Oklahoma Football

3rd & 1: This week’s Top 3

This week in college football was one for the books, especially for the No. 1 team in the country – who let their on-field performance speak for itself.

Clemson overcame early problems for a dominating performance of their own, while Oklahoma’s run game reached a season high.

No. 1 Alabama – The Tide didn’t stop rolling Saturday night in Nashville, Tennessee. They went on a smashing shutout and proved that you should never say you want Bama, unless you really mean it.

Alabama’s offense set a program-record with 38 first downs and were 72 yards away from having the best yardage total of all time, while Damien Harris scored more touchdowns in a single game than all of last season -reaching the end zone twice within the first quarter and one in the third.

Freshman quarterback Tua Tagovailoa went 8 for 10 in 103 yards. The most impressive play for the second-string QB being when he used a spin move to avoid a tackle and connected with DeVonta Smith for a 27-yard touchdown.

The No. 1 team face their first challenge of the season against Ole Miss. Where will they stack up against the Rebels? Will their defense and offense work strongly together? While a shutout victory is unlikely, they should remain undefeated after Saturday night’s game.

No. 2 Clemson – When the offense fails, the defense excels – that’s how the Clemson Tigers defeated Boston College.

It may look like the No. 2 team outplayed the Eagles on paper, but it was the total opposite. For three quarters of the game, Clemson struggled to move the ball. They only scored once in the first half of the game, a 11-yard run by quarterback Kelly Bryant.

Bryant threw two interceptions, but redeemed himself with two touchdowns of his own.

Kendall Joseph and AJ Terrell both had an impressive game. Joseph racked up a dozen sacks, while Terrell was responsible for getting the Tigers a fourth quarter interception.

Clemson head to Virginia to take on No. 12 Virginia Tech. The Tigers main concern heading into this game is putting together a 60-minute effort.

No. 3 Oklahoma – It was a little too close for comfort for Sooners fans against Baylor.

Oklahoma scored three times in the first quarter and only gave up one touchdown to the Bears, but things took a turn for the worse when Baylor had four straight unanswered scoring drives.

Oklahoma regrouped late in the third for a 48-yard touchdown with Jeff Badet, while Trey Sermon, who only saw fourth quarter playing time, was responsible for OU’s last two touchdowns of the game.

The Sooners struggled at stopping Baylor all game and allowed their opponent to score with less than two minutes to go, but it wasn’t enough.

Oklahoma doesn’t face anyone heading into Week 5 and will have home advantage against Iowa State. Playing Sermon throughout 60 minutes could be a vital element heading into Big XII play.

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3rd& 1: This Week’s Top 3

It’s week 2 and a new team is at number 2!

This week’s Top 3 features Alabama as the top contender, an upset, and the Tigers defending their territory.

No. 1 Alabama – Running game, running game, running game.

Did I mention running game?

Alabama’s number one aspect against Fresno State was their ability to run the football, despite showing improvement in passing. Alabama is known for their running game, but what will happen when a stronger opponent turns the tables on the Crimson Tide and they are forced to pass?

It may never become an issue, but another issue heading into Week 3 sheds some light on why it needs to be considered: Third downs.

Alabama ranks 118 of 130 FBS teams – a major drop of its 34th ranking a year ago and it’s 43.8 percentile. Alabama is successful in all other plays, improvements here will carry the team when it is severely necessary.

No. 2 Oklahoma  – Oklahoma’s defense carried the Sooners to an outstanding victory and their quarterback to the leading candidate for the Heisman Trophy.

The Oklahoma defense only allowed the Buckeyes one touchdown scoring drive and three field goals throughout 60 minutes, while Baker Mayfield lead the offense and completed 27 of 35 passes for 386 yards with two touchdowns and a field goal for a 31-16 victory.

Oklahoma made a case for themselves Saturday night and if Mayfield’s stats continue on the rise with a strong defense, we could be looking at a national championship contender.

No. 3 Clemson – It was a tight kept score for Clemson versus the Auburn Tigers at Memorial Stadium, who remain at No. 3 this week. The Clemson Tigers dominated the line of scrimmage and kept their opponent from reaching the end zone successfully.

Clemson struggled early on and appeared to be in trouble when Kelly Bryant went down with an injury. The injury was minor however and he returned for their first scoring drive before halftime.

The Clemson Tigers returned from the half for their second, and final, touchdown when Kelly Bryant ran 27 yards into the end zone – avoiding a tackle as he did. In addition, the defense protected their lead by getting to Auburn’s quarterback with a total of 11 sacks.

Clemson has a lot going for them, and could gain additional momentum with more yards-per-carry and keeping turnovers at a minimum.