While Michigan and Texas dominated and Ohio State sat out this Saturday, Georgia was in a fight to the finish against Auburn. The Bulldogs took the lead late in the fourth quarter, and their defense put end to a Tiger comeback. Although Georgia still won and remain undefeated, is it time to raise concern that the Bulldogs recent close calls may end up spelling defeat in the near future? We discuss that and more in the Week 5 Saturday Takeaways.
Is Georgia still number one?
Week 5 Saturday Takeaways #1: The AP voters are still behind the two-time defending national champions. And they have every right to be. No other program has been better in the sport in that time frame. But that was the back then, right now Georgia is not playing the same way. This is not the same suffocating defense that had taken over college football. Maybe it is time we realize this before it is too late.
For the second time in as many conference games, Georgia was tied or trailing at halftime, a situation they found themselves in once last regular season. Although the Bulldogs have been able to overcome all of the early-game adversity, next weekʻs opponent Kentucky is on the rise. The Wildcats are averaging 18.2 points per game in the first half. And have scored 23 or more in both conference games before halftime. If the trends continue, Georgia may have a lot harder hill to climb in order to take down Kentucky.
Referring back to the heading, Georgiaʻs spot as the number one team should be reconsidered. Texas, Florida State and Ohio State all have ranked victories this season compared to Georgiaʻs zero. Michigan has looked more like the Georgia of past with blowout wins in each games they have played. To reiterate, Georgia has not done anything to relinquish their spot atop the rankings, but they have not played up their historical standard.
The USC defense is still concerning
Week 5 Saturday Takeaways #2: In a game USC could have easily put away by scoring 48 points, the Trojans were once again unable to keep the opposition out of the end zone. Coming into this week, USC had allowed 365 total yards per game, then proceeded to give up a whopping 564 yards to Coloradoʻs offense. The Buffaloes scored 20 unanswered points to end the game, but still fell seven points short of the upset.
Of USCʻs final seven opponents, six rank in the top 30 nationally in total offense. The one that is not currently, Utah, expects to have quarterback Cam Rising back in time for the mid-October matchup against USC, a rematch of the 2022 Pac-12 Championship game, a game that highlighted USCʻs defensive difficulties.
Despite scoring 40+ in every game this season, the defense is still unreliable in the Trojansʻ push for their first conference championship since 2017.
What is happening is the SEC?
Week 5 Saturday Takeaways #3: Three SEC teams are undefeated. One is Georgia, but the other two? Kentucky and Missouri. The SEC West just became a mess with Ole Missʻ wild victory over LSU after losing to Alabama. South Carolina lost to Tennessee who lost to Florida who lost to Kentucky who plays Georgia next week. Also next Saturday, Texas A&M can take sole possession of first place in the SEC West with a over Alabama who we thought was dead after escaping South Florida, but is apparently not. It is a crazy time in the Southeastern Conference.
West Virginia wonʻt be denied
Week 5 Saturday Takeaways #4: It may be true that no seat was hotter coming into this season than that of Neal Brown. After going 22-25 through four season at West Virginia, many speculated Brownʻs tenure as head coach should have already been up. Well, those questions have dried up due to the recent success in Morgantown.
The Mountaineers are 4-1 with the lone loss coming against Penn State in Week One. Saturday nightʻs win over TCU might have been a little lucky, but some times itʻs better to be that way. West Virginia has the opportunity to continue the winning streak for a while. After a bye week in Week 6, West Virginia visits their old ball coach, Dana Holgorsen, on a Thursday night against Houston. Including Houston, the Mountaineersʻ next three opponents currently do not have a Big 12 win.
It is honestly shocking how things at West Virginia, but the excitement will continue to build as the Mountaineers continue to defy expectations.
Red River Showdown will be must see
Week 5 Saturday Takeaways #5: Texas and Oklahoma are set for another great rendition of the classic rivalry game. It is a matchup of the unquestionable top two teams in the Big 12 Conference. Texas comes in with the most national recognition, but why would that deter Oklahoma, who has one of the most prolific offenses this season. There will be a lot of points and a lot of passion in Dallas next weekend, something that has been commonplace over the recent editions of the Showdown. Three of the last four games have been decided by one possession, Oklahoma won each one-possession game while the Longhorns took the outlier, a 49-0 beatdown last season.
Stay Connected with Fantom Sports:
Get the latest college football news via Fantom Sports Industries.
Stay connected with us on Twitter via @Fantom_sports.
Create an account and read our stories on the NewsBreak App.