The first slate of Saturday games for the 2013-14 college football season kicked off Saturday, complete with all the highlights and drama we have come to expect year in and year out.
Several top teams took care of business early on, including Johnny Manziel's Texas A&M Aggies, who soared to a 52-31 victory over Rice.
Of course, Manziel added to the drama that has been surrounding him since the offseason by taunting the Rice defense in the second half, getting flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct and consequently getting benched by head coach Kevin Sumlin.
Top 25 teams Ohio State, Florida and Wisconsin also rolled early Saturday.
Here's a look at what went down on Saturday. Games will be updated once they have finished.
|Ohio State (2)||Buffalo||40-20|
|Texas A&M (7)||Rice||52-31|
|Oklahoma State (13)||Mississippi State||21-3|
|Notre Dame (14)||Temple||28-6|
|Michigan (17)||Central Michigan||59-9|
|Oregon (3)||Nicholls State||66-3|
|Alabama (1)||Virginia Tech||35-10|
|Eastern Washington||Oregon State (25)||49-46|
|Texas (15)||New Mexico State||56-7|
|Clemson (8)||Georgia (5)||38-35|
|LSU (12)||TCU (20)||37-27|
|Washington||Boise State (19)||38-6|
Ohio State 40, Buffalo 20
Ohio State predictably pounded Buffalo on Saturday, 40-20.
Dual-threat quarterback Braxton Miller went 15-of-22 for 178 yards and two touchdowns to one interception while adding 77 rushing yards. Senior running back Jordan Hall added 159 yards and two touchdowns on the ground. And receivers Devin Smith and Chris Fields combined for 114 yards and three touchdowns. Hall's touchdown runs went for 49 and 37 yards.
The Buckeyes posted 460 yards of total offense while going 7-for-12 on third downs, but they also committed nine penalties for 94 yards. Further, they committed two turnovers in the game, so there was plenty to dislike for OSU fans.
Ohio State faces San Diego State next in its quest for the national championship.
Texas A&M 52, Rice 31
Boy, did this game have some fireworks.
Not only did Johnny Manziel go 6-of-8 for 94 yards and three touchdowns in the second half after his suspension, he also celebrated by scribbling his John Hancock into the air and making the "show me the money" sign with his fingers.
Oh yeah, and Manziel also got flagged for taunting the Rice defense after his third touchdown pass, consequently getting benched by head coach Kevin Sumlin.
One thing's for sure: Manziel knows how to entertain an audience.
With Manziel under suspension for the first half, junior quarterback Matt Joeckel stepped up admirably, going 14-of-19 for 190 yards and one touchdown.
Running backs Ben Malena and Tra Carson combined for 158 yards and three touchdowns on the ground for the game. Leading receiver Mike Evans added six catches for 84 yards and two touchdowns.
On the other hand, the Aggies allowed Rice to rack up 509 total yards of offense, including 306 yards on the ground. That defense will have to improve before the Aggies take on Alabama in Week 3.
Texas A&M faces Sam Houston State next week.
Florida 24, Toledo 6
It wasn't a blowout by any means, but Florida took care of business against Toledo on Saturday.
Brown rushed for 112 yards and two touchdowns on 25 carries for the game. He posted 102 rushing yards all of last season behind former starter Mike Gillislee.
Quarterback Jeff Driskel went 17-of-22 for 153 yards and one touchdown.
Freshman defensive back Vernon Hargreaves added an interception in the win.
Despite the Gators missing five players on defense, Toledo managed only 205 total yards against Florida. That included going 1-for-13 on third down.
Florida faces the Miami Hurricanes in Week 2. The Hurricanes are coming off a 34-6 victory over Florida Atlantic and are hoping to do big things in 2013.
Notre Dame 28, Temple 6
It's safe to say Tommy Rees started off the 2013 campaign on the right foot.
Rees exploded on Saturday against Temple, going 16-of-23 for 346 yards and three touchdowns as the Fighting Irish romped to a 28-6 victory.
Senior receiver T.J. Jones led all receivers with six catches for 138 yards. Junior DaVaris Daniels added three catches for 69 yards and two touchdowns. And junior tight end Troy Niklas went 66 yards for another touchdown (Tyler Eifert who?).
Temple running backs did combine for 134 yards and a touchdown on 29 carries, but one touchdown was all the Owls got. Heck, even the ensuing point-after attempt was blocked by Notre Dame.
Notre Dame junior running backs Amir Carlisle and Cam McDaniel combined for 133 rushing yards, while George Atkinson III added 34 yards and a touchdown on eight carries.
No Everett Golson? No Tyler Eifert? No Theo Riddick? No Cierre Wood? No Manti Te'o?
Oregon 66, Nicholls State 3
This is what happens when you pit Oregon against a completely overmatched team.
This was a blowout from the start. After one quarter of play, the Ducks had taken a commanding 24-0 lead over the Colonels.
Some guy named De'Anthony Thomas rushed for 128 yards and two touchdowns on 18 carries. Sophomore running back Byron Marshall scampered for 124 yards and one touchdown on eight carries.
Sophomore dual-threat quarterback Marcus Mariota went 12-of-21 for 234 yards and one touchdown. He also rushed for 113 yards and two touchdowns on five carries.
Senior receiver Josh Huff added 118 yards on five catches.
Meanwhile, Nicholls State averaged 5.1 yards per pass attempt and 2.1 yards per carry while losing two fumbles and going 7-for-20 on third down.
Oregon is still a decent program, folks.
The Ducks will play Virginia next week. Good luck, Virginia.
Alabama 35, Virginia Tech 10
So far, so good for Alabama as the Crimson Tide attempt to win their third consecutive national championship this season.
It certainly wasn't a dominant effort by Alabama on Saturday, but Nick Saban's squad got it done.
Quarterback A.J. McCarron—who was in a walking boot earlier in the week—went 10-of-24 for 110 yards with one touchdown to one interception. He connected with junior wide receiver Christion Jones for a 38-yard touchdown in the fourth quarter.
Jones was the star of the game. Not only did he have two catches for 47 yards and a touchdown, he also ran back a punt 54 yards for a touchdown and a kickoff 94 yards for a touchdown.
Junior defensive back Vinnie Sunseri also ran back an interception 38 yards for a touchdown.
So the Alabama offense actually only contributed two touchdowns on Saturday. Still, a win's a win. The Crimson Tide defeated the Hokies despite getting outgained in total yards, 212-206. Alabama also went 6-for-17 on third down.
Alabama will face Johnny Manziel and Texas A&M next in two weeks.
Clemson 38, Georgia 35
Clemson and Georgia gave us an absolute treat on Saturday.
In an explosive duel that featured over 1,000 yards of total offense, Tajh Boyd, Sammy Watkins and Clemson edged Georgia, 38-35.
Boyd was special in this one, going 18-of-30 for 270 yards and three touchdowns while adding 42 yards and two touchdowns on the ground.
Watkins caught six balls for 127 yards, including a 77-yard touchdown in which he left the entire Bulldogs defense in his dust.
Georgia had more total yards than Clemson (545-467), but the Bulldogs committed two turnovers and were flagged for nine penalties for 84 yards. They also went 4-for-14 on third down.
Georgia sophomore running back Todd Gurley rushed for 154 yards and two touchdowns on just 12 carries, albeit in a losing effort.
Bulldogs quarterback Aaron Murray went 20-of-29 for 323 yards with zero touchdowns to one interception.