Florida stuns Tennessee as rivalry heats up late
Feleipe Franks heaved a 63-yard touchdown pass to Tyrie Cleveland as the clock expired, and No. 24 Florida beat 23rdranked Tennessee 26-20 in a wild, wacky and sometimes unwatchable rivalry game Saturday.
Franks scrambled away from the rush on a first-and-10 play with 9 seconds left and found Cleveland behind safety Micah Abernathy for a Hail Mary that no one, especially the visiting Volunteers, saw coming.
The final play capped a crazy fourth quarter in which the teams combined for 37 points and little, if any, defense. There was little to remember from the first three quarters as Florida led 6-3 to open the fourth.
“It was a really fun way to end a game,” Franks said. “You grow up waiting for moments like that to happen in your life, and when it does happen, you don’t have any words to describe it.”
Tennessee (2-1, 0-1 SEC) can blame three missed field goals for not being ahead late. The Gators (1-1, 1-0) looked as if they had the game in hand early in the final frame, but let the Volunteers get back in it.
It looked for sure as if it was headed for overtime — and then Franks found Cleveland.
“It’s crazy,” Cleveland said. “I think this is about the fastest I ever ran.”
The play gave Florida a 12th win in the past 13 years against Tennessee and allowed the Gators to avoid the program’s first 0-2 start since 1971.
“We’ve just got to stay as deep as the deepest” receiver, Vols coach Butch Jones said. “That’s one of those plays that comes around every so often, and unfortunately they made the play and we didn’t.”
#1 Alabama 41, Colorado St. 23:
Jalen Hurts passed for 248 yards and two long touchdowns and rushed for 103 yards to lead the host Crimson Tide (3-0) past the Rams (2-2). Alabama needed just 10 minutes and a few big plays from Hurts to race to a 17-0 lead. The first quarter was one-sided, with Alabama outgaining Colorado State 216-11.
#2 Oklahoma 56, Tulane 14:
Baker Mayfield passed for 331 yards and four touchdowns, and the host Sooners (3-0) followed their impressive victory at Ohio State with a rout. Oklahoma receiver CeeDee Lamb caught four passes for 131 yards and two touchdowns before he was ejected for targeting on a block in the second quarter. The Sooners and Green Wave (1-2) were tied at 14 in the second quarter before Oklahoma’s Parnell Motley returned an interception 77 yards for a touchdown.
#3 Clemson 47, #14 Louisville 21:
The visiting Tigers (3-0, 1-0 ACC) held 2016 Heisman Trophy winner Lamar Jackson in check for most of the game, quarterback counterpart Kelly Bryant accounted for three touchdowns, and the Tigers won in a rout. The Cardinals (2-1, 0-1) were outgained 613-433, saving face somewhat with a 14-point fourth quarter.
#5 Penn St. 56, Georgia St. 0:
Trace McSorley threw a Beaver Stadium-record 85yard touchdown pass to Saquon Barkley for one of his four scoring strikes and also ran for a touchdown in a rout by the host Nittany Lions (3-0). McSorley was 18-for-23 passing for 309 yards. Barkley had 226 all-purpose yards and wasn’t fazed by an awkward hit that sent him laboring to the sideline in the second quarter. The Panthers (0-2) had three interceptions and two lost fumbles, and Penn State turned all five turnovers into touchdowns.
#7 Michigan 29, Air Force 13:
Donovan Peoples-Jones returned a punt 79 yards for a score and Quinn Nordin tied a school record with five field goals, helping the host Wolverines overcome their offensive struggles. Michigan (3-0) didn’t lead by more than three points until Peoples-Jones’ touchdown early in the third quarter. The Falcons (1-1) failed to convert a pass until Arion Worthman threw a short pass to Ronald Cleveland and the receiver turned it into a 64yard TD with 11:54 left in the third that pulled the service academy within three points again. Nordin kicked two more field goals, late in the third and early in the fourth.
#8 Ohio State 38, Army 7:
J.T. Barrett threw for two touchdowns and ran for another as the host Buckeyes (2-1) rebounded from a tough loss to Oklahoma. J.K. Dobbins ran 13 times for 172 yards and two scores for Ohio State.
#9 Oklahoma St. 59, Pitt 21:
Mason Rudolph threw for five touchdowns, all in the first half, and the visiting Cowboys (3-0) drilled the Panthers (1-2). Rudolph threw for 497 yards before being pulled in the middle of the third quarter as Oklahoma State reached the end zone on it first seven drives. Jalen McCleskey caught seven passes for 162 yards and three touchdowns and three other Cowboys reached the 100-yard receiving mark, the first time in 12 years a team has had four 100-yard receivers in the same game.
#10 Wisconsin 40, BYU 6:
Alex Hornibrook threw for four touchdowns and 256 yards as the host Badgers (3-0) met little resistance, putting the game away in the first half and leading 24-6 at halftime. Hornibrook missed on only one pass all day. He completed 10 of 11 passes in the first half for 149 yards and two touchdowns. Freshman running back Jonathan Taylor gained 128 yards and scored once on 18 rushes. Quarterback Beau Hoge, son of former Pittsburgh Steelers running back Merril, made his first career start for BYU (1-3) with Tanner Mangum out with an injury. Hoge threw an interception on his first attempt and never got a whole lot going.
Mississippi St. 37, #12 LSU 7:
Nick Fitzgerald threw two touchdown passes and ran for two more scores to help the host Bulldogs (3-0, 1-0 SEC) rout the Tigers (2-1, 0-1). Aeris Williams had 146 yards rushing and averaged 6.3 yards per carry for Mississippi State, which beat LSU for just the second time in 18 tries dating to 2000.
#13 Georgia 42, Samford 14:
Nick Chubb ran for 131 yards and two touchdowns, freshman Jake Fromm threw three scoring passes in his first home start, and the defense was dominant for the Bulldogs (3-0). Chubb already had 94 yards rushing and a touchdown by the end of the opening quarter while Samford (2-1) was still without a first down.
#15 Auburn 24, Mercer 10:
Kamryn Pettway ran for 128 yards and three scores as the host Tigers (2-1) overcame five turnovers to hold off FCS school Mercer (1-2), which resumed its football program five years ago and plays a division down in the Southern Conference. The Bears gave the Tigers all they could handle, sending many fans heading home after a first half that Auburn led 10-3.
#16 Virginia Tech 64, East Carolina 17:
Redshirt freshman Josh Jackson threw for 372 yards and five touchdowns, three to Cam Phillips, as the visiting Hokies improved to 3-0 for the first time since 2011. Phillips had a programrecord 14 catches for 189 yards. Gardner Minshew threw for two scores for the Pirates, who led 17-7 but fell to 0-3 for the first time since 2004.
Vanderbilt 14, #18 Kansas St. 7:
Kyle Shurmur scored on a 2-yard run with 8:23 left, and the host Commodores got their first win over a ranked, nonconference opponent since 1946. With the win, Vanderbilt improved to 3-0 for the first time since 2011. Senior quarterback Jesse Ertz tried to drive the Wildcats (2-1) to the tying score but was tackled short on fourth-and-8 deep in Vanderbilt territory with 1:06 left.
#20 TCU 56, SMU 36:
Jalen Reagor made a leaping 38yard catch between four defenders in the end zone on the last play of the first half, finally putting the host Horned Frogs (3-0) ahead to stay. The Mustangs (2-1) led 19-7 before Kenny Hill threw three TD passes in the final 7½ minutes of the second quarter. Hill completed 24 of 30 passes for 365 yards and four scores.
CCSF 40, American River 26:
Quarterback Zach Masoli threw for two touchdowns and ran for two more as CCSF (1-2) won at home. After American River (2-1) closed to 30-26 after the third quarter, safety Anthony Porter helped seal the game with a fumble recovery.