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Tagovailoa throws 5 TDs, No. 2 Alabama rolls over USM 49-7

bama04TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) The glaring sun was the only thing that slowed down Alabama receiver Henry Ruggs III early, and that was only for an instant.

Ruggs held up momentarily before pulling in his second long touchdown catch in the second-ranked Crimson Tide's 49-7 victory over Southern Miss on Saturday. He collected it and was off to the races again for a 74-yard score.

Ruggs said it wasn't an underthrown ball by Tua Tagovailoa, who had another huge game.

"The sun caught in my eye," he said. "The ball was right in the sun, so I actually turned around to make sure I secured the catch instead of catching it over the shoulder."

Tagovailoa passed for 293 yards and five touchdowns in just three quarters, including a 45-yarder and 74-yarder to Ruggs in the first nine minutes.

He had his second straight five-TD game and the Tide (4-0) raced to a 28-0 lead in the first 19 minutes in yet another lopsided victory. Last season's Heisman Trophy runner-up completed 17 of 21 passes.

The Golden Eagles (2-2) couldn't keep up with the speedy Ruggs, despite a little help from the sun. He had a career high in receiving yards even before the first quarter ended.

Ruggs finished with four catches for 148 yards, all in the first half and all on four targets. He sprinted to the end zone untouched on a slant pattern for the 45-yarder.

There were plenty of big plays to go around for an offense that had back-to-back 91-yard scoring drives. Alabama scored on its first four possessions in an early kickoff in hot weather against a sizable underdog.

"There's a lot of reasons that the players could have not played well today," Tide coach Nick Saban said. "And I was really pleased with the fact that they were ready to play and got after it."

Najee Harris gained 110 yards on 14 carries to become the Tide's first 100-yard rusher since last season's LSU game. Jerry Jeudy caught a pair of TD passes and finished with 96 yards on six catches.

"I've been coaching a long time, and this is probably the first time I've ever said this: I don't know if I've ever seen an offense with two Heisman Trophy candidates in it," Southern Miss coach Jay Hopson said. "They're good, they're really good. They're going to be one of the best, if not the best, offenses in college football with that type of exploding. The quarterback, I mean he just doesn't make a bad throw."

For Southern Miss, De'Michael Harris had 34 yards rushing with 50 yards and a touchdown receiving. Jack Abraham completed 17 for 26 passes for 174 yards.


Alabama's injuries continue to pile up. Linebacker Terrell Lewis missed the game with a hyperextended knee, but Saban said he's expected back to practice by Tuesday. Christopher Allen started in his place. Nose guard DJ Dale was helped to the locker room late in the first half with a patella tendon strain.

"Doc thinks he may be OK," Saban said.

Placekicker Will Reichard left the game after a kickoff in the first quarter with a pulled hip flexor and Joseph Bulovas handled the duties after that. Saban labeled him as questionable against Mississippi next weekend.


Southern Miss: Couldn't cash in with points on three early trips into Alabama territory. Was outgained 514-226 in total yards.

Alabama: Just keeps rolling along, but its toughest games await. Tagovailoa now has 17 touchdown passes without throwing an interception this season. The biggest test for the Tide could be overcoming all the injuries.


Tagovailoa's fourth TD pass made him the second Alabama quarterback to reach 70. AJ McCarron has the school career mark with 77. Tagovailoa also passed Jalen Hurts and others to move into the top 5 on Alabama's career passing yards list.


Southern Miss returns home to face UTEP.

Alabama hosts SEC West opponent Mississippi.

 No. 9 Florida routs Tennessee 34-3, extends series dominance

gators06GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) Kyle Trask threw for 293 yards and two touchdowns in his first start in nearly seven years and No. 9 Florida beat slumping Tennessee 34-3 Saturday, extending the Gators' dominance in a series that used to be the most prominent in the Southeastern Conference's Eastern Division.

Trask's first collegiate start was far from perfect, though. The fourth-year junior lost a fumble and threw two interceptions against the Volunteers (1-3, 0-1 SEC)

But he did enough to overcome those miscues and lead Florida (4-0, 2-0) to its 14th win in its last 15 games against Tennessee. Trask completed 20 of 28 passes, none better than the ones that went for touchdowns to Kyle Pitts and Freddie Swain.

Trask connected with Pitts for a 19-yard score on the opening drive of the game and then hooked up with Swain for a 29-yarder to cap Florida's first possession of the second half.

Not bad for a backup.

Trask played behind current Houston starter D'Eriq King at Manvel (Texas) High for three seasons and spent the last three years behind Feleipe Franks, who gruesomely dislocated and fractured his right ankle in a 29-21 victory at Kentucky last weekend. Trask last started a game in 2012 for Manvel's freshman A team.

Tennessee's performance was mostly a debacle, especially early.

Right tackle K'Rojhn Calbert was flagged for a late hit after the Vols picked up their first first down. Cornerback Warren Burrell recovered a fumble with a foot out of bounds, negating the turnover.

Jauan Jennings, the team's top receiver, bobbled a would-be touchdown in the end zone that resulted in an interception. Tennessee had to burn a timeout after coming out of a television break. And then quarterback Jarrett Guarantano threw an interception right to cornerback Marco Wilson after a miscommunication with a receiver.

Guarantano completed 8 of 15 passes for 93 yards with two interceptions and a sack in the first half. He was benched in favor of freshman Brian Maurer to start the second half.

Maurer, who grew up in nearby Ocala, had made his collegiate debut last week against Chattanooga.

Jennings added to Tennessee's woes in the second half. He received a 15-yard penalty for running into punt returner Freddie Swain, who had called for a fair catch.


Tennessee: The Vols might have a quarterback quandary moving forward. Maurer played three series before Guarantano returned. Maurer completed 4 of 11 passes for 44 yards with an interception. Guarantano finished 10 of 17 for 104 yards with two interceptions.

Tennessee finished with 239 yards, including 151 passing.

Florida: The Gators turned in their most complete game of the season. They needed a couple of defensive stands to beat Miami in the opener and leaned on Track to orchestrate a late rally and overcome an 11-point deficit at Kentucky.


The Gators should remain in the top 10 after a dominating performance.


Tennessee has a bye week before beginning a daunting stretch against No. 3 Georgia, Mississippi State and at second-ranked Alabama.

Florida hosts Towson in the second of two games against teams from the Football Championship Subdivision.

 No. 23 California holds on to defeat Mississippi 28-20

cal01OXFORD, Miss. (AP) Chase Garbers threw for four touchdowns, but No. 23 California needed a game-saving tackle at the 1-yard line from linebacker Evan Weaver on the game's final play to defeat Mississippi 28-20 on Saturday.

Cal (4-0) was in control until the final six minutes, when reserve quarterback John Rhys Plumlee led Ole Miss (2-2) on a late rally to wipe out a 28-13 deficit. Plumlee was stopped by Weaver for no gain on fourth down at the 1-yard line as time expired.

Garbers completed 23 of 35 passes for 357 yards, including TDs of 9 and 60 yards to Jordan Duncan and Jake Tonges on the opening two possessions of the third quarter, setting up the late defensive heroics.

"Weaver has 22 tackles. When was the last time we didn't talk about what a great player he is? He produces every week," California coach Justin Wilcox said. "Chase was awesome. It's not even close. That's the best game he has played."

The Rebels got strong performances from quarterbacks Matt Corral and Plumlee, who led the final two possessions. Corral had a 1-yard scoring run and was 22-of-41 passing for 266 yards before leaving with a rib injury. The Rebels had 525 yards of total offense but failed on two scoring opportunities with missed field goals.

Plumlee went 7 of 7 for 82 yards in the final six minutes. Jerrion Ealy scored on a 15-yard run with 4:29 left to cap Plumlee's first series. The Rebels went 89 yards in 10 plays in the final 2:45, finished by the game-saving stop from the Golden Bears' defense.

"We had a great opportunity today, but we just didn't make enough plays to win the game," Mississippi coach Matt Luke said. "Matt did well, but we've got to look at the rib injury. John Rhys made the most of his opportunity."

Cal finished with 433 yards of total offense, including first-half touchdown passes by Garbers of 6 and 13 yards to Trevon Clark and Christopher Brown Jr. The Golden Bears were efficient offensively, going 6 for 12 in third-down situations and 3 for 3 in the red zone, capped by touchdowns.


California: The Bears overcome a cross-country road trip, an early kickoff time - especially for a Pac-12 team - and a serious late charge to earn the decision. This win should raise expectations about Wilcox's team after flying under the radar nationally early this season.

"When you come down here and play in this environment, against those coaches and athletes and win like we had to win, it builds confidence," Wilcox said. "This is important to us and definitely is a step in the right direction."

Ole Miss: Any margin for error in a bid for postseason play was erased in a second nonconference loss; the first was at Memphis. The Rebels, while showing flashes of improvement, are still a work in progress as the most difficult section of the schedule remains.


Winning on the road against an SEC opponent, along with the first 4-0 start since 2015, should be good enough for the Bears to move up a few spots.


California: The Bears return to Pac-12 play by hosting No. 24 Arizona State on Saturday night.

Ole Miss: The Rebels begin a stretch of five consecutive SEC opponents with a visit to No. 2 Alabama on Saturday.

 School-record 6 TDs for Burrow, No. 4 LSU routs Vandy 66-38

lsu05NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) Joe Burrow tossed four of his school-record six touchdown passes to Ja'Marr Chase and threw for 398 yards Saturday, leading No. 4 LSU to a 66-38 romp over Vanderbilt in the Tigers' Southeastern Conference opener.

LSU (4-0) beat Vanderbilt (0-3, 0-2) for the eighth straight time and improved to 12-5 all-time in Nashville in the first game between these SEC charter members since 2010.

The Tigers showed off their new high-powered offense, scoring their most points this season and most ever in regulation against an SEC opponent. They needed 2:11 or less on their first seven scoring drives, and LSU scored 4 seconds after Micah Baskerville returned an onside kick 46 yards to open the third quarter on Burrow's fifth TD pass.

Baskerville later blocked a punt he recovered for a TD.

Burrow had a game for the record books.

He became both the first LSU quarterback to throw for 350 yards or more in three straight games, and his 357 yards passing by halftime also was the most in school history. Burrow opened the game hitting 13 of his first 14 for 244 yards before his second incompletion at 9:19 in the second quarter. He finished 25 of 34 before leaving the game early in the fourth quarter.

And Burrow kept throwing to Chase. The sophomore caught TDs of 64, 25 and 51 yards in the first quarter and adding a 16-yarder in the third. He finished with 10 receptions for 229 yards, most by an LSU receiver since Odell Beckham Jr . had 204 against Furman in 2013.

Vanderbilt had never played two of the nation's top five teams within the first three weeks before in program history. At least the Commodores scored on their first drive, which they didn't manage in an opening loss to No. 3 Georgia or a loss at Purdue. They scored their most points yet this season but turned it over twice.

LSU led 28-7 after the first quarter, 38-17 at halftime and 59-31 after the third. Clyde Edwards-Helaire ran for 106 yards and a TD, and John Emery added a TD late.


LSU: The Tigers came in second in the SEC defending the run, giving up just 80.3 yards a game. They gave up a 41-yarder to Ke'Shawn Vaughn on Vandy's first offensive play, and he broke loose for a 52-yard TD run in the third quarter - the longest run this season for the SEC's top returning rusher. Vaughn finished with 20 carries for 130 yards.

Vanderbilt: The Commodores came in as the only FBS team without a sack this season, and the closest they came to hitting Burrow early was on a roughing the passer penalty in the first quarter. Then Jaylen Mahoney sacked the LSU quarterback early in the second quarter a play after Burrow had plenty of time to roll to his right before finding Stephen Sullivan on a 30-yard completion. Kenny Hebert also got a sack, and Elijah McAlister recovered an Edwards-Helaire fumble for a touchdown in the final minute of the first half.


LSU: Open date before hosting Utah State on Oct. 5.

Vanderbilt: Hosts Northern Illinois on Sept. 28.

 Taylor helps No. 13 Wisconsin trounce No. 11 Michigan 35-14

wisconsin03MADISON, Wis. (AP) Jonathan Taylor ran for 203 yards and two touchdowns, Jack Coan added a career-high two rushing touchdowns and No. 13 Wisconsin made it look easy in a 35-14 victory over No. 11 Michigan on Saturday.

Taylor had 143 yards and both scores in the first quarter, including a 72-yarder. He missed the second quarter due to cramps, but the 2018 Doak Walker Award winner returned in the third to finish with 23 carries to help the Badgers (3-0, 1-0 Big Ten) avenge a 38-13 loss to the Wolverines last season in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

Michigan's struggles to hold on to the ball continued as the Wolverines suffered another embarrassing loss under coach Jim Harbaugh. Michigan is 1-6 on the road against ranked opponents under Harbaugh, who took over the program in 2015.

The game was so lopsided that the 80,248 in attendance chanted "overrated, overrated" to a Michigan team expected to contend for the Big Ten championship. Michigan also had to make a quarterback change.

Harbaugh elected to bench Shea Patterson late in the first half in favor of backup quarterback Dylan McCaffrey. Patterson, who fumbled twice in each of Michigan's first two games, left after completing 4 of 9 passes with 88 yards and an interception.

Patterson returned in the second half after McCaffrey was knocked out of the game on a play that caused Wisconsin safety Reggie Pearson to receive a targeting penalty. Safety Eric Burrell also was ejected following a targeting call.

Patterson finished 14 of 32 for 219 yards with two touchdowns and an interception.

Wisconsin got better production from its quarterback.

Coan, in only his seventh start, had a 1-yard touchdown run and a 25-yarder that made it 28-0 just before the half. Coan also passed for 128 yards.

Wisconsin has outscored South Florida, Central Michigan and now Michigan by a combined score of 145-14.

Zack Baun and Jack Sanborn each had a sack to lead another dominant effort by Wisconsin's defense. Baun now has a sack in each of Wisconsin's three games.

Wisconsin inside linebacker Chris Orr and Burrell each recovered a fumble. Burrell and safety John Torchio each had an interception.


Michigan: The Wolverines struggled to get anything going offensively, as the unit continues to sputter under first-year offensive coordinator Josh Gattis. The Wolverines have lost each of their last six road games with Wisconsin.

Wisconsin: After going 8-5 a year ago, the Badgers proved they're again a force in the Big Ten.


Wisconsin will likely move into the top 10. The Badgers were a 3 1/2-point favorite against the Wolverines and proceeded to dominate the Big Ten preseason favorite.


Donovan Peoples-Jones returned for Michigan after missing the previous two games with an undisclosed injury. The junior receiver had a 5-yard touchdown reception late in the fourth quarter.


Michigan linebacker Josh Ross had a boot on his right foot following the loss.


Michigan: Hosts Rutgers on Sept. 28.

Wisconsin: Takes on Northwestern on Sept. 28 at home.

 No. 22 Washington dominates BYU for 45-19 victory 

huskies03PROVO, Utah (AP) Winning games with elite defense is second nature to Washington. The Huskies are quickly silencing doubters who expected them to take a step back this season.

Relentless defensive pressure and efficient offense blended together perfectly for No. 22 Washington in a 45-19 victory over BYU on Saturday. The Huskies forced three BYU turnovers and scored a pair of touchdowns off those defensive plays.

In four games, Washington has allowed just 18.3 points per contest and held each opponent under 400 yards of total offense. The Huskies' defense resembles past units that led the Pac-12 in scoring defense and total defense each of the previous four seasons.

"We got people that are going to show up and work and we're going to execute when we're out there," linebacker Brandon Wellington said. "Sometimes, it's not going to be pretty but we're going to figure out a way to get it done."

Jacob Eason found a way to get it done on offense. Eason threw for 290 yards and three touchdowns while completing 24 of 28 pass attempts. The Huskies (3-1) totaled 477 yards on offense behind his efficient performance.

Aaron Fuller, Eason's top target, tallied 91 yards on eight catches. Fuller had one touchdown catch and returned a punt 88 yards for another score.

Eason put together his second straight 200-yard passing game. Washington has won all three games this season in which he has passed for at least 200 yards.

"There's always something that's better from week to week," Huskies coach Chris Petersen said. "We emphasize it and he's on it."

Zach Wilson threw for 277 yards and a touchdown on 26 of 42 passing to lead BYU. It wasn't nearly enough to help the Cougars (2-2) prevent the Huskies from dominating in all three phases of the game.

Three BYU drives ended with turnovers. Two others ended in failed fourth down conversions.

"They put us in a really tough spot," Cougars coach Kalani Sitake said. "They got ahead of us, and whenever we tried to gain momentum, they were able to stop it."

Washington took control behind a productive first quarter from Eason. He threw for 99 yards and a pair of touchdowns, while completing 90% of his pass attempts during the quarter. Eason capped each of his team's two drives with a 17-yard TD pass - one to Richard Newton, the other to Fuller - to put the Huskies up 14-3.

Following Lopini Katoa's 48-yard return to midfield, BYU marched down to the Washington 20 on its second drive. It ended when Wilson coughed up a costly fumble on a sack. Wellington scooped up the loose ball and returned it 69 yards to extend the Huskies' lead to 21-3 late in the first quarter.

"They're returning Pac-12 champs, they're gonna be a really good team this season," tight end Matt Bushman said. "But our mistakes just made them look like world beaters."

The Cougars' offense found some life in the second quarter. Emmanuel Esukpa punched in a 1-yard run and Jake Oldroyd made a career-long 54 yard field goal just before halftime to cut Washington's lead to 24-12. Oldroyd's field goal was the first from 50 or more yards for BYU since 2006.

Everything unraveled for BYU after halftime.

Andre Baccellia slipped free of a tackle and caught a 35-yard TD pass from Eason, and Fuller returned a BYU punt 88 yards to give Washington a 38-12 lead with 10:37 remaining in the third quarter. Trent McDuffie forced and then recovered a fumble from Dax Milne at the Huskies 48 to set up Baccellia's touchdown.

Washington outscored the Cougars 21-7 in the third quarter after struggling in that quarter during each of the team's previous two games.

"You always want to come out after halftime with some juice and I think we did that today," Eason said.


Washington running back Salvon Ahmed did not make the trip to Provo after re-aggravating a lower leg injury last week. Ahmed is day-to-day, although Petersen said he is making good progress in his recovery and could potentially be ready to go against USC.

Sean McGrew filled in and ran for 110 yards on 18 carries in his first start. The Huskies also got 80 yards and a TD on 16 carries from Newton.

"That's how you want it," Petersen said. "You cannot just have one good player at that position. That's been our mantra around here for a long time. It's just too physical of a game."


BYU running back Ty'Son Williams did not play in the second half after suffering an apparent knee injury late in the second quarter. The injury occurred after he caught a 16-yard pass for a first down at the Washington 31.

Williams finished with 28 yards on six carries and 17 yards on two receptions. With the senior on the sidelines for the final two quarters, BYU mustered just 79 total rushing yards and averaged 2.9 yards per carry.

"He's a workhorse, he just runs so hard. He wants us to succeed. That one hurt," Bushman said.

BYU had no immediate update on the severity of Williams' injury or how much time he's expected to miss.


Leading 24-9 late in the second quarter, Petersen made the decision to fake a field goal attempt from the BYU 5-yard line. The play unraveled. Payton Wilgar stuffed holder Race Porter after a 1-yard run and the Cougars marched down to score on Oldroyd's 54-yard field goal just before halftime.


Washington: The Huskies have not lost a step on defense despite losing nine full-time starters on that side of the ball from last season. Washington pressured Wilson early and often. It led to three turnovers, a pair of sacks and four tackles for loss.

BYU: All the good vibes from back-to-back overtime victories over Tennessee and USC vanished into the mountain air. The Cougars got dominated on both sides of the ball for the better part of four quarters.


Washington will likely move inside the top 20 after blowing out BYU on the road.


Washington: The Huskies will host Pac-12 South leader USC.

BYU: The Cougars will make their second road trip of the season, this time to Toledo.

  Fields shines as No. 6 Ohio State trounces Miami (Ohio) 76-5

ohio state04COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) Ohio State coach Ryan Day says he's still trying to determine just how good the Buckeyes are after a fourth straight blowout win.

He might start to find out more next week.

The sixth-ranked Buckeyes (4-0, 1-0 Big Ten) trounced Miami (Ohio) 76-5 on Saturday and now prepare for a rugged stretch of Big Ten games beginning with a visit to Nebraska and then a home game against Michigan State.

"Maybe midway through the season, we'll have a better idea," Day said. "I do think that we're playing with a lot of passion, we're playing hard, we're playing tough. That's clear to see, but again, we go on the road and that's a big test next week. I think I'll have a better idea next week."

One thing for sure is that quarterback Justin Fields is turning out to be something special.

The sophomore Georgia transfer threw four touchdown passes and rushed for two more scores in the second quarter alone before taking a seat and letting his two backups mop up in the second half. Fields has accounted for 19 touchdowns in the first four games.

The Buckeyes - victimized by an early Fields end-zone fumble and safety - only led 7-5 after the first quarter. But that changed quickly as Fields hit K.J. Hill with a 53-yard touchdown pass - the longest of his career - and then ran for a 7-yard score just 32 seconds later. It was all Ohio State the rest of the way.

Fields finished 14 for 21 for 223 yards, also throwing two touchdown passes to Chris Olave and another to Binjimen Victor .

"We defended him as well as we could," Miami coach Chuck Martin said. "We just couldn't get the big son of a gun on the ground."

Miami freshman quarterback Brett Gabbert was 5 for 15 for 48 yards and an interception before getting injured and leaving the game in favor of Jackson Williams in the second quarter. The RedHawks (1-3) were held to 130 total yards.

The game was suspended because of lightning with 2:40 left and then was declared over by consent of the two head coaches.


Fields committed his first turnover of the season when Miami linebacker Myles Reid batted the ball out his hand and it trickled out of the back of the end zone for a safety that gave the RedHawks an early lead. Miami kicked a field goal and led 5-0 before Ohio State scored the next 76 points.

Fields says falling behind didn't startle him.

"Coach always tells us we're eventually going to get punched in the face," he said. "It's just about how we respond."


Miami: The RedHawks, despite hanging tough in the opening quarter, are probably glad to have this one behind them. They didn't have the talent to keep it close.

"We got a good bounce early and that helped us early, and then they settled in," Martin said.

Ohio State: The Buckeyes are speeding along and flattening overmatched opponents. Fields continues to show his immense potential. The larger challenges are still ahead in the dog days of a tough Big Ten stretch.

"We've got a lot of momentum right now," linebacker Baron Browning said. "We just need to keep our momentum going and keep getting better, not focus on who we're playing, just keep getting better. That was our focus and the mission for the day."


Another blowout of an overmatched team likely isn't going to impress voters, even with gaudy numbers from Fields.


All-America defensive end Chase Young delivered two sacks, both of which led to Miami fumbles that the Buckeyes recovered. Young has recorded seven sacks this season.

"It was just a good, good defensive effort," Young said. "Hopefully we can try to do that against Nebraska."


"It's pretty awesome, it's not fun to go against, but pretty awesome to see how many explosive athletes they got," Martin said.


Miami: Hosts Buffalo next Saturday.

Ohio State: At Nebraska next Saturday night.

 Trick play helps Pitt upset No. 15 UCF 35-34

 pitt01PITTSBURGH (AP) Wide receiver Aaron Matthews hit quarterback Kenny Pickett on a 3-yard, fourth-down touchdown pass with 56 seconds remaining and Pittsburgh stunned No. 15 UCF 35-34 on Saturday.

The Panthers (2-2) ended UCF's 25-game regular-season winning streak on a play head coach Pat Narduzzi called the "Pitt Special" in a nod to the Philadelphia Eagles, who ran a similar play two seasons ago in their Super Bowl victory over the New England Patriots.

Pitt trailed by six when Pickett drove the Panthers to the UCF 3. Running back A.J. Davis took a direct snap with Pickett going in motion. Davis handed the ball to Matthews, who rolled to his right and hit Pickett in the end zone. UCF's last-gasp drive went nowhere.

Pickett completed 25 of 47 for 224 yards with a touchdown despite leaving briefly with a right arm injury. Maurice Ffrench and Dontavius Butler-Jenkins caught touchdown passes for the Panthers, who bounced back from an emotional loss to rival Penn State last week by withstanding a 31-point outburst from the Knights (3-1) in the middle of the game.

UCF quarterback Gabriel Dillon passed for 338 yards and two touchdowns but also threw his first two interceptions of the season. Gabriel Davis hauled in 10 passe for 151 yards and two scores, but the Knight's high-tempo offense didn't run as efficiently as it had during three blowouts to start the year.

UCF finished with 423 yards, 180 under its season average.

The Panthers reeled off the game's first 21 points, including an 18-yard blocked punt return for a touchdown midway through the second quarter. Trailing by three touchdowns for the first time since a blowout loss to Michigan in 2016, UCF responded emphatically, with a little help from the Panthers.

Pitt running back A.J. Davis fumbled deep in Panther territory with 5:41 left in the first half. Adrian Killins scored four plays later and UCF was off and running.

Gabriel found Gabe Davis for two third-quarter touchdowns. Those touchdowns were sandwiched around an 87-yard punt return for a score by Otis Anderson, who broke several tackles while racing down the left sideline to the end zone.

Gabriel's 28-yard rainbow to Davis gave UCF 31 points in less than a quarter. Pitt backup quarterback Nick Patti's first career touchdown pass, a 6-yard toss to Butler-Jenkins, drew the Panthers within three late in the third quarter. The Panthers had a chance to tie it early in the fourth, but Alex Kessman's 40-yard attempt sailed wide.

Gabriel led a long scoring drive - including a conversion on fourth-and-1 at the UCF 47 - that ended with a Dylan Barnas 28-yard field goal with 4:36 to go.

Pitt, which opted to attempt a field goal while down seven in the fourth quarter against Penn State last week, moved steadily down the field. And this time, the Panthers dialed up a play that gave them a victory that should provide their season with a massive jolt.


Expect UCF to take a drop after losing in the regular season for the first time since 2016.


UCF: Gabriel should have a stranglehold on the starting job even with Darriel Mack Jr. on the way back from an ankle injury suffered in July. Notre Dame transfer Brandon Wimbush figures to be out of the picture completely. He played just one snap, getting tackled for a loss in the first quarter.

Pitt: The Panthers face an uphill climb in the ACC's Coastal Division after opening the season with a loss to No. 21 Virginia, but Pitt could be a handful once conference play starts in earnest next month. The secondary plays with swagger and Pickett is becoming more comfortable by the week in new offensive coordinator Mark Whipple's system.


UCF: Hosts UConn in its American Athletic Association opener next Saturday night.

 Pony Up: SMU beats No. 25 TCU 41-38, 1st 4-0 start since '84

smu01FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) Shane Buechele threw for 288 yards with two touchdowns and ran for another score as SMU held on to beat No. 25 TCU 41-38 on Saturday, ending a seven-game losing streak in the rivalry and improving to 4-0 for the first time since 1984.

The Mustangs went ahead to stay after jumping ahead 15-0 in less than 10 minutes. Their last 4-0 start came when TCU and SMU were Southwest Conference rivals, and not long before crippling sanctions led to the NCAA's so-called death penalty when the Mustangs didn't even field a team in 1987 and 1988.

"When you play against a really good team and you find a way to win, and you do it on the road, it's gratifying," SMU coach Sonny Dykes said, trying to stay focused on this year's team but knowing what a big deal the win over TCU and 4-0 start is for SMU fans.

TCU true freshman quarterback Max Duggan's third touchdown pass of the second half came with 3:37 left. The Frogs got the ball back a minute later after a three-and-out by SMU, including a snap that Buechele wasn't ready for that resulted in a 23-yard loss.

But after coach Gary Patterson opted against TCU (2-1) trying a 51-yard field goal attempt, Duggan's fourth-down pass never had a chance and SMU ran out the clock.

"We talked about it all week really, it was going to be a 60-minute football game," Dykes said. "Had an idea that it would kind of come down to the very end. I think our guys did a good job of preparing for that."

Xavier Jones ran for 79 yards with a touchdown, and caught a 3-yard TD early in the fourth quarter for a 38-24 lead. That ended an 84-yard drive that started when TCU running back Sewo Olonilua lined up in wildcat formation on fourth-and-1 and was sacked for a 6-yard loss when he looked to pass.

Olonilua fumbled at TCU's 4 in the first quarter, giving SMU the ball back right after Buechele was stuffed for no gain on fourth-and-goal from the 1. That set up a 1-yard TD run by Jones.

"It's a simple thing. We got outplayed. We got outcoached," Patterson said.

Buechele, the former Texas quarterback who is one of seven graduate transfers for SMU, was 23-of-34 passing. He had gone 0-2 against TCU while with the Longhorns.

On the same play Buechele had a pass intercepted in the end zone in the second quarter, the helmet of an SMU offensive lineman was apparently ripped off his head by a defender and heaved about 20 yards down the field. Second-year Mustangs coach Sonny Dykes, an offensive analyst for Patterson, was livid that no penalty was called.

Darius Anderson broke free for a 77-yard run on the next play, setting up his 3-yard TD to get TCU within 18-14. Anderson finished with 19 carries for 161 yards and two scores.

"It's a tough loss," Anderson said.


SMU: The Mustangs had lost the last seven in the series by an average margin of four touchdowns. Buechele has two big receivers in James Proche (10 catches, 66 yards, one touchdown) and Reggie Roberson Jr. (four catches, 122 yards), a former transfer from West Virginia.

TCU: Duggan finished 16-of-36 passing for 188 yards, with two TDs to Pro Wells, after going 1 of 10 for 22 yards before halftime in his first start. "We didn't win. That's how all quarterbacks get judged," Patterson said. Graduate transfer Alex Delton started the first two games. The Frogs were coming of a three-touchdown road win against Big Ten team Purdue, and had allowed only 209.5 total yards per game.


TCU will fall out of the Top 25, a week after getting ranked and making it 15 seasons in a row to appear in the poll. SMU didn't get any votes in the AP poll last week, and hasn't been ranked since 1986.


SMU plays its American Athletic Conference opener at USF next Saturday.

TCU stays at home next Saturday to open Big 12 Conference play against Kansas.

Nix helps No. 8 Auburn over No. 17 Texas A&M 28-20

 auburn05COLLEGE STATION, Texas (AP) Auburn coach Gus Malzahn was pleased with the performance of Bo Nix in a victory at Texas A&M on Saturday.

What made Malzahn even happier is that the freshman quarterback will likely be with him for a long time to come.

Nix threw a touchdown pass and JaTarvious Whitlow ran for a score as No. 8 Auburn built a big lead and withstood a late charge from Texas A&M to get a 28-20 win over the 17th-ranked Aggies.

"It's going to be a lot of fun to have him around in the future," Malzahn said. "I'll tell you that."

Nix didn't put up flashy numbers against the Aggies, but he looked poised and didn't make any big mistakes in his first true road game in front of a rowdy crowd of 101,681.

"He's got something special to him," Malzahn said. "He's not your normal freshman. We knew that when we recruited him. One thing that I like is the moment ain't too big for him."

Nix said knowing how strong Auburn's defense was and the preparation and advice he got during the week from the coaching staff helped him on Saturday.

"It was kind of easy to stay poised," he said.

Fellow freshman Joey Gatewood replaced Nix for a few snaps throughout the game and he threw his first career touchdown pass in the first quarter.

The Tigers (4-0, 1-0 SEC) were up 21-3 before A&M (2-2, 0-1) finally got going offensively in the fourth quarter. Mond cut the lead to 21-10 with his first touchdown pass early in the quarter before Auburn added a touchdown rushing. But the Aggies made a field goal before Mond connected with Ainias Smith on a 15-yard TD pass with just over two minutes left to get them to 28-20.

However, Auburn recovered the onside kick and ran out the clock.

Mond had 335 yards passing but Texas A&M's previously solid running game was held to just 56 yards.

"We don't have a bad football team, we've just got to get them to play better and that's my job," Texas A&M coach Jimbo Fisher said.

Auburn took an early lead when Nix handed the ball off to Whitlow who got it to Anthony Schwartz on a reverse that he took 57 yards for a touchdown to make it 7-0.

Seth Small missed a 47-yard field goal on Texas A&M's first possession and one from 52 to end the second quarter.

Gatewood's TD pass came late in the first quarter when he found John Samuel Shenker wide open in the end zone for the 6-yard catch that made it 14-0.

Mond connected with Jhamon Ausbon on a 41-yard pass on the last play of the first quarter. But A&M's offense stalled after that and the Aggies settled for a 33-yard field goal that cut the lead to 14-3.

Freshman Isaiah Spiller had a 13-yard run to start the third quarter, but Daniel Thomas knocked the ball out of his hands at the end of the run and pounced on it to give Auburn the ball.

The Tigers took advantage of the turnover when Nix found Seth Williams on a 9-yard touchdown pass that pushed the lead to 21-3.

Texas A&M's next drive was a mess with Mond being sacked and fumbling on first down. The Aggies recovered it, but Mond was sacked again on the next play. The Aggies were then penalized for delay of game and then for a false start to bring up third-and-30. Jacob Kibodi ran for 22 yards after that before Texas A&M had to punt it away.

Texas A&M's defense forced a punt on Auburn's next drive, but the Aggies managed just one yard on their ensuing possession and had to punt it right back.

The Aggies finally put together a nice drive early in the fourth quarter capped by a 27-yard touchdown reception by Quartney Davis that cut the lead to 21-10.

Auburn then ate up six minutes off the clock with a 12-play drive after that and added a touchdown on an 8-yard run by Whitlow that made it 28-10.

"That was the type of drive that wins the game on the road," Malzahn said. "That was the best drive we had all season."


Auburn: Nix was solid and should only get better with more experience. Auburn's defense kept the Aggies off-balance for most of the day in a solid all-around game for the Tigers, who have a home game next week before they travel to No. 9 Florida on Oct. 5.

Texas A&M: The Aggies came out flat and missed a chance for a big win in a season that only gets more difficult. Texas A&M still has to play No. 2 Alabama, No. 3 Georgia and fourth-ranked LSU. The latter two are on the road in consecutive weeks to end the season.


"Our team's growing up," Malzahn said. "We're still not there ... but they're getting more confidence."


Texas A&M's Braden Mann, who won the Ray Guy Award for the nation's best punter last season, is having another great year. On Saturday he had five punts of 50 yards or more, including two for 60 yards or more. Mann averaged 56 yards a punt on Saturday for his eighth career game with an average above 50 yards.


Auburn should maintain its spot or could move up if any teams ahead of the Tigers fall on Saturday. The Aggies will certainly plummet in the poll and could fall out altogether after the home loss.


Auburn: Hosts Mississippi State next Saturday.

Texas A&M: Meets Arkansas next Saturday at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas.

 Herbert's 3 TD passes lead No. 16 Oregon past Stanford 21-6

oregon02STANFORD, Calif. (AP) Justin Herbert threw two of his three touchdown passes to Jacob Breeland and No. 16 Oregon won its Pac-12 opener for the first time since 2014 by beating Stanford 21-6 on Saturday.

The Ducks (3-1, 1-0) used an efficient day from Herbert and another smothering defensive performance to end a three-game losing streak to the Cardinal (1-3, 0-2). Stanford has lost three games in a row for the first time since 2008.

Herbert finished 19 for 24 for 259 yards. He connected with Jaylon Redd and Breeland on scoring strikes in the first half and put the game away with a 24-yard pass to Breeland that made it 21-3 five plays after K.J. Costello was intercepted by Jevon Holland.

Oregon has gone three straight games without allowing a touchdown but doing it against Stanford was far more impressive than against Nevada and Montana.

Costello completed 16 of 30 passes for 120 yards with an interception.

Stanford started the game well, holding the ball for more than six minutes before settling for a field goal on the opening drive. But two straight three-and-outs and two more drives that failed to get inside the Oregon 40 followed and Oregon's big-play offense led by Herbert took control.

A two-play, 55-yard drive gave the Ducks the lead when Herbert found Redd alone in the middle of the field for a 36-yard catch and run. The Ducks added a 10-play drive in the second quarter that featured two conversions on third and long and a perfectly executed back-shoulder throw to Breeland for a 16-yard TD that made it 14-3.


Oregon: The Ducks ended a four-game losing streak in Pac-12 openers with the last win coming in 2014 when Marcus Mariota led the team to the playoff. Doing it on the road was even more meaningful. Oregon had lost 15 of its past 20 games away from Autzen Stadium and will need to reverse that trend this year if the Ducks want to contend in the Pac-12 North, especially with upcoming trips to No. 22 Washington, No. 24 Arizona State and Southern California.

Stanford: The Cardinal are off to their worst start since coach Jim Harbaugh's first season on The Farm in 2007. Since then Stanford has been one of the most consistent programs on the West Coast. But the ingredients that led to that success - a dominant offensive line and strong defense - have been lacking of late and the offense lacks the playmakers to make up for those deficiencies. The Cardinal have scored two offensive TDs in their past 10 quarters.


Oregon: Host No. 23 California on Oct. 5.

Stanford: Visit Oregon State next Saturday

No. 1 Clemson blasts Charlotte 52-10 for 19th straight win

clemson05CLEMSON, S.C. (AP) Trevor Lawrence threw two first-half touchdown passes and No. 1 Clemson won its 19th straight with an overwhelming, 52-10 victory against Charlotte on Saturday night.

Lawrence and the Tigers (4-0) put the first matchup between the two teams away in a hurry. Lawrence threw a 58-yard touchdown toss to Tee Higgins and K'Von Wallace scored on a 66-yard interception return to give Clemson a 14-0 lead in the first five minutes Lawrence came out of the game after throwing a 3-yard touchdown pass to Cornell Powell on the first play of the second quarter.

Charlotte (2-2), which had been averaging 47 points a game, had no chance to rally against Clemson's defense.

The 49ers were stuffed on a fourth-and-short on their 48 at one point. When they got inside the Clemson 10, the Tigers rallied to hold them to their only first-half points on Jonathan Cruz's 24-yard field goal. Clemson already led 31-0 by that point.

Clemson extended its program record for consecutive wins after breaking the old mark a week ago at Syracuse.

The most exciting moments may been at halftime when a fake Clemson team ran down the hill - copying Clemson's traditional entrance - to the crowd's cheers as part of a movie based on ex-Tigers player Ray Ray McElrathbey, who took in and raised his younger brother Fahmarr while on scholarship.

The second half could have used a little movie magic to spice things up.

This marks the fifth straight season the Tigers have opened 4-0.

Lawrence went 7 of 9 for 94 yards before spending the final three quarters watching his teammates complete the blowout.

Reigning Atlantic Coast Conference player of the year Travis Etienne had his first touchdown in three games. Backup runner Lyn-J Dixon also had a scoring run.

Charlotte, which revived football in 2013, fell to 0-5 against Power Five opponents and 0-3 against ranked teams. That count doesn't include a 73-0 defeat by Clemson's "B " team in 1948. Charlotte shut down its football program after that 1948 season before playing again in 2013.

Tailback Benny LeMay ran for 81 of Charlotte's 153 yards against a Clemson defense that had yielded just 75 yards rushing per game this season. The 49ers' lone touchdown came after a muffed punt by Will Swinney, the son of Tigers coach Dabo Swinney, deep in Clemson territory. Charlotte quarterback Chris Reynolds ended the series with an 8-yard touchdown run in the third quarter.


Charlotte: The 49ers have posted some strong numbers on offense that could keep them competitive in Conference USA play. But first-year coach Will Healy has some work ahead to keep up with teams like Clemson.

Clemson: The Tigers did what they were supposed to against Charlotte. You can bet, though, that the coaching staff will seize on every mistake or missed assignment this week as Clemson prepares to get back to ACC play.


Charlotte returns home to start Conference USA play against Florida Atlantic on Saturday.

Clemson goes to North Carolina on Saturday.

Ehlinger leads No. 12 Texas past Oklahoma State 36-30

texas03AUSTIN, Texas (AP) Sam Ehlinger passed for four touchdowns and No. 12 Texas ended four years of frustration against Oklahoma State with a 36-30 win Saturday night to open the Longhorns' Big 12 schedule.

Ehlinger had his third four-touchdown passing game of the season for the Longhorns (3-1, 1-0), who had lost four in a row to the Cowboys. Texas also had lost its last five home games in this series dating back to 2010.

The Texas defense held Oklahoma State's two big offensive weapons - running back Chuba Hubbard and wide receiver Tylan Wallace - mostly in check.

Hubbard, the nation's leading rusher coming into the night, ran for 121 yards and two touchdowns but averaged just 3.3 yards per carry. Hubbard twice got stuffed short near the goal line on key drives for the Cowboys early and late.

Wallace, who came into the game tied for the national lead with six touchdown receptions, didn't find the end zone against the Longhorns and had just two catches in the second half.

Hubbard's second touchdown got the Cowboys (3-1, 0-1) within a touchdown with 1:37 to play, but Texas recovered the onside kick and killed the clock when Ehlinger ran 29 yards on third down.

Texas' Keaontay Ingram rushed for 114 yards. His spinning, tackle-breaking 26-yard reception set up a touchdown that gave Texas a 13-point lead early in the fourth quarter.

Ehlinger finished with 281 yards passing and threw for three touchdowns in the second quarter, including a 73-yarder to Brennan Eagles.


Oklahoma State: Cowboys coach Mike Gundy will face questions about some decisions that cost his team valuable points. Hubbard got stuffed on fourth-and-short inside the Texas 5 in the third quarter. After an interception, Gundy opted for a fake field goal early in the fourth that also got stuffed.

If the Cowboys had let reliable kicker Matt Ammendola kick his fourth and fifth field goals of the game, Oklahoma State would have owned the lead in the fourth quarter and been tied after Hubbard's late score.

Texas: Ehlinger did what he always does. He delivered smart passes, threw for multiple touchdowns and produced a game-clinching run. But it was the defense that will get a huge boost after the Longhorns avoided giving up the big-play touchdowns that killed them in a loss to LSU. The Longhorns' speed on the edges chased down Hubbard, and a strong push at the line disrupted the Cowboys near the goal line.


Oklahoma State hosts Kansas State on Saturday.

Texas has a week off before playing at West Virginia on Oct. 5.

No. 3 Georgia holds off No. 7 Notre Dame 23-17

bulldogs04ATHENS, Ga. (AP) Jake Fromm threw a 15-yard touchdown pass to Lawrence Cager early in the fourth quarter and No. 3 Georgia, getting a tougher fight than many expected, held off No. 7 Notre Dame 23-17 on a raucous Saturday night between the hedges, a result that could have ramifications all the way to the College Football Playoff.

The Bulldogs (4-0) trailed 10-7 at halftime but turned the momentum when redshirt freshman Divaad Wilson intercepted a pass by Ian Book deep in Notre Dame territory. The Fromm-to-Cager combination gave Georgia a 23-10 lead, but the Fighting Irish (2-1) had a chance at the end.

Book's 4-yard touchdown pass to Chase Claypool cut the deficit with 3:12 remaining, the Notre Dame defense held, and Book got the ball back at his own 48 after a poor punt with just under 2 minutes to go.

The Irish got as far as the Georgia 38, but no further. It ended with Book zig-zagging on a desperate scramble before hurling up a long pass that fell incomplete, denying Notre Dame the signature win over a top opponent it so desperately needs.

With Georgia up 13-10 after a pair of field goals by Rodrigo Blankenship, Cager hauled in a 36-yard pass along the sideline to push the Bulldogs into the red zone. Then, on third-and-7 from the 15, Notre Dame brought a blitz and Fromm coolly lofted one toward Cager along the left side of the end zone.

A half-foot taller than cornerback Troy Pride Jr., the 6-foot-5 graduate transfer leaped high to make the catch and tapped down his right foot before tumbling out of the bounds to give Georgia a commanding 20-10 lead with 13:19 remaining.

Desperate to cut into the deficit, Notre Dame called a flea-flicker play. But when Book was pressured out of the pocket and let go of a pass on the run, J.R. Reed dove in front of the intended receiver to make a brilliant interception as he slid into the Irish bench.

Reed sprinted all the way across the field, hopped atop the Georgia bench and bounced for the record crowd of more than 93,000 at Sanford Stadium while wearing shiny, Road Warrior-style shoulder pads that go to the latest Bulldog defender to get a turnover. It led to Blankenship's third field goal and a seemingly comfortable lead for the Bulldogs.

A two-touchdown underdog, Notre Dame took advantage of a huge turnover by Georgia punt returner Tyler Simmons to grab the lead. Attempting to make a fair catch, he fumbled the ball away and Claypool recovered for the Irish at the Georgia 8 to set up Book's 1-yard touchdown pass to Cole Kmet.

Georgia's D'Andre Swift scored on a 3-yard run, but Jonathan Doerer booted a 27-yard field goal on the final play of the first half.


Notre Dame: Dropping to 8-29 against Top 10 teams since Lou Holtz left after the 1996 season, this still seemed like a step in the right direction for the Fighting Irish. Instead of getting blown out against a leading opponent, as they were by Alabama in the 2013 BCS championship game and Clemson in last year's playoff semifinals, Notre Dame was in this game all the way. But Book's two interceptions were a killer, and the Irish also seemed to struggle with the noise judging by five false-start penalties.

Georgia: After three straight blowout victories, the Bulldogs finally got the test they so desperately needed. Maybe it wasn't as dominating as some were expecting, but this was the sort of win that should look good on the resume if they're in the mix for a playoff spot.


Notre Dame: Returns home next Saturday to host No. 21 Virginia.

Georgia: The Bulldogs are off next weekend before traveling to Tennessee for a Southeastern Conference game on Oct. 5.










Y llegaron los noventas

Como un preludio alusivo del fin de milenio, llegaba la ultima década del siglo XX con unos años noventas que verían el cambio total que sufrió nuestro país y nuestro fútbol americano.