Week one of college football got off to a wild start as some things went as expected and some results we're as surprise.
Nebraska 37, Wyoming 34- This is a game I was sitting in the North Endzone section for and the view wasn't pretty. Nebraska allowed Wyoming to come back from a 37-21 and make the game close in the end. This team, especially the defensive side, has a lot of work to do. Wyoming racked up 602 total yards on a defense that was supposed to show it's "experience". As I was leaving the stadium, there wasn't the usual post-win chatter and cheering you hear after a Huskers win. The fans making their way back across the campus to their cars were almost in a fog- and it wasn't just the early September mugginess.
The common thought was that if Wyoming can come in to a record crowd of nearly 92,000 and almost steal a victory, what is going to happen against UCLA? What about Northwestern, Michigan and Michigan State?
Talk in the Omaha World Herald brought up Nebraska offensive coordinator Tim Beck being too conservative-something he admitted to. The play that brought that into question came with just over seven minutes left in the game when a Taylor Martinez pass was picked off, which resulted in a Wyoming touchdown two plays later.
Beck may have the best receiving core in the conference (with the exception of Ohio State) and I could understand the point of view of being "too conservative", but they were in field goal range. A field goal is better than a turnover. Heck, a missed field goal is still better than throwing an interception and having the other team get better field position.
The bottom line is this. Nebraska survived, but we have to get a lot sharper in every phase of the game going forward or else its going to be a long season.
Texas A&M 51, Rice 28- Just when it was starting to get back to football as usual at College Station, Johnny Manziel took the spotlight away from his team and put it on himself once again. Manziel had numerous instances of post-play jawing with Rice. That's college football- I get it. Here's the thing, Manziel was suspended for the first half of the game for the whole autograph for money saga. So, right on que, Manziel makes the action like he's signing an autograph after throwing a touchdown pass. He also flashed his money symbol- rubbing the thumb and two fingers together. He did this at times last year, but this year is different. He's under a bigger microscope- a different spotlight.
Coach Kevin Sumnlin told reporters after the game that he thought Manziel would have learned something by now. So did the rest of America. Now, like the majority of America, I'm under the assumption that he learned absolutely nothing. After seeing that display out there against Rice, I'm convinced he signed every single piece of merchandise that crossed his eyes.
All he seems to care about is himself.
I praise Kevin Sumlin for taking him out of the game following his unsportsmanlike conduct calls and not putting him back in. If I were the coach, if he steps out of line one more time, he's benched for the season. I will not continue to put someone out there at the most important position on the offense if not the entire field, who is only concerned about himself. He's supposed to be a leader, a role model. If the university would step in and stop me from doing so, I'd resign. If I were an offensive lineman, I'd be one more step away from boycutting blocking for him and transferring to another school.
He needs to grow up. He's 20 years old and he needs to grow up fast.
Clemson 38, Georgia 35
This was one of the more exciting if not the most exciting game of the weekend as Clemson put Georgia on the losing track to start the season and Tahj Boyd thrust himself into the Heisman conversation. He passed for 270 yards and three touchdowns while star wide receiver Sammy Watkins brought in six catches for 127 yards and a touchdown.
Clemson likely won't be challenged like that again until they host Flordia State on Oct. 19 and then again in the season finale against South Carolina Nov. 30.
The Tigers will be a tough out this season.
Alabama 35, Virgina Tech 10
Alabama started the season off in dominating fashion. If they can survive Johhny Manziel and the Aggies next week, their path is clear to the SEC Title and a 3rd straight National Championship.
Also of note, Northern Iowa topped Iowa State 28-20, Eastern Washington clipped Oregon State 49-46, North Dakota State took down Kansas State 24-21 and LSU held off TCU 37-27.
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