Oklahoma State Cowboys, 52, Oregon State Beavers 36
Redshirt freshman quarterback Spencer Sanders threw for 203 yards and three touchdowns in his debut during Oklahoma State’s season-opening 52-36 win over Oregon State on Friday night at Reser Stadium in Corvallis, Oregon. Sanders, who was named the starter over graduate transfer Dru Brown from Hawaii just hours prior to kickoff, was 19-for-24 with no interceptions and also showcased his mobility by rushing for 109 yards on 13 carries. Brown did see two snaps in the game with 1:19 remaining in the game, handing the ball off each time.
Cowboys head coach Mike Gundy opted to go with the youngest and he responded with a solid, unspectacular day. Given the pedigree of quarterbacks to come out of OSU, Sanders could be the next big thing next year.
Junior quarterback Sam Ehlinger protected the football, managed the game well, and turned in an efficient performance through the air with the Bulldogs loading the box and forcing throws to the perimeter — Ehlinger went 28-of-38 passing for 276 yards and those four touchdowns, while adding eight carries for 34 yards, mostly on scrambles. He even slid once as he started his Heisman campaign, surprising his teammates and coaches “I think he’s the difference in their team,” Louisiana Tech head coach Skip Holtz said after the game. “I think he’s a top-10 quarterback. I think he definitely is a top-10 quarterback. I was really impressed with the way that he ran the system that they asked him to run tonight.”
Texas finally broke their opening game losing streak under coach Herman, since they didn’t play Maryland this time.
Iowa St. Cyclones 29, Northern Iowa 26
The Iowa State defense shined in the first half pitching a shutout, and gave UNI a 4th and 30 at the beginning of the second quarter. Big plays were non-existent, and UNI star tight end Briley Moore was limited to 16 yards in the first half.Speaking of sloppy starts, the second half would start with a free kick out of bounds penalty that jump started a UNI drive. The Panthers would capitalize tying the game up with a 50 yard field goal, tying the game 3-3 only two minutes into the second half.
In-state, FCS rival Northern Iowa came into the game smelling an upset and nearly got one. It took three overtimes for the Cyclones to come-away victorious. Chalk this one up to in-state rivalries more than an indication of the Cyclones. For now.
Kansas Jayhawks 24, Indiana State 17
Les Miles has his first win as coach of the Kansas Jayhawks. It wasn’t pretty. At all. But for KU, a win is a win. Things looked like they might fall apart right away in the second half. Indiana State promptly drove the ball down the field for a second consecutive drive, but an interception in the endzone kept ISU off the board. KU would successfully take it the other way, as former KU basketball great James Sosinski caught a TD pass to go on top 16-3. The extra point was missed because we’re still Kansas.
Miles saw 33,000 fans attend his first game as head coach for Kansas and he rewarded them with a win.
Texas Tech Red Raiders 45, Montana State 10
The Red Raiders have a new head coach and new coaching staff, but the offense remained eerily similar pass first offense as quarterback Alan Bowman threw the ball 55 times for 436 yards and 2 touchdowns. The Red Raiders did rush the ball 40 times for 255 yards and 8 different players carried the ball. 11 different receivers caught a pass as well.
Kansas State Wildcats 49, Nichols 14
How dominant was Chris Klieman’s inaugural K-State team on his inaugural first half on the sidelines? Try this on for size:
Rushing yards: K-State 210, Nicholls 22
Passing yards: K-State 108, Nicholls 43
Total Yards: K-State 308, Nicholls 65.
Chris Klieman has put his stamp on the program immediately and his Wildcats played like a team that believes in its head coach.
TCU Horned Frogs 39, Arkansas Pine-Bluff 7
Seven fumbles highlighted TCU’s effort on Saturday night, as the Frogs struggled to hold on to the ball all night. The big storyline coming into the night was whether or not a quarterback would separate himself with on-field play. After game 1, it seems like we’re inching toward an answer.
Alex Delton started the game as planned, but his timing looked off most of the night. He missed a touchdown pass to Tre’vontae Hights throwing behind him, and he underthrew most of his passes downfield. Overall Delton struggled on the night. He missed on a few big throws, took two sacks, and never looked completely comfortable. He did impress with his legs, though, rushing for 67 yards including a 54-yard designed run to open the second half, putting TCU in the red zone.
Meanwhile, Max Duggan flashed a laser rocket arm, albeit a slightly wild one at times. For now we can chalk it up to nerves. Overall he looked good, completed 16 of 23 passes for 165 yards and a touchdown.
West Virginia fans should be thankful, since it appears that Gary Patterson hasn’t decided on a quarterback and you should always know who you’re guy is by this point. Pick one and roll with it. We’ll see where it takes the Frogs but for now, Patterson is playing quarterback roulette.
The ex-Alabama QB [Jalen Hurts] hit on 20 of his 23 pass attempts in the game, rolling up 332 yards through the air and three passing TDs. Hurts added three more scores on the ground as he rushed 16 times for 176 yards. Hurts’ 20 completions went to 10 different receivers. His targets included speedster Charleston Rambo, who turned a short slant route into a 56-yard touchdown early in the second half. Rambo also made a statement with his postgame attire.
It’s only one game but Jalen Hurts looks like the next Oklahoma Heisman quarterback. He ran, threw, avoided and simply made Houston defenders look lost. Keep in mind the guy crowned in September hasn’t won the award, but Hurts just put himself atop the list with this performance.
The Big 12 Conference is the only conference to go undefeated in Week One. Granted, other than Oklahoma playing Houston, no one else played anyone of significance but James Madison proved that an upset was possible. Further, look at the SEC where Mizzou lost to Wyoming, Tennessee lost to Georgia State, and Ole Miss lost to Memphis. A win is never guaranteed and in week one, upsets are likely when teams aren’t fully comfortable yet.