Halloween might be over, but that doesn’t mean you’re done dealing with horror. The truth is, I’m going to horrify you. You’ll spend the next few nights sleepless in bed after seeing how some of these teams did in week 9. I’m pretty sure Florida hasn’t slept once all season. Thankfully for them, I decided not to include them on this list. They’ve suffered enough and I’ll probably save them for another date.
The Duke Blue Devils had a decent start to the 2017 season. They won their first four games, including the ACC opener against North Carolina. Granted, the other wins came against Baylor, Northwestern and North Carolina Central, but a win is a win. They were 4-0 and needed just two more wins to be bowl eligible. That win against North Carolina came September 23. It has been more than a month since the Blue Devils last won a football game.
Last Saturday’s game in Blacksburg was just the latest loss for Duke, who had 183 total yards in the game, including 82 in the air. The Blue Devils averaged 3.4 yards per pass attempt in the game, which was…well not very good!
Duke’s five-game losing skid has featured some close ball games. They’ve lost by a touchdown to teams like Florida State, Virginia, and Pitt. You flip two or three of those results and they’d probably be bowl eligible.
As it stands now, Duke needs to win two of its three remaining games to get to six wins. They play Army on the road, Georgia Tech at home, and Wake Forest on the road. Those won’t be easy games.
Week 8 wasn’t the best of weeks for the San Diego State Aztecs. They turned it around quickly, though. All it took was getting Rashaad Penny going and that was that.
Penny running for 253 yards meant it would be a long night for the Hawaii defense, who gave up a total of 334 rushing yards.
If one GIF could sum up the rushing defense for Hawaii, it would most likely be this one:
— Dr. Saturday (@YahooDrSaturday) October 29, 2017
Hawaii’s offense countered that rushing effort with 195 total yards, including 35 on the ground. The Rainbow Warriors also went 2-for-14 on third down.
At this point, Hawaii has four games remaining in the season. They’re 3-5 now. They’ll need to at least win three of those games to reach bowl eligibility. Time will tell if they reach that point.
Traditionally, this column focuses on FBS. However, we like to break the rules that we create. That’s how we roll.
Remember when Youngstown State made it all the way to the FCS title game last year? That was a fun year for them. Unfortunately, it hasn’t worked out this season.
Saturday’s loss for the Penguins was their fourth in a row and it was by far the worst in the current skid. What went wrong this time? Youngstown State rushed for 84 yards on 32 carries, which was 2.6 yards average. If that’s not enough, they turned it over twice.
The defense was less than stellar, meanwhile. Illinois State ran them over for 299 yards on the ground, including four touchdowns.
Now, if Stanford had lost this game, they probably would’ve been No. 1 on this list. However, they won and Oregon State didn’t.
Stanford won this game despite no Bryce Love and a poor showing on offense. Oregon State outgained Stanford in this game 264-222. On the ground, the Beavers had the edge 138-81.
What killed Oregon State ultimately was the turnovers. They had three of them, including a fumble that led to the game-winning touchdown drive by Stanford.
This game was ugly and it had no alibi. Unfortunately for Oregon State, it meant remaining winless in conference play.
The season hasn’t gone well for the Beavers, what with Head Coach Gary Andersen resigning. They have four games left. Hopefully, they can turn it around and try to turn it into a positive.
If there is one constant in the MAC this season, it’s that Toledo is very good. Ball State, meanwhile, isn’t quite as good as Toledo, and it certainly showed when the two faced off last week.
Toledo easily outscored Ball State 58-17 and outgained them in total yards 602-309. The Rockets had an easily impressive game offensively, despite going 1-for-8 on third down. Of course, Ball State had a much worse time as they converted 3-of-19 when it came to third down conversions.
Ball State has lost five straight games. Their last win came Sept. 16 against Tennessee Tech. The losses haven’t been close, either. In fact, the 17 scored against Toledo is the second most points scored during the losing streak (they had 21 against Western Kentucky). In the previous four games, Ball State scored a combined 36 points.
They’ll try to snap the streak against Eastern Michigan, a team that has lost six straight games, on Thursday night. One of those two teams will get their first win in conference play.