Top 10 Game-Changing Plays of Week 8
What an insane week of college football!
There were upsets all over the place, tons of ranked teams suffered a devastating loss, and, of course, we witnessed remarkable plays that changed the momentum of games. Special teams touchdowns? Check. Late-second field goals? Double check. One-handed catches that made you rewind the DVR at least five times? YES!
Week 8 of the college football season was full of game-changing plays.
Who had the best play of them all?
10. Carlos Hyde or Superman?
Who would have thought Iowa would have given Ohio State trouble?
With the game tied at 24, Carlos Hyde busted through the hole, bounced off a tackle and then leaped for the end zone. It was an incredible run and swung the momentum in the Buckeyes' favor as the crowd went absolutely nuts.
The game was a lot closer than most expected but was well worth it when seeing plays like this take place. Ohio State won the game 34-24.
9. What a Punt Return!
TCU gave Oklahoma State all it could handle and looked like it was going to shut out an explosive offense through the first quarter. Not so fast! Josh Stewart fielded the ball at his own 5-yard line, shifted between his blocks nicely and let his speed finish the job.
Uh, Stewart, why are you catching the ball at the five?
I can't believe what I'm seeing!
Stewart's touchdown woke up Oklahoma State and helped jump-start a 24-10 win.
8. It's Blocked!
Miami was sleepwalking through much of the game against North Carolina. The offense couldn't move the ball, the defense looked gassed and the visiting team looked like it was going to go down in flames.
That's when Artie Burns came off the edge and was able to put his paws on a Thomas Moore field-goal attempt. The blocked kick landed right in the hands of Ladarius Gunter, who was able to run 67 yards for the touchdown.
This play put Miami up 13-7 and gave the Hurricanes the boost they needed to squeeze out a very important conference win on the road.
7. Yes, They Are for Real
Everything happened so quickly for Missouri. Florida safety Cody Riggs was ejected on the first play of the game for targeting, which gave the Tigers wonderful field position only 15 seconds into the game.
New starting quarterback Maty Mauk then wasted no time taking advantage of a banged-up Florida defense, as he was able to find Bud Sasser in the corner of the end zone for a 20-yard score. This gave the Tigers a quick 7-0 lead, got the crowd fired up and capped off a heartbreaking start for the Gators.
Florida was never really in the game after this game-changing play.
6. It's Good!
Some would argue that it shouldn't have even come down to this last-second field goal. Ole Miss had a 17-0 lead over LSU in the middle of the third quarter.
Oh well, Ole Miss will take the win however it comes.
After the Tigers battled back, Bo Wallace and company put the Rebels in a position to end the game in regulation. Andrew Ritter lined up for a 41-yard kick with the entire SEC nation watching, and he barely sneaked the ball between the posts.
It's easily the biggest win under coach Hugh Freeze and is another sign that Ole Miss on the right track.
5. Climb the Ladder!
Florida State couldn't have gotten off to a faster start against Clemson. On the first play of the game, Lamarcus Joyner forced a fumble to give the Seminoles the ball at Clemson's 24-yard line.
It took three plays before Jameis Winston threw the ball up for grabs and allowed Kelvin Benjamin to make a play. He jumped what seemed to be five feet in the air and was able to get a foot down as he fell into the end zone.
Jab, jab, knockout punch!
All of the air was taken out of Memorial Stadium and everything went downhill from here for the Tigers.
4. Manziel Comes Up Short
There were plenty of game-changing plays in the Texas A&M-Auburn game—a contest which seemed to go back and forth. Nick Marshall played the best game of his young career, Mike Evans was unstoppable and Johnny Manziel injured his shoulder early in the contest.
But with everything said and done, you still believed the reigning Heisman winner would find a way to get it done. Bad shoulder and all, Manziel is going to find a way to put the Aggies into the end zone in the final seconds.
It didn't happen.
On 4th-and-13, Manziel tried to pull off another amazing play by scrambling around in the pocket but ended up getting sacked. It was then everybody realized that Texas A&M really lost the game. You wouldn't believe it if you didn't see it.
3. How Did He Catch That?
I've seen this play more than 10 times already and still can't figure out how Kodi Whitfield came down with it. There are two UCLA defenders draped over him; the ball should have been intercepted, batted down or something!
Instead, neither defensive back played the ball, which allowed Whitfield to get an arm free and snag a bullet thrown by Kevin Hogan for a 30-yard touchdown. This play put Stanford up 10-3 in the third quarter and was a hint that everything was going to go Stanford's way.
And they were right, as the Cardinal bounced back with a big 24-10 win over their Pac-12 rival.
2. Down Goes Louisville!
UCF was down by 21 points in the second half and any chance of shocking the world on Friday night was all but gone. But the Knights were slowly able to climb back into the game and had a chance to take the lead in the final seconds.
It was 3rd-and-goal from the 2-yard line, and quarterback Blake Bortles rolled out of the pocket and threw the ball in the back of the end zone to find Jeff Godfrey. Just like that: touchdown, Louisville loses, UCF wins. Say goodbye to a Teddy Bridgewater Heisman and any chance of the Cardinals playing for a national title.
This play happened so fast and stunned the college football world.
1. He Did What?!
Tennessee was facing 3rd-and-10, and the chances of pulling off the upset were looking bleak. Justin Worley dropped back to pass, threw the ball up for grabs and Marquez North somehow came down with a one-handed 39-yard reception.
How did he do that?
Is that David Tyree in a Tennessee uniform?
This reception instantly put the Volunteers into field-goal range, and they ended up winning the game 23-21 as time expired thanks to a 19-yard kick by Michael Palardy. But it was this catch that made the monster SEC upset possible.