Archive for College Football Awards

College Football Crisis Management Award – Week 15

Not every FBS game played in Championship Week was a championship game – something the Big 12 Conference might want to address this off season – but, Week 15 consisted of only a total of 14 FBS games played.

Of those 14 games, 8 were won by teams that never trailed and 6 included some sort of comeback.  Of those 6 games where the winning team trailed at one point or another, 3 of those games included comebacks after being down by 10 points or more.

All 6 FBS teams that were in contention for a spot in the inaugural playoff brackets won their respective games with 5 of those teams winning rather convincingly.  Florida State was the only playoff contender that trailed at one time in their game, but, for anyone following college football this year, that fact should not surprise you.

 

TEAMS WITH THE MOST DOUBLE-DIGIT COMEBACKS

3: Florida State, Iowa, Nevada, North Carolina, South Florida, Washington     2: Appalachian State, Arizona, Ball State, Baylor, Boise State, Bowling Green, California, Colorado State, Florida Atlantic, Hawaii, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisville, LSU, Marshall, Memphis, Middle Tennessee, Minnesota, North Carolina State, TCU, Toledo, UAB, Washington State, Western Michigan, West Virginia, Wisconsin

TEAMS WITH THE MOST DOUBLE-DIGIT COLLAPSES

4: Iowa State, Massachusetts, Western Kentucky    3: Arkansas, Ball State, Colorado, Iowa, Louisiana-Monroe, Louisiana Tech, Purdue, South Carolina    2: Arizona State, Boston College, BYU, Buffalo, Florida International, Georgia State, Hawaii, Nebraska, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Pittsburgh, San Diego State, Texas State, Texas Tech, Troy, Tulsa, UNLV,  Washington State

In the Week 15 comebacks from a deficit of 10 points or more, one team came back after being 10 points down and two teams tied for the Safe Harbor Consulting College Football Crisis Management Award with comebacks after being down by 14 points.

In the Conference USA Championship game, Marshall spotted Louisiana Tech 10 first quarter points; still trailed by 7 after 3 quarters; and, then put up 10 unanswered points of their own in the 4th quarter to win the game, 26 – 23 and be crowned the C-USA Champions.

We are so very happy to announce that in the first of our two co-award-winning games, the SMU Mustangs not only won their first and only game in 2014, but they did so by rallying back from a 14 point deficit.  For far too many weeks into this season, we noted that SMU was the only remaining FBS team to have never had a lead in any game played.  This fact turned us into Mustang fans, rooting for them to get a lead and, eventually, win a game.  Week 11 saw the Mustangs get their first lead in a game and Week 15 finally ends their season long losing streak.

SMU jumped out to a 6 – 0 lead over AAC rival Connecticut but then allowed the Huskies to put up 20 unanswered points (3 touchdowns with one missed PAT) to go into halftime trailing 20 – 6.  Now, one might expect an 0 – 11 team to just fold up their tents and mail in the second half of the last game in the season, but these Mustangs had too much pride to do that.

SMU held Connecticut scoreless in the second half while putting up 2 third quarter touchdowns to tie the game up at 20 – 20, and a game-winning fourth quarter touchdown to secure their first win and a share of the Safe Harbor Consulting College Football Crisis Management Award for Week 15!  Way to go Mustangs!!

Certificate - Week 15 - SMU

The other co-award winning game featured two Big 12 teams playing in their final games of the regular season.  The Big 12 is the only Big 5 conference that does not host a championship game.  (NCAA rules require conferences to have at least 12 teams to have a Conference Championship Game).  In this rival game, known as “Bedlam”, Oklahoma State and Oklahoma lived up to its moniker.

After the two teams traded touchdowns for a 14 – 14 tie halfway through the second quarter, the Sooners put up two unanswered touchdowns to take a 28 – 14 lead into halftime.

After playing a scoreless third quarter, Oklahoma State scored a touchdown to get within 7; Oklahoma answered with a touchdown to go back up by 14; and, the Cowboys scored again to pull back within 7 with just under 5 minutes to play.  Oklahoma then had an unsuccessful drive and punted the ball back to the Cowboys.  Oklahoma State was then sacked, threw an incompletion and threw an interception in what looked like would be their last attempt to tie the game.

After Oklahoma ran three plays and ran the scoreboard clock down to under a minute, they had to punt the ball back to the Cowboys.  On the punt, Oklahoma State made a fair catch on their own 15 yard line, but was called for running into the kicker.  Oklahoma elected to accept the five yard penalty and re-kick.  My only explanation for this unusual ploy is that perhaps the Sooners thought it would be nice to run a few more seconds off of the clock with another punt – bad idea!  On the re-kick, Oklahoma State’s Tyreek Hill returned the punt 92 yards for a game tying touchdown!  Bedlam indeed!

Oklahoma then missed on a 44 yard field goal attempt in OT and the Cowboys connected on their own 21 yard field goal to, not only win the game, not only become bowl eligible, but, also become co-winners of the Safe Harbor Consulting College Football Crisis Management Award.  Which acclaim do you suppose they cherish most?

Certificate - Week 15 - OSU

Congratulations to both of our Co-Award Winners for Week 15.

There actually is a Week 16 in FBS football.  Next week’s slate includes one, very special FBS football game – Army v Navy.  I encourage everyone, football fan or not, to take in this contest and celebrate the young men and women who invest this significant time in their lives to help protect our freedoms and our way of life.

You can read our Week 1 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 2 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 3 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 4 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 5 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 6 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 7 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 8 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 9 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 10 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 11 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 12 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 13 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 14 report by clicking here.

College Football Crisis Management Award – Week 14

Believe it or not, we have already reached the last full week of FBS football games for 2014.  Seems like only yesterday I was typing out our Week 1 report.  And, what a great week to end the year on!

Week 14 made my Week 13 report look prophetic; Week 13 was indeed the calm before the storm.  Week 14, Rivalry Week, had plenty of excitement, lots of come-from-behind victories (with no 5 way tie for 1st place), shake ups at the top of the playoff rankings, close calls, significant broken ankles and lots of turkey sandwiches consumed during the watching of these contests.

Week 14 consisted of a total of 60 contests with at least 1 FBS opponent.  Of those 60 games, only 23 (38%) were won by teams that never trailed in the game.  Of the 37 games in which the winning team trailed at some point in the game, 13 of those contests included comebacks from deficits of 10 points or more.

 

TEAMS WITH THE MOST DOUBLE-DIGIT COMEBACKS

3: Florida State, Iowa, Nevada, North Carolina, South Florida, Washington     2: Appalachian State, Arizona, Ball State, Baylor, Boise State, Bowling Green, California, Colorado State, Florida Atlantic, Hawaii, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisville, LSU, Memphis, Middle Tennessee, Minnesota, North Carolina State, TCU, Toledo, UAB, Washington State, Western Michigan, West Virginia, Wisconsin

TEAMS WITH THE MOST DOUBLE-DIGIT COLLAPSES

4: Iowa State, Massachusetts, Western Kentucky    3: Arkansas, Ball State, Colorado, Iowa, Louisiana-Monroe, Purdue, South Carolina    2: Arizona State, Boston College, BYU, Buffalo, Florida International, Georgia State, Hawaii, Louisiana Tech, Nebraska, New Mexico, Pittsburgh, San Diego State, Texas State, Texas Tech, Troy, Tulsa, UNLV,  Washington State

In the Week 14 comebacks from a deficit of 10 points or more:

Nevada, Indiana and Navy each overcame 10 point deficits in their victories over UNLV, Purdue and South Alabama, respectively.

Missouri overcame an 11 point deficit against Arkansas to secure their spot in next week’s SEC Championship Game while their opponent in that contest, Alabama had to come back after being 12 points down to Auburn in the Iron Bowl.

Louisville was down to in-state rival Kentucky by 13 points in a see-saw affair before pulling out a victory, 44 – 40.

Wisconsin, West Virginia, Ball State and Northern Illinois all trailed by 2 touchdowns before rallying back for their victories.  Wisconsin defeated Big Ten Rival Minnesota, 34 – 24 to land a spot in the Big Ten Championship Game next week; West Virginia downed Iowa State 37 – 24; Ball State defeated Bowling Green, 41 – 24; and, at the end of the game, it was Northern Illinois 31, Western Michigan 21.

Nebraska had to come back after being 17 points down against Iowa before securing the win, 37 – 34.  And, Ohio rallied back from a 21 point deficit to defeat in-state, conference rival Miami (OH), 24 – 21.

But, no team overcame a larger deficit in Week 14 than the winner of the Safe Harbor College Football Crisis Management Award Winner did!

And, the winner is … the Rutgers Scarlet Knights!

The final, regular week of the 2014 College Football campaign matched the two new schools in the Big Ten Conference against one another.  Both schools had already outperformed the analysts’ predictions for their inaugural season in the Big Ten and one of these teams was looking to put an exclamation point on their promising start in this new football chapter for their university.

Maryland scored first with a touchdown on their first possession of the game and ended the 1st quarter with a 7 – 3 lead.

The Terrapins added another touchdown on the first play of the 2nd quarter on a 71 yard touchdown pass from C.J. Brown to Amba Etta-Tawo.  After Rutgers responded with a touchdown pass of their own, from Gary Nova to Leonte Carroo, the Terrapins put up three touchdowns on consecutive possessions to take a commanding 35 – 10 lead with just under 3:00 left in the first half.

As Rutgers’ fans started to give up hope, the Scarlet Knights put together a nice, 13 play, 77 yard touchdown drive that ended with a 1 yard pass from Nova to Andre Patton to pull the Knights to within 18.

A 71 yard kickoff return by Rutgers’ Jenarion Grant to start the second half set up the Scarlet Knights for a quick, 3 play touchdown drive ending on a 1 yard TD plunge by Robert Martin to make the score Maryland 35, Rutgers 24.

On Rutgers’ next possession, the Scarlet Knights marched 70 yards in 10 plays ending on another Nova to Carroo touchdown pass, to pull the Scarlet Knights to within 4 points and bring the lamenting Rutgers’ fans back to their TV sets.

A 50 yard field goal by Maryland’s Brad Craddock put the Terrapins back up by 7, but still only one possession away from a tie with one more quarter left to be played and the Knights sitting on the Maryland 10 yard line.

Amazingly enough, Rutgers tied the game up at 38 – 38 on the first play of the 4th quarter on Gary Nova’s 4th touchdown pass of the day – this one to Andre Patton from 10 yards out.  A Kyle Federico, 20 yard field goal on Rutgers’ next possession gave the Scarlet Knights their first lead of the day, 41 – 38, with just over 6:00 minutes left in regulation play.

Maryland attempted and missed a would-be tying 54 yard field with 3:45 left on the scoreboard clock.  But, instead of running out the clock, Rutgers handed the ball back over to Maryland on a lost fumble at their own 45 yard line!  This time, instead of attempting another 50+ yard field goal to tie the game, the Terrapins went for it on 4th and 1 and were held short of the first down.

No more Rutgers’ gifts would come the Terrapins way and the gun sounded to end the two new Big Ten teams’ first season in their new conference with Rutgers on top 41 – 38, after coming back from 25 points down to win the Week 14 Safe Harbor Consulting College Football Crisis Management Award.

Congratulations Scarlet Knights!

Certificate - Week 14 - Rutgers

Week 15 is an abbreviated schedule with a few games between teams in conferences that have no championship game and a few conference championship games.  Even so, most of the games being played will have a significant impact on the final ranking of teams to play in the inaugural FBS playoff.  With so much on the line, each game promises to be an exciting contest with hair being pulled by fans all across the nation.  I can hardly wait!

You can read our Week 1 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 2 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 3 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 4 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 5 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 6 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 7 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 8 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 9 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 10 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 11 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 12 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 13 report by clicking here.

College Football Crisis Management Award – Week 13

Week 13 in FBS College Football felt an awful lot like the calm before the storm.  No big upsets, no big comebacks, no big shuffling of the top ranked teams.  Week 13 felt like a big cleansing breath before the upcoming Rivalry Week storm.  There was an unusually high number of games with no lead changes – 37 out of 59 games, or a year-high 63% – and, with 5 teams tying for the largest come-from-behind victory, you really don’t have a Crisis Management Award “winner”, you have a basketball squad of co-winners.

So, yes, Week 13 was a rather ho-hum affair in FBS College Football, but, hey, we could use the break.

 

TEAMS WITH THE MOST DOUBLE-DIGIT COMEBACKS

3: Florida State, Iowa, North Carolina, South Florida, Washington     2: Appalachian State, Arizona, Baylor, Boise State, Bowling Green, California, Colorado State, Florida Atlantic, Hawaii, Illinois, Kentucky, LSU, Memphis, Middle Tennessee, Minnesota, Nevada, North Carolina State, TCU, Toledo, UAB, Washington State, Western Michigan

TEAMS WITH THE MOST DOUBLE-DIGIT COLLAPSES

4: Massachusetts, Western Kentucky    3: Ball State, Colorado, Iowa State, Louisiana-Monroe, South Carolina    2: Arizona State, Arkansas, Boston College, BYU, Buffalo, Florida International, Georgia State, Hawaii, Iowa, Louisiana Tech, Nebraska, New Mexico, Pittsburgh, Purdue, San Diego State, Texas State, Texas Tech, Troy, Tulsa, Washington State

There were only 8 come-from-behind victories in Week 13 in which the winning team trailed by 10 points or more, and 5 of those games tied for the largest come-from-behind victory.  In the Week 13 comebacks from a deficit of 10 points or more:

Texas Tech came back from 10 points down against Iowa State before pulling off the victory, 34 – 31; Army was down by 10 points to FCS Fordham before rallying back for a 42 – 31 win; and, Middle Tennessee had to overcome a 13 point deficit before besting Florida Atlantic, 35 – 34.

But, no team overcame a larger deficit in Week 13 than the group of five who had to overcome a two touchdown deficit before securing their victory.

And, the winners are … Minnesota, Old Dominion, Western Michigan, Arizona State and Hawaii!!  No real “winner” but a group of impressive victories.

Minnesota and Nebraska would square off in what was, in essence, an elimination game for the Big Ten West Conference Championship.  The winner would still have a chance to win the B1G West, the loser would have to wait for next year.  Nebraska scored first and took a 21 – 7 point lead into the halftime locker room.  But, for the second week in row, against a Big Ten West rival, the Cornhuskers would relinquish a 14 point lead and fall in the standings and the rankings.

With 2 third quarter touchdowns sandwiching a Nebraska field goal, the Golden Gophers entered the 4th quarter down 24 – 21.  A Mitch Leidner 2 yard TD plunge with just under 4:00 to play put Minnesota up for the first time, 28 – 21.  With Nebraska driving for a potential go-ahead touchdown, Briean Boddy-Calhoun forced and recovered a fumble following a 28 yard pass to the Golden Gophers 4 yard line.  This clinched the victory, kept the Golden Gopher’s hopes alive for a Big Ten West title and earns them a share of the Week 13 Safe Harbor Consulting College Football Crisis Management Award.

Old Dominion earned their share of this week’s award by overcoming a 2nd quarter, 21 – 7, deficit against Louisiana Tech.  The Monarchs managed to get within 10 at halftime, 24 – 14 and then held the Bulldogs scoreless in the second half, tying up the score at 24 – 24 with just under 7 minutes left in the game to force overtime.  In overtime, Louisiana Tech had first possession and had to settle for a 25 yard field goal.  On Old Dominion’s possession, Taylor Heinicke connected with David Washington on an 8 yard touchdown pass to secure the victory and complete the comeback.

Western Michigan spotted in-state and MAC rival Central Michigan, 14 1st quarter points before starting their march to victory.  With three 2nd quarter touchdowns (including one 2-point conversion), the Broncos took a 22 – 17 halftime lead against the Chippewas.  Western Michigan kept control of the game in the second half and won by a final score of 32 – 20 to earn a share of the Week 13 SHC College Football Crisis Management Award.

Meanwhile, in Pac 12 action, the air raid that is Washington State football, jumped out to a 21 – 7 lead over the Sun Devils from Arizona State.  Arizona State rallied back to tie the score at 21 – 21 before the Cougars booted a last second field goal to enter halftime with a 24 – 21 lead.  Footballs continued to fly in the second half (a total of 101 passes were thrown in this game – 74 of them by WSU QB Luke Falk), but the Sun Devils put up 31 unanswered points to run away with the victory.  An end of the game touchdown by Washington State completed the scoring, 52 – 31.

And, out in the Hawaiian Islands, the Warriors completed the Week 13 slate of FBS football games with a comeback of their own.  Never fails – the last games played seem to always impact our awards.  In this battle, UNLV put up the first two touchdowns to go ahead 14 – 0 in the 1st quarter.  Hawaii fought back and tied the score at 14 – 14 going into halftime.  The Warriors took their first lead of the game by scoring the only third quarter touchdown before all heck broke loose in the 4th quarter.

Hawaii went up by 10 early in the 4th quarter.  Two UNLV touchdowns gave the lead back to the Rebels with just under 5 minutes left in the game.  A Warrior touchdown at the 2 minute mark put Hawaii up 31 – 28, but the Rebels wrestled the lead back with just 15 seconds left on a touchdown pass from Blake Decker to Taylor Barnhill.  But wait, we’re not done!  Hawaii took the kickoff to the UNLV 42 yard line; hit a 22 yard pass with 5 seconds left; threw an incomplete pass with 1 second left ; and then connected on a 20 yard touchdown pass from Ikaika Woosley to  Marcus Kemp to secure an amazing victory!  On an otherwise blasé weekend, this game brought some much needed excitement to the  week, too bad nobody saw it!

Congratulations to all our winners this week!

Now, let’s hope Rivalry Week brings with it some more excitement.

You can read our Week 1 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 2 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 3 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 4 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 5 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 6 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 7 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 8 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 9 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 10 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 11 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 12 report by clicking here.

College Football Crisis Management Award – Week 12

Here we come, down the homestretch in College Football 2014, the inaugural FBS Playoff season, and, instead of becoming solidified, the playoff picture just gets more convoluted.  Florida State remains undefeated but just won their third game after trailing by more than 15 points and has trailed in 7 of their 10 wins.  Does this ability to come-from-behind mean they are a great team or does the fact that they have trailed by more than 2 touchdowns to some rather mediocre teams mean they are not that good?  The SEC West is beating up on each other but should their losses move them down in the standing since they are losing to other really good SEC West teams?  Or, do the nation’s best teams all play in the SEC West and therefore, should be represented in the playoffs?  Ohio State is looking really good coming down the homestretch but they lost in Week 2 to a below average Virginia Tech squad and their overall schedule is comparatively weak when matched against other playoff contenders.  How heavily should that Week 2 loss be weighed?  And what exactly will the selection committee consider: how good a team looks NOW or how good it has looked all season?  And, without a Conference Championship Game, the Big 12 could end up with two, one-loss co-champions.  How will not having to play a conference championship game impact the selection committee’s decision?  Like I said, convoluted.  And, the best news of all, the next few weeks should muddy things up even more!

For the second week in a row, Week 12 consisted of exactly 50 games in which at least one FBS team participated.  Of those 50 games, only 20 (40%) were won by teams that never trailed in the game.  And, of the 30 games that included some sort of comeback, an amazing, year-high, 14 games included comebacks of 10 points or more!  Week 12 also gives us our first two-team Safe Harbor Consulting College Football Crisis Management Award winner; and, not only that, but they win it for the second week in a row!!

 

TEAMS WITH THE MOST DOUBLE-DIGIT COMEBACKS

3: Florida State, Iowa, North Carolina, South Florida, Washington     2: Appalachian State, Arizona, Baylor, Boise State, Bowling Green, California, Colorado State, Florida Atlantic, Illinois, Kentucky, LSU, Memphis, Nevada, North Carolina State, TCU, Toledo, UAB, Washington State

TEAMS WITH THE MOST DOUBLE-DIGIT COLLAPSES

4: Massachusetts, Western Kentucky    3: Ball State, Colorado, Louisiana-Monroe, South Carolina    2: Arizona State, Arkansas, Boston College, BYU, Buffalo, Florida International, Georgia State, Hawaii, Iowa, Iowa State, New Mexico, Pittsburgh, Purdue, San Diego State, Texas State, Texas Tech, Troy, Tulsa

In the Week 12 comebacks from a deficit of 10 points or more:

Late at night, on the west coast, Oregon State shattered Arizona State’s hopes of being a playoff contender by rallying back from a 24 – 14, halftime deficit to pull off the upset, 35 – 27.

South Alabama spotted Texas State a 10 – 0 lead before coming back to win the game by a final score of 24 – 20.

TCU kept their playoff hopes alive after a big scare from a scrappy, Kansas squad.  The Jayhawks led 27 – 17 halfway through the third quarter before the Horned Frogs put up two quick 3rd quarter touchdowns to take the lead.  The game was still in doubt near the end before a late interception sealed the victory for TCU, 34 – 30.  How much should a close game to a 3 – 6 team impact TCU’s standing as the Number 4 team in the playoff picture coming into the week?  We will see on Tuesday.

Virginia Tech handed Duke its second loss of the season 17 – 16 after trailing 10 – 0 in the first quarter.  The Blue Devils were trying to earn some respect as a one-loss team but, instead, falls farther down the rankings.

Arizona completed their 10 point, come-from-behind rally over Washington with a last second, game winning, 47 yard field goal by Casey Skowron.  The Wildcats win 27 – 26 after trailing by 10 early in the 2nd quarter.  A botched extra point by Washington near the end of the 3rd quarter helped account for the one-point, Arizona victory.

The Northwestern Wildcats needed an overtime period to complete their 11 point, come-from-behind victory over Notre Dame by a final score of 43 – 40.  Northwestern trailed by 11 at the end of the first quarter, 20 – 9, and again by 11, 40 – 29, halfway through the 4th.  A touchdown and two-point conversion pulled them within 3 with just over 4 minutes left in the game, and then, Jack Mitchell connected on a 45 yard field goal to tie the game at 40 – 40 with 19 seconds left in the game.  After Notre Dame missed on their 42 yard field goal attempt in the first overtime period, Jack Mitchell was true once again, this time from 41 yards out, to secure the victory.

After going 10 weeks into the season before getting their first lead in any game, SMU was leading South Florida 13 – 0 going into the fourth quarter before losing the game on two South Florida, 4th quarter touchdowns, the second one with just 4 seconds left in the game, to lose 14 – 13.  Just when we thought we wouldn’t have to report on SMU any more in this blog, they end up on the wrong side of a double-digit comeback.

Oklahoma fell two touchdowns down against Texas Tech early in the 3rd quarter before rallying back for a comfortable 42 – 30 victory.  Five 2nd half Sooner touchdowns helped put the game away.

In an historic game, Wisconsin rallied back from an early, 2nd quarter, 17 – 3 deficit to easily defeat Nebraska 59 – 24.  The historic part of this game was Wisconsin’s Melvin Gordon rushing for an NCAA best ever 408 yards!  Gordon achieved this record while watching the 4th quarter from the sideline with the victory well in hand.  This game also knocked Nebraska out of the playoff picture in a big way.

Appalachian State rallied back from a two touchdown, 20 – 6, deficit to defeat Arkansas State, 37 – 32.  The Mountaineers scored 31 unanswered points to take a 37 – 20 lead before two late Red Wolves touchdowns (with failed extra points) made the score appear closer.

North Carolina trailed Pittsburgh, 14 – 0 and then 21 – 7, before rallying back and making this a close game.  The Tar Heels finally took the lead early in the 4th quarter, 34 – 28, but Pittsburgh went on top again, 35 – 34 with just 3:33 remaining in the game.  North Carolina had one more drive left in them and scored with 50 seconds remaining in the contest to complete the comeback, 40 – 35.

For the third time this season, undefeated Florida State trailed by double digits and the nation just waited for their fall from the top.  When will the nation ever learn?  FSU trailed the Hurricanes of Miami 16 – 0 and then again 23 – 7 before the Seminole Chop started going to work.  In this game, however, the Seminoles did not wrestle the lead away from their opponent until Dalvin Cook scored on a 26 yard run with just over 3 minutes left in the contest.  When Brad Kaaya was intercepted on a last ditch 4th and 9 attempt, the Seminoles kept their record unblemished and still solidly in the playoff top four.

Florida International found themselves down by 18, 21 – 3, to Middle Tennessee before putting up 4 unanswered touchdowns on their way to a 38 – 28 victory.

But, no team overcame a larger deficit in Week 12 than the team won the Safe Harbor Consulting College Football Crisis Management Award for the second week in a row!

And, the winner is … Boise State!!

Last week, Boise State’s 14 point, come-from-behind victory over New Mexico was good enough to win the Week 11 Safe Harbor Consulting College Football Crisis Management Award.  In Week 12, they had to do that 6 points better to win the award once again.

In its Week 12 game against San Diego State, the Broncos found themselves down by a whopping 20 points before they ever put one point up on the board.  Finally, with just 3:25 left in the first half, Boise State’s Dan Goodale was good on a 21 yard field goal to make the score 20 – 3.  The Broncos got the ball back with just 1:43 left in the half at their own 22 yard line and managed to march 78 yards for a touchdown to make the score 20 – 10 at the half.

An Aztecs field goal and Broncos touchdown in the 3rd quarter left Boise State trailing by just 23 – 17 going into the 4th quarter with the Broncos sitting at the doorstep to another touchdown.  The Broncos punched the ball into the end-zone on the first play of the 4th quarter to take their first lead of the game, 24 – 23.

A touchdown on their next possession put the Broncos up by 8, 31 – 23.  The Aztecs managed to put up a touchdown of their own, but failed on their two-point conversion attempt to trail, 31 – 29.  The Broncos hung up one more touchdown to put the game away, 38 – 29 and, for the second week in a row, win the Safe Harbor Consulting College Football Crisis Management Award.

Congratulations Boise State on becoming the first two-time winner of the award this year!

Certificate - Week 12 - Boise State

Yes, and down the stretch they come.  I love the chaos that the playoff scenario has created and can’t wait to see what more excitement this horse race has in store for us over the few remaining weeks.  I am sure, someone or someones are going to be disappointed in the end.  I just hope it’s not me!

You can read our Week 1 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 2 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 3 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 4 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 5 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 6 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 7 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 8 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 9 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 10 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 11 report by clicking here.

College Football Crisis Management Award – Week 11

Week 11 in College Football seemed to have almost everything, including a few almosts.  There were 5 top ten teams that suffered a loss in Week 11 and almost a couple more.  LSU almost beat Alabama before giving up a late, game-tying field goal and then losing in overtime; Utah almost scored a touchdown before starting the celebration too soon resulting in an Oregon touchdown instead and drastically shifting the momentum of that game (you can see the play by clicking here).  And, Notre Dame almost had an amazing comeback after being down by 28 points against Arizona State before the rally stalled near the end.

Week 11 consisted of an even 50 games in which at least one FBS team participated.  For a second week in a row, over 50% of the visiting teams had a happy, victorious ride home with 28 (56%) visiting teams winning their games.  In 24 of the 50 games played, or 48%, the winning team never trailed.  And, in the 26 games that included some sort of a comeback, 8 teams were able to overcome double-digit deficits.  Even though there was that one, almost huge comeback by Notre Dame, the largest deficit overcome was a year-low 14 points, achieved by two teams, in the two highest scoring affairs of the week including the game with the largest margin of victory by an FBS team over another FBS team.

And, a great big sigh of relief for SMU.  Although the Mustangs continue to remain un-victorious on the year, after scoring a touchdown on their first play from scrimmage, a 64 yard touchdown pass from Matt Davis to Der’rikk Thompson, SMU secured their first lead of the season and can now be removed from our infamous list of Teams That Have Never Held the Lead.  We are glad to not have to report on this any more for 2014.

TEAMS THAT HAVE NEVER HELD THE LEAD

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TEAMS WITH THE MOST DOUBLE-DIGIT COMEBACKS

3: Iowa, Washington     2: Baylor, Bowling Green, California, Colorado State, Florida Atlantic, Florida State, Illinois, Kentucky, LSU, Memphis, Nevada, North Carolina, North Carolina State, South Florida, Toledo, UAB, Washington State

TEAMS WITH THE MOST DOUBLE-DIGIT COLLAPSES

4: Massachusetts, Western Kentucky    3: Ball State, Colorado, Louisiana-Monroe, South Carolina    2: Arkansas, Boston College, BYU, Buffalo, Florida International, Georgia State, Hawaii, Iowa, Iowa State, New Mexico, Purdue, Troy, Tulsa

In the Week 11 comebacks from a deficit of 10 points or more:

After being on the losing end of last week’s Safe Harbor Consulting College Football Crisis Management Award winning game, Louisville came back from an early 10 point deficit against Boston College before pulling away, 38 – 19.

One week after the sad and unfortunate end to quarterback Connor Halliday’s esteemed career at Washington State, the Cougars overcame an early 10 point deficit to defeat Oregon State, 39 – 32.  Next up quarterback Luke Falk led the way with 471 yards passing and 5 touchdown passes to ease the pain of Halliday’s loss.

In a low scoring affair on Friday night, the Memphis Tigers overcame a 10 – 0 deficit to Temple to eventually win 16 – 13 on a game winning, 31 yard field goal by Jake Elliot as time expired.

In a battle between two Big 12 heavyweights, the Baylor Bears found themselves down by 11 to Oklahoma at the end of the first quarter before putting up 45 unanswered points and pulling away with an impressive, road win, 48 – 14.

UTEP ran out to a 20 – 7 lead over Western Kentucky before the Hilltoppers rallied back to score 4 of the next 5 TDs to win the game, 35 – 27.

And, Appalachian State also came back from a 20 – 7 deficit against Louisiana-Monroe before winning their game, 31 – 29, on a 39 yard Bentlee Critcher field goal with just 29 second left in the game.

But, no team overcame a larger deficit in Week 11 than the two teams who won the Safe Harbor Consulting College Football Crisis Management Award!

And, the winners are … Marshall and Boise State!!

You don’t expect to see the team who overcomes the largest deficit of the week to also be the team to win by the largest margin of victory, but that’s exactly what the Thundering Herd from Marshall accomplished.  Marshall is the most unrecognizable undefeated FBS team in America.  The Thundering Herd entered Week 11 with an 8 – 0 record but on the outside looking in at the FBS Playoff rankings due to their weak schedule and non-Big 5 conference affiliation.  Whether or not Marshall should be considered as a playoff contender is fodder for another article.

The Thundering Herd, however, did not look like playoff contenders to start their Saturday against Southern Mississippi.  The Golden Eagles put up 14 points before the thunder was heard.  (See what I did there?  Clever, huh?)  But then, after the second Southern Miss touchdown, there appeared to be a new Marshall in town.  (Man, I am on a roll with this one!)

Marshall racked up a massive 63 points against just one more field goal from the Golden Eagles to easily win the game by 46 points – the largest margin of victory in Week 11 between two FBS schools (Ole Miss did defeat Presbyterian 48 – 0, but Presbyterian is not an FBS school).  Nonetheless, the Thundering Herd still wins a share of the Safe Harbor Consulting College Football Crisis Management Award.  That’s pretty amazing.

Certificate - Week 11 - Marshall

The other award winning comes from the Week 11 game with the highest number of total points scored between the two teams.  New Mexico and Boise State came out of the gates on fire putting up one touchdown after another.  New Mexico scored on a 75 yard touchdown pass on their first play from scrimmage, and, then, Boise State did the exact same thing on their first play from scrimmage.  Two plays into the game, just 23 seconds gone off the clock, and the game had 2 75 yard touchdown passes and was tied 7 – 7.  Buckle your seats folks; we’re in for a bumpy ride!

By the time the first quarter ended, 42 points were already up on the scoreboard with New Mexico holding a 28 – 14, 14 point lead, but no one believed the scoring was over or that lead was safe.  The second quarter had only 5 touchdowns scored (compared to 6 in the first quarter) and the teams entered half time with New Mexico on top, 42 – 35.

The pace slowed down a little bit in the third quarter as the Broncos from Boise State only managed 2 field goals against the Lobos’ lone touchdown.  As a result, New Mexico entered the final quarter holding an 8 point lead, 49 – 41.

But, the 4th quarter belonged to the Broncos.  The Broncos finally decided to play some defense, holding the Lobos scoreless, while their offense continued to click, putting up 3 4th quarter touchdowns and pulling away with a 60 – 49 victory.  109 total points!  And, a share of the Safe Harbor Consulting College Football Crisis Management Award for Week 11.

Certificate - Week 11 - Boise State

Congratulations Marshall and Boise State!

Well that was fun.  We managed to shake up the early playoff picture and we still have future games between top ranked teams that promise to shake it up even more.  Can hardly wait for Week 12!

You can read our Week 1 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 2 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 3 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 4 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 5 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 6 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 7 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 8 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 9 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 10 report by clicking here.

College Football Crisis Management Award – Week 10

The fun and excitement in Week 10 for FBS College Football started off with a bang on Thursday Night and continued throughout the weekend, ending with a nail biter late Saturday Night.  The very first game of the week gave us our Safe Harbor Consulting College Football Crisis Management Award winner and the very last game ended in overtime between two Top 20 teams.  That sure does make for a long and exciting football week.

For the first time this year, exactly half of the games played had the winning team never trail (27 games) and half of them included a comeback of some sort.  And, interestingly enough, Week 10 was a good week for visiting teams as 30 of the 54 games were won by the road team.  Of the 27 games in which the winning team trailed at some point in the contest, 7 of those victors had to overcome deficits of 10 points or more.  And, of those 7 games, all but 1 involved teams from a Big 5 conference playing each other.

SMU must endure at least one more week as the only FBS team to not yet hold a lead in any game this year by virtue of their third bye of the year, but, the Mustangs’ schedule has some games coming up against other struggling teams in which they should be able to secure a lead, it not a victory.  I am probably not supposed to show favoritism, but I am rooting for the Mustangs.

With its come-from-behind victory over Colorado, in which they trailed by 10 points, the Washington Huskies join Iowa as the two teams with the most double digit comebacks.

TEAMS THAT HAVE NEVER HELD THE LEAD

SMU

TEAMS WITH THE MOST DOUBLE-DIGIT COMEBACKS

3: Iowa, Washington     2: Bowling Green, California, Colorado State, Florida Atlantic, Florida State, Illinois, Kentucky, LSU, Nevada, North Carolina, North Carolina State, South Florida, Toledo, UAB

TEAMS WITH THE MOST DOUBLE-DIGIT COLLAPSES

4: Massachusetts, Western Kentucky    3: Ball State, Colorado, South Carolina    2: Arkansas, BYU, Buffalo, Florida International, Georgia State, Hawaii, Iowa, Iowa State, Louisiana-Monroe, Purdue, Troy, Tulsa

In the Week 10 comebacks from a deficit of 10 points or more:

The number 1 team in the nation had to come back from 10 points down to defeat a pesky Arkansas Razorbacks team.  Mississippi State trailed 10 – 0 early in the first half and went into the half time locker room still down by 3 in a defensive battle between the two SEC foes in the first home game Mississippi State ever played as the Number 1 team in America.  The Bulldogs tied the game at 10 – 10 late in the third quarter and then, finally, took the lead 17 – 10 on a 69 yard touchdown pass from Dak Prescott to Fred Ross in the 4th quarter.  Arkansas was driving down field for a potential, game tying score when Brandon Allen’s pass was intercepted in the end zone by Will Redmond with 15 seconds left in the game.  A bit of a scare, bit Mississippi State pulled off the victory.

In another SEC battle with playoff implications, Auburn and Ole Miss battled back and forth before the visiting Tigers from Auburn ended the game on top with a 35 – 31 victory.  The lead changed hands several times throughout the game, but Ole Miss once held a two-score, 10 point lead early in the second half before the Tigers put up two third quarter touchdowns to retake the lead, 28 – 24.  Bo Wallace scored on a 3 yard run early in the 4th quarter to seesaw the lead back to Ole Miss.  Then, Auburn ended the scoring on a Cameron Artis-Payne 6 yard TD run to secure the victory.

Meanwhile, out west, Washington found themselves down to Colorado by 10 points throughout much of the first half.  First by a score of 10 – 0, then 17 – 7, and, finally, by 20 – 10 before closing the lead to 3 just before the half ended.  After Colorado went up by 6 on an early second half field goal, the Huskies put up three unanswered touchdowns – one, on a 28 yard touchdown pass from Cyler Miles to Dante Pettis; one, on a 30 yard interception return by Travis Feeney; and, one, on a Dante Pettis 87 yard punt return.  When the final gun sounded, Washington had secured its third double digit, come-from-behind victory of the season, 38 – 23.

In the only double-digit comeback that did not include teams from one of the Big 5 Conferences, Memphis rallied back from an 11 point deficit to defeat Tulsa by a final score of 40 – 20 on a Friday Night Lights affair.  The Tigers were trailing 14 – 3 midway through the 2nd quarter before stringing up 30 unanswered points to take control of the contest.  Both teams added 4th quarter touchdowns to make up the final score.

In the hills of West Virginia, TCU entered battle with the Mountaineers in hopes of keeping their playoff potential alive.  West Virginia put up the first 13 points in a game that included more defensive stops than most people had anticipated.  The Horned Frogs put up the next 14 points to take a 1 point lead, but West Virginia answered with two touchdowns of their own to go back up by 13.  A TCU touchdown near the end of the 3rd quarter brought the Horned Frogs to within 6 points to start the final period.  A field goal by the Mountaineers on the first play of the 4th quarter put West Virginia up by 9.  TCU got within 2 following a touchdown run by B. J. Catalon with 7:33 remaining in the contest.  The TCU defense held West Virginia to a three and out on the pursuing possession but were stalled on their own, following possession after failing on a 4th and 3 at the West Virginia 43 yard line.  The Mountaineers, however, could not get a first down and punted back to TCU with just over 2:00 left on the scoreboard clock.  The Horned Frogs marched 54 yards on 7 plays to set up a game winning, 37 yard field goal by Jaden Oberkrom to secure the victory and keep the Horned Frogs’ playoff hopes alive.

And, in yet another SEC contest, Tennessee found themselves down by 14 to South Carolina with under 5:00 left in the game.  Starting at their own 25 yard line following a South Carolina kickoff, Tennessee went on a 10 play, 75 yard touchdown drive culminating in a 3 yard touchdown run by Joshua Dobbs to make the score, South Carolina 42, Tennessee 35.  With only 1:50 left, the Volunteers attempted an on-side kick that South Carolina recovered at the Tennessee 43 yard line.  Still holding three time-outs, the Volunteers’ hopes were slim, but they did have a chance.  South Carolina ran 3 plays for -2 yards, only taking 27 seconds off of the clock before punting the ball down to the Tennessee 15 yard line.  Tennessee proceeded to march the ball down field to the South Carolina 9 yard line before the Gamecocks called a timeout with 19 seconds remaining in regulation play.  After an incomplete pass, Joshua Dobbs hit Jalen Crooms for a game-tying touchdown pass to force overtime.  Tennessee got the ball first in overtime and had to settle for a 32 yard, Aaron Medley field goal.  After South Carolina’s Dylan Thomas was sacked on first and second downs for a total of 15 yards lost, and an incomplete pass on third down, the Gamecocks had to try a 58 yard field goal to tie the game back up.  The field goal was no good and Tennessee had secured an amazing late game, come-from-behind victory.

Lots of excitement in all those double-digit comebacks, but no team overcame a larger deficit in Week 10 than the team who won the first Week 10 game played, on Thursday night, to win the Safe Harbor Consulting College Football Crisis Management Award!

And, the winner is … Florida State!!

The Florida State Seminoles seem to be embroiled in a year full of Crisis Management issues, from off the field problems to on the field challenges, yet, somehow, they seem to continue to thrive in spite of these issues.  Florida State has been, and continues to be, right in the middle of the inaugural playoff picture, but they always seem to be on the precipice of falling off the pedestal.  From fears of losing the services of their Heisman holding quarterback to large in game deficits and overtime thrillers, the Seminoles somehow continue to win and continue to stay in the Top 4 rankings.

In a rare Thursday Night contest, the Seminoles invaded Louisville for what many analysts thought might be their last real obstacle in securing a spot in the first ever FBS playoffs.  And, Louisville looked the part of season spoilers in the first half.  After a scoreless 1st quarter, the Cardinals put up three, quick 2nd quarter touchdowns to take a 21 – 0 lead and Seminoles haters all around the country were starting to celebrate – but, not so fast!  Florida State scored a touchdown late in the half and the momentum was about to shift.

Louisville put up a field goal early in the 3rd quarter to go up by 17, but the Seminoles scored three unanswered, big play, touchdowns to take the lead.  One touchdown was a 68 yard pass from Jameis Winston to Travis Rudolph (14 – 24); one was a 40 yard run by Dalvin Cook (21 – 24); and, one was a 47 yard pass from Winston to Ermon Lane (28 – 24).

The Cardinals kept Seminoles hater’s hopes alive when they retook the lead, 31 – 28 following a 6 play 77 yard touchdown drive, but Florida State had a few more big plays left in them.  A 38 yard touchdown run from Cook put the Seminoles back on top, 35 – 31, and a 35 yard Winston to Freddie Stevenson pass closed the deal and secured a 42 – 31 victory for the still undefeated and still Number 2 ranked Seminoles.  So, the first game played, on Thursday Night, in Week 10 produced the Safe Harbor Consulting College Football Crisis Management Award winner.

Congratulations Florida State!

Certificate - Week 10 - Florida State

The SEC battles did shake up the playoff picture a little bit and promise to continue to do so in the weeks to come.  I wonder how many of the four teams in the first playoff ranking will actually play in one of the playoff games?  It should be interesting to watch how this all unfolds.

You can read our Week 1 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 2 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 3 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 4 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 5 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 6 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 7 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 8 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 9 report by clicking here.

College Football Crisis Management Award – Week 9

Yes, Week 9 in college football did have three games with 100+ points scored; yes, Week 9 did have two double-overtime games with Big 5 opponents; yes, Week 9 did have a Top 4 team lose, thus, shaking up the playoff picture; but, given what we have grown accustomed to, Week 9 was a pretty tame week in FBS College Football.  Or, maybe, I’ve just gotten spoiled.

Week 9 consisted of a total of 49 college football games with at least 1 FBS contestant.  For the first time since Week 3, over half of those games were won by teams that never trailed in the game; 27 games (55%).  With a year low 22 games with some kind of comeback, only 5 of those games, for the second week in a row, included comebacks of 10 points or more.  And, to top off the relatively uneventful week, the largest comeback, achieved by two teams, was a rather pedestrian 15 point comeback.

The Mustangs of SMU continue to struggle through their 2014 football campaign losing once again without ever having a lead – this time, to Memphis by a final score of 48 – 10.  Georgia Tech and UCF both played their first games of the year that did not include some kind of comeback, meaning there are no more FBS teams that have played in games that always included some kind of comeback win.  In Georgia Tech’s case, the Yellow Jackets never trailed in their 56 – 28 victory over Pittsburgh; in Central Florida’s case, they beat Temple, 34 – 14 without ever giving up the lead.

In losing to Toledo, 42 – 35, after having held a 13 point lead, Massachusetts joins Western Kentucky as the two teams with the most loses after holding a double-digit lead.

TEAMS THAT HAVE NEVER HELD THE LEAD

SMU

TEAMS WITH THE MOST DOUBLE-DIGIT COMEBACKS

3: Iowa     2: Bowling Green, California, Colorado State, Florida Atlantic, Illinois, Kentucky, LSU, Nevada, North Carolina, North Carolina State, South Florida, Toledo, UAB, Washington

TEAMS WITH THE MOST DOUBLE-DIGIT COLLAPSES

4: Massachusetts, Western Kentucky    3: Ball State    2: BYU, Buffalo, Colorado, Florida International, Georgia State, Hawaii, Iowa, Iowa State, Louisiana-Monroe, Purdue, South Carolina, Troy,

In the Week 9 double digit comebacks: Nevada had to overcome a 10 point deficit in the early morning hours, defeating Hawaii, 26 – 18 out in the islands.  As mentioned above, Toledo rallied back after being 13 points down against Massachusetts, handing the Minutemen their fourth loss of the season after they lead by 10 points or more.  And, North Carolina eeked out a one point victory over Virginia, 28 – 27 after the Cavaliers scored the first 14 points of the game.  But no team overcame a larger deficit in Week 9 than the Safe Harbor College Football Crisis Management Award co-winners did!

And, the winners are … Ball State and Texas State!!

The Ball State Cardinals were first on the scoreboard against Akron, after kicking a field goal on their first possession, but found themselves trailing by 15 at 21 – 6 as halftime approached.  The Cardinals scored a touchdown just before half to cut the lead to 21 – 13, and added an additional 22 unanswered, second half points to take the victory, 35 – 21, and earn a share of the Week 9, Safe Harbor Consulting College Football Crisis Management Award.

Certificate - Week 9 - Ball State

The Texas State Bobcats were shut out in the first half and spotted the Warhawks from Louisiana-Monroe a 15 – 0 lead early in the third quarter before starting their rally.  With one 3rd quarter touchdown, followed by two more in the 4th quarter, Texas State completed their come-from-behind victory by a final score of 22 – 18 against their Sun Belt foe.  The 15 point, come-from-behind victory was enough for the Bobcats to be recognized as co-winners of the Safe Harbor Consulting College Football Crisis Management Award for Week 9.

Certificate - Week 9 - Texas State

Congratulations Cardinals and Warhawks!

Week 9 ended up being a little bit less exciting than past weeks in college football, but, maybe we needed to take a little breath to get ready for an exciting second half of the season.  With the first Playoff Committee Top 25 Ranking coming out on Tuesday, we are positioned to watch the landscape change from week to week.  Let the posturing begin.

You can read our Week 1 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 2 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 3 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 4 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 5 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 6 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 7 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 8 report by clicking here.

College Football Crisis Management Award – Week 8

College Football Week 8 was an interesting one in that it had the fewest number of games in which the winning team never trailed and, yet, also the fewest number of games in which the winning team came back from a double digit deficit.  There was only one upset of a Top Ten team by an unranked opponent, and, the only real shuffling of Top 25 teams was caused by ranked teams playing each other, which minimized the shakeup.  Week 8 also saw the last remaining team to never trail finally find themselves behind in a game but, still left us with our one lone team looking for its first lead.  An exciting week, as they all are, but no Week 6.

Of the 53 games played in Week 8 with at least one FBS football team participating, a year-low 19 (36%) were won by teams that never trailed.  When Florida International put a touchdown on the board near the end of the first quarter, Marshall experienced its first deficit of the entire 2014 season.  The Thundering Herd did go on to gain the victory, 45 – 13, but that now leaves us with no teams that have never trailed.  SMU, however, was unable to get a lead against Cincinnati and remains the last team on that dubious list.

Both North Texas and South Alabama played their first games in which the winning team had to overcome a deficit of some kind.  North Texas ended up losing to Southern Miss, 30 – 20, after holding a field goal lead at one point, and South Alabama beat Georgia State 30 – 27 after once trailing by 4.

We have added a Crisis Management List to our chart to now identify teams that have the most double-digit, come-from-behind victories.  After 8 weeks, Iowa tops our chart with three such comebacks. Interestingly enough, in Iowa’s two losses, including this week’s loss, they also blew double-digit leads.

TEAMS THAT HAVE NEVER HELD THE LEAD

SMU

TEAMS THAT HAVE PLAYED GAMES THAT ALWAYS INCLUDED A COMEBACK WIN

Georgia Tech (5 – 2), UCF (4 – 2)

CRISIS MANAGEMENT LEADERS

TEAMS THAT HAVE OVERCOME 3 DOUBLE-DIGIT DEFICITS

Iowa

TEAMS THAT HAVE OVERCOME 2 DOUBLE-DIGIT DEFICITS

Bowling Green, California, Colorado State, Florida Atlantic, Illinois, Kentucky, LSU, North Carolina State, South Florida, UAB, Washington

Of the year-high 34 games that included some kind of comeback in the game, a year-low 5 games included comebacks of 10 points or more.  Minnesota had to overcome an 11 point deficit before beating Purdue 39 – 38 on a late, fourth quarter, 52 yard field goal by Ryan Santoso.  Maryland dug themselves a 14 – 0 hole before rallying back and holding off Iowa for a 38 – 31 Big Ten victory for the conference newcomers.   Nevada scored 4 second half touchdowns to overcome a 15 point halftime deficit against BYU to secure a late night, west coast victory by a score of 42 – 35.  And, Florida Atlantic trailed Western Kentucky by 17 at half before rallying back and finally taking the lead on a late, 4th quarter 61 yard pass from Jaquez Johnson to Lucky Whitehead and securing a 42 – 38 victory.  But no team overcame a larger deficit in Week 8 than the Safe Harbor Consulting College Football Crisis Management Award winner did!

And, the winner is … South Florida!!

In a bit of irony, the South Florida Bulls traveled all the way to Tulsa, Oklahoma just to experience another hurricane – of the golden variety.  And, the Bulls must have been tired from the trip; the Golden Hurricane put a first half hurting on South Florida and ran into the halftime locker room with a 20 point lead, 27 – 7.

Marlon Mack started the Bulls second half comeback with a 54 yard TD run to make the score 27 – 14.  After a Tulsa field goal, South Florida’s QB, Andre Davis threw TD passes of 15 yards, 15 yards and 85 yards – all to Mike White – to put the Bulls up, 35 – 30.  The Bulls then added a late field goal for good measure to cap off the amazing, come-from-behind victory, 38 – 30 and secure the Week 8 Safe Harbor Consulting College Football Crisis Management Award.

Congratulations Bulls!

Certificate - Week 8 - South Florida

I’m not sure we will ever have another week like we did two weeks ago in Week 6, but I’m anxious for the coming weeks to find out.  Now, bring on Week 9!

You can read our Week 1 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 2 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 3 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 4 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 5 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 6 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 7 report by clicking here.

College Football Crisis Management Award – Week 7

We have already reached the halfway point of the inaugural FBS Playoff season and the projected playoff line-up looks nothing today like it did at the start of the season.  And, my bet is, it will look nothing at the end of the season like it looks today.  The Mississippi schools have muddied the water, the Pac 12 schools have thrown in a wrench and the B1G Ten schools have vacated the premises.  Not to mention that the lone remaining team from most analysts’ original playoff predictions is currently involved in a scandal that could cost them the services of their high profile, Heisman-holding quarterback.  Looking ahead, every one of the remaining weeks shows promise of further changing the playoff landscape and keeping us all on our toes and biting our nails.

Week 7 of the 2014 college football season didn’t quite match the fury of Week 6, but it did offer up plenty of excitement and plenty of opportunity to shake up the Top 4 and Top 25 rankings.  Week 7 included a total of 54 games with at least one FBS football team participating in which 26 (48%) were won by teams that never trailed.  Marshall, with its 49 – 24 victory over Middle Tennessee State, is left as the only FBS team to have never trailed at any point this season.  Baylor gets removed from that list in remarkable fashion, but, more on that later (spoiler alert).

SMU, by virtue of having a bye this week, remains the only FBS football team to never hold a lead in any of their contests so far.  But, I don’t think the Mustangs will stay there for much longer.  Hopefully, a week off is just what the doctor ordered and they can find themselves on the positive end of the scoreboard sometime soon.

The list of teams that have played in games in which the lead never changed hands has been trimmed down to two.  That is also true for the list of teams that have played in games that always included a comeback of some sort.  In the case of the latter list, Georgia Tech remains on that list, but, for the first time this season, they were on the losing end of the score, having lost to Duke after having a 3 point lead at one point in the game.

TEAMS THAT HAVE NEVER TRAILED

Marshall

TEAMS THAT HAVE NEVER HELD THE LEAD

SMU

TEAMS THAT HAVE PLAYED GAMES IN WHICH THE LEAD NEVER CHANGED

North Texas (2 – 4), South Alabama (2 – 3)

TEAMS THAT HAVE PLAYED GAMES THAT ALWAYS INCLUDED A COMEBACK WIN

Georgia Tech (5 – 1), UCF (3 – 2)

Of the 28 Week 7 games that involved some kind of comeback, 12 of those games experienced comebacks of 10 points or more, and, for the first time this season, two games tied for the honor of the largest come-from-behind victory for the week.  Four teams – LSU, East Carolina, Texas San Antonio (UTSA), and Eastern Michigan – all rallied back for victories after trailing by 10 points at some time in their games.  Kentucky overcame an early 11 point deficit before easily dispensing UL Monroe, 48 – 14.  And, a total of five teams – Hawaii, Houston, Notre Dame, West Virginia and Central Florida (UCF) – had to come from two touchdowns, 14 points, down before securing their victories in Week 7.  But, no teams had to overcome a larger deficit than the two teams that tied for this week’s Safe Harbor Consulting College Football Crisis Management Award  did.

And, the winners are … the Baylor Bears and the Western Michigan Broncos!!

Baylor entered its game against Texas Christian (TCU) as one of only two teams that had yet to trail at any point in 2014.  This game was one of Week 7’s highest profile games, featuring two Top 10 ranked teams that promised to have serious playoff picture implications.  The build-up leading into this game promised plenty of fun and excitement, and, it delivered all of that in spades.

These two teams include high octane offenses, so it was not too surprising to see lots of points put on the board.  TCU jumped out to a quick 14 – 0 lead, but the scoring was fast and furious and the game remained close through the first three quarters.  TCU held the lead most of the time, although Baylor did manage to tie the game once, at 24 – 24, and, generally, remain within striking distance of the Horned Frogs.

When TCU padded their lead with two quick touchdowns in the 4th quarter, to go ahead by 21, 58 – 37, it looked like the Horned Frogs were going to vault themselves into the playoff picture, but, Baylor was not yet done.

Baylor immediately answered TCU’s last touchdown with a 4 play, 45 yard touchdown drive that took all of 59 seconds off of the clock to draw back to within 14 points.  After getting the ball back 2:39 later at their own 8 yard line, the Bears marched 92 yards in 5 plays to pull within one touchdown of a tie.

With the Bear defense holding TCU to a 3 and out, the offense started their next drive at their own 9 yard line and moved 91 yards in a 5 play, 59 second drive to tie the game up at 58 – 58.

On TCU’s next possession, while trying to get within field goal range to reclaim the lead, the Baylor defense stopped a 4th down and 3 attempt at the Baylor 45 yard line to take possession of the ball with just a little over 1:00 left on the game clock.  The Bears were able to move the ball down to the TCU 11 where Chris Callahan booted a 28 yard field goal as time ran out on the clock, to win the game.  It was Baylor’s only lead in the entire game and put the finishing touch on a remarkable, 21 point, come-from-behind victory.  Not only was it the first time Baylor had ever trailed in a game this season, but they trailed by 21 points before claiming their hold of the Safe Harbor Consulting College Football Crisis Management Award for Week 7.  An honor they would share with Western Michigan.

Certificate - Week 7 - Baylor

The Western Michigan vs Ball State football game was, admittedly, a little less of a high profile game than Baylor v TCU.  A few less TV sets and fans were watching this game, and no playoff implications rested in the balance of the outcome.  But, a 21 point, come-from-behind victory is no less amazing when two teams from the same conference take the field against one another.

The Broncos of Western Michigan dug their 21 point hole deficit earlier in the game than Baylor did, finding themselves down by a score of 28 – 7 late in the 2nd quarter.  A 75 yard touchdown pass near the end of the first half – followed up by a Ball State field goal – made the halftime deficit 17 points.

Two Western Michigan touchdowns against one Ball State touchdown in the 3rd quarter allowed the Broncos to enter the 4th quarter down by 10.  A 54 yard touchdown run by Jaryion Franklin followed up by a 12 yard touchdown pass from Zach Terrell to Daniel Brayerman put the Broncos on top for the first time, 42 – 38 with just over one minute to play.

The Cardinals, trailing for the first time, marched the ball down field in attempt to rescue back the lead, but failed to get the ball into the end zone, being stopped on a 4th and goal play after four incomplete passes from the Broncos 8.  It was a nail biter at the end, but when the final gun sounded, the Broncos were 21 point come-from-behind winners and co-winners of the Safe Harbor Consulting College Football Crisis Management Award for Week 7.

Certificate - Week 7 - Western Michigan

Congratulations to both the Baylor Bears and the Western Michigan Broncos.  A great way to end the half-way point of the 2014 season!  This week just goes to show, that there is just as much fun, excitement and entertainment in a mid-major conference football game as there is in a game of national attention with playoff implications – college football at its best.

Now, let’s go ahead and shake up the playoff picture again in Week 8!

You can read our Week 1 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 2 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 3 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 4 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 5 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 6 report by clicking here.

College Football Crisis Management Award – Week 6

As fun and exciting as Weeks 1 – 5 in College Football have been, Week 6 blew them all away.  In the inaugural FBS Championship Playoff season, Week 6 just muddied up the waters something awful … and I love it!!  Given some of the teams that were involved in this week’s upsets, I guess you can call the playoff picture a Mississippi Mud Pie.  I happen to believe that Week 6 was just the tip of the iceberg and each subsequent week will result in more upsets; more shuffling of the top ranked spots; more heartache and frustrations from select fan bases; more jubilation and field rushing from other fan bases; and, yes, more fun and excitement.

The College Football slate for Week 6 included a total of 57 games with at least one FBS football team participating.  Of those 57 games played, 24 (42%) were won by teams that never trailed.  Both Ole Miss and TCU come off the list of teams that have never trailed, but, both also ended up winning their games in come-from-behind fashion beating top 5 ranked teams and adding to the Week 6 playoff predictions shuffle.  That leaves us with just two teams, Baylor and Marshall, which have yet to trail in any of their 2014 football contests.

SMU remains the only FBS football team to never have a lead in any of their contests so far.  But, the Mustangs did show some life in their game against a very good East Carolina squad and, as they get into American Athletic Conference play, I am confident they will soon achieve their first lead, and, come away with their first victory.

In addition to Baylor, Marshall and SMU, there are 4 other teams, Appalachian State, Kansas, North Texas and South Alabama who have had the first team to score never relinquish the lead in every game they played.  And, there are 4 FBS teams that have had every game they played in include some kind of come from behind victory.  Georgia Tech, with their win over Miami (FL), in which they once trailed by 7, remains the only undefeated team to rally back from a deficit in each of their victories.

TEAMS THAT HAVE NEVER TRAILED

Baylor, Marshall

TEAMS THAT HAVE NEVER HELD THE LEAD

SMU

TEAMS THAT HAVE PLAYED GAMES IN WHICH THE LEAD NEVER CHANGED

Appalachian State (1 – 3), Kansas (2 – 3), North Texas (2 – 3), South Alabama (2 – 3)

TEAMS THAT HAVE PLAYED GAMES THAT ALWAYS INCLUDED A COMEBACK WIN

Georgia Tech (5 – 0), Iowa (4 – 1), UAB (3 – 2), UCF (2 – 2)

Week 6 included 33 games in which the winning team trailed by at least 1 point or more at some time in the contest.  Of those 33 games, 7 included comebacks of 10 points or more.  Ole Miss knocked Alabama out of the playoff picture (for the time being) with an incredible 11 point comeback against the mighty Crimson Tide.  Bowling Green also came back from an 11 point deficit to defeat Buffalo, 36 – 35.  UAB had to comeback after being 13 points down against Western Kentucky before securing their victory, 42 – 39.  Two teams that have figured into the past two Crisis Management Award winning games, California, on the losing end of Week 4’s award and Washington State, the winner in Week 5, played in a barn-burner in which California eventually won, 60 – 59, after being down by 14 several times in the contest.  Georgia Southern came back after being 14 points down to beat New Mexico State, 36 – 28.  And, Kentucky upset South Carolina, 45 – 38, after trailing by 14 points, legitimizing their standing in the tough SEC.  But, no team came back from a larger deficit in Week 6 (or, any other week this season) then our Safe Harbor Consulting College Football Crisis Management Award winner did!

And, the winner is … the Red Hawks from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio!!

How ironic is it that in a week with so many games of ranked team versus ranked team; a week with 11 top 25 teams getting beat; a week that muddies up the top 10 rankings and throws a wrench into the volatile inaugural championship playoff picture, that the one game with the largest come from behind victory; the one game with enough excitement to entertain any college football fan; and, the game that produced this Week’s Safe Harbor Consulting College Football Crisis Management Award winner, was the game that featured two 0 – 5 teams vying for their first win of the season?

In the 5 games Massachusetts had lost prior to the Week 6 contest against Miami, OH, they held the lead in three of those loses – twice blowing leads of more than 10 points.  Miami held 7 point leads in three of the 5 games they had lost coming into Saturday.  You knew one of the two teams had to come away with a victory – you just didn’t know it would be in such amazing fashion.

UMass put up the first two touchdowns, ending the 1st quarter with a 14 – 0 lead.  They built that lead up to 27 points at 41 – 14 with 2:00 left in the first half and it looked like the Red Hawks were headed to yet another embarrassing defeat.  The touchdown Miami scored just before the half ended, to get within 20, still didn’t seem like it put them back into the game.

But, UMass may have already thought they had the victory sealed and failed to come out of the locker room with that same first half intensity and Miami was not yet done playing football.  Miami put up the only score in the 3rd quarter to get within 13 at 41 – 28.  And, two more touchdowns in the 4th quarter while holding UMass at bay completed an amazing 27 point come from behind victory and secure the Safe Harbor Consulting College Football Crisis Management Award for Week 6.

Certificate - Week 6 - Miami OH

 

I guess it’s fitting that this historic week should include the year’s largest come from behind victory to date.  And, I love the fact that games like this – otherwise buried behind all the Top 25 matchups and Top 5 upsets, can be just as exciting and demand our attention and recognition.  Way to go Red Hawks!!

Now, I can’t wait to see what muddies up the waters next week.

You can read our Week 1 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 2 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 3 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 4 report by clicking here.

You can read our Week 5 report by clicking here.