Nick Saban was again on the Alabama sideline after a COVID-19 scare and a false constructive take a look at earlier within the week, and his Crimson Tide are again on high of ESPN’s energy rankings.
Alabama carved aside a Georgia protection that had been suffocating this season with one explosive play after one other and collared the Bulldogs 41-24 on Saturday night time in Bryant-Denny Stadium.
Clemson, which decimated Georgia Tech 73-7 behind Trevor Lawrence’s 5 first-half landing passes, did nothing to lose the No. 1 spot; it was extra that Alabama took down No. 3 Georgia and made it look simple within the second half.
And the extra you watch the ACC (see North Carolina being upset by Florida State), the extra unbelievable evidently anyone in that league goes to beat Clemson.
The Massive Ten joins the occasion this Saturday and has 4 groups within the energy rankings — No. 3 Ohio State, No. 5 Penn State, No. 11 Wisconsin and No. 17 Michigan — earlier than even taking part in a recreation this season. They get their first likelihood on the sector to show they belong.
The all-league schedule within the SEC has achieved what many in and round that convention thought it will: We’re a month into the season and 10 of the 14 groups have two or extra losses.
Whereas Arkansas, now 2-2, did not make it into the facility rankings this week, if we had energy rankings for coaches, the Hogs’ Sam Pittman, Barry Odom, Kendal Briles and the remainder of that Arkansas workers can be proper there on the high. No person has accomplished a greater teaching job so far than the Hogs’ first-year workers, which inherited a program that had misplaced 20 straight SEC video games.
BYU moved into the highest 10 at No. 9 after Zach Wilson and the Cougars did a quantity on Houston within the second half Friday on the highway.
And new to the facility rankings this week are a pair of unbeatens, No. 21 Coastal Carolina and No. 25 Liberty. They sq. off on Dec. 5 to shut out the common season.
If you wish to be choosy, certain, Alabama has had extra dominant defenses underneath Saban. However so long as the Crimson Tide proceed to present Mac Jones time to throw the soccer and he has DeVonta Smith, Jaylen Waddle and the remainder of these Alabama receivers to throw to, good luck in beating this bunch. And talking of Alabama’s protection, the Tide blanked Georgia within the second half on Saturday to win 41-24 and put the sport away in old-school Bama trend. Senior operating again Najee Harris, yet one more key cog in that offense, bullied his technique to 152 dashing yards on 31 carries.
Up subsequent: at Tennessee (Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ET, CBS)
Mac Jones throws an interception on the primary play of the sport, then comes again to throw 4 touchdowns in Alabama’s 41-24 win over Georgia.
The Tigers did nothing Saturday in a 73-7 thrashing of Georgia Tech to relinquish their crown as one of the full, if not essentially the most full, groups in school soccer. Clemson has but to be pushed this season within the ACC and has received 26 straight video games in opposition to league foes. The Tigers have scored greater than 40 factors in every of their previous 4 video games, and with house video games in opposition to Syracuse and Boston Faculty the subsequent two weeks, they are going to probably be unbeaten going into their highway recreation at Notre Dame on Nov. 7.
Up subsequent: vs. Syracuse (Saturday, midday ET, ESPN or ACC Community)
The Buckeyes’ operating recreation will look a bit completely different this season now that J.Ok. Dobbins is gone. He completed third nationally a yr in the past with a median of 143.1 yards per recreation and carried the ball 301 instances. Oklahoma graduate switch Trey Sermon will probably be choice No. 1 this season, however sophomore Grasp Teague III seems to be to be recovered from his Achilles harm. So as an alternative of 1 again getting many of the carries, Sermon and Teague determine to share the load for an Ohio State operating recreation that ought to once more be explosive in 2020.
Up subsequent: vs. Nebraska (Saturday, midday ET, Fox)
There’s by no means any disgrace in shedding to Alabama, however the best way Georgia misplaced Saturday night time in a 41-24 setback to the Crimson Tide can be what stings essentially the most. The Bulldogs led 24-20 on the half, however they unraveled within the second half amid their very own errors and an Alabama passing recreation that has been unstoppable. Regardless of yielding 564 yards in whole offense, Georgia remains to be elite on protection and, till proved in any other case, is the second-best group within the SEC. But when Georgia will get one other shot at Alabama within the SEC championship recreation, the Dawgs might want to play a a lot cleaner recreation to have an opportunity.
Up subsequent: at Kentucky (Oct. 31, midday ET, SEC Community)
The Nittany Lions ought to be enjoyable to look at on offense this season with first-year coordinator Kirk Ciarrocca coming over from Minnesota. One of many keys can be quarterback Sean Clifford being extra correct throwing the ball, however he is obtained loads of playmakers round him together with an offensive line that returns 4 starters. Journey Brown is the headliner within the backfield, however Penn State has loads of depth and flexibility there. Pat Freiermuth is likely one of the nation’s premier tight ends, and receiver Jahan Dotson is likely one of the Massive Ten’s most underrated gamers.
Up subsequent: at Indiana (Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ET, FS1)
It was a battle the entire method, and the Irish have had stretches this season the place they’ve appeared fairly common, however they’ve made key performs once they’ve wanted to and did once more Saturday in a 12-7 house win over Louisville. Veteran quarterback Ian Guide made two clutch third-down throws on the ultimate drive to maintain the ball away from the Cardinals, and sophomore operating again Kyren Williams has rushed for 312 yards in his previous two video games. Notre Dame can be an enormous favourite the subsequent two weeks in opposition to Pittsburgh and Georgia Tech on the highway earlier than returning house to face Clemson on Nov. 7.
Up subsequent: at Pittsburgh (Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ET, ABC)
The Cowboys’ recreation with Baylor was rescheduled to Dec. 12 after Baylor suspended all soccer actions to judge constructive exams for COVID-19 and carry out contact tracing. Oklahoma State may have had two consecutive weeks off when it faces Iowa State subsequent weekend, which ought to be the Cowboys’ largest take a look at but on protection after giving up simply three touchdowns of their first three video games. The rescheduling of the Baylor recreation means Oklahoma State will play 4 of its final 5 video games on the highway previous to the Massive 12 championship recreation on Dec. 19.
Up subsequent: vs. Iowa State (Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ET, Fox)
One factor we all know for certain concerning the Bearcats is that they need to be effectively rested heading into the hardest stretch of their season. The Bearcats have not performed since Oct. 3 once they defeated South Florida 28-7. Their recreation Saturday with Tulsa was postponed till Dec. 5 as a result of constructive COVID-19 instances inside Cincinnati’s program. Upcoming for Luke Fickell’s Bearcats, who’ve allowed simply 17 factors of their previous two outings, are video games in opposition to SMU, Memphis and Houston in successive weeks. And with the Tulsa postponement, meaning Cincinnati will play its ultimate three video games on the highway.
Up subsequent: at SMU (Saturday, 9 p.m. ET, ESPN2)
BYU took its largest step but towards an unbeaten season with a 43-26 win at Houston on Friday night time, and junior quarterback Zach Wilson took one other step towards inserting his identify squarely into the Heisman Trophy race. The Cougars scored 29 unanswered factors after falling behind 26-14 within the third quarter, and Wilson threw three of his 4 landing passes within the ultimate quarter-hour and 53 seconds of the sport. BYU, averaging 43.6 factors per recreation, nonetheless has its hardest video games to return in opposition to Boise State (on the highway) and San Diego State.
Up subsequent: vs. Texas State (Saturday, 10:15 p.m. ET, ESPN)
Zach Wilson throws 4 touchdowns on 400 yards in BYU’s 43-26 win vs. Houston.
The Geese are the highest-ranked Pac-12 group heading into the season despite the fact that they’re having to interchange a ton of expertise on offense. That burden will fall on former Mississippi State head coach Joe Moorhead, who takes over as Oregon’s offensive coordinator after Marcus Arroyo left for the UNLV head-coaching job. Moorhead has had little or no time on the observe discipline with the Geese’ gamers due to the pandemic and has a call to make at quarterback with Justin Herbert now within the NFL. Sophomore Tyler Shough will attempt to maintain off Boston Faculty graduate switch Anthony Brown.
Up subsequent: vs. Stanford (Nov. 7, TBA)
The consistency in Paul Chryst’s program at Wisconsin has been outstanding. He has guided the Badgers to 10 or extra wins in 4 of his 5 seasons in Madison, and this yr they are going to be vying for his or her fourth Massive Ten championship recreation look previously 5 years. Protection isn’t an issue at Wisconsin. The Badgers completed tenth nationally a yr in the past in scoring protection (16.9 factors per recreation), and from junior center linebacker Jack Sanborn to a loaded secondary to budding star Keeanu Benton at nostril sort out, they could possibly be even higher in 2020.
Up subsequent: vs. Illinois (Saturday, 8 p.m. ET, Massive Ten Community),
After such a lackluster win over Vanderbilt to open the season, a lot of the school soccer world was ready to put in writing off the Aggies as a group that did not belong among the many SEC’s elite this season. However Jimbo Fisher’s membership appears to be discovering its groove, and coming off Saturday’s 28-14 highway win at Mississippi State, Texas A&M could possibly be poised to go on a run once you survey the Aggies’ schedule the remainder of the best way. Sophomore operating again Isaiah Spiller has helped take the strain off quarterback Kellen Mond, and Texas A&M has discovered some good stability on offense.
Up subsequent: vs. Arkansas (Oct. 31, 7:30 p.m. ET, SEC Community)
The Hurricanes bounced again from their loss every week earlier to Clemson by holding off Pittsburgh at house for a 31-19 victory. Switch quarterback D’Eriq King continues to make an enormous distinction for a Miami offense that has scored greater than 30 factors in all 4 its wins. He threw 4 landing passes Saturday, together with three of 35 yards or longer. His ultimate scoring toss was a 45-yarder to Will Mallory on a second-and-17 play after Pitt had pulled inside 21-16 within the third quarter.
Up subsequent: vs. Virginia (Saturday, 8 p.m. ET, ACC Community)
D’Eriq King tallies 4 whole landing passes, main Miami to a 31-19 win over Pittsburgh.
The Gators may have some time to get issues straightened out on protection. They’ve scored not less than 38 factors of their first three video games, however have given up greater than 500 yards in whole offense in two of these three video games. Their recreation Saturday with LSU was rescheduled for Dec. 12 as a result of constructive exams and quarantines inside the Florida soccer program. And due to an prolonged pause of group actions within the Gators’ program, their recreation in opposition to Missouri, initially scheduled for this coming Saturday, has been moved to Oct. 31.
Up subsequent: vs. Missouri (Oct. 31, 7:30 p.m. ET, SEC Community Alternate)
The Wildcats, who had been off Saturday, have received three video games in a row, however should play the remainder of this season with out senior quarterback Skylar Thompson, who underwent season-ending shoulder surgical procedure. True freshman Will Howard will step in because the starter after main the Wildcats to a win over TCU every week in the past. Kansas State has been ok on protection, particularly in relation to taking the ball away, that the Wildcats will not should lean too closely on Howard. However they are going to want him to make key throws and maintain the soccer like he did within the TCU recreation if they are going to dangle round within the Massive 12 race.
Up subsequent: vs. Kansas (Saturday, midday ET, FS1)
Because the Trojans prepare for the beginning of their season, one factor new defensive coordinator Todd Orlando is promising is that there will not be any holding again in relation to being bodily in observe. USC gave up 31 or extra factors in 4 of its final six video games a yr in the past, together with 49 in a 49-24 loss to Iowa within the Vacation Bowl. Particularly, the Trojans have to be higher at stopping the run after ending 72nd nationally final season in dashing protection. They gave 162.3 yards per recreation on the bottom, which ranked them ninth within the Pac-12.
Up subsequent: vs. Arizona State (Nov. 7, midday ET, Fox)
Michigan’s move protection will not have any warm-ups this season with Tanner Morgan, Rashod Bateman and that Minnesota offense being first up on the schedule. The Wolverines’ move rush ought to be in good condition with Kwity Paye and Aidan Hutchinson coming off the sting, they usually’ve made some strikes within the secondary. Junior Sammy Faustin has shifted from security to cornerback, because the Wolverines appear set on the security place. Jim Harbaugh mentioned just lately that sophomore security/nickel Daxton Hill could be essentially the most gifted participant on the group.
Up subsequent: at Minnesota (Saturday, 7:30 p.m. ET, ABC)
The Mustangs needed to scratch and claw to remain unbeaten on Friday night time with a 37-34 time beyond regulation victory in opposition to Tulane, marking the second straight season that they’ve began 5-0. The final time that occurred was 1983. SMU coach Sonny Dykes mentioned again in June that he anticipated Shane Buechele to have one of the productive years of any quarterback in school soccer. Up to now, he is been proper. Buechele threw two extra landing passes to associate with 384 passing yards and is now 15-3 since turning into SMU’s beginning quarterback.
Up subsequent: vs. Cincinnati (Saturday, 9 p.m. ET, ESPN2)
The Tar Heels had proven a number of hints of presumably being ranked a tad too excessive earlier this season with some shaky performances. However on Saturday, North Carolina left little question in falling behind 24-0 within the second quarter and seeing its rally fall quick in a 31-28 loss at Florida State. For perspective, Florida State’s solely win coming into the sport was a comeback victory over Jacksonville State. The Tar Heels are nonetheless gifted sufficient to be an element within the ACC race, so will probably be attention-grabbing to see how they reply to such a disappointing loss.
Up subsequent: vs. N.C. State (Saturday, midday ET, ESPN or ACC Community)
We knew the Hokies may rating. That they had put up not less than 38 factors in every of their first three tilts, together with 45 in an 11-point loss to North Carolina every week in the past. That is what made Saturday’s 40-14 rout of Boston Faculty so pleasing for Justin Fuente and his Virginia Tech soccer group. The Hokies performed a few of their greatest protection of the season in forcing 5 Boston Faculty turnovers, and they’re going to want that form of offensive/defensive stability if they are going to dangle round within the ACC race.
Up subsequent: at Wake Forest (Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ET, ACC RSN)
Coastal Carolina’s baseball group put the Solar Belt Convention college situated simply exterior of Myrtle Seaside, South Carolina, on the map in 2016 by successful the nationwide championship. Now, it is Coastal Carolina’s soccer group that is grabbing headlines. The Chanticleers beat No. 21-ranked Louisiana 30-27 on Wednesday on the highway for his or her first win over an FBS top-25 nationally ranked program in class historical past. They usually did it in dramatic trend. Massimo Biscardi kicked a game-winning 40-yard discipline purpose with 4 seconds remaining. The Chants have scored 30 or extra factors in all 4 of their wins.
Up subsequent: vs. Georgia Southern (Saturday, midday ET, ESPNU)
The Sooners had been off Saturday and will use the remainder after their 53-45 win in 4 overtimes every week in the past in opposition to Texas. Oklahoma must shore up its protection after giving up 31 or extra factors in regulation in every of its previous three video games. Enjoying their method again into the Faculty Soccer Playoff equation could also be a protracted shot for the Sooners, however they nonetheless get Oklahoma State at house in November and are not fully out of it within the Massive 12 race, particularly in a season when it seems to be just like the Massive 12 may beat up on one another.
Up subsequent: at TCU (Saturday, midday ET, ABC)
The Ragin’ Cajuns mastered the artwork of the comeback of their first three wins, as they rallied in all three video games. They got here from behind three completely different instances to tie the sport in opposition to Coastal Carolina on Wednesday, and regardless of dashing for 240 yards, misplaced for the primary time this season in a gut-wrenching 30-27 defeat at house. It was Louisiana’s first recreation since Sept. 26, and the layoff confirmed within the Ragin’ Cajuns’ incapacity to get off the sector defensively in key conditions. Their Nov. 5 house recreation with Arkansas State is shaping as much as be the pivotal contest within the Solar Belt Convention’s West Division race.
Up subsequent: at UAB (Friday, 8 p.m. ET, CBS Sports activities Community)
A span of three or 4 weeks in any soccer season can change the complexion of issues in a rush, particularly in a season like this one. And after Week 1 and a 31-14 house loss to Louisiana, Iowa State was being chalked up as extra of a pretender after some within the preseason predicted the Cyclones to be a contender within the Massive 12 race. It is a reminder that overreaction after one week of soccer isn’t very sensible. Iowa State, which was off this week, has received three straight video games and is one in all two unbeaten groups in Massive 12 play together with Oklahoma State. They meet subsequent weekend in Stillwater.
Up subsequent: at Oklahoma State (Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ET, Fox)
BYU is not the one college taking part in as an impartial this season making some noise. Hugh Freeze’s Flames are 5-0 after successful 38-21 at Syracuse on Saturday, the primary win over an ACC opponent in Liberty college historical past. Freeze led Liberty to eight wins a yr in the past in his first season as head coach, and the Flames could possibly be on their technique to matching and even surpassing that whole this season. They nonetheless have a few of their most difficult video games upcoming in opposition to Virginia Tech, North Carolina State and Coastal Carolina, all on the highway.
Up subsequent: vs. Southern Miss (Saturday, 1 p.m. ET, ESPN3)