Ole Miss holds off late surge to topple No. 6 LSU; more late Week 8 Snap Judgments
• Ole Miss 27, No. 6 LSU 24: The momentum created by Ole Miss’ 3-0 start this season had all but dissipated when LSU came to Oxford this weekend. The Rebels had dropped three straight games to ranked SEC opponents (Alabama, Auburn and Texas A&M) to fall to 3-3, and hopes for a surprising year in the SEC West were fading fast.
Coach Hugh Freeze’s team turned things around on Saturday night. Ole Miss kicker Andrew Ritter, who already had one field goal attempt blocked, drilled a 41-yard kick with two seconds remaining that stifled an LSU comeback and helped the Rebels upset the No. 6 Tigers 27-24. It was yet another shocking result in an incredibly wild day in the SEC.
Ole Miss came out firing and took a 17-0 lead early in the third quarter. The Rebels’ defense intercepted Tigers quarterback Zach Mettenberger three times in the first half, limiting an LSU offense that had scored at least 35 points in six of its seven games heading into Saturday.
But coach Les Miles’ team wouldn’t go down quietly. The Tigers went on a 24-7 run to tie the game with just more than three minutes remaining. The tying score came after an 11-play drive in which Mettenberger, who struggled all night, converted a fourth-and-10 to keep the drive alive. Three plays later, Mettenberger found Jarvis Landry in the end zone for a four-yard touchdown.
The Rebels, however, weren’t done. With 3:15 left to play, Ole Miss quarterback Bo Wallace — who delivered one of the best performances of his career by going 30-of-39 for 346 yards — led his team into field goal range with a 14-yard completion to Ja-Mes Logan, a 10-yard keeper and a seven-yard pass to Jaylen Walton. That set the stage for Ritter, who coolly knocked home the game-winning kick.
This was LSU’s second loss of the season, as the Tigers also dropped a road game at Georgia on Sept. 28. Coordinator John Chavis’ defense allowed the Rebels to convert 11-of-18 third downs. Now the Tigers sit two games behind No. 1 Alabama in SEC West, with Auburn holding the No. 2 spot following its win over Texas A&M on Saturday.
• No. 1 Alabama 52, Arkansas 0: Crimson Tide fans might have experienced feelings of déjà vu on Saturday, and for good reason: ‘Bama steamrolled the Razorbacks by the same margin (52-0) in 2012 as it did on Saturday. Quarterback AJ McCarron went 15-of-21 for 180 yards and three touchdowns and the Tide’s ground game combined for 352 rushing yards. Meanwhile, Arkansas quarterback Brandon Allen completed only 7-of-25 passes with two interceptions. [RECAP l BOX]
• No. 12 Baylor 71, Iowa State 7: Perhaps Baylor’s win over Kansas State last week, when the Bears scored only 35 points, was an aberration. Baylor got back to its remarkably high-scoring ways against Iowa State on Saturday, racking up 714 yards of total offense in a rout of the Cyclones. Bears quarterback Bryce Petty finished 23-of-31 for 345 yards and two touchdowns, tailback Lache Seastrunk rushed for 107 yards and receivers Antwan Goodley and Tevin Reese combined for 289 receiving yards. It was Baylor’s fourth game this season with at least 700 yards of offense, and the defense came to play, too; Iowa State was held scoreless until the final minute of the fourth quarter. [RECAP l BOX]
• Notre Dame 14, USC 10: Irish quarterback Tommy Rees played interception-free football, throwing for 166 yards and two touchdowns as Notre Dame snapped a five-game home skid against rival USC. Rees left the game after being sacked in the third quarter and did not return, but the Irish were able to hold on and give Trojans’ interim coach Ed Orgeron his first loss. USC wide receiver Marqise Lee, who missed the team’s game against Arizona with a sprained knee, didn’t play in the second half after tweaking that same left knee. [RECAP l BOX]
• No. 25 Wisconsin 56, Illinois 32: Wisconsin back Melvin Gordon passed the 1,000-yard rushing mark for the season with a 142-yard, three-touchdown performance against Illinois. The Badgers’ James White wasn’t far behind with 96 yards and two touchdowns on the ground. In all, the Illini allowed 287 rushing yards (7.1 per play). Illinois quarterback Nathan Scheelhaase completed 20-of-27 passes, but he was kept without a touchdown pass for the second straight game. Scheelhaase threw 12 scoring strikes over his first four contests. [RECAP l BOX]
• No. 2 Oregon 62, Washington State 38: The unbeaten Ducks’ offense continued to roll this Saturday against Washington State. Quarterback Marcus Mariota passed for 325 yards, running back Byron Marshall rushed for 192 yards and three touchdowns and Oregon amassed 728 total yards (an average of 9.5 per play). But all was not lost for Mike Leach’s program: Quarterback Connor Halliday set an FBS record with 89 passing attempts and tied the record for completions with 58. He also chalked up 555 passing yards, four scores and four picks. [RECAP l BOX]
• Arizona 35, Utah 24: The euphoria surrounding Utah’s upset of Stanford last weekend lasted only seven days, thanks largely to Arizona running back Ka’Deem Carey. Last season’s national rushing leader ran for 234 yards on a school-record 41 carriers against the Utes, including a 44-yard score that sealed the game with 1:30 remaining. [RECAP l BOX]
• No. 17 Fresno State 38, UNLV 14: Quarterback Derek Carr threw for 411 yards and four touchdowns as Fresno State dominated UNLV. Carr now has 23 touchdown passes on the season for the unbeaten Bulldogs. [RECAP l BOX]
• Oregon State 49, Cal 17: Quarterback Sean Mannion went 35-of-45 for 481 yards and four touchdowns as Oregon State overwhelmed Cal on the road. The Beavers, who are now bowl eligible, tallied 570 total yards and 32 first downs in a rout of the Bears. [RECAP l BOX]