Arkansas — The Razorbacks stamped themselves as legitimate contenders in the SEC with a 31–24 win over Georgia in Athens. Arkansas rolled up 433 yards of offense (averaging 7.7 yards per snap) and did not commit a turnover. This week, No. 1 Alabama visits Fayetteville in a game that will go a long way in deciding the winner of the SEC West.
Arizona — The Wildcats notched a huge intersectional win over Iowa Saturday night in Tucson. Nick Foles was very good at quarterback (303 yards, two TDs), but the story of the game was the Arizona defensive front. The Cats held Iowa’s top two tailbacks (Adam Robinson and Jewel Hampton) to a combined 35 net yards on 17 carries and sacked Ricky Stanzi six times, including three straight times on Iowa’s second-to-last possession.
Nebraska — Winning at Washington was not a surprise — the Huskers were a three-point favorite — but you have to be impressed with how easily Nebraska disposed of the Huskies. Bo Pelini’s club rolled up 533 yards of offense, including 383 on the ground, en route to a 56–21 win. In old-school Nebraska fashion, three Huskers topped the 100-yard mark — quarterback Taylor Martinez (137) and tailbacks Roy Helu (110) and Rex Burkhead (104).
Disappointments of the Week
California — Just when we thought the Golden Bears were ready to be a factor in the Pac-10, they get torched by Nevada for 497 yards and 52 points in a nationally televised Friday night game on ESPN. The Bears moved the ball with ease (277 yards passing, 225 rushing) but lost the turnover battle 3-to-1 and had no answer for Nevada quarterback Colin Kaepernick.
Connecticut — The Huskies are 0–0 in the Big East, but this doesn’t look like a team capable of contending for a league title. They dropped to 1–2 overall (the lone win is vs. an FCS opponent) with a disheartening 30–16 loss to Temple in Philadelphia. Jordan Todman ran well for UConn (192 yards on 26 carries), but quarterback Zach Frazer was not very efficient, completing 16-of-31 passes for 150 yards (4.8 yards per attempt) and no touchdowns.
Kansas — The Jayhawks’ roller-coaster ride continued with a 31–16 loss at Southern Miss. Kansas rebounded from a season-opening defeat at home to South Dakota with a surprising win over Georgia Tech in Week 2, but Turner Gill’s club got ambushed in Hattiesburg Friday night. KU managed only 274 yards against a USM defense that gave up 449 to South Carolina two weeks ago.
Player of the Week
Ryan Mallett, Arkansas — Quarterback Ryan Mallett was spectacular in the Hogs’ win at Georgia, completing 21-of-33 passes for 380 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions.
Freshman of the Week
Ronnie Hillman, San Diego State — It came in a losing effort, but Hillman was terrific Saturday night, rushing for 228 yards and two touchdowns on 23 carries in the Aztecs’ 27–24 defeat at Missouri. The 5-10, 175-pound Hillman, who missed last season due to eligibility issues, has rushed for 378 yards the last two weeks.
• Ole Miss is the only team in the country that has played three games — and played at least one on the road — that is winless at home (Jacksonville State, Vanderbilt) and undefeated on the road (Tulane).
• Miami (Ohio) won its first game by double-figures since October 2007, beating Colorado State 31–10 in Oxford.
• Colorado State finally scored its first touchdown of the season, a 6-yard toss from Pete Smith to Matt Yemm with 1:14 remaining in the fourth quarter of the Rams’ third game.
• Oklahoma State quarterbacks Brandon Weeden and Clint Chelf combined to complete passes to 13 different receivers in the Cowboys’ 65–28 win over Tulsa.
• Vanderbilt had two one-play scoring drives (an 80-yard run from Warren Norman and a 15-yard run from quarterback Larry Smith) and also scored on a pick-six in a 28–14 win over Ole Miss. The Commodores have now won four of their last six vs. the Rebels.
• LSU quarterback Jordan Jefferson has thrown for less than 100 yards in each of the last two games.
• Stanford scored at least 13 points in all four quarters of its 68–24 win over Wake Forest. The Cardinal have now scored in double-figures in eight of 12 quarters this season.
• UMass completed 22-of-29 pass attempts for 222 yards in its 42–37 loss at Michigan.