Week 6 of the college football season had the makings of upsets Saturday, but three Top 10 teams managed to escape with victories. The most notable to hang on was then-No. 6 Georgia, who miraculously defeated Tennessee 34-31 in overtime.
Down 31-24 with five seconds remaining in the fourth quarter, senior quarterback Aaron Murray threw a two-yard touchdown pass to knot things up at 31. In overtime, it appeared Tennessee would score a touchdown first, which would put pressure on the Georgia offense to answer back or lose.
Unfortunately, in Volunteer fashion, running back Alton Howard reached for the pylon but lost the ball prior to crossing the plane of the goal line, resulting in a touchback. Georgia would then get a Marshall Morgan 42-yard field goal on its offensive possession to win the game.
The two other Top 10 teams that avoided being upset were Ohio State and Stanford. The Buckeyes got all they could handle at Northwestern, but running back Carlos Hyde, who rushed for an impressive 168 yards and three touchdowns, scored with 5:22 left in regulation to give the Buckeyes a 34-30 lead. Ohio State went on to win 40-30.
Stanford got the best of a talented Washington team, as the Huskies couldn't put a final drive together and lost 34-31.
One of the biggest surprises of the weekend was Notre Dame’s win over Arizona State down in Arlington. After a terrible outing against Oklahoma, the Irish racked up 424 yards and won 37-34.
Baylor, Clemson, Oregon and Florida State again put up huge offensive statistics in their blowout wins. The four teams combined for an average of 60.5 points and 714.3 yards.
Game Attended: Oregon 57 at Colorado 16
The Buffs were actually giving the Ducks a game until halfway through the second quarter. In typical Oregon fashion, the offense came alive and put the game out of reach 43-16 when Josh Huff caught a four-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Marcus Mariota with 57 seconds remaining in the first half.
The explosive Ducks offense accumulated 755 yards and, for the first time in school history, scored at least 50 points in five consecutive games. Mariota had a career-high seven touchdowns, two of which were rushing.
The defense started off slow but ended up having a solid game. Oregon shut out Colorado in the second half and forced them to go 0-15 on third down. Defensive back Terrence Mitchell added a pair of interceptions as well.
Overall Record: 44-16
Week 6 Record: 7-3
Note: Team in bold indicates author’s pick
Prediction: Florida State 45, Maryland 24
Result: Florida State 63, Maryland 0
Prediction: Oklahoma 34, TCU 20
Result: Oklahoma 20, TCU 17
Prediction: Arizona State 38, Notre Dame 24
Result: Notre Dame 37, Arizona State 34
Prediction: Northwestern 37, Ohio State 34
Result: Ohio State 40, Northwestern 30
Prediction: Stanford 38, Washington 28
Result: Stanford 31, Washington 28
Prediction: Iowa 20, Michigan State 17
Result: Michigan State 26, Iowa 14
Prediction: Oklahoma State 38, Kansas State 27
Result: Oklahoma State 33, Kansas State 29
Prediction: Georgia 48, Tennessee 20
Result: Georgia 34, Tennessee 31 (OT)
Prediction: Florida 26, Arkansas 17
Result: Florida 30, Arkansas 10
Prediction: Auburn 28, Ole Miss 24
Result: Auburn 30, Ole Miss 22
If there is one team to be talked about, it has to be the Baylor Bears. Since taking the job in 2008, Art Briles has taken a team that was in the Big 12 cellar for years to a team that can contend for a conference title.
Since Robert Griffin III, the Bears offense has had talent at the quarterback position. Griffin won the Heisman Trophy in 2011, and many thought there would be a drop-off at the position when he went to the NFL.
Last season’s starter Nick Florence, though, finished second in career passing yards with 6,301, which is right behind Griffin’s 10,366 yards. Current starter junior Bryce Petty continues to keep the streak alive, as he’s already passed for 1,348 yards and 10 touchdowns this season.
The running game is lethal with Lache Seastrunk, who has rushed for 589 yards and eight touchdowns. The receiving game is also dangerous with Antwan Goodley (540 yards and five touchdowns) and Tevin Reese (425 yards and four touchdowns).
The Bears are currently first in the nation in passing yards per game (432.3) and points per game (70.5). They are also second in the nation in rushing yards per game (347.3).
The defense gets overlooked, but they are currently only giving up 16.3 points per game.
Baylor hasn’t necessarily played the toughest opponents this season, but this is clearly a team to be reckoned with. This week, the Bears will head to Kansas State, whom they upset last season at home 52-24.
Baylor should be 7-0 when they face a potentially undefeated Oklahoma team on Thursday, Nov. 7. This will be a critical conference game that could wind up being the decider in who wins the Big 12 and earns a BCS bowl bid. Their last four games of the season, though, will be difficult against Texas Tech, Oklahoma State, TCU and Texas.