Clemson held 2016 Heisman Trophy winner Lamar Jackson in check for most of the game, quarterback counterpart Kelly Bryant accounted for three touchdowns, and the third-ranked Tigers routed No. 14 Louisville 47-21 on Saturday night in an Atlantic Coast Conference showdown.
Jackson passed for 317 yards and three TDs, but most of that came with things already in hand for Clemson (3-0, 1-0 ACC). The Tigers' Dorian O'Donnell returned an interception 44 yards for a TD and a 26-7 third-quarter lead, and they sacked Jackson four times.
Bryant, meanwhile, won the QB battle with TD runs of 8 and 1 yards sandwiched around a 79-yard scoring pass to wide-open Ray-Ray McCloud in the second quarter.
Jackson had TD passes of 11 yards to Charles Standberry, 36 yards to Jaylen Smith and 8 to Dez Fitzpatrick. But the junior struggled to throw and run all night for Louisville (2-1, 1-1 ACC).
The Cardinals were outgained 613-433, saving face somewhat with a 14-point fourth quarter.
at Mississippi State 37, No. 12 Lousiana State 7: Nick Fitzgerald threw two touchdown passes and ran for two more scores to help the Bulldogs rout the Tigers.
Aeris Williams led the Bulldogs with 146 yards rushing and averaged 6.3 yards per carry. Mississippi State (3-0, 1-0 Southeastern Conference) beat LSU for just the second time in 18 tries dating to 2000.
LSU (2-1, 0-1) easily won its first two games of the season, but was overmatched by Mississippi State on both sides of the ball. The Tigers were also sloppy — two touchdown plays were negated because of penalties. In all, LSU was penalized nine times for 112 yards.
Fitzgerald was 15-of-23 passing for 180 yards. Keith Mixon caught six passes for 97 yards and a touchdown. Freshman Jace Christmann made the first three field goals of his career, connecting from 30, 45 and 27 yards.
LSU tied it at 7 in the second quarter on Darrel Williams' 10-yard touchdown run. But Mississippi State responded with 30 straight points. LSU's Danny Etling completed just 13 of 29 passes for 137 yards. Derrius Guice had 76 yards rushing.
at No. 1 Alabama 41, Colorado State 23: Jalen Hurts passed for 248 yards and two long touchdowns and rushed for 103 yards to lead the Crimson Tide (3-0), who dominated early and emphatically answered a comeback attempt before outlasting the Rams (2-2).
Hurts delivered his best all-around game of the season. He ran for a 27-yard touchdown and hit on a career-long 78-yard scoring pass to Calvin Ridley and a 52-yarder to Robert Foster. Hurts completed 12 of 17 passes and mixed in 11 carries before leaving late in the third quarter. It was his second straight 100-plus yard rushing performance.
The Tide needed just 10 minutes and a few big plays from Hurts to race to a 17-0 lead. The first-quarter stats were utterly one-sided, with Alabama outgaining Colorado State 216-11.
at No. 2 Oklahoma 56, Tulane 14: Baker Mayfield passed for 331 yards and four touchdowns and the Sooners followed their impressive victory with a rout of the Green Wave.
Oklahoma receiver CeeDee Lamb caught four passes for 131 yards and two touchdowns before he was ejected for targeting on a block in the second quarter. Marquise Brown had career highs of six catches for 155 yards, including an 87-yard touchdown grab in the fourth quarter for the Sooners (3-0).
The Sooners and Green Wave were tied at 14 in the second quarter before Oklahoma's Parnell Motley returned an interception 77 yards for a touchdown to turn the momentum for good. Oklahoma extended its nation-leading win streak to 13 games.
Tulane (1-2) scored on its first two drives and never scored again. Dontrell Hilliard ran for 104 yards and a touchdown to surpass 2,000 yards rushing in his career for the Green Wave.
at No. 5 Penn State 56, Georgia State 0: Trace McSorley threw a Beaver Stadium-record 85-yard touchdown pass to Saquon Barkley for one of his four scoring strikes and also ran for a touchdown.
A week after a shaky start against Pittsburgh, McSorley bounced back in a rare prime-time game against a non-Power Five school. He completed 14 of 19 passes for 258 yards in the first half to help Penn State (3-0) take a 35-0 lead.
McSorley finished 18 of 23 for 309 yards. Barkley had 226 all-purpose yards and wasn't fazed by an awkward hit that sent him laboring to the sideline in the second quarter.
Conner Manning completed 16 of 29 passes for 133 yards for Georgia State (0-2) with three interceptions. The Panthers also lost two fumbles and Penn State turned all five turnovers into touchdowns.
at No. 7 Michigan 29, Air Force 13: Donovan Peoples-Jones returned a punt 79 yards for a score and Quinn Nordin tied a school record with five field goals, helping Michigan overcome offensive struggles.
The Wolverines (3-0) didn't lead by more than three points until Peoples-Jones' touchdown early in the third quarter.
The Falcons (1-1) failed to convert a pass until Arion Worthman threw a short pass to Ronald Cleveland and the receiver turned it into a 64-yard touchdown play with 11:54 left in the quarter that pulled the service academy within three points again.
Nordin kicked two more field goals, late in the third and early in the fourth, to share a single-game school mark with three players.
Michigan's Wilton Speight was 14 of 23 for 169 yards, missing some targets and having some passes dropped. Ty Isaac ran for 89 yards on 16 carries.
at No. 8 Ohio State 38, Army 7: Freshman J.K. Dobbins ran for 172 yards and a pair of touchdowns to help the Buckeyes rebound from last week's deflating loss to Oklahoma.
Dobbins broke away for an electrifying 52-yard touchdown run to open the second half after romping for 22 yards on the previous play, extending Ohio State's 17-7 halftime lead. The Buckeyes (2-1) then got touchdowns on two of their next three drives to pull away.
J.T. Barrett, the target this week of critics who suggested he should be benched after the 31-16 loss to the Sooners, completed 25 of 33 passes for 270 yards and two touchdowns, albeit against the less-talented defense of Army (2-1).
No. 9 Oklahoma State 59, at Pittsbrugh 21: Mason Rudolph threw five touchdown passes, all in the first half, for the Cowboys.
Rudolph completed 23 of 32 passes for 497 yards before being pulled in the middle of the third quarter with the Cowboys (3-0) in full command. He did throw his first interception of the season, ending a streak of 216 passes without a pick dating to last season. It was the longest active streak in the FBS.
Jalen McCleskey caught seven passes for 162 yards and three touchdowns. James Washington added 124 yards receiving. Marcell Ateman (109) and Dillon Stoner (100) also reached the 100-yard receiving mark, the first time in 12 years a team has had four 100-yard receivers in a game. The Cowboys did it despite missing LSU transfer Tyron Johnson, suspended for the game for a violation of team rules.
The Cowboys reached the end zone on each of their first seven possessions, including a pair of touchdown runs by Justice Hill. Oklahoma State converted all nine of its third downs in the opening half. Pitt dropped to 1-2.
No. 10 Wisconsin 40, at Brigham Young 6: Alex Hornibrook threw for 256 yards and four scores as the Badgers (3-0) met little resistance from the Cougars, who were playing without starting quarterback Tanner Mangum.
Hornibrook completed 10 of 11 passes in the first half for 149 yards and two touchdowns. The second half was more of the same as he hit on all eight attempts. Freshman Jonathan Taylor rushed for 128 yards and scored once in 18 carries. The Badgers outgained the Cougars (1-3) by nearly 300 yards, 491-192.
BYU quarterback Beau Hoge, son of former Pittsburgh Steelers running back Merril, made his first career start, having his first pass intercepted and finishing with 111 yards and two interceptions.
at No. 13 Georgia 42, Samford 14: Nick Chubb ran for 131 yards and two touchdowns, freshman Jake Fromm threw three scoring passes in his first home start, and Georgia's defense was dominant.
With fellow senior Sony Michel held out with an ankle injury sustained last week in a victory at Notre Dame, Chubb had his busiest game of the season. Chubb's season-high 16 carries, all in the first three quarters, helped him become the first Bulldogs back to run for 100 yards this season.
Chubb was stopped on a fourth-down run on the Bulldogs' opening drive, and he rarely was stopped again. He had back-to-back 20-yard runs to open Georgia's next drive and added a 32-yard scoring run late in the opening quarter. Chubb scored on a 14-yard run early in the third quarter before watching backups handle the remainder of the carries.
Georgia (3-0) avoided a letdown following the emotional win at Notre Dame.
Chubb already had 94 yards rushing and a touchdown by the end of the opening quarter while Samford (2-1) was still without a first down.
at No. 15 Auburn 24, Mercer 10: Kamryn Pettway ran for 128 yards and three touchdowns to help the Tigers overcame five turnovers and hold off FCS Bears. After being held without a touchdown in a 14-6 loss at third-ranked Clemson the previous week, Auburn (2-1) could at least point to a stout defensive opponent as the reason for its troubles.
Not this time. Mercer (1-2), which only resumed its football program five years ago and plays a division down in the Southern Conference, gave the Tigers all they could handle, much to a chagrin of a disgruntled crowd at Jordan-Hare Stadium — many of whom didn't bother returning to their seats after a lackluster first half in which the Southeastern Conference powerhouse led only 10-3.
Much of Auburn's woes could be attributed to an inability to hold onto the ball. The Tigers lost three fumbles in the first half and another returning a punt on what should've been their first possession of the second half. Jason Stidham also had an interception when Kam Lott ripped the ball away from Nate Craig-Myers , a lackluster effort by the intended receiver that symbolized the entire afternoon.
No. 16 Virginia Tech 64, at East Carolina 17: Redshirt freshman Josh Jackson threw for 372 yards and five touchdowns — three to Cam Phillips — to lead the Hokies to victory. Phillips had a program-record 14 catches for 189 yards to help the Hokies improve to 3-0 for the first time since 2011. He punctuated his day with a perfectly executed route that left him wide open, and Jackson hit him in stride for a 45-yard score with 7:46 left in the third quarter.
Both Jackson and Phillips called it a day before the fourth, as Virginia Tech roared out of a slow first-quarter start by scoring 57 straight points to turn this into a rout. That included 34 points and four TD throws by Jackson in the third quarter alone.
Gardner Minshew threw for two scores for the Pirates. They led 17-7 but fell to 0-3 for the first time since 2004.
at Vanderbilt 14, No. 18 Kansas State 7: Kyle Shurmur scored on a 2-yard run with 8:23 left, and Vanderbilt upset Kansas State for the Commodores' first win over a ranked, nonconference opponent since 1946.
Vanderbilt improved to 3-0 for the first time since 2011 with the Commodores' first win over a ranked, nonconference opponent since beating North Carolina State. The Commodores also have won five straight at home dating to last season.
Kansas State (2-1) last beat a Southeastern Conference team on the road in the regular season in 1982 at Kentucky. Senior quarterback Jesse Ertz tried to drive the Wildcats to the tying score. But he was tackled short on fourth-and-8 deep in Vanderbilt territory by Oren Burks and LaDarius Wiley with 1:06 left.
D.J. Reed of the Wildcats had not one, but two touchdowns wiped out. He picked up a fumble by Shurmur and ran 35 yards to the end zone in the second quarter. Replay review ruled Shurmur was down before the ball came out. In the final seconds of the third quarter, Reed returned a punt for a TD that was wiped out by an illegal block in the back.
at No. 20 Texas Christian 56, Southern Methodist 36: Jalen Reagor made a leaping 38-yard catch between four defenders in the end zone on the last play of the first half, finally putting the Horned Frogs ahead to stay.
The Mustangs (2-1) led 19-7 before Kenny Hill threw three TD passes in the final 7 1/2 minutes of the second quarter. The last was Reagor's catch in a crowd of Mustangs who seemed more like observers than defenders.