FBS Top 25: No. 21 Clemson ends five-game losing skid to South Carolina

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No. 21 Clemson ends five-game losing skid to South Carolina

CLEMSON, S.C. — Artavis Scott had two long touchdown catches, Wayne Gallman ran for 191 yards and No. 21 Clemson ended a five-game losing streak to rival South Carolina with a 35-17 victory Saturday.

The Tigers (9-3) hadn’t beaten the Gamecocks (6-6) since 2008, an unprecedented run of failure that overshadowed their 32-8 record the past three seasons.

This time, Clemson showed off a perked up offense bolstered by the return of freshman starter Deshaun Watson at quarterback.

Watson threw two inside flip passes that Scott turned into touchdowns of 53 and 70 yards. The second one gave the Tigers a 28-10 lead that South Carolina couldn’t overcome.

Watson finished 14 of 19 for 269 yards and two rushing TDs in first significant action since defeating North Carolina State on Oct. 4.

No. 5 TCU makes case to CFP committee with rout at Texas

AUSTIN, Texas — TCU took the field on Thanksgiving night determined to send a message to the rest of college football.

The sixth-ranked Horned Frogs delivered one with a 48-10 romp against Texas, and the tens of thousands of its fans who stuck around to the end will be happy to keep chanting “T-C-U!” to anyone who may have missed it.

Are you listening, College Football Playoff committee?

Trevone Boykin passed for two touchdowns and ran for another, and TCU’s defense dominated the Longhorns and quarterback Tyrone Swoopes, sending Texas to one of the worst home losses in program history.

The win kept the Horned Frogs (10-1, 7-1) in the hunt for their first Big 12 title. The question is whether it was impressive enough to impact the playoff standings, where they sit at No. 5, one spot out of contention for a national championship.

No. 6 Ohio State erupts in second half to top Michigan

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ezekiel Elliott scored untouched on a 44-yard run on fourth-and-1 with 4:58 left to help No. 6 Ohio State, without injured star quarterback J.T. Barrett, beat archrival Michigan 42-28 on Saturday.

With no postseason, the only thing left to be decided for Michigan (5-7, 3-5 Big Ten) is the future of coach Brady Hoke. Interim AD Jim Hackett will make the call on whether the coach stays or goes.

Barrett threw for one TD and ran for two before his right leg crumpled underneath him when he was tackled on a run on the first play of the fourth quarter.

Cardale Jones came in for the Buckeyes (11-1, 8-0, CFP No. 6) to lead the drive that culminated in Elliott’s long run. Darron Lee returned a fumble 33 yards late to add to the lead.

Stanford upsets No. 8 UCLA and ends its CFP chances

PASADENA, Calif. — Kevin Hogan passed for 234 yards and two touchdowns, and Stanford crushed No. 8 UCLA’s hopes for the Pac-12 South title and a College Football Playoff spot with a 31-10 victory Friday.

Devon Cajuste and Michael Rector caught scoring passes for the Cardinal (7-5, 5-4 Pac-12) as the two-time defending Pac-12 champions salvaged satisfaction from a down season by trouncing the Bruins (9-3, 6-3) for the seventh consecutive time.

With a dynamite 16-for-19 performance by Hogan and two rushing TDs from Remound Wright, Stanford snatched the South title away from UCLA, which needed a victory to advance to the conference title game. Instead, the Bruins flopped in another big game and Stanford handed the division crown to Arizona, a 42-35 winner against Arizona State on Friday.

Brett Hundley passed for 146 yards in likely his final home game for the Bruins, losing a matchup with Hogan for the fourth time in three years.

No. 16 Georgia Tech defeats No. 9 Georgia in OT

ATHENS, Ga. — Harrison Butker kicked a career-long 53-yard field goal on the final play of regulation Saturday, and D.J. White picked off a pass in overtime to preserve No. 16 Georgia Tech’s 30-24 victory against No. 9 Georgia in a game filled with bizarre plays.

Georgia Tech (10-2) trailed 24-21 after Hutson Mason threw a 3-yard touchdown pass to Malcolm Mitchell on fourth down with 18 seconds left. But the Yellow Jackets wound up with good field position after a squib kickoff, Justin Thomas scrambled 21 yards into field goal range, and Butker’s kick barely cleared the crossbar.

Zach Laskey put Georgia Tech ahead with his third touchdown run of the game in overtime, but Butker’s extra point was blocked. The Bulldogs (9-3) had a chance to win it as they faced second-and-goal at the 9.

Georgia fumbled twice at the Georgia Tech 1, ruining almost certain touchdown drives, but then snatched the ball away at its own 1 when it looked like the Yellow Jackets were about to take it in. Damian Swann took that one 99 yards the other way for a touchdown, the longest fumble return in Georgia history.

Each team blocked a field goal, and Georgia pulled off a fake field goal that kicker Marshall Morgan nearly took to the end zone. Georgia Tech looked to be in position to clinch the victory after Georgia failed to field a pooch kickoff, allowing the Yellow Jackets to recover deep in Bulldogs territory with just over 4 minutes remaining.

But Thomas made another huge mistake, losing control of the ball as he attempted to pump fake on a scramble.

All was forgiven when Georgia Tech held on for its first win the series known as “Clean, Old-Fashioned Hate” since 2008, and only the second in the past 14 meetings.

No. 11 Arizona defeats No. 13 Arizona State and wins Pac-12 South

TUCSON, Ariz. — Nick Wilson ran for 178 yards and three touchdowns and No. 11 Arizona claimed the Pac-12 South title by holding on for a 42-35 victory against No. 13 Arizona State on Friday.

Arizona (10-2, 7-2 Pac-12) needed to beat its biggest rival and have Stanford knock off No. 8 UCLA to win the Pac-12 South.

The Cardinal took care of the first part by rolling over the Bruins. The Wildcats handled their end with a stream of big plays and a final defensive stand.

Arizona moves on to face No. 2 Oregon in the Pac-12 Championship game, Dec. 5 at Levi’s Stadium in the Bay Area.

Arizona State (9-3, 6-3) got a spark by replacing Taylor Kelly with Bercovici, but a final drive stalled at Arizona’s 40-yard line.

No. 17 Mizzou beats Arkansas, claims SEC East title

COLUMBIA, Mo. — Marcus Murphy scored the go-ahead touchdown on a 12-yard run with 4:38 remaining and Markus Golden recovered a fumble to seal No. 17 Missouri’s 21-14 victory Friday against Arkansas and send the Tigers to the SEC championship game for the second consecutive season.

Missouri (10-2, 7-1) tied it at 14 early in the fourth quarter with a 98-yard drive capped by Jimmie Hunt’s 4-yard TD reception and a reverse pass by receiver Bud Sasser to Darius White for the 2-point conversion.

Arkansas (6-6, 2-6) was driving for the tie when Kentrell Brothers stripped Alex Collins and Golden recovered with 2:13 to go at the Missouri 35 to thwart Arkansas’ bid to tie it.

The Razorbacks had won two in a row, both shutouts, against ranked teams.

Late interception seals No. 22 Louisville victory against Kentucky

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Brandon Radcliff ran for a 4-yard touchdown with 2:47 remaining and safety Gerod Holliman sealed it with an NCAA record-tying 14th interception with 35 seconds left, helping No. 22 Louisville earn a wild 44-40 victory over Kentucky on Saturday.

No lead was safe in a back-and-forth game between rivals that got physical before kickoff. Louisville coach Bobby Petrino grabbed the jacket of Wildcats assistant Daniel Berezowitz during one pregame scuffle.

The game was equally as charged. There were four fourth-quarter lead changes alone. The Cardinals (9-3) ultimately got the last word by driving 81 yards for the game-winning score that capped their fourth and final comeback against the Wildcats (5-7).

Kentucky’s last possession ended with Holliman picking off Patrick Towles and returning it 65 yards to the 2 before Louisville ran out the clock and sparked a celebration.

Western Kentucky ends No. 24 Marshall’s undefeated season

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. — Brandon Doughty threw a Conference USA-record eight touchdown passes, the last in overtime to Jared Dangerfield followed by a 2-point conversion pass to Willie McNeal that lifted Western Kentucky past No. 19 Marshall 67-66 on Friday.

Marshall’s Rakeem Cato had seven touchdown passes but threw four interceptions as the teams combined for 1,446 yards of offense.

Doughty broke the previous conference record of six TD passes set on eight occasions.

Western Kentucky (7-5, 4-4) foiled Marshall’s bid for the fourth perfect season in school history. The teams tied the Bowl Subdivision record for the most combined points scored in a game involving a ranked team, set when West Virginia beat Baylor 70-63 in 2012. It was the highest-scoring game in Conference USA history, eclipsing East Carolina’s 65-59 win against Marshall in double overtime in 2012.

Marshall (11-1, 7-1) saw its 13-game home winning streak snapped and likely lost its chance to earn a place in the New Year’s bowls. The College Football Playoff committee will pick one team from outside the five major conferences for one guaranteed spot. Marshall was 24th in the CFP this week, one place behind Boise State, which plays Utah State on Saturday.

Marshall already has qualified for next week’s conference championship and will meet the winner of Saturday’s game between Rice and Louisiana Tech.

No. 25 Utah surges in fourth quarter to beat Colorado

BOULDER, Colo. — Dominique Hatfield returned a fourth-quarter interception 20 yards for a touchdown and Utah benefited from a pair of key replay reversals as the Utes beat Colorado 38-34 Saturday, sending the Buffaloes to their season-ending eighth consecutive loss.

Travis Wilson threw for 311 yards and three touchdowns, helping Utah (8-4, 5-4 Pac-12) finish with a winning conference record and rebound from last week’s rout by Arizona. Devontae Booker had 25 carries for 95 yards, including a touchdown and a key 11-yard gain in the late going to help run out the clock.

Sefo Liufau completed 20 of 31 passes for 317 yards and a touchdown but the game turned on his late interception. Colorado (2-10, 0-9) finished winless in league play for the first time since 1915 when the Buffaloes finished 0-5 in the Rocky Mountain Conference.

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