NORMAN, Okla. (AP)Spencer Rattler passed for 304 yards and a touchdown and No. 2 Oklahoma, playing a road game on its home field, narrowly avoided a shocking upset by holding on for a 40-35 victory over Tulane on Saturday.
The opener for both teams was relocated from New Orleans because of Hurricane Ida, and Oklahoma had the Green Wave painted on the 25-yard lines. Sooners fans cheered when Tulane’s players ran into the field before the game.
At the end, they were holding their breath.
The Sooners, who led 40-22 early in the fourth quarter, gave up a pair of touchdowns. Tulane had fourth-and-13 from just short of midfield with just under two minutes to go when quarterback Michael Pratt ran for 12 yards and the Green Wave turned the ball over on downs. The Sooners ran out the clock.
Oklahoma’s Gabe Brkic tied an FBS record with three field goals of 50 or more yards, and Marvin Mims had five catches for 117 yards for the Sooners.
Pratt passed for 296 yards and three touchdowns for the Green Wave. He also ran for another score.
NO. 1 ALABAMA 44, NO. 14 MIAMI 14
ATLANTA (AP) – Looking very much like a team capable of making another run at a national title, No. 1 Alabama opened its season with a rout of Miami behind four touchdown passes from Bryce Young in his first college start.
The sophomore from Southern California completed 27 of 38 for 344 yards, hooking up with Cameron Latu on a pair of scoring plays and burying the Hurricanes with a 94-yard touchdown pass to Jameson Williams early in the third quarter.
Young became the first Alabama quarterback to throw four TD passes in his starting debut. Mac Jones and Joe Namath had shared the school record with three scoring throws to begin their stints as the Tide’s No. 1 QB. Williams, a transfer from Ohio State, had four receptions for 126 yards in his Alabama debut.
The Crimson Tide also turned in a dazzling defensive effort at the home of the NFL’s Atlanta Falcons, sacking D’Eriq King four times, forcing him into three turnovers and stuffing him on a goal-line stand. Alabama led 27-0 before Miami crossed midfield. King and the Hurricanes simply made too many mistakes to compete with perhaps the greatest dynasty in college football history.
NO. 5 GEORGIA 10, NO. 3 CLEMSON 3
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – Christopher Smith returned an interception 74 yards for a touchdown and Georgia turned in a defensive effort for the ages, toppling Clemson.
The Bulldogs held the Tigers to 2 yards rushing and sacked D.J. Uiagalelei seven times to position themselves for a run at the College Football Playoffs.
Uiagalelei finished 19 of 37 for 178 yards with one interception. He bobbled snaps, was out of sync with his receivers and spent most of the day under heavy duress against a relentless Bulldogs pass rush.
Clemson didn’t score until 9:08 left in the game when a 44-yard reception by Joseph Ngata an a defensive pass interference penalty set up a 22-yard field goal by B.T. Potter, helping the Tigers avoid their first shutout since 2003.
MONTANA 13, NO. 20 WASHINGTON 7
SEATTLE (AP) – Montana became the first FCS team to upset a ranked FBS team in five years, shocking Washington.
Montana quarterback Cam Humphrey scored on a 4-yard run early in the fourth quarter, and the Grizzlies added a short field goal with 2:54 left to take a six-point lead.
Needing a touchdown to avoid the stunning upset, Washington’s Dylan Morris was incomplete on fourth-and-2 with 1:33 left giving the ball back to the Grizzlies.
Montana was able to run only 21 seconds, and Kevin Macias’ 50-yard field goal attempt was well short. Given one more chance, Washington reached the Montana 43, but Morris’ pass was intercepted by Montana’s Marcus Welnel with 31 seconds left and those in maroon and silver started a wild celebration.
Montana is the first FCS team to beat a ranked FBS team since North Dakota State won at No. 13 Iowa 23-21 early in the 2016 season, and the fifth time it has happened since Appalachian State’s famous upset of No. 5 Michigan in 2007. It was Montana’s second victory over Washington, the last coming in 1920.
NO. 6 TEXAS A&M 41, KENT STATE 10
COLLEGE STATION, Texas (AP) – Leon O’Neal Jr. had two interceptions, returning the second one 85 yards for a touchdown, and Devon Achane added two scores to Texas A&M beat Kent State.
It’s Texas A&M’s ninth consecutive victory after ending last season with an eight-game winning streak.
O’Neal and Achane’s big performances helped make up for a mistake-riddled night by Haynes King, who threw three interceptions in his first career start.
O’Neal’s first interception came just before halftime when he picked off Dustin Crum’s pass in the end zone. With about eight minutes left in the third, O’Neal jumped in front of a receiver for his second pick. He weaved around a couple of Kent State players and dashed untouched for the score, capping the play by diving into the end zone to make it 20-3.
King was 21 of 33 for 292 yards and threw two touchdown passes to Ainias Smith.
NO. 7 IOWA STATE 16, NORTHERN IOWA 10
AMES, Iowa (AP) – Datrone Young had a big interception with 2:05 left in the fourth quarter and Iowa State staved off upset-minded Northern Iowa to avoid becoming the just the second top-10 team to lose to a team from Division I’s second-tier.
Iowa State was in danger of joining Michigan as the only top-10 team to lose to an FCS opponent, a memorable upset by Appalachian State in 2007.
Having survived the opening close-call, Iowa State will likely head into its rivalry game next week against No. 18 Iowa ranked for the first time in the history of the series.
Brock Purdy completed 21 of 26 passes for 197 yards, but the Cyclones were kept off-balance by a defense that returned all of its starters. Breece Hall, who led the nation with nine 100-yard games last year, was held to 69 yards on 23 carries.
Northern Iowa had two chances with the ball after Connor Assalley’s 21-yard field goal put the Cyclones up 16-10 with 6:18 left.
NO. 19 PENN STATE 16, NO. 12 WISCONSIN 10
MADISON, Wis. (AP) – Jaquan Brisker and Ji’Ayir Brown had interceptions deep in Penn State territory in the final 2 1/2 minutes to help the Nittany Lions beat Wisconsin.
Wisconsin had its string of 25 consecutive victories in home openers snapped because of its red-zone failures. The Badgers dominated time of possession but had four scoreless trips inside Penn State’s 25, including three inside the 10.
The Badgers had first-and-goal at the 1 late on a drive that included a targeting penalty on Ellis Brooks that knocked Penn State’s top tackler out of the game. On fourth down, Graham Mertz attempted a pass across the middle to tight end Jake Ferguson, but Brisker picked it off and delivered a 41-yard return with 2:16 remaining.
Wisconsin got the ball back on its own 18 with 1:11 left and got to the Penn State 25 with 26 seconds remaining. After an intentional grounding call pushed Wisconsin back to the 32, Brown intercepted Mertz’ pass on the final play.
NO. 11 OREGON 31, FRESNO STATE 24
EUGENE, Ore. (AP) – Anthony Brown scored on a 30-yard quarterback keeper with 2:57 left and Oregon beat Fresno State.
Oregon jumped to a 21-6 lead, but Fresno State (1-1) scored two straight touchdowns to tie it midway through the third quarter, then took the lead early in the fourth on Abraham Montano’s field goal.
A fumble recovery gave Oregon the ball at the Fresno State 32, but the Ducks settled for Camden Lewis’ 25-yard field goal to tie it before Brown’s go-ahead touchdown.
Brown threw for 172 yards and a touchdown and ran for 62 yards.
NO. 13 FLORIDA 35, FLORIDA ATLANTIC 14
GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) – Emory Jones’ first career start included a touchdown pass and two interceptions in Florida’s victory over Florida Atlantic.
Jones was far from sharp in the Swamp, but the fourth-year junior had some moments to build on moving forward. He did much of his damage with his legs, finishing with 74 of the team’s 400 yards rushing.
His backup, Anthony Richardson, looked more ready for the spotlight. Richardson ran seven times for 160 yards, including a 73-yard score late in the game and an 11-yarder in which he broke three tackles and hurdled another defender. He was 3-for-8 passing for 40 yards.
Malik Davis had 104 yards and a touchdown on the ground, the second time he’s hit the century mark, and the first since his freshman year in 2017. Dameon Pierce ran for two scores.
NO. 15 SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA 30, SAN JOSE STATE 7
LOS ANGELES (AP) – Drake London caught a career-high 12 passes for 137 yards, Greg Johnson returned a late interception 37 yards for a touchdown and Southern California pulled away to beat San Jose State.
Kedon Slovis passed for 256 yards and two touchdowns, with more than half of his completions finding their way to the dominant London. Slovis also hit Tahj Washington with a 29-yard touchdown pass in the first half, but the rest of USC’s passing game struggled until the Trojans’ final surge.
Erik Krommenhoek made a sliding 20-yard TD catch with 2:07 to play for USC, which outscored the Spartans 17-0 in the fourth quarter.
Nick Starkel passed for 308 yards and Tyler Nevens rushed for a touchdown for the Spartans, who trounced Southern Utah in their season opener last week.
UCLA 38, NO. 16 LSU 27
PASADENA, Calif. (AP) – Dorian Thompson-Robinson threw for 260 yards and three touchdowns, Zach Charbonnet added 117 rushing yards and a score and UCLA beat LSU.
Thompson-Robinson completed 9 of 16 passes and had an interception. Tight end Greg Dulich had 117 yards receiving, including a 75-yard touchdown catch early in the second quarter to tie it at 7.
It is the first time in 13 years a Pac-12 team has defeated a ranked Southeastern Conference squad. Coincidentally, UCLA was the last to do it, when it beat Tennessee in 2008. The Bruins are 2-0 for the first time since 2017 and could be ranked for the first time since 2015 when the AP Top 25 is released on Tuesday.
NO. 18 CINCINNATI 49, MIAMI OF OHIO 14
CINCINNATI (AP) – Desmond Ridder was 20 of 25 for 295 yards and four touchdowns and Cincinnati beat Miami of Ohio.
The Bearcats tied the series that began in 1888 at 59-59-7.
Ridder threw an 81-yard touchdown pass to Tyler Scott on the second play from scrimmage. It was the longest TD toss of his career. Ridder also ran six times for 31 yards, including a 25-yard touchdown carry.
Jerome Ford added 121 yards rushing yards on 12 carries, scoring on a 21-yard run in the second quarter.
NO. 18 IOWA 34, NO. 17 INDIANA 6
IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) – Riley Moss returned two first-half interceptions for touchdowns and Iowa beat Indiana.
Iowa intercepted three of Michael Penix, Jr.’s passes and had a fourth wiped out by a roughing-the-passer call.
Tyler Goodson rushed for 99 yards and a touchdown for the Hawkeyes. Spencer Petras had a 9-yard touchdown run, and completed 13 of 27 passes for 145 yards.
It was the seventh consecutive win for the Hawkeyes dating to last season. It was only the third loss for Indiana in its last 18 season openers.
NO. 21 TEXAS 38, NO. 23 LOUISIANA-LAFAYETTE 18
AUSTIN, Texas (AP) – Bijan Robinson scored twice and Hudson Card threw two touchdown passes in his first career start, leading Texas past Louisiana-Lafayette in coach Steve Sarkisian’s Longhorns debut.
Robinson scored Texas’ first touchdown on a pass from Card in the first quarter, then punched in another on a 7-yard run on the first possession of the third that put Texas ahead 21-6. Robinson finished with 176 total yards rushing and receiving in the kind of all-around game Sarkisian had promised to use.
Card, a second-year freshman who won the starting job over fourth-year player Casey Thompson, was 14-of-21 passing for 224 yards and no interceptions. He also scrambled out of pressure well and had a 3-yard touchdown run in the third quarter after Louisiana closed to 21-12.
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