College Football Scores 2012: Week 3 Results and Analysis

Ben Chodos@bchodosCorrespondent IISeptember 15, 2012

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - SEPTEMBER 08: Head coach Lane Kiffin of the USC Trojans talks to quarterback Matt Barkley #7 during a game against the Syracuse Orange at MetLife Stadium on September 8, 2012 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)
Rich Schultz/Getty Images

Week 3 of the college football season offers several exciting matchups, and the rankings will surely be undergoing significant changes after the weekend. 

Alabama held on to the top spot in the AP Top 25 poll for the second week in a row, and it faces its first SEC matchup against a depleted Arkansas team. USC checked in at No. 2, and the Trojans also start conference play, taking on No. 21 Stanford.

LSU and Oregon—No. 3 and No. 4, respectively—face soft matchups, while Oklahoma has the week off. The Sooners are tied for No. 5 with Florida State, who takes on Wake Forest in their first game against an FBS opponent. 

Here are results and analysis for all the action this weekend.


Pittsburgh 35 (13) Virginia Tech 17
(5) Florida Sate 52 Wake Forest 0
Minnesota 28 Western Michigan 23
Nebraska 42 Arkansas State 14
(12) Ohio State 35 Cal 28
Oklahoma State 65 LA-Lafayette 24
Northern Illinois 41 Army 40
Illinois  44 Charleston Southern 0
Purdue 54 Eastern Michigan 16
Auburn 31 LA-Monroe 28
Connecticut 24 Maryland 21
Vanderbilt 58 Presbyterian 0
(16) TCU 20 Kansas 6
Miami (FL) 38 Bethune-Cookman 10


Pittsburgh 35, (13) Virginia Tech 17

Logan Thomas completed just 14 of his 31 passes and threw three interceptions while the Hokies ended the game with four turnovers.

Pittsburgh jumped out to a 21-0 lead early in the second quarter and controlled the game the rest of the way. The Panthers dominated on the ground, racking up 254 yards and two touchdowns while averaging 4.6 yards per carry.

Rushel Shell led the way with 157 yards on 23 carries while Ray Graham had 94 yards and two scores on 24 carries. Quarterback Tino Sunseri also had a fine performance, completing 19 of 28 passes for 283 yards, three touchdowns and an interception.

Virginia Tech was flat for the entire game, and they will plummet down the rankings after the loss.


(5) Florida State 52, Wake Forest 0

Those who had questions about Florida State's ability to compete against an FBS team now have their answers.

The Seminoles outscored the Deamon Deacons 38-0 in the first half, making their ACC opponent look like the two FCS teams they blew out to start the season. This was sweet victory for many of Florida State's players after losing to Wake Forest last year.

Chris Thompson racked up 197 yards and two touchdowns on just nine carries while Florida State as a team averaged 8.6 yards per carry.

The defense gave up just 126 total yards in this dominant victory. 


(12) Ohio State 35, Cal 28

Ohio State looked set to run up the score in this game when Braxton miller scored on an incredible 55-yard touchdown run. But the Bears hung tough and stayed within striking distance.

A wild fourth quarter featured a tie, two lead changes and 29 points scored, but the Buckeyes came out on top when Miller found Devin Smith for a 72-yard touchdown pass with 3:26 to go in the game.

Miller ended the match with 249 passing yards, four touchdown passes and an interception to go along with his 12 rushes for 75 yards and a touchdown.

Cal's Brendan Bigelow was a constant big-play threat and finished  the game with four carries for 160 yards and two touchdowns. But it was not enough for the Golden Bears, and the Buckeyes narrowly avoided an upset.


Auburn 31, Louisiana-Monroe 28

Louisiana-Monroe nearly upset an SEC team for the second consecutive week. The Warhawks defeated Arkansas last week, then suffered an overtime loss to Auburn.

The Tigers held a 14-point lead going into the fourth quarter, but Louisiana-Monroe came storming back, and quarterback Colton Browning threw two touchdown passes in the final seven minutes to tie the game. He completed 28 of his 45 passes for 237 yards and three touchdowns. 

For Auburn, Onterio McCalebb gained 128 yards on 11 carries while Tre Mason racked up 80 yards on 21 carries. Each player scored a touchdown. 

But a thrilling upset was not in the cards this week, as Auburn kicked a field goal in overtime to win the game.