Washington dominates No. 19 Boise State; more late Week 1 Snap Judgments
• Washington 38, No. 19 Boise State 6: This was not the Boise State offense fans expected to see. It wasn’t the Washington defense fans expected to see, either. The Huskies held the Broncos in check, bending but refusing to break, and Boise State quarterback Joe Southwick struggled. He threw for just 152 yards, including a very costly interception.
Still, the story here wasn’t that Washington won — it was the way it won. Quarterback Keith Price (23-of-31, 324 yards, two touchdowns, one interception) and running back Bishop Sankey (25 carries, 161 yards, two scores) both had very strong games, and the Huskies simply overwhelmed Boise in the second half. Coming off three straight 7-6 campaigns, Washington has been really close to getting over the hump. Perhaps with a defensive infusion, this will be the year coach Steve Sarkisian finally breaks through.
On the other end, the Broncos were a popular pick to bust the BCS in SI.com’s preseason Crystal Ball (I picked them to land in the Fiesta Bowl), and they’re not out of the race by any means. If they right the ship, they could still make a run. Remember, Orange Bowl-bound Northern Illinois lost to Iowa in the first week of the season a year ago. But Boise has some serious issues to work through on both sides of the ball, and Chris Petersen will need to do what he has done so well throughout his heralded tenure — coach his team to play above its talent level. [RECAP l BOX]
• No. 8 Clemson 38, No. 5 Georgia 35: This game lived up to the hype and more, as it featured big plays, fake punts, botched field goals and lots and lots of Todd Gurley. Still, Tajh Boyd, Sammy Watkins and the Clemson offense proved too much for the Bulldogs in Death Valley. SI.com’s Andy Staples was at the game and has a full story from the scene. [RECAP l BOX]
• No. 12 LSU 37, No. 20 TCU 27: This game wasn’t the defensive showdown it likely would have been in years past, but more offense isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Despite a suspension to running back Jeremy Hill, the Tigers still managed to rush for 197 yards, and quarterback Zach Mettenberger (16-of-32, 251 passing yards, one touchdown) did just enough to outlast TCU. SI.com’s Stewart Mandel was in Arlington and has more from the game at Jerry World. [RECAP l BOX]
• Eastern Washington 49, Oregon State 46: Eastern Washington quarterback Vernon Adams had one of the best games any player will have all year, and the Eagles took down the Beavers in Corvallis. So, pretty much don’t mess with the blood field. (My full recap is here.) [RECAP l BOX]
• No. 22 Northwestern 44, Cal 30: This game should not have been played this late (EAST COAST BIAS), but it was way too much fun. It should have been played around 3:30 p.m. ET, to save us from the not-as-fun midday slate of games. Sonny Dykes is a coach fans need to pay attention to, and the Bears going to get better sooner rather than later. Pat Fitzgerald is also a coach doing big things, and the Wildcats’ white uniforms and white helmets were nice. Among the notable performances: Northwestern’s Trevor Siemian threw for 273 yards and a touchdown, while Cal true freshman quarterback Jared Goff went 38-of-62 for 453 yards, two scores and three interceptions. [RECAP l BOX]
• McNeese State 53, USF 21: Ummmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.
perhaps Willie Taggart really thought he was a bus driver now and not a football coach anymore?
— Chris Driver (@Jerkwheatery) September 1, 2013
• Northern Iowa 28, Iowa State 20: It hasn’t been the best weekend for the Big 12 after the conference went 2-2 against the FCS, with West Virginia narrowly escaping William & Mary. Northern Iowa got 240 total yards and four touchdowns from running back David Johnson, and the Cyclones couldn’t capitalize on their chances, as they settled for field goals on two critical drives in the third quarter (one of which came after a fumble at the Panthers’ 20-yard line). [RECAP l BOX]
• Auburn 31, Washington State 21: This game was as much fun as fans hoped, but both the Tigers and Cougars have plenty of work to do before they’ll compete in their respective conferences. Gus Malzahn’s offense was explosive in flashes, which was enough to pull out the win over a battling-but-still-not-quite-there Washington State team under Mike Leach.
Cougars quarterback Connor Halliday went 34-of-65 for 329 yards and three picks. Washington State might be the equivalent of Meg Ryan riding her bike with her eyes closed and her hands off the bars in City of Angels. There will be the expected tragedy, but at least fans will feel like they’re flying for a few fleeting moments. [RECAP l BOX]
• No. 16 Oklahoma 34, Louisiana-Monroe 0: The takeaway here? Bob Stoops is smarter than we are, and starting quarterback Trevor Knight was a good idea (at least in Week 1). The redshirt freshman looked comfortable running an Oklahoma offense with some new wrinkles, finishing with 103 rushing yards, 86 passing yards and three scores. He showed potential with his arm, even if a few of his throws sailed on him, and he’ll get more accurate in time. His learning curve will have to be accelerated: The Sooners’ next five opponents are West Virginia, Tulsa, Notre Dame, TCU and Texas. [RECAP l BOX]
• No. 18 Nebraska 37, Wyoming 34: Nebraska gave up 220 rushing yards and 382 passing yards, but somehow, the Huskers found a way to hold on. Seventeenth-year (give or take) senior quarterback Taylor Martinez averaged just seven yards per attempt, but he made them count, throwing for three touchdowns. Wyoming counterpart Brett Smith has a lot of hype, and for good reason: He combined for 474 total yards and four touchdowns. Survive and advance, Nebraska. Survive and advance. [RECAP l BOX]
• Tennessee 45, Austin Peay 0: Well, Tennessee thanked God for its new coach in its pregame prayer, and whether that had any impact on the Vols’ drumming of Austin Peay in Butch Jones’ first game at the helm is still up for debate. Quarterback Justin Worley had about as efficient a game as a quarterback can have, and the backfield duo of Rajion Neal and Martin Lane combined to add three touchdowns. There aren’t many easy wins on the Tennessee schedule, so Vols fans will take them when they can get them. [RECAP l BOX]
• Western Kentucky 35, Kentucky 26: Mark Stoops has a long way to go before rejuvenating Kentucky’s program. On the flip side, Western Kentucky keeps winning regardless of who coaches the Hilltoppers. Bobby Petrino will make this team fun to watch, whether he bails after the 2013 season or not. [RECAP l BOX]
• Baylor 69, Wofford 3: This tweet about sums up Baylor’s offense:
— Adam Kramer (@KegsnEggs) September 1, 2013