What I Loved and Hated from College Football Week 10
In one unexpected instant, a game can change.
Jobs can be saved—at least for the time being. Hearts can be broken. Stadiums can explode, and emotions can shift to the opposite end of the spectrum without much warning. The term “Hail Mary” has never felt more appropriate than it did on Saturday, and the outcome between Nebraska and Northwestern changed in an instant. The resulting reactions are still being processed.
Elsewhere, Florida State proved itself (again) on the biggest stage, cruising in a Top 10 matchup that didn’t quite have that feel to it. With a monster week ahead, however, this was only an appetizer.
Linemen celebrated like children, Braxton Miller did Braxton Miller things, a stadium entrance went all wrong thanks to excessive fog, and the rare double-fumble touchdown was on display.
Before we turn the page to an enormous Week 11, here’s what I loved and hated in Week 10.
Loved: Braxton Miller’s Improv Skills
Ohio State’s starting quarterback is bordering unfair. He can beat you with the run—as teams know by now—and he also has a cannon, something he's showing off more now that he's healthy again.
But Braxton Miller also has the ability to improvise, combining these traits into one backyard-ish play that Purdue had no answers to. It’s as if a designed run, a pass and an option flip had a child, and that child was this smooth touchdown.
SPOILER: This was not the only touchdown Ohio State scored.
Hated: This 'GameDay' Sign Spelling Mistake
Maybe the joke's on us, and we’re missing out on some inside joke that is being enjoyed by the parties involved. Perhaps that could explain this sign that made a cameo at Florida State for ESPN’s College GameDay. That’s the only way you could possibly justify what’s going on above.
Spelling mistakes on signs happen—here’s my personal favorite—but this, well, seems too blatant to be this bad. Right? Maybe?
Or...maybe this sign just had an accident. Yeah, we’ll leave it at that.
Hated: Marshall’s Stadium Entrance
When large human beings are moving with incredible momentum, unable to see where they’re going, often times there will be problems. The problems won't be for the large men, but those unfortunate enough to be in the path of destruction.
One of the members of the Marshall football staff learned this lesson on Saturday, falling after a bump from behind. Once he was down, it was all over. After trying to capture his balance, he was bumped again, this time almost into the camera.
Fog isn’t undefeated, but by golly is it a tough matchup for anyone.
Hated: Iowa's Helmet Interception
Here’s the good news, C.J. Beathard.
In a game of interception H.O.R.S.E., your Week 10 contribution probably would have been impossible to repeat. I have absolutely no idea why anyone would play interception H.O.R.S.E., but I’m trying to find something positive to say about this pick that went off an Iowa lineman’s head.
Eventually the pass ended up in the hands of Wisconsin defensive end Pat Muldoon, but it needed a helmet boost to get there.
And if you needed a summary of the 2013 Iowa football season, you found one here.
Loved: Sacred Heart's Fumbled Fumble Touchdown
Yes, Sacred Heart earns a spot in this week’s love/hate. In fact, it really earned it.
Moses Webb did everything on one play against Monmouth on Saturday, a game I’m sure you were paying close attention to.
Webb caught a pass for a big gain only to fumble. Oh, but he wasn’t done. The Sacred Heart wideout then re-forced the fumble he had only just lost, picked it up and ran it in for a touchdown. And you thought a lineman’s strip sack was impressive box score work.
This brings that to an entirely different level.
Loved: Nebraska'a Game-Winning Hail Mary
The most amazing thing about Nebraska’s miraculous Hail Mary against Northwestern wasn’t the tipped touchdown catch by Jordan Westerkamp, although the play itself was unbelievable. The throw was perfect—as perfect as a Hail Mary can be—and the tip worked out beautifully.
But that wasn’t the best part.
No, the most incredible moment in the madness is the reaction—or lack thereof—from head coach Bo Pelini, who had the look of a confused and worn-down man, unsure whether to celebrate or lay down on the turf.
Given this year (and this week), it’s hard to blame him.
Heartbreak for the Wildcats and unimaginable excitement for the Cornhuskers; just another week of college football.
Hated: This Fake Injury
Maybe, just maybe, Auburn linebacker Anthony Swain developed a spontaneous kind of injury, one that just hits without any sort of warning. OR, maybe he is just the latest player to fake an injury in an attempt to slow down an offense.
We'll likely never know, although the footage is...different.
As if Gus Malzahn and Bret Bielema needed anything else to amplify this newfound rivalry, this should help. There was plenty of gamesmanship throughout, although this will likely serve as the “One Shining Moment” part of the 2013 version.
As a whole, however, I am anti-faking injuries, regardless of what happened here. And I hope Swain has recovered from his traumatizing scare.
Loved: Travis Jackson's Touchdown Dance
Michigan State lineman Travis Jackson had a dream, and that dream was to do celebratory squats after a touchdown against his team's rival. I don't know if this was actually his dream or not, but by golly he squatted on one of the afternoon's biggest stages.
If you could somehow bottle the joy of a large man celebrating, you could make large sums of money. Like a child that got the video game system he always wanted on Christmas day, this end-zone encounter called for a celebration.
I can't stop watching this; it's that amazing.
Hated: To Be Punched in the Face Celebrating
Sometimes you just get so excited, you have to punch your buddy in the face.
Wait, no. Never.
Please note that celebrating a touchdown by joyfully hitting a friend is not accepted. You will be called for targeting and ejected, and they will tack on 15 yards regardless of whether or not the review was upheld.
I know these two Michigan State fans were excited about Sparty's latest touchdown, but the one gentleman seemed a little too excited. I would hate to be within three miles of that man's fist pump.
Loved: The Potential Hit of the Year
Had Jadeveon Clowney been involved in the hit above, the Internet would have capsized in an instant. That would have been it; the Internet would have been lost for good.
Be thankful that is not the case.
Northern Illinois linebacker Ladell Fleming delivered what might be the hit of the year against Massachusetts on a kickoff, and what a hit it was. It was clean, it was vicious, and the ball popped out because DID YOU SEE THAT HIT? OF COURSE THAT BALL POPPED OUT.
Thank you for not breaking, Internet.