These five teams impressed us the most.
With rivalry weekend in the books, it’s time to take stock of what exactly went down now that the dust has settled. We saw No. 6 Auburn take down the mighty Crimson Tide, and we also watched No. 2 Miami fall to Pitt, and I think it’s safe to say that the regular season ended with a pretty emphatic bang. Now, all that’s left are the conference championship showdowns to decide who ends up where in the rankings.
So without further ado, let’s take a look at the five teams the teams that impressed us the most this weekend, listed in alphabetical order:
Auburn wasn’t the first team this year to make the Crimson Tide look vulnerable, but they were the first to finally seal the deal, defeating Alabama 26-14 in stunning fashion. Jarrett Stidham was sensational, passing for 237 yards and running for a touchdown, while Kerryon Johnson pitched in 104 yards on the ground and a touchdown as well. The Tigers looked every bit like the best team in the SEC, and they’ll get their chance to prove it when they rematch versus Georgia in the championship game.
Clemson was a trendy pick to get upset this week. On the road versus a tough 8-3 South Carolina squad, the Tigers were certainly in for a tough matchup, but lord, the complete opposite of an upset happened. Clemson brought it to the Gamecocks from the opening kickoff and refused to yield, pouring 20 on them before the first half came to a close. South Carolina wasn’t able to score until the fourth quarter, as both the run and the passing game were completely shut down. With Alabama now out of the top four, it’s likely the Tigers will take over the top spot.
3. Ohio State
Ohio State kept its playoff hopes alive with a solid win over Michigan. The Buckeyes put themselves in a 14-0 deficit early, but the second half was all OSU—even after J.T. Barrett left due to injury. The running game gashed a stout Michigan defense for nearly 250 yards, and the Buckeyes will need all of that effort and then some if they want to take down the Wisconsin Badgers next week in the conference title game.
4. Ole Miss
Ole Miss stunned No. 16 Mississippi State on Thanksgiving, taking down the Bulldogs 31-28. Ole Miss went ballistic on offense, as Jordan Ta’amu threw for 247 yards and two touchdowns, and Jordan Wilkins ran for 110 and two scores. The Rebels had to have the victory to get to 6-6 and salvage a .500 season.
From seemingly out of nowhere, the Pitt Panthers threw the rankings into chaos when they shocked No. 2 Miami on Friday afternoon, 24-14. The Panther simply looked like the better team for the majority of the game, and quarterback Kenny Pickett looked like a bona fide star leading the offense, throwing for a touchdown and running for two more. The Panthers finish the year at 5-7 and will just miss out on a bowl berth, but man, what a way to wrap up the season.