RISING: Kansas rose and fell in the same game. The Jayhawks opened a 24-0 lead on Southeast Missouri, but needed to recover an onside kick with about 90 seconds remaining to preserve a 34-28 victory. If coach Charlie Weis wants to feel upbeat, he’ll watch the first-half tape. If he wants to sound alarms, he’ll watch the second half.
FALLING: Texas didn’t think it could get worse than last year’s 19-point loss at Brigham Young. But it did. The Longhorns fell 41-7 as the Cougars ran away in the second half. Texas has plenty of problems on offense, but there are fewer excuses for a defense that surrendered 429 yards and three rushing touchdowns by quarterback Taysom Hill.
RISING: More than 104,000 clicked to turnstiles at renovated and expanded Kyle Field in College Station, Texas. They had to wait an additional two hours because of a weather delay to watch Texas A&M pound Lamar 73-3. Quarterback Kenny Hill, who starred in his debut against South Carolina, found SpeedyNoil for a 44-yard touchdown pass on his first attempt and finished with 283 passing yards and three touchdowns.
FALLING: The task is greater than expected for Vanderbilt coach Derek Mason. The 41-3 loss to Mississippi makes it 78-10 in two games with no offensive touchdowns. That’s the worst start in two games for the Commodores since 1998.
RISING: Virginia Tech scored the biggest road victory in coach Frank Beamer’s 28 seasons in Blacksburg. The Hokies topped then-No. 8 Ohio State 35-21 behind quarterback Michael Brewer’s 199 yards passing and two touchdowns. Tech had never defeated a higher-ranked team on the road. The loss is the Buckeyes’ third in the last four games, dating to last year, after winning 24 straight.
FALLING: Boston College looked to get league play off to a good start at home, but Pittsburgh running back James Conner set the tone and stayed in control after the early moments in the Panthers’ 30-20 victory on Friday. The 250-pound Conner rolled to 213 yards in 25 carries.
RISING: Maryland coach Randy Edsall didn’t need much time to think about it. He had never won a game in his career when his team committed six turnovers. But that’s what happened in the Terrapins’ 24-17 victory at South Florida. Defense was a key. The Terps limited freshman Marlon Mack, who rushed for 275 yards last week against Western Carolina, to 73.
FALLING: Michigan was overmatched by Notre Dame in a 31-0 loss. It would have been 38-0, but an Irish pick six on the final play was wiped out by a late-hit penalty. Still, it’s a shame this rivalry has come to an end.
RISING: With 21 points in a 5-minute span in the second half sparked by quarterback Marcus Mariota, Oregon ran away from Michigan State. The Ducks went from nine down to 12 up and went on to a 46-27 victory. The Spartans had won their last three games when it trailed by double digits. Not this time.
FALLING: Stanford took the home loss to Southern California 13-10, but the behavior of Trojans athletic director Pat Haden also made headlines. Haden received a text from a USC staff member on the sideline suggesting he come down to the field after Steve Sarkisian received an unsportsmanlike-conduct penalty. Haden left the press box, came to the sideline and spoke to the officials. The move was unusual, but it’s also a bad look for Haden, a member of the College Football Playoff selection committee. Such business needs to be conducted after a game, not during.
RISING: Central Michigan is 2-0 for the first time since 2002, and the Chippewas are savoring how they got there. Central took down Purdue 38-17 behind Thomas Rawls’ 155 rushing yards and quarterback Cooper Rush’s efficient play. Meanwhile, the Boilermakers committed three turnovers and never led in the game at West Lafayette, Ind.
FALLING: Fresno State was pounded at Utah 59-27, but the Bulldogs have this going for them: Wwith losses by Stanford and Ohio State, Fresno State now has college football’s longest home-field winning streak. It will get a test this weekend when Nebraska visits.
| Blair Kerkhoff, firstname.lastname@example.org