The third-ranked Clemson Tigers proved on Saturday that they are still legitimate National Title contenders even without Deshaun Watson. Quarterback Kelly Bryant threw for one touchdown and ran for two more as they cruised past the 13th-ranked Louisville Cardinals 47-21 on Saturday night. The Tigers' defense was also able to keep Heisman-winning quarterback Lamar Jackson from going off, although he did finish with 381 total yards and three touchdowns in the loss. On the ground, he only finished with 67 yards on 17 carries, as all three touchdowns came through the air. Clemson began to pull away in the second quarter with a couple of field goals and a 79-yard touchdown pass from Bryant to Ray-Ray McCloud for a 19-7 lead at halftime. The Tigers would add four touchdowns in the second half, including a pick-six from Dorian O'Daniel and an 81-yard run from Travis Etienne. Bryant finished the day with a career-high 318 yards passing, as his defense was able to sack Jackson four times on the night. The Tigers out-gained the Cardinals 613-433, as the first-year quarterback Bryant improved to 3-0 with Clemson. He will look to keep that alive at home next week against Boston College, while Louisville looks to rebound when they host Kent State.
Florida Stuns Tennessee With Hail Mary
The Florida Gators haven't played since their season-opening loss to the Michigan Wolverines after their second game was postponed, so a win like they got on Saturday against Tennessee was huge for them. The Gators shocked the Volunteers with a 63-yard Hail Mary touchdown pass from Feleipe Franks to Tyrie Cleveland as time expired for a 26-20 win at home. Franks was able to scramble out of pressure to heave the long pass from the line of scrimmage, which found Cleveland in stride in the end zone for the win. The Gators outscored the Vols 20-17 in the fourth quarter, as they recorded the second 63-yard game-winning touchdown against Tennessee in the past two seasons. In 2015, Will Grier found Antonio Galloway for a game-winning 63-yard score in the final minute, and on Saturday, they gave Tennessee a bad case of deja vu. The Gators recorded their 12th win in the past 13 games against their conference rival, and they avoided their first 0-2 start since 1971. Franks finished with 212 yards and two touchdowns, while the Florida defense intercepted Tennessee quarterback Quinten Dormady three times in the win. The Gators will hit the road for another conference matchup with the Kentucky Wildcats in Week 4, while the Vols will get out of conference play next week to host UMass.
USC Outlasts Texas in Double-Overtime
The USC Trojans knew Saturday would not be easy, even with the recent struggles of the Texas Longhorns' football team. The rivalry between these two teams always produces great games, just look at the 2005 Rose Bowl. Saturday night was just as intense, as it was the kicking game that help the fourth-ranked Trojans survive at home. Kicker Chase McGrath tied the game with a 31-yard field as time expired in the fourth quarter, and then won it with a 43-yard game-winner in the second overtime for a 27-24 over the Longhorns. Sam Darnold threw for 397 yards and three touchdowns in the win, as him and their freshman kicker helped the Trojans improve to 3-0 on the year. Texas suffered their second loss in three games under first-year head coach Tom Herman, as it was a goal-line fumble that set up the game-winner for USC in the second OT. The Trojans have now won 12 in a row overall and 12 straight at home, as wide receiver Deontay Burnett played the role of Darnold's biggest target by catching eight passes for 123 yards. and two touchdowns. McGrath's game-tying and game-winning field goals were the first two of his college career, and they are two that he'll never forget. USC will hit the road next week for a game against Cal, while the Longhorns will have their second straight road test in conference play against Iowa State.