Sep 25, 2017

Big Ten & SEC Week 4 Recap: Penn State Escapes Iowa and SEC Play Goes Down to the Wire

Standings and Results

Big Ten


AP Top 10

1. Alabama
2. Clemson
3. Oklahoma
4. Penn State
5. USC
6. Washington
7. Georgia
8. Michigan
9. TCU
10. Wisconsin

College Football Takes Over New York City

This weekend College GameDay took the show on the road to Times Square in New York City. Just because there is no FBS program housed in the Big Apple, doesn’t mean that college football doesn’t flow through the veins of those in the City the Never Sleeps!

Don’t believe us? Take a look at what you missed if you didn’t start your morning with Rece Davis and the rest of the gang.

We’re thinking Lee can make it in NYC…

Since GameDay was not located on a college campus, Coach Corso had another trick up his sleeves when it came to his show-closing headgear picks.

And… it’s not College GameDay without the classic GameDay signs. New York City didn’t let us down, check out some of our favorites below.

1. #PlotTwist

2. If anyone is, it’d probably be him. After all, he’s a man, he’s 40!

3. That’s not how this works, that’s not how any of this works!

4. Loophole!

5. Plz be safe up there, Coach!

6. Where is Carson Daly?

7. #FordhamStrong

A Kinnick Classic

The No. 4 Penn State Nittany Lions hit the road for the first time this season, descending on Iowa City to face the Iowa Hawkeyes under the lights.

Iowa entered the game having won its previous four night games in Kinnick Stadium, including a 14-13 victory over No. 2 Michigan last season, which came by way of a field goal as time expired. The Hawkeyes also brought in a five-game winning streak in conference openers, as well as this note courtesy of ESPN:

That winning streak dated back to 2008, with wins over No. 3 Penn State (2008; 24-23), No. 5 Michigan State (2010; 37-6), and No. 2 Michigan (2016; 14-13). So the Hawkeyes had to be feeling as good as any unranked team about to face off against a Top 5 team could. And while the first half saw Penn State control the game in terms of field position and time of possession, Iowa’s bend-but-don’t-break defense held up.

How does a team outgaining another by so much find themselves down at the half? Josey Jewell showed everyone with under a minute to play in the half.

They went for it all on the very next play, and to answer Chris Fowler, yes they could take the lead.

Despite the game being a defensive battle for much of the game, it was chock full of big plays — many of them coming from Penn State running back and Heisman hopeful Saquon Barkley, who set the school record for all-purpose yards in single game with 358 (211 rushing, 94 receiving, 53 return).

Here’s one taste of what Barkley had in store for Iowa defense.

and another…

Yahoo’s Dr. Saturday account kept track of all the eye-opening moves with this thread.

In fact, the running back’s performance was impressive enough that athletes of other sports were taking notice.

From Olympic Hurdler and Bobsledder, Lolo Jones:

To reigning PGA Championship winner, Justin Thomas:

As well as six-time MLB All-Star, two-time AL MVP, five-time silver slugger and 2012 AL Rookie of the Year, Anaheim Angels outfielder Mike Trout:

It wasn’t all about Barkley, though. Hawkeyes running back Akrum Wadley, who made a name for himself with a big game in last year’s upset of No. 2 Michigan, had himself a fourth quarter to remember. The running back got into the end zone on both of the Hawkeyes’ final two drives of the game, scoring on a 70-yard catch and run (below) before taking another carry 35 yards to paydirt with under 2 minutes left to play.

After the long run put the Hawkeyes up for the first time in the game, Penn State’s offense had one last chance to muster a game-winning touchdown. The Nittany Lions stormed down the field and inside the Iowa 10-yard line before incompletions on second and third downs saw Penn State with one final play to win the game. With four seconds left in the game this happened…

Current WWE Superstar and former Iowa defensive lineman Big E (Ettore Ewen) was tuning into the game, which led tag team partner Xavier Woods to film his reaction to the final play. It’s unknown whether Big E took this loss harder than their tag team title match loss at SummerSlam this past month, although they did recently win them back earlier in September so he’s still got that going for him.

A Southwest Showdown

Texas A&M squared off with Arkansas in the Southwest Classic at AT&T Stadium in Dallas. The Aggies did not take their first lead in the game until midway through the fourth quarter and they led for just 4:56 of regulation game time, but were able to take a 50-43 conference-opening win nonetheless.

The game was dominated by Aggies wide receiver Christian Kirk, who tied the game at 7-7 early with a long receiving touchdown.

Kirk then showed his skills on special teams, retaking the lead for the Aggies after they allowed a 79-yard Razorbacks drive late in the fourth quarter.

That return had fans looking like this…

And this…

Kirk wasn’t done, however. After Arkansas retook the lead, A&M went down the field once again and kicked the game-tying field goal with four seconds left to send the game to overtime, which as Dr. Saturday tells us, should not be a surprise.

In overtime the Aggies gameplan was also no surprise: Throw to Kirk. I’m sure you can guess how that worked out for them.

Florida Goes for 31

Fresh off of their 26-20 Hail Mary victory over Tennessee at home last weekend, the Gators traveled to Lexington to face Kentucky, whom they’d beaten in each of their past 30 matchups going in. The Wildcats last victory in the series came at home in 1986 by a score of 10-3.

However, last year’s 45-7 drubbing notwithstanding, Kentucky has been a tough go for the Gators since 2014 with the Gators having won both games by one possession. And this year was no different, as the Gators had to fight until the last second of the game to pull out a 28-27 victory.

After alternating touchdowns in the first half (including the grab from Wildcats receiver Garrett Johnson below), the Wildcats emerged out of the break with 13 unanswered points to take a 27-14 lead early in the fourth quarter.

Following a seven-play, 80-yard drive capped off by a Brandon Powell six-yard touchdown run, Florida took the lead with 43 seconds to play on this five-yard connection between Luke Del Rio and Freddie Swain — a play that came thanks in large part to some Wildcats miscommunication on D.

The game wasn’t over that easily, however. Following two quick first down completions and a roughing the passer penalty, Kentucky found itself in field goal territory on the Gators side of the field.

A 10-yard run from running back Benny Snell looked like it was going to seal the deal as it appeared to move Kentucky to the 25-yard line for a game-winning 42-yard attempt. Instead, a holding penalty was called, taking away the first down and sending the Wildcats back to the 45-yard line with 11 seconds remaining. After completing a quick pass for six yards, the Wildcats brought out fifth year senior kicker Austin MacGinnis to attempt a 57-yard field goal to end the streak.

Here’s how the ending played out from field level…

The loss keeps the winning streak in tact for the Gators…

Battle of the Bulldogs

In perhaps the most highly anticipated matchup on the day, No. 17 Mississippi State, fresh off of a lopsided victory over LSU, went into Athens to square off with No. 11 Georgia between the hedges. Georgia took control early and cruised to a 31-3 victory at home.

The game started out as one would expect when two Bulldogs catch a glimpse of each other.

Then after forcing a Mississippi State three-and-out on the game’s opening drive, Georgia got right to work:

The home Bulldogs scored on their next possession as well to jump out to an early 14-0 lead, and took a 14-3 advantage into the locker room at halftime. Coming out of the break, Georgia scored on three of its first four drives in the second half. Freshman quarterback Jake Fromm threw for 201 yards and two scores on 9-of-12 passing, including this  pass down the middle to tight end Isaac Nauta.

Not only did the Georgia offense show up, their defense was all over their Bulldog counterparts, holding star quarterback Nick Fitzgerald to just 83 yards passing, 47 yards rushing and two interceptions.

A “Special” Assistant Coach

If you caught the Tennessee-UMass game, you may have noticed a new coach on the sidelines. Longtime ESPN personality Chris Berman joined his good friend, UMass head coach Mark Whipple, in Neyland Stadium as the Minutemen looked for their first win of the season.

While it is unknown what area of the game Boomer was assisting with, his presence alone seemed to spark something in the Minutemen, as they gave the Volunteers fits all day long.

UMass, which was already without one offensive weapon for the game in tight end Adam Breneman, lost starting quarterback Andrew Ford to injury on a sack late in the third quarter, but continued to fight on the road. The defense stood their ground holding the Vols to just 17 points, but the Tennessee defense was able to match their effort and hold on for a 17-13 victory.

Team Selection Committee Recap

The Florida Citrus Sports Team Selection Committee held its second meeting of the 2017-18 season Monday morning at Camping World Stadium, and after four weeks of memorable college football action and more than two dozen campus visits already logged this year, there were more than a few exciting stories to go around. READ MORE >>>

Play of the Week

Although they didn’t come out on top after the final whistle, Rutgers put up a fight on the road against Nebraska. On their first drive of the game Jerome Washington made this magical catch to give the Scarlet Knights a first down. Who says you have to use your hands to catch a pass?

Tweet of the Week

Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh has made headlines during his stay in Michigan and one of those reasons is for his secrecy when it comes to his depth chart. Indy Star sports columnist Gregg Doyel was covering the Wolverines game in West Lafayette against the Purdue Boilermakers and shared what media were given for depth charts. Touché, Purdue Sports Information department, touché.


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