SEC

Conference Call: Blair Kerkhoff's rundown of the college football weekend

Updated: 2013-09-09T13:29:23Z

By BLAIR KERKHOFF

The Kansas City Star

Big 12

• RISING: Baylor became the first Football Bowl Subdivision team to score 28 points in the first quarter of successive games since Oklahoma in 2008 in its 70-13 romp over Buffalo. “It was impressive,” Bulls coach Jeff Quinn said of the Bears’ more than one-point-per-minute offense.

• FALLING: Will Texas regroup or unravel? After a 40-21 bludgeoning at Brigham Young, defensive coordinator Manny Diaz was fired and replaced by Greg Robinson. Yes, that Greg Robinson. Things don’t get easier with Mississippi coming to Austin this week.

SEC

• RISING: How ’bout them Dawgs? Georgia ran over South Carolina 41-30 and had Gamecocks coaches quarreling on the sideline and star defensive lineman Jadeveon Clowney openly frustrated because he’s says he’s not being used properly. The Bulldogs snapped a three-year losing streak to their nemesis and returned to the national championship picture.

• FALLING: Florida committed five turnovers in its 21-16 loss at Miami. Four were in Hurricanes territory and three were in the red zone. “I was careless with the ball,” said Gators quarterback Jeff Driskel, who threw two picks and fumbled once.

Atlantic Coast

• RISING: Miami followed Clemson’s lead of a week earlier and downed an SEC heavyweight. The Hurricanes beat Florida 21-16 in a mistake-filled game. Still, this was another big moment for a conference looking for respect.

• FALLING: Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota went 71 yards for a touchdown on the first series, and the Ducks were well on their way to a 59-10 whomping of Virginia. This was a dispiriting performance after the Cavaliers knocked off Brigham Young the previous week.

Big Ten

• RISING: Michigan took care of business in Notre Dame’s final scheduled visit to the Big House, winning 41-30 in front of the largest crowd (115,109) to witness a college football game. But what to make of the Brent Musburger/Kirk Herbstreit interview with Eminem? Awkward. Even Marshall Mathers was weirded out: “I’m really uncomfortable right now,” he said. We all were, Slim Shady, we all were.

• FALLING: Navy’s option is the off-speed pitch of college football, and Indiana swung at one in the dirt for strike three. The Hoosiers fell at home 41-35, allowing 444 rushing yards.

Pac-12

• RISING: The points came early and often for Utah in a 70-7 thumping of Weber State. Quarterback Travis Wilson accounted for five touchdowns and has put up terrific numbers (73.7 percent, five touchdowns) in two games.

• FALLING: As we scold Southern California and Texas, remember they did give us one of the greatest games of all-time, in the Rose Bowl for 2005. But both program suffered reputation-damaging losses Saturday, with the Trojans losing to Washington State 10-7 in Los Angeles. The quarterback carousel — Cody Kessler started the first two games, Max Wittek has relieved in both — is not working. And USC fans, upset with head coach Lane Kiffin, chanted “Fire Kiffin” throughout the game.

American Athletic

• RISING: Houston beat Temple 22-13 in its first conference game. That’s a good sign for the Cougars. They were champions in their first years in the Southwest Conference (1976) and Conference USA (1996).

• FALLING: Cincinnati quarterback Munchie Legaux suffered a terrible leg injury in the loss to Illinois. Bearcats athletic director Whit Babcock tweeted late Saturday that Legaux’s family was on its way from New Orleans to be with their son. That’s never an encouraging sign for a quick recovery.

Others

• RISING: Bowling Green got its Mid-American Conference season off to a fast start with a 41-22 victory at Kent State. The big play was a 92-yard bomb from Matt Johnson to Ryan Burbrink. Kent State was without its top offensive threat, running back Dri Archer, who had an ankle injury.

• FALLING: It’s going to be a tough transition year for Georgia State in its first season as an FBS program. The Panthers lost their second straight game to an FCS team, this time Chattanooga 42-14. Oh, Georgia State visits Alabama on Oct. 5.

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