LSU knew that a visit to Auburn, no matter how bad the Tigers were doing this season, wasn’t going to be an easy one. In terms of offense it was ugly, but a 12-10 win at Jordan-Hare is nothing to complain about. Meanwhile, the national champions, Alabama, had no problem against Florida Atlantic in another easy win, this time 40-7.
The big moves and shakers in the poll standings were in the ACC and Big 12. Florida State didn’t show that incredible defense it had during the first three weeks, but at the moment, Clemson is the biggest opposition they can get in the ACC, and the Seminoles came back from a bad first quarter with some incredible offense, led by EJ Manuel, who finished with 380 yards and two touchdown passes. Tajh Boyd had a good game with three touchdown passes, but the Clemson quarterback was intercepted with 8:41 left, giving Chris Thompson a chance to score a touchdown and give Florida State a 49-31 lead, which was held despite the late touchdown from the Tigers.
Jimbo Fisher has himself a national contender at the moment, probably keeping their number 4 spot in the nation. The Seminoles have been looking impressive, but Oregon were probably even more, as the most exciting offense to watch in the nation shredded through Rich Rodriguez and his Arizona Wildcats, winning 49-0.
The turnovers killed for Arizona, losing the ball five times during the game, leading to two touchdowns straight off the interceptions, while the Ducks didn’t even need De’Anthony Thomas to have a good game, as he was held to only 48 yards on 12 carries and caught two passes for 11 yards, not scoring a single touchdown. When the opponents do all the work for you, there’s no need to be as explosive as usual.
The Big 12 provided the next poll shaker, as Kansas State, momentarily, positioned itself as possibly the best in the conference, with an impressive display of time consumption and defense against the Oklahoma Sooners, who were ranked number 6 in the nation before losing a very rare home game. The Wildcats forced two fumbles and an interception off Oklahoma quarterbacks, while Collin Klein and John Hubert ate up the clock with the running game. Their defense held Oklahoma to only 88 yards on 27 carries, leading to a 24-19 win.
Another big “we’re here” statement was made by Notre Dame, beating a Michigan school for the second straight week, with another impressive defensive stand. Denard Robinson threw four interceptions and fumbled another ball, which made Manti Te’o‘s two interceptions look much less important. The Wolverines gained more yards and had more time of possession, but simply couldn’t do anything with the ball, failing to get in the end zone in their second loss to a ranked opponents this season, this time 13-6. Notre Dame have won at least 10 games when the season was over the last four times they started 4-0, a first since 2002.
The impressive scoreline this weekend came from Nebraska, who beat Idaho State 73-7, which shouldn’t give the Cornhuskers that much of a boost from 25, seeing as they didn’t have much of an opposition. Nebraska scored off interceptions and a punt return, while gaining 385 yards on the ground against the Bengals, with both Rex Burkhead and Imani Cross running for over 100 yards.
Next to fall? Out of the teams looking worthy of a national title bid (Alabama, LSU, Oregon, Florida State and maybe Georgia), LSU’s week 6 trip to Florida seems like the trickiest fixture to get through, while Georgia visit South Carolina. Next week has Alabama and LSU playing easy games at home, while Oregon travel to Washington State and Florida State travel to play against South Florida.