In as much as Week 5 of the 2012 college football season was a weekend without a defense, Week 6 was the weekend that the mighty and powerful fell from grace.
Stocks and bonds for LSU, Florida State, Georgia and Texas all plummeted on Saturday which allowed for the flourishing fortunes of South Carolina, Florida, West Virginia and even the unlikely commodity of NC State.
So, what does all the movement up and down the charts of destiny mean?
Well if nothing else Week 6 spurred one of the most provocative and extensive Studs and Duds lists of the season, a register we’re pleased to present here for your pleasure.
It serves as both a glowing tribute and painful record of the individual performances that drove the bus that was a wild, wonderful sixth stanza of the 2012 season.
A rare but well deserved shout-out for a stud kicker, sophomore Shawn Moffitt was 4-of-4 on field-goal attempts and 4-of-4 on extra-point tries in UCF’s win over East Carolina this past Thursday night.
Moffitt was responsible for 16 of the Knights 40 points and his performance included 22- and 23-yard boots in the second quarter, a 36-yarder in the third and then a 49-yard bomb in the fourth.
Senior WR Quincy McDuffie managed to score on two big-time plays in UCF’s 40-20 win over East Carolina on Thursday evening.
McDuffie’s first strike came in the first quarter when he returned a kickoff 99 thrilling yards for a TD, and his second came in the third via a 64-yard pass connection with QB Blake Bortles.
Though USC’s win over Utah wasn’t dominating, senior QB Matt Barkley put forth a solid enough Week 6 effort to earn some stud love.
Barkley went 23-of-30 (76.7 percent) for 303 yards, three scores and zero picks in the Trojans 39-28 comeback win over the Utes.
Sophomore WR Marqise Lee gave the Trojans a huge spark in their Thursday night comeback win over Utah by racking up 192 yards and one score on 12 catches.
Lee’s accomplishments are even more impressive when you digest the fact that his 192 yards accounted for 63 percent of USC’s Week 6 passing yards, and that he earned his stats vs. a defense that, prior to Thursday night, had only allowed opponents 235.2 yards through the air per game.
Though it’s probably a little harsh to pin Utah State’s Friday night loss to BYU on one guy, when you lose 6-3 and miss a field goal in the fourth quarter, it’s time to look up the kicker’s name.
Junior kicker Josh Thompson had a 38-yard opportunity midway through the fourth to tie up the game vs. BYU, an attempt he ultimately missed ending the Aggies quest to knock off both their bigger in-state rivals in one season.
Despite the fact the Falcons lost in overtime to Navy on Saturday afternoon, senior RB Cody Getz was a stud via his 204 yards of rushing and one score on 29 carries.
Week 6’s inter-academy contest marked Getz’s third 200-plus-yard performance of the season.
Junior QB Clint Moseley took over for the yanked Kiehl Frazier after halftime in Saturday’s clash with Arkansas and struggled mightily.
Moseley went 13-of-21 for 163 yards, one score and two costly INTs, and his squad lost 24-7.
Sophomore QB Chandler Whitmer has thrown a total of 10 picks through six games in 2012, and a whopping four of these came in Saturday’s game vs. Rutgers.
Whitmer went 14-of-32 for 191 yards, zero TDs and four picks leading the Huskies to a 19-3 loss.
When you ask yourself how Ohio beat Buffalo on Saturday after registering only 16 first downs vs. the Bulls' 31, it's guys like Bobcat freshman RB Daz’mond Patterson who begin to explain the story behind stats.
Patterson’s thrilling 100-yard kickoff return in the first quarter for an Ohio TD took what had been a 14-0 deficit and transformed into a 14-7 score in mere seconds.
The other part of the story surrounding Buffalo’s 38-31 loss to Ohio in Week 6 was the tale of three Bulls' fumbles that stopped drives in their tracks.
Yes, Buffalo outgained the Bobcats 501 to 333 yards and 31 to 16 first downs, but they still lost the game.
Senior QB Matt McGloin went 35-of-51 for 282 yards, two TDs and zero picks, and then tacked on an additional rushing score in Penn State’s Week 6 39-28 win over Northwestern.
McGloin’s 68.6 completion percentage on Saturday is a high-water mark for the 2012 season.
Just because your team loses to Army it doesn’t mean that you can’t put on a stud-worthy performance.
And that’s precisely what junior RB Andre Williams did on Saturday by reeling off 191 yards and two scores via rushing in the Eagles' 34-31 loss to Army.
Maples, Steelman and Dixon combined for 453 yards and four scores in Saturday’s 34-31 win over Boston College.
The breakdown is impressive: junior RB Raymond Maples ran for 184 yards and zero scores on 34 carries; senior QB Trent Steelman tacked on 141 ground yards and three TDs on 22 carries; and sophomore RB Larry Dixon added 128 yards and one score on 13 carries.
Even though Kansas’ 56-16 loss to K-State this past Saturday wasn’t exactly a nail-biter, senior QB Dayne Crist’s dismal performance warrants dudly mention.
Crist went 16-of-27 for 189 yards, one TD and three picks vs. the Wildcats; sadly the completion percentage of 59.3 was his high mark for 2012.
Junior RB John Hubert’s 101 yards of rushing vs. Kansas this Saturday may not turn many heads, but his four TDs are sure to warm even the coldest statistical heart.
Hubert’s 24 points came on 10 carries and propelled the Wildcats to a 56-16 win and a 5-0 record.
The story behind the story of Boise State’s 40-14 Week 6 beatdown win over Southern Miss is the fact that the Golden Eagles’ offense statistically trumped the Bronco’s young “O.”
Southern Miss’s 21 first downs and 424 yards of total offense totally outdid Boise’s 18 first downs and 310 total yards, so what’s up with a 26-point loss?
Well, how about a whopping five turnovers for the Golden Eagles? Yes, that’s three fumbles and two picks which usually results in just one thing…the dreaded “L.”
Sophomore RB Giovani Bernard rattled off an eye-popping 262 yards and one score on 23 carries in North Carolina’s 48-34 win over Virginia Tech on Saturday.
Not only did Eastern Michigan manage only 14 points in its ugly 41-14 loss to Kent State on Saturday, it was 0-9 on third-down conversions.
After hitting our list as a Dud in Week 5, junior QB Tyler Van Tubbergen has made a 360-degree turn to the Stud roster in Week 6.
Tubbergen went 23-of-28 for 283 yards, five TDs and one pick in Western Michigan’s 52-14 walloping of UMass this Saturday.
Sophomore RB K’Deem Carey racked up 132 yards and three TDs in the defensive juggernaut that was Stanford and Arizona’s Week 6 OT thriller.
Carey definitely came big and deserves recognition despite the Wildcats coming up short vs. the Cardinal.
Senior RB Stepfan Taylor posted his third 100-plus-yard performance in Week 6’s OT win over Arizona by racking up 142 yards and two scores on a workhorse-like 31 carries.
Another Wildcat player who performed at a level that deserves a shout-out despite a narrow loss, sophomore WR Austin Hill zipped along for 165 yards of receiving and two scores on 11 catches in Arizona’s Week 6 loss to Stanford.
Junior QB Jordan Lynch flat-out sizzled in Northern Illinois’ 35-23 Week 6 win over a solid Ball State squad.
Not only did Lynch go 16-of-23 for 195 yards, one score and zero picks, he also rushed for a whopping 207 yards and tacked on three more ground scores for good measure.
Junior QB Zach Mettenberger went just 11-of-25 for 158 yards, zero TDs and one pick in LSU’s defensive dominated loss to Florida this past Saturday.
His completion percentage of 44.0 was a 2012 low mark for the rookie QB.
Though you could take several different approaches to explaining how Florida beat LSU 14-6 this past Saturday, you’d be hard-pressed not to be wowed with the Gator defense.
Florida held LSU to a mere 200 yards of total offense, only eight first downs and, perhaps most impressively, a mere 42 yards of rushing.
In a contest with only 437 yards of combined total offense, it’s pretty studly if you’re the guy who rushed for 146 yards.
Senior RB Mike Gillislee was that guy for the Gators Saturday vs. LSU by virtue of rushing for 146 of Florida’s 237 yards, a number that included both of the Gators only TDs.
It’s a tough deal when you fall to a league foe on the road by five points and you’re the kicker that missed two field goals.
Senior K Jimmy Newman suffered that fate in Wake Forest’s narrow loss to Maryland in Week 6, and in doing so, he also extended his already dubious field-goal percentage to 2-of-6 on the season.
Newman’s first miss came late in the first half when he had a 42-yarder to extend Wake’s 7-6 lead to 10-6. The second came three minutes later when he missed a 44-yarder to answer a Maryland score and make the score 13-10 Terrapins at halftime.
After posting a studly 197 yards of receiving in Clemson’s Week 5 triumph over Boston College, junior WR DeAndre Hopkins heated up in Week 6 for 173 yards.
Hopkins’ big day came via seven grabs and included two scores, ultimately helping to propel the Tigers to a 47-31 win over Georgia Tech and a 5-1 record.
TCU is another Week 6 team that outgained an opponent only to lose the game at least partially because of sloppy ball security.
The Horned Frogs picked up 24 first downs and gained 455 yards total offense vs. Iowa State’s 15 first downs and 350 yard but still lost the game 37-23.
This all becomes more plausible when you count up TCU’s five turnovers which break out to two fumbles and three picks.
The Horned Frogs woes are undoubtedly exasperated due to recent losses at QB and RB, but still five turnovers are hard to stomach.
The other side of the story of Iowa State’s thrilling 37-23 upset of No. 15 TCU is outstanding individual performances like that of senior WR Josh Lenz.
Lenz racked up a season high 147 receiving yards and three TDs on a mere five grabs.
Want more? Well, Lenz tacked on an additional score in the fourth quarter when he tossed a 15-yard pass to Ernst Brun for a Cyclone TD that extended Iowa State’s lead to 30-20.
Though many will point to Texas Tech’s lack of defense as the reason the Red Raiders got whipped 41-20 by Oklahoma this past Saturday afternoon, things aren’t always as simple as they seem.
In reality, Oklahoma and Texas Tech produced similar offensive resumes; the Sooners had 22 first downs and 380 total yards while the Red Raiders had 21 first downs and 360 total yards.
The difference may have been senior QB Seth Doege who was 22-of-36 for 203 yards, zero TDs and three costly picks.
Senior QB Denard Robinson was only 8-of-16 for 105 yards, one TD and zero picks in Michigan’s healthy 44-13 win over Purdue in Week 6, but he becomes worthy of stud mention via his 235 yards of rushing on 24 carries.
An unsung hero in every sense of the word, senior K Trey Farquhar was a perfect 4-of-4 on field-goal tries and ultimately gifted 14 total points to the Vandals' 26-18 win over New Mexico State.
Farquhar’s successful boots included a 39-yarder, a booming 55-yarder, a 32-yarder and finally a long 53-yarder to earn him one of the best single-game kicking performances of 2012.
In one of the most blistering rushing performances of Week 6, junior RB Kasey Carrier lit up Texas State for 191 yards and four TDs on 23 carries.
Carrier was a key player in New Mexico’s 35-14 win over Texas State, a victory that evened up the Lobos' record to 3-3 on the season.
In yet another week dominated with explosive offenses, senior CB Destry Berry came up big with two INTs in New Mexico’s 35-14 win over Texas State.
Berry’s first pick came on Texas State’s first play from scrimmage in the second half, and his second came on the last play of the contest, erasing any desperate hope of a Bobcat comeback.
Though it’s rare that you can lump guys from different teams into a “Dud” performance, the QBs who participated in Week 6’s Beavers vs. Cougars clash are the exception to the rule.
Washington State’s senior QB Jeff Tuel and sophomore QB Connor Halliday “joined up” with Oregon State’s sophomore QB Sean Mannion for a statistical resume that is difficult to stomach.
The trio combined to go 45-of-79 for 477 yards, one TD and seven picks.
The difference-maker in the sloppy Week 6 contest pitting Oregon State vs. Washington State was senior CB Jordan Poyer who came up with three picks in the Beavers' 19-6 win over the Cougars.
Though junior QB Derek Carr’s Week 6 production didn’t reach the heights of his Week 5 statistical bonanza, he still earned himself stud honors.
Carr went 25-of-39 for 217 yards, four TDs and zero picks in Fresno State’s 28-7 win over Colorado State.
Rookie head coach Hugh Freeze certainly seems to have Ole Miss moving in the right direction, but this doesn’t mean that he won’t make mistakes that leave fans scratching their heads.
And that’s exactly what Freeze did on Saturday night when he opted to go for it on 4th-and-1 from his own 39 with approximately three minutes left on the clock.
Ole Miss held a 27-23 lead at the time and after getting stuffed for no gain, the Rebels turned the ball over on downs to the Aggies who scored four plays later to go ahead for good.
The Aggies offense was yet another unit that didn’t take good care of the ball in Week 6, but the only difference is Texas A&M wound up winning the game regardless of the sloppiness.
The Aggies coughed up four fumbles and QB Johnny Manziel threw two picks giving A&M six total turnovers in their unlikely 30-27 victory over Ole Miss.
Junior RB Charles Sims carried his “A” game from Week 5 over to Week 6 when he tore it up for 210 yards and one score via rushing and then tacked on an additional 55 yards and another score as a receiver.
Sims’ performance was a big part of Houston’s 44-21 win over North Texas on Saturday evening.
After six weeks of college football and five West Virginia victories, it’s difficult to imagine a stud list that doesn’t include the Mountaineers senior gun-slinger.
Smith went 25-of-35 for 268 yards, four TDs and zero picks in West Virginia’s 48-45 win over Texas in Austin.
If you fancy being blown away consider the fact that Smith has thrown 24 TDs and zero picks thus far in 2012.
One of the real offensive differences in WVU’s 48-45 win over Texas on Saturday night was the play of sophomore RB Andrew Buie who blitzed for 207 yards and two scores on a generous 31 carries.
Buie tacked on an additional 66 yards on three catches as a receiver, and his entire statistical package in Week 6 represent career highs for the Jacksonville, Fla., product.
Senior QB Zac Dysert went 25-of-49 for 303 yards and two TDs in the Redhawks sizable defeat to Cincinnati in Week 6, numbers that look decent until you throw in three crucial picks.
Dysert’s Miami team lost the game 52-14, dropping their record to 3-3 on the season.
Though he wasn’t the top yardage rusher in La Tech’s offensive-explosion victory over UNLV on Saturday night, freshman RB Kenneth Dixon was the top visitor to the end zone.
Dixon ran for 102 yards on 16 carries and scored four TDs to contribute to the bottom line of the Techster's 58-31 win over UNLV.
Georgia’s offense had averaged a whopping 48.2 points per game coming into its Week 6 showdown with South Carolina, making the Bulldogs' 35-7 loss to the Gamecocks all the more shocking.
South Carolina’s defense held a Bulldog offense that had averaged over 250 yards per game rushing to 115 yards. From a passing perspective, the Cocks held a Georgia attack that had averaged more than 285 yards per game to 109 yards.
Though South Carolina’s 35 offensive points were dazzling, it is the Gamecocks' stifling “D” that ultimately won the day and moved them one step closer to an elusive first-ever SEC conference title.
If you’re wondering how an Irish squad that averaged only 25.8 points per game coming into Week 6 hung up 41 points on Miami (Fla.) on Saturday night, think rushing.
Sophomore RB George Atkinson and senior RB Cierre Wood combined for 241 yards of rushing and three TDs in Notre Dame’s 41-3 victory over the Hurricanes.
And this was a win fueled by 376 yards of rushing vs. 211 yards passing.
Though it’s rare to come across a “Top 25 Fanbases in College Football” piece that makes mention of NC State fans, the omission of Wolfpack enthusiasts might be a huge oversight.
The official attendance for Saturday night’s upset shocker at Carter Finley in Raleigh, N.C. was only 54,962, but these were 50,000 of the loudest, most diehard and passionate fans in the nation.
There is no doubt that NC State’s football program deserves the lion’s share of credit for its 17-16 super upset over Florida State, but when passing out kudos, don’t forget about an underappreciated fanbase that never gave up and were duly rewarded with one of the greatest nights of their lives.
As is often the case in dissecting the anatomy of an upset, there isn’t a whole lot of meat on the bone when you review the comparative stats resulting from NC State’s shocking upset of No. 3 Florida State.
That said, the one aspect of the numerical review of the 17-16 outcome that sticks out like a sore thumb is the Wolfpack’s performance on fourth down where they went 3-of-4 during the course of the game.
Stunningly, all three of the successful conversions came during the final drive of the contest with the final, a 4th-and-goal from the two, resulting in the game-winning score.
Though it’s tempting to say that QB Mike Glennon is the stud for the NC State offense, 11 guys were on the field during the final drive that paid witness to the three fourth-down conversions. This group of unlikely heroes combined to pull off one of the biggest upsets of the season.
If Florida State could have managed to squash just one of these attempts, the ‘Noles would still be in the hunt for the national title and NC State fans would have indeed experienced a thrill, but they would have ultimately gone home hungry.
Though junior QB Taylor Martinez didn’t personally give up 63 points to Ohio State on Saturday night, he did throw three picks, two of which led directly to Buckeye TDs.
Overall, Martinez went 15-of-25 for 214 yards, one TD and three picks in the Cornhuskers' painful 63-38 loss to Ohio State.
Sophomore QB Braxton Miller ripped it up Saturday night vs. Nebraska, not by virtue of a passing performance that included going 7-of-14 for 127 yards, one score and zero picks, but instead by running wildly all over the field.
Overall, Miller racked up 186 mostly thrilling big-play rushing yards on 16 carries including one memorable end-zone visit.
The other big player in the Buckeye’s rush-dominated 63-38 win over Nebraska was junior RB Carlos Hyde who blitzed for 140 crucial yards and a whopping four TDs on 28 carries.
It’s pretty safe to say that Saturday night was a breakout performance for Hyde.
Sophomore DB Bradley Roby was on the receiving end of two of Nebraska QB’s Taylor Martinez picks in Week 6, and his 49 return yards included a thrilling pick-six.
In a Week 6 that served up just about every conceivable football dish, only one team’s defense pitched a shutout and that unit hails from SMU.
SMU held UTEP to 13 first downs and 285 total yards of offense in its 17-0 road win on Saturday night.
It’s a good thing the Mustangs’ defense brought its “A” game to El Paso to face UTEP, because if this had been a nail-biter, things may well have gotten ugly.
Well, SMU’s junior K Chase Hover was just 1-of-4 on field-goal attempts Saturday night, missing from a lengthy 48 yards, a makeable 27 yards and then finally again from 37 yards.
The only FG Hover converted was a 19-yarder in the first quarter.
Yet another team who suffered a devastating Week 6 loss due to looseness in ball handling, UCLA coughed up two fumbles and suffered four picks in its 43-17 beatdown at the hands of Cal.
Yes, you can slice and dice stats and individual performances, but when you turn the ball over six times, you can pretty much count on a loss.
Three of UCLA QB Brett Hundley’s four picks were nabbed by the nifty hands of sophomore DB Kameron Jackson, who registered his first INTs of 2012 in Saturday night’s win.
Though it’s crystal clear that Oregon outplayed Washington in the Ducks' 52-21 Week 6 win over the Huskies, it’s important to tell the rest of the story via our continuing weekly theme of turnovers.
Washington’s offense committed five total ball gaffes in Saturday night’s loss, a number that included three fumbles and two picks.