Before jumping all in to Week 2, here's a look back at the fun and festivities we’ve seen thus far ...
GOT YOUR HEISMAN RIGHT HERE
Take your pick on a current or former Alabama quarterback – Tua Tagovailoa or Jalen Hurts – and you’d be wrong. Same thing with Clemson prodigy and reigning national champ signal-caller Trevor Lawrence.
You wouldn’t be wrong with choosing Lawrence’s backfield mate, though. Tigers junior tailback Travis Etienne, with his far more publicized teammate really struggling, unloaded against ACC rival Georgia Tech last week, finally showing his full arsenal of speed, power and elusiveness in a positively electric 12-carry, 205-yard, three-TD performance.
Tough to go against Hurts in particular, considering he accounted for 508 total yards and six scores. But, fair or not, the perception is that any QB is going to put up ridiculous numbers in Oklahoma coach Lincoln Riley’s system, and, frankly, the eyes here really didn’t see any difference in his Hurts’ game other than A) opportunities afforded him and B) plays geared toward his strengths.
Etienne’s game jumped off the screen. Hurts’ numbers did.
HEY, YO, WE'RE NUMBER 1
They may never reach the mountaintop in college football, or even get more than a passing, somewhat appreciative glance from the consensus in their own town, but the Temple Owls, for one week at least, reign as the nation’s best offense.
In Rod Carey’s first game as head coach, the Owls racked up the most real estate in the country – 695 yards. That topped American Athletic Conference rival Central Florida by a single yard, Texas Tech by four and Hurts and his fellow Sooners by 9 … and Penn State fans thought their squad had a big-time opening.
Hah, eat your heart out, Nittany Lions Nation … with your boys in blue and their measly 673 yards.
Kidding aside, the excitement around Temple’s effort can be tempered a bit, since it occurred against an FCS-level squad, and a pretty weak in Bucknell at that. Reality check comes next week against Maryland of the Big Ten.
HOT SEAT ... FRONT AND CENTER
Willie Taggart, Florida State: Built a nice program at South Florida, then bolted first chance for greener pastures at Oregon. Lasted one year there before he bolted for what he thought were greener pastures at Florida State. He is now 5-8 with the Seminoles and the, ummm, mastermind behind turning a 31-13 lead last Saturday less than five minutes before halftime – at home, mind you – into a 36-31 loss to Boise State.
Jeff Brohm, Purdue: He was a good player at Louisville, a very good coach at Western Kentucky and always a great interview, which, unfortunately, explains why most treat him as a godsend in West Lafayette, Ind. The reality is, he’s now 13-14 directing the Boilermakers, having lost five of his last seven, including last Saturday’s absolute meltdown at Nevada, which highlighted his stubbornness to adapt even as the walls were closing in, leading to Purdue blowing a 14-point, fourth-quarter lead and losing 34-31 on a 56-yard field goal by now-scholarship kicker Brandon Talton of the Wolfpack.
Will Muschamp, South Carolina: Have never understood why this guy gets, and maintains, head-coaching gigs – at Southeastern Conference schools no less. After managing to turn Florida into a mediocre mess, he somehow lands the job in Columbia, S.C., and has produced just 22 wins in 40 games, last Saturday’s abomination against North Carolina being a classic “effort,” as the Gamecocks completely shut it down in the final 15 minutes, turning an 11-point lead into a 24-20 loss.
Mario Cristobal, Oregon: OK, got it. His reign at Florida International (27-47 record) is kinda hard to hold against him, the school’s program, really, just in its infancy back then, and he did post a 9-4 mark last season. Still, his teams show an annoying habit of collapsing, especially when they’re in position to get that “big win.” Last Saturday’s colossal cave against Auburn was the ultimate case in point as the Ducks, up 21-6 in the third quarter, allowed the Tigers to score the game’s final 21 points. Brutal.
WORTH PRICE OF ADMISSION
Best game of the young season took place last weekend in Winston-Salem, with host Wake Forest prevailing, 38-35, in a back-and-forth battle against Utah State. The Demon Deacons scored the winning TD as Jamie Newman hit Kendall Hilton from two yards out with 1:08 remaining. Newman and the Aggies' Jordan Love, who is being talked about as a potential first-round pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, both threw for 400-plus yards and three TDs. Love, though, also got picked three times while the Deacons only turned over the ball once. The game’s biggest star, ironically enough since the teams combined for better than 1,100 yards of offense, happened to be a defender – Utah State junior linebacker David Woodward, who racked up 24 tackles, 3.5 of 'em for losses, including a sack.