Week 11 did not disappoint, with some incredible games features national contenders. LSU stole the headlines with their win over Alabama, with Minnesota also getting publicity for their upset win over Penn State. Let’s look at the main talking points from a fascinating week of college football.
1) LSU Seal Historic Win Over Alabama
Alabama have been the top dog of college football for a decade now, but this past weekend LSU toppled Bama in Bryant-Denny stadium. It was the Tigers first win over Alabama since 2011, and has massive play-off implications.
LSU overpowered Alabama 46-41, with quarterback Joe Burrow silencing the last of his doubters with a incredible performance against a Bama defense loaded with NFL talent. 393 yards and 3 TD’s along with 64 rushing yards was enough to punish Alabama, who made some uncharacteristic errors in this one. LSU still has to face Ole Miss and Texas A&M, but their path to a national title is in their hands.
2) LSU Solidified as Number One
The first College Football Play-off rankings made some headlines last week, as they anointed Ohio State number one over LSU. After their win against a third ranked Alabama on the road, there will be no doubt LSU returns to number one this week.
Ohio State look very good this year, but LSU now has four wins against top ten teams, something no other play-off team can match for strength of schedule. For Alabama a play-off berth is still within reach, but it needs other contenders to lose down the stretch.
3) Minnesota Spring Upset on Penn State
Despite the massive hype surrounding the LSU – Alabama game, Minnesota still managed to steal some headlines with their massive upset win. The undefeated Golden Gophers took down the fourth ranked Penn State 31-26, a win that has vaulted them to national attention.
Head coach P.J Fleck signed a seven-year contract extension worth $33.25 million, to ward off potential interest from bigger schools like Florida State. Minnesota have now jumped to seventh in the latest AP Poll, and if they remain unbeaten this year could find themselves in the hunt for a national title.
4) P.J Fleck on National Radar After Win
One of the hottest names in college coaching right now is P.J Fleck, who only enhanced his reputation with a upset win over Penn State. The Minnesota head coach is now 9-0 this year, and his team are ranked in the top ten for the first time since 1962.
Fleck recently signed a long-term extension at Minnesota, after being touted for the vacant Florida State job. With other top line programs like Tennessee and USC struggling, it’s clear Fleck will have coaching offers in the years to come. Him and his team have captured the nations attention this year.
5) Baylor Survives TCU
Baylor survived it’s first major test of the season, overcoming TCU 29-23 in triple overtime. Baylor have made a comeback this year, at 9-0 and ranked 12th in the nation. This wasn’t a vintage Baylor performance, but they survived a tough road game with a win.
TCU did a good job stopping the high powered Baylor offense, limiting them to less then 300 total yards. The win keeps Baylor in the Big Ten title hunt, but first they must overcome two very tough games ahead.
6) Tough Schedule for Baylor
Baylor sits at 9-0 atop the Big 12 standings, but their perfect season ends on a much tougher note. They did well to overcome TCU, but now face Oklahoma and Texas in the next two weeks.
The game against Oklahoma should be a high scoring affair, but despite a good offense they can’t match the weapons Oklahoma has. Texas will also be a tough test, despite their 6-3 record. Considering in their last two games Baylor have struggled against 4-5 TCU and 3-6 West Virginia, the next two weeks will show how talented this team really is.
7) Weekend Roundup
This past weekend was arguably the biggest of the season, with plenty more games that had interesting storylines. Oklahoma were a failed two-point conversion away from falling to Iowa State, a loss that would have ruined their faint hopes of a play-off berth.
13th ranked Wisconsin overcame 18th ranked Iowa 24-22. They relied on running back Jonathan Taylor, who gashed the usually stout Iowa defense for 250 yards on 31 carries. Taylor is the focal point of this Wisconsin offense, and they needed every one of those yards to beat Iowa.
8) Chase Young Latest
Heading into last weekend’s games the chatter was surrounding Ohio State player Chase Young. The stud defensive end was suspended this past weekend, pending a NCAA investigation into a loan he acquired from a family friend in 2018.
He says the loan was to buy a plane ticket for his girlfriend to watch him play in the Rose Bowl, and that he paid the loan back swiftly after. Ohio State pummeled Maryland 73-14 without him, but they’ll need him in the play-off run, as he absence could drag on much later in the season.
9) AP Top 25 Poll
The week 12 AP Top 25 poll has been released, with no surprise that LSU is on top. Ohio State is second, with Clemson and Alabama rounding out the top four play-off places. Georgia and Oregon are close behind in fifth and sixth, with Minnesota the biggest riser to seventh. Utah, Penn State and Oklahoma round out the top ten.
Florida, Baylor and Auburn come next, with Michigan staying in 14th. Wisconsin swaps places with Notre Dame to round out the top 15. Texas jumps back into the top 25 in 22nd at 6-3, with Iowa slipping to 23rd. Indiana and Oklahoma State are the other newcomers in 24th and 25th respectively.
10) Arkansas Fires Chad Morris
Sadly another football coach was fired this past weekend, with Arkansas dismissing Chad Morris, less than two years after hiring him. His record was a lowly 4-18, and went winless in 14 SEC games. Since taking over in December 2017, they have been the bottom feeder of the SEC and have made no sign of obvious progress under Morris.
Tight ends coach and special teams coordinator Barry Lunney Jr will serve as interim head coach until the end of the season. Early names being linked with the job include Memphis head coach Mike Norvell, Bill Clark at UAB and Eli Drinkwitz at Appalachian State.
That wraps up my review of week 11 of college football, a massive thank you to everyone who read this blog I really appreciate it. If you have any thoughts either comment below or find me on Twitter @JWjournalism.