Top 10 Game-Changing Plays of Week 12 of College Football

Randy ChambersAnalyst INovember 17, 2013

Top 10 Game-Changing Plays of Week 12 of College Football

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    Shanna Lockwood-USA TODAY Sports

    Where do you begin with Week 12 of the college football season?

    There were incredible plays throughout the week that helped make up one of the most exciting weeks in recent memory. From an Auburn miracle that was answered to a last-second field goal that had no chance of being successful, Week 12 reminded everybody why we are all fans of college football.

    There was even a record-breaking performance that will likely rest in the record book for quite some time.

    Here are the biggest game-changing plays that helped make up one of the more incredible weeks of college football.

10. Let's Go, Come On!

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    Wonder where Matt Leinart has been hiding?

    He was spotted at the USC vs. Stanford game, as he led the Trojans out onto the field.

    Just check out how loud the Los Angeles Coliseum gets and how jacked up the players are. This is truly a game-changing moment before the ball is even kicked off. It puts everybody in the right mood to play some high-level football.

    And that's exactly what USC did, as Stanford fell 20-17 in upset fashion.

9. My Eyes!

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    Freshman quarterback Skyler Mornhinweg actually did a fine job of managing the game and keeping Florida in the matchup against heavily favored South Carolina. But when the game mattered most is when he reminded Florida fans of their injured quarterbacks Tyler Murphy and Jeff Driskel.

    When the Gators were behind 19-14 in the fourth quarter, Mornhinweg rolled out of the pocket on first down and there was nothing there. Instead of throwing the ball away and living to see another down, he threw the ball off his back foot, right into the hands of South Carolina's Jimmy Legree. 

    The nightmare for Florida continues.

8. That Boy Is Good

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    It was only a matter of time before Clemson began to separate itself from Georgia Tech. It only took the beginning of the second quarter before that happened.

    Clemson's Tajh Boyd dropped back to pass and threw it up for grabs for talented receiver Sammy Watkins. Of course, Watkins comes down with the ball in tight coverage and walked across the goal line for the 41-yard touchdown pass.

    This play (plus the extra point) put the Tigers up 13-0 and was a harsh reminder to the Yellow Jackets that they aren't quite there yet. There's just too much firepower on Clemson's roster and this play was pretty much the nail in the coffin.

7. Myles Jack

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    Myles Jack.

    Do I need to say anymore?

    The linebacker/running back did it again for UCLA. On the Bruins opening drive, the freshman carried the ball for an eight-yard touchdown. As usual, he bounced off of defenders, kept his feet turning and didn't go down until he crossed the goal line.

    Washington's defense was no match for the talented two-way player, and UCLA went on to win the Pac-12 showdown 41-31.

6. Learn How to Tackle, Bro

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    It was the first score of the game, but was also a quick reminder to Troy that it was over its head in a matchup against Mississippi.

    Ole Miss quarterback Bo Wallace threw a simple short pass to wide receiver Laquon Treadwell that shouldn't have picked up much yardage. Instead, nearly every Troy defender missed at least one tackle and watched the freshman receiver score a 25-yard touchdown.

    This play instantly set the tone for the game and played with the visiting teams psyche.

5. Game over

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    Oh, Virginia Tech.

    Why can't this team ever play with any consistency?

    The Hokies let Maryland take them into overtime where they were forced to settle for a field goal. The Terrapins were moving the ball when quarterback C.J. Brown appeared to have run a busted play. Usually that's when the quarterback takes his losses and tries again on the next down.

    Not Brown.

    He finds the edge of the field and dives across the end zone for the game-winner. Maryland pulled off the shocker!

4. Into the Record Book You Go

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    In the game against Baldwin Wallace, it took a variety of plays for Cartel Brooks to pull off the feat, but who cares?

    Brooks, a Division III running back who attends Heidelberg University, set an NCAA record with 465 rushing yards. In other words, no other player in NCAA history has more rushing yards in a single game than Brooks. He carried the ball 38 times and scored three touchdowns in his effort.

    In that one game, Brooks accrued more rushing yards than most teams are able to produce on your average Saturday.

    Well done, sir.

3. It Is Good!

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    Northwestern finds the craziest ways to lose, huh?

    Devin Gardner completes a pass in-bounds with less than 20 seconds left and Michigan has no timeouts. The field goal unit has to run onto the field with less than five seconds remaining. The placeholder slides into position and Wolverine kicker Brendan Gibbons doesn't even have enough time to properly set up.

    None of that mattered, as the senior kicker was able to get just enough leg strength to put the ball over the crossbar. This ridiculous kick sent the game into extra regulation where the Wolverines eventually won in triple overtime.

2. He Caught That?

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    UCF looked like it was going to suffer an upset to Temple and those BCS dreams were going to come to an end.

    Not so fast.

    With only a minute and change left, Blake Bortles looks for the open receiver and finds J.J. Worton in the end zone. Despite the ball being overthrown, the junior wideout sticks his arm out and hauls in the one-handed catch.

    This play tied the game and allowed enough time for a last-second game-winning field goal.

    The Knights keep those BCS hopes alive!

1. Play of the Year

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    It's the play that saved Auburn's season and drove many Georgia fans to the nearest local bar.

    The Tigers were facing 4th-and-18 and needed a miracle to have a chance to get within field-goal range. Well, those prayers were answered.

    Nick Marshall throws the ball up for grabs, two Georgia defenders bat the ball up instead of down and Ricardo Louis shows incredible concentration to haul in the 73-yard touchdown pass.

    It's the play of the year in college football. Nothing will top this touchdown reception that Auburn fans are sure to remember for quite some time.