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The Grueling Truth - Where Legends Speak / Latest College Football News & Rumors / NCAA Football Week 7 Takeaways: Pennix Rolls, Prime Chokes, Tar Heels for Real, Best team in the Big Ten and Much More

NCAA Football Week 7 Takeaways: Pennix Rolls, Prime Chokes, Tar Heels for Real, Best team in the Big Ten and Much More

Publish Date:10/16/2023
Fact checked by: Mark Lewis

NCAA Football Week 7

1) Washington vs Oregon was the Game of the year, so far

Michael Penix Jr. delivered a touchdown throw to Rome Odunze with 1:38 remaining to seal the victory and move closer to securing Heisman consideration.

Bo Nix delivered one of the most excellent second-half performances by a quarterback who ultimately lost, completing 20 out of 24 passes for 221 yards while failing on two fourth-down attempts deep within Huskies territory.

This game saw six lead changes, and it seemed like the Ducks were offered an opportunity to take control all game long, but they never could quite get over the hump. Unfortunately for them, their chances were dashed due to a missed kick that would have sent it into overtime.

In 10 months, these two teams will move to the Big Ten and focus more heavily on running the ball and punts instead of having fun. Or maybe these teams can bring some fun to the Big Ten, because on Saturday this game was fun!

There will be so many decisions left for us to review. Oregon coach Dan Lanning made several questionable choices during this game, such as going for it on fourth down deep within Washington territory twice and failing both times, then opting for fourth down late in the game in an attempt to seal victory but ultimately failed again, setting up Washington’s winning score.

There will undoubtedly be endless speculation. Would Penix have done damage against Oregon’s defense to the tune of 302 yards and four touchdowns, including that game-winner, had both starting corners not been injured on one play? Or perhaps Jalen McMillan hadn’t been sidelined early for Washington.

Lanning may wake up one morning wondering why he was arrogant in calling fourth down calls but never attempted a play for an end zone shot on that final drive.

2) Michigan dominates again; are they really that good?

Are the Wolverines this good? Who knows, the schedule has been soft as Charmin, but they do seem to have everything.

The real story of Michigan’s season requires a deeper dive into J.J. McCarthy, who has genuinely blossomed into an all-around star at quarterback. He entered Saturday leading the nation in Total QBR and added to his tally against Indiana, throwing for three touchdowns and averaging 13 yards per pass. The ground game remains strong, with Blake Corum treating end zones like Kevin Hart treats movies — he’s in all of them. The defense hasn’t allowed multiple touchdowns in a game yet. The analytics all suggest Michigan’s dominance is noteworthy, with most metrics offering the Wolverines have been the season’s most impressive team — that is if watching LeBron dunk on a team full of second-graders is impressive.

We will find out soon how dominating this team really is.

3) Ohio State or Penn State, who is better?

Ohio State and Penn State; both teams just have massive unanswered questions Yes, Ohio State won at Notre Dame — in ugly, low-scoring fashion on the road — but other teams like Marshall and Stanford have done that as well in recent seasons. Although Marvin Harrison Jr is an impressive playmaker for Ohio State on offense, The competition overall has been lacking for both teams.

Penn State and their homecoming game against UMass on Saturday; wherein UMass played the role of an unsuspecting insect flying languidly across the Pennsylvania Turnpike before colliding with the Nittany Lions 18-wheeler for an overwhelming 63-0 beating. Penn State has won all its games by at least 17 points and achieved something of a signature victory with their shutout win against Iowa. Penn State’s much-vaunted running backs have fallen far short, prompting reporters to openly question why James Franklin does not allow his quarterback to launch it deep like drunk men playing Madden on every play – is this Penn State’s key to reaching the playoffs? Perhaps!

Next week will clarify when Ohio State and Penn State square off against each other in Columbus. After that, we can be sure of Michigan’s actual competition for a Big Ten championship and postseason berth.

4) Jordan Travis has the Seminoles rolling

Travis made headlines against Syracuse by throwing for 284 yards and scoring one touchdown while also running two short scores despite playing without one of his main receivers, Johnny Wilson. But over the past calendar year alone – without him! – Travis boasted an astounding 65% completion rate, 3,035 total yards passed for touchdowns (26), three interceptions (3), and was undefeated (12-0 record!

Florida State is a legit National contender, and Travis would be my best darkhorse candidate to win the Heisman Trophy.

5) USC has no defense

Notre Dame found relief for their offensive struggles against USC in South Bend thanks to the subpar USC defense. Notre Dame scored 24 first-half points versus USC- seven more than in their past three first half combined- before sealing a 48-20 win that marked Lincoln Riley’s worst defeat since losing in a 2019 playoff game against LSU. The Irish are a good football team, but USC will sustain a few more losses in a loaded PAC 12 because he doesn’t have the horses to win on defense.

6) The North Carolina Tar Heels and Drake Maye are for real

North Carolina took an important step toward joining Florida State as one of the two dominant teams in the ACC on Saturday with a 41-31 victory against Miami.

Drake Maye completed four touchdown passes and amassed 273 passing yards. At the same time, Omarion Hampton ran for 197 yards and scored once, while Tez Walker – in only his second game after becoming eligible – caught six passes totaling 132 yards and three scores.

Drake Maye connected with Devontez Walker for their third pitch-and-catch touchdown. Walker is an exciting addition to an already exciting UNC offense, but what really stands out about their 6-0 start is their defense, which went from being primarily used as a shield last season to an actual force this time. Miami had an early advantage Saturday, leading 17-14 at halftime, but their offense faltered thereafter — leading only by three at halftime — with four drives into the second half yielding no success and Mack Brown engaging in one of his signature humorously aggressive postgame handshakes by reaching into Mario Cristobal’s chest and pulling out his heart – they had already pulled away to an easy win, the Tarheels have started this season 6-0!

7) Colorado is better than last year, but they are not a good team

At halftime Friday night, all Buffaloes players and staff had taken steps to prepare themselves for an uninterrupted night’s rest by popping a melatonin gummy and changing into their official Coach Prime pajamas (complete with a cowboy hat and sunglasses-shaped eye mask) to promote better sleep. Then of course the cocky team got what it deserved in the second half, and that was a beating.

Unfortunately for Colorado, Stanford is no stranger to pulling all-nighters for advanced theoretical physics exams, so they stayed strong during the second half, overturning an initial 29-0 lead from Colorado and winning 46-43 after a second overtime period. The issue was Coach Prime is not a very good coach, and it showed itself big time in this game.

Shedeur Sanders completed for 400 yards and five touchdowns – two to resurgent Travis Hunter – but his interception in the second overtime frame would ultimately doom Colorado’s chances.

Colorado is a fun team to watch if you ignore the arrogance, but they are still far away from being a good team.

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