teams they used to dominate when they had Trevor Lawrence. I would say Clemson doesn’t belong in the top-25, but it feels like half the top 25 loses every week.

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