Happy Monday, everybody! It's Holly, your intrepid sports corgi-spondent here, recapping another exciting weekend in college football.
Boy, what a weekend it was. We had critical divisional matchups, tense-fought rivalry games, and as always - a few unexpected results. There were exciting moments across the nation in Week 7, but I think we're all going to end up focusing on the obvious, ground-shaking highlight of the weekend:
UTAH STATE 52, #21 BOISE STATE 26
I mean, what a shocker! Conventional wisdom had Boise State making another run through a relatively light Mountain West schedule to an undefeated season and a shot at a New Year's Six bowl. Once Utah State's Chuckie Keeton went down in Week 3 with a knee sprain, this game looked unlikely to change that.
Then Friday night rolled around, and the Aggies steamrolled the Broncos for their first win in the rivalry in 18 years, fueled by Boise State's eight overall turnovers, including seven in the first half alone.
And hey, speaking of costly turnovers -
[HOLLY'S MANAGER STEPS IN] HEY LOOK AT THIS PICTURE FROM WHEN YOU WERE A PUPPY
Oh man, I was awfully cute back then. What was I saying? I lost my train of thought. Moving on.
#6 LSU 35, #8 FLORIDA 28
This matchup was expected to be pivotal in determining both SEC divisional races, and it certainly didn't disappoint. Saturday night in Death Valley is always exciting, and despite a respectably strong showing by the Gators, it wasn't enough to pull out what would've been a very tough road win. The Tigers finally put it away when Les Miles went to his bag of tricks for a fake field goal touchdown that wound up being the decisive score.
And hey, speaking of the importance of special teams play -
HOLLY'S MANAGER: LOOK HOLLY, MORE PUPPY PHOTOS
Hey, I'm trying to recap the games here. Aw, I was a charmer, though.
#1 OHIO STATE 38, PENN STATE 10
At the same time that that SEC bash-up was happening, James Franklin's Nittany Lions were prowling into Columbus, hoping to knock off the wobbly top dog at a "blackout" game in Ohio Stadium. Despite Urban Meyer's quarterback rotation continuing to spin, the Buckeyes settled in behind JT Barrett for a comfortable win.
And hey, speaking of secondary rivalries in the Big Ten -
MANAGER: BOY THERE SURE ARE A LOT OF THESE
I remember that day. It was my first trip to the park and I was trying to eat pine needles.
OREGON 26, WASHINGTON 20
This game might've looked better on paper before the season started, but even with Oregon uncharacteristically struggling this year, it's still a rivalry game and anything can happen. Washington came in with big hopes of breaking a long streak of futility against the suddenly-vulnerable Ducks, but Vernon Adams Jr. looked solid returning from injury, and the Ducks pushed their streak over the Huskies to 12 years straight.
And hey, speaking of teams that failed in their best chance to break a losing streak to a riva-
MANAGER: [just grunts, shoves more puppy photos out]
Gosh I keep getting distracted here. I feel like there's a big bullet point I'm missing.
RUTGERS 55, INDIANA 52
Okay, enough talking about good teams. Let's talk about Rutgers, who shocked the Hoosiers by rallying from a 25-point deficit, scoring 22 in the fourth quarter en route to a 55-52 victory that was closed out by Kyle Federico's field goal as time expired.
And hey, speaking of dramatic, last-second victori-
MANAGER, exasperated: HOLLY, THIS ISN'T A GOOD IDEA
Ah, I remember when I had to sleep in the crate so I wouldn't make a mess. It was roomy when I was six pounds, though. There's some other mess I meant to talk about, though. Oh well, it'll come to me.
#11 FLORIDA STATE 41, LOUISVILLE 21
It doesn't seem like we've spent much time talking about the Seminoles this season, but they're still undefeated, and passed another potential challenge against the visiting Cardinals on Saturday. Louisville has disappointed this year, and coach Bobby Petrino hinted at lineup changes after the Noles dominated in the second half in this one. In the end, no amount of tinkering with the 2-4 Louisville roster might've been enough to hold back a team with Heisman candidate Dalvin Cook, who low-key added another 223 all-purpose yards and two scores to his already sparkling resume.
And hey, speaking of still-undefeated teams who've made major bowls in the last few years that we'd all sort of started to count out but are staying quietly strong in part due to the play of offensive stars with the surname Cook -
MANAGER: HOLLY, ARE YOU TRYING TO GET US KILLED
Aw, this was the day we came home. We ended up getting stuck overnight at a motel in rural Pennsylvania on the way back because of a freak whiteout snowstorm...but it just goes to show, things don't always go as planned, especially in Big Ten Country.
#10 ALABAMA 41, #9 TEXAS A&M 23
The Aggies came in with high hopes here, but Derrick Henry's 236 yards and two TDs were supplemented by the Tide defense running back three pick-sixes in a big SEC west clash in College Station.
And hey, speaking of defensive touchdowns by teams Nick Saban has coached currently or in the past-
MANAGER: OH COME ON THAT'S A PRETTY BIG STRETCH, IT'S JUST MEAN TO EVEN TRY TO SHOEHORN IT IN
*sigh* FINE. Alright well let's move on to my player profile. This is the place where, each week, I represent for my short-legged brethren by celebrating the work of a player who's under six feet tall. This week, we have an extra-special entry, in a player who performed valiantly and sacrificed himself in the process:
SHORT LEGS, TALL ORDER: 5'11" DB JALEN WATTS-JACKSON, MICHIGAN ST-
MANAGER, in an Alvin and the Chipmunks tone of indignation: HOLLLLLLLLL-Y!
Hey, listen, pal, can you just let me get through my column here? You write your nonsensical claptrap all week, Mondays are when *I* get to talk.
Besides, it's about time someone finished off their task without dropping the ba-
MANAGER, walking out door: You're on your own, Holly.