This week's games that made no sense to anyone.
Boston College 37, USC 31
In addition to being one of the Dumpster Fires of the Week, USC is making its second consecutive appearance in Nobody Knows Anything.
What made this game so confusing was the lack of offensive balance by both teams. USC threw for 317 yards and ran for 20. Boston College ran for 452 yards but picked up just 54 through the air.
How did USC only gain 20 yards on the ground? Pittsburgh ran for 303 yards in Chestnut Hill the previous week, and USC managed 156 yards rushing against Stanford.
USC was not prepared to play, or the depth issues are more severe than anyone thought. Neither scenario is good news for the Pac-12, which is losing national credibility every week.
Virginia 23, Louisville 21
In the ACC preseason media poll, Virginia was picked to finish last in the lowly coastal division, the only one of seven teams not to receive a first place vote in the division. Now, the Cavaliers might win the thing. Every team in the division has flaws. It is wide open again after Virginia Tech cratered against East Carolina.
UVA still has issues, but the Cavalier D is good enough to keep them in any divisional game.
Meanwhile, Louisville’s offense is still sputtering with young quarterbacks at the helm. It will be a while before Bobby Petrino’s bunch is back in the top 25, and Florida State’s trip to Louisville looks a lot less menacing now. The ‘Noles would be wise to use the Clemson game as a national showcase; they will not get many more.
Iowa State 20, Iowa 17
Rivalry games always have the potential for weird upsets, but it’s hard to imagine a more deflating loss for a fan base than this.
Iowa St. was 0-2, and nothing was going right for the Cyclones on offense or defense. The 'Clones held Iowa to 275 total yards, Sam B. Richardson threw for 255 yards and 2 touchdowns, and Kirk Ferentz managed to give ISU kicker Cole Netten another shot at the game-winning field goal.
Iowa entered 2014 with one of the easiest schedules of any Power 5 team. In three home games against inferior competition, the Hawkeyes have managed to outscore their opponents by a total of just nine points. All of a sudden, what could have been a 10-win season looks like a string of possible embarrassments. Road games at Pittsburgh and Maryland appear daunting, and the Hawkeyes aren’t playing well enough to count games against Minnesota and Indiana as automatic wins.
The Big Ten West will allow for Iowa to go bowling again, but it’s doubtful that anyone will feel good about the direction of the program at year’s end.