Who made this week’s Winner & Losers column (aka. The ‘Kansas & Losers’ column)… find out below.
Let’s put some respect on UCLA’s name. At 5-0 with a couple of very eligible wins under their belt, the Bruins are looking good. The college football world had been aflame with praise for Washington in recent weeks, but the 40-32 scoreline makes this game seem closer than it was.
Dorian Thompson-Robinson is one of the great mysteries of the CFB world, he profiles as a very good QB but over the last few seasons he has been largely inconsistent. Now, midway through his fifth year with UCLA, are we seeing a player that could be jumping NFL draft boards? Through five games DTR has completed 74.3% of his passes for 11 touchdowns, with just one interception blotting the copy book.
The addition of Jake Bobo from Duke in the offseason appears to be paying dividends, with the 6’5” outside receiver putting up a huge six catch, 142 yards and two touchdown day on Friday evening. Combined with the ever-dangerous Zach Charbonnet, the Bruins have a nice one-two punch at receiver and running back.
Back to back games against Utah and Oregon might bring Chip Kelly’s men back to earth with a bang, but for now the programme has a feel good factor on the field.
Ole Miss are another team who moved to 5-0 with a win on Saturday, taking down Kentucky in order to do so. Despite all the offensive talent scattered across both rosters, the Rebels defense were largely to thank for the win.
Maurice Crum and D.J Durkin act as co-defensive coordinators in Oxford, and their approach proved effective, with Ole Miss putting up nine tackles for a loss, three sacks and multiple fumble recoveries. AJ Finley (S) and Austin Keys (LB) were at the heart of everything, as Will Levis came under scrutiny at QB for Kentucky.
Offensively, Jaxson Dart’s stat line won’t be setting off too much excitement amongst the Rebels’ fan base, but he’s slowly adjusting to life under Lane Kiffin. Games against Vanderbilt and Auburn should allow Kiffin and his team to extend their winning streak, before a more difficult section of the schedule hits.
TCU & Max Duggan
It’s been a tough ride for Max Duggan as TCU’s starting quarterback. Along with the inconsistent performances has come a lot of scrutiny, and even a trip to the bench to start the 2022 season.
However, the fourth year signal caller is now stamping his authority on the starting job and an offense which has been purring away nicely to start the season. Against a solid Oklahoma side, Duggan put up video game numbers – 302 yards passing, three passing scores and 116 yards rushing plus a further two touchdowns on the ground. Impressive.
It’s clear that Duggan is thriving in his role as the offensive leader for the Horned Frogs, he looks calm in the pocket and is more than willing to share the ball around to any target that can get half a step on the defender covering him. Draft scouts would probably like to see Quentin Johnson padding the stat sheet in wins like this, but the future Sunday player did draw multiple pass interference calls in the first half.
An exciting matchup against 5-0 Kansas awaits TCU next week.
After so much preseason hype around the weapons at their disposal, Virginia are really failing to live up to expectations so far in 2022. On Saturday they dropped to 2-3 with a defeat to a resurgent Duke who completely bullied the Cavaliers on the ground.
Brennan Armstrong had got the ‘dark horse’ label from some analysts ahead of the 2023 draft, but at present he’s struggling to stay upright behind an offensive line that is porous, to put it politely. The pressure Armstrong is facing is impacting his ability to find standout targets, Dontayvion Wicks and Keytaon Thompson – the latter being the only real bright spot for the Cavaliers so far this season.
As the rest of the ACC, including Duke, look to progress, Virginia seem to be going backwards. Tony Elliot was appointed as the new Head Coach this offseason, and he absolutely deserves some time to turn things around, but this season is already looking like a right off for the Cavaliers.
24 carries of the football for the Badgers, two yards rushing in total. That stat says it all about Wisconsin’s performance against Illinois on Saturday as Bret Bielema enjoyed every minute of his team’s win against his former team.
Graham Mertz was sacked five times and threw two interceptions, as Wisconsin struggled to get anything going offensively. Braelon Allen has been incredibly efficient against stacked boxes all season long, but even he couldn’t get the ball moving against a resolute Fighting Illini defense.
On the flip side, the Badgers defense looked slow and struggled against the dynamic running style of Chase Brown. They also struggled to stop QB, Tommy Devito, punching the ball into the end zone three times in what was one of the most humbling defeats Wisconsin have suffered at home in recent years.
Ohio State’s Punter
This might be a British thing, although judging by Twitter’s reaction it probably isn’t. You’re up by 30 points against a clearly inferior team, it’s fourth down in your own half – just punt the ball away. It’s a nice respectful thing to do.
Instead, Jesse Mirco decided his time had come and he broke away for a 22 yard run. Only to be slammed to the floor as he ran out of bounds, cue some excellent handbags from the Buckeyes bench. We’re not condoning late hits at the Full10Yards, but…
By Andy Moore @ajmoore21