Penn State and TCU lost, and now College Football Playoff Committee members are busy reshuffling the order of teams in their initial 2017 rankings to be released this Tuesday night.
Ohio State staged quite a dramatic comeback in front of its home crowd, eking out a 39-38 win over Penn State. The Nittany Lions led 21-3 just minutes into the 2nd quarter. They still held a 35-20 advantage going into the final quarter. And when Ohio State scored with 4:20 to play, Penn State was still ahead 38-33. But the Nittany Lions lost 4 yards on a 3-and-out possession to set up the winning drive for the Buckeyes. It was the first loss for Penn State.
TCU also suffered its first loss, falling to 14-7 Iowa State. The Cyclones improved to 6-2 overall, 4-1 in the Big 12, and became bowl eligible for the first time since 2012. The Horned Frogs had been averaging 41.5 points and 466 yards to per game. Iowa State held them to a kick return touchdown and just 307 total yards. Together with its earlier win at Oklahoma, Iowa State has been a one-team wrecking crew on the Big 12's chances to get a team in the postseason Final Four playoff.
USF was the third unbeaten team to fall on Saturday as Houston invaded Tampa and took home a 28-24 win. That ended the Bulls' 12-game winning streak and, together with Miami's 24-19 defeat of North Carolina, makes the Hurricane's current 12-game winning streak the longest in the FBS.
Going into the weekend, my Congrove Computer Rankings had Penn State ranked 2nd, TCU 6th and USF 9th. The updated rankings will be released Sunday morning.
Other interesting games around the nation include Boston College whipping Florida State 35-3 on Friday night. The Seminoles, who were a consensus preseason pick to be in the final four, are now 2-5 overall, and just 2-4 in the ACC.
No. 15 Notre Dame trailed 14-7 early, then outscored 17th-ranked N.C. State 28-0 for the 35-14 win. The Wolfpack entered the contest on a 6-game winning streak. The Fighting Irish have now won 6-in-a-row and continue to put themselves in better position for Final Four inclusion.
Air Force handed Colorado State its first Mountain West loss, 45-28. Fresno State also lost a conference game for the first time this season as the Bulldogs fell 26-16 at home to UNLV.
UMass picked up a second straight win over a Sun Belt team when the Minutemen edged Appalachian State 30-27 in double-overtime. Last week, UMass blasted Georgia Southern 55-20 and triggered the firing of that team's head coach, Tyson Summers.
Tennessee lost 29-26 at Kentucky and the Vols fell to 0-5 in the SEC and just 3-5 over-all. The Wildcats improved to 7-2 overall and 3-2 in the SEC.
5th-ranked Georgia routed Florida 42-7 in Jacksonville and reports quickly circulated that the Gators were looking into the possibility of a "with cause" firing, or a reduced buyout of Jim McElwain's contract. By Sunday afternoon, McElwain was out and defensive coordinator Randy Shannon was named interim head coach.
Louisville fell 42-32 at Wake Forest. Heisman Trophy winning QB Lamar Jackson and the Cardinals have won just 5 of their last 12 games.
Elsewhere, top-ranked Alabama was idle, No. 3 Wisconsin won 24-10 at Illinois, and No. 8 Clemson downed No. 21 Georgia Tech 24-10.
Eastern Michigan may be the best 2-6 team in the country (0-4, MAC). The Eagles lost in overtime for the third time this season, falling 30-27 at Northern Illinois on Thursday after losing 20-17 last week to Western Michigan in overtime. They also lost 27-20 to Ohio in double-overtime on September 23. EMU's other 3 losses were by 5 points or less.
After winning 30-12 at Southern Miss on Saturday, UAB is just one win away from becoming bowl eligible in its first season back on the football field after a 2-year hiatus. The school shut down the program after the 2014 season to save money, but was resurrected after alumni and businesses provided a substantial boost. The Blazers were bowl eligible that year with a 6-6 record, but shut the program before they could accept a bid. It would have been just their second-ever bowl appearance, and first since 2004.
There was one FBS vs. FCS battle this week as Central Florida crushed Austin Peay 73-33. FBS teams are 83-9 (.902) vs. the FCS this season, and 1,213-117 (.912) since 2003.
These are the FCS victories in 2017:
September 23: Western Illinois 52, Coastal Carolina 10
September 16: North Carolina A&T 35, Charlotte 31
September 16: Idaho State 30, Nevada 28
September 9: South Dakota 35. Bowling Green 27
September 9: New Hampshire 22, Georgia Southern 12
September 2: Liberty 48, Baylor 45
September 2: Howard 43, UNLV 40
September 2: James Madison 34, East Carolina 14
August 31: Tennessee State 17, Georgia State 10.
98 FBS teams are playing 98 games vs. FCS members this year, down substantially from the 110 FBS schools that played 113 games vs. FCS squads last year.
Alabama - Won 39 straight regular season nonconference games (FBS longest). Won 17 straight home games (FBS longest). Won 13 straight road games (tied for FBS longest). Won 22 straight conference games (FBS longest). Idle this week.
Oklahoma - Won14 straight road games (tied for FBS longest). won 49-27 vs. Texas Tech on Saturday.
South Florida - Its 12-game winning streak had been the current FBS longest, but the Bulls lost 28-24 to Houston on Saturday.
Miami (Fla.) - Won 12 straight overall (FBS longest). Won 24-19 vs. North Carolina on Saturday.
Texas State - Its 13-game conference losing streak had been the current FBS longest, but the Bobcats won 27-7 at Coastal Carolina on Saturday,
Coastal Carolina - Lost 11 straight conference games (tied FBS longest). Lost 27-7 vs. Texas State on Saturday.
Baylor - Lost 11 straight conference games (tied FBS longest). Lost 38-7 vs. Texas on Saturday.
Kansas - Lost 45 straight road games (FBS longest). Lost 30-20 at Kansas State on Saturday.