Week Four Midweek Musings

Week Four Midweek Musings
PULLMAN, WASHINGTON - SEPTEMBER 21: Rodrick Fisher #88 of the Washington State Cougars moves the ball against the UCLA Bruins in the second half at Martin Stadium on September 21, 2019 in Pullman, Washington. UCLA defeats Washington State 67-63. (Photo by William Mancebo/Getty Images)

This was an odd week in college football to say the least. Some coaches’ seats may have cooled off, but at least one is definitely hotter. Here are my week four Midweek Musings:

USC

It’s not often your third quarterback of the season enters a game in week four. It’s even less often that he pulls off an upset of a tenth-ranked, undefeated team, but that’s exactly what Matt Fink did against Utah. Fink threw for 351 yards, 3 TDs, and one interception after Kedon Slovis left the game. Slovis took a clean hit less than a minute into the game, but slammed his head on the turf. He was clearly disoriented and had trouble getting up.

It’s a good think Fink has proven to be a reliable option. The Trojans’ next three Saturdays? At #17 Washington, a bye week, and at #10 Notre Dame. I imagine that the bye week gives Slovis a good chance to be cleared for Notre Dame, but if not, USC appears to be in good hands.

UCLA

In even stranger news, the 0-3 UCLA Bruins upset the 3-0 Washington State Cougars by a score of 67-63 on the road. Here’s a once-in-a-lifetime stat (outside of the Big XII, anyway): quarterback Anthony Gordon was 41 of 61 for 570 yards and nine touchdowns. His team lost. Another odd stat: each team rushed for just 150 yards. For more on this game, check out Tony Siracusa’s article.

The Bruins have what should be some winnable games coming up in October. (Of course, most people would have thought San Diego State to be a winnable game, and we all know how that turned out). Still, I suspect Chip Kelly’s seat is a bit cooler this week.

Michigan

This commercial came on during the Giants’ game on Sunday. I don’t know when I last saw my father laugh like that. I’m sure the ad was conceived of and taped before the season, but my dude… you have so, so many bigger problems right now. Your seat is probably hot enough to iron your pants.

I did not foresee Rutgers being a critical game for Michigan (did anyone?), but there you have it. This team is in free-fall right now.

Stanford

Another team in free-fall is Jim Harbaugh’s former team. The only Cardinal game I’ve seen this year was the game they won, so I don’t have a real sense of what their problems are. They’ve now been smoked by both USC and UCF. This week they kept Oregon to 21 points but managed only six of their own. Can a trip to one-win Oregon State get them back on track?

Texas

The Longhorns have been cruising, minus the loss to LSU. However, their secondary has suffered several blows this week. Defensive backs Caden Stearns, Josh Thompson, and Jalen Green are all expected to be out for a minimum of a month. Coach Tom Herman told ESPN that he’s hoping their bye week this week will allow two more injured DBs, B.J. Foster and DeMarvion Overshown, to return against West Virginia.

Highlight of the Week

They lost the game on a last-minute Pitt Special, but this punt return from UCF’s Otis Anderson was something. Despite the loss, this was the Knights’ 30th straight game scoring at least 30 points.

 

There’s a sad story out of Texas to report this week as well. Former Ole Miss QB Jevan Snead has been found dead in Austin. As of now, there’s no word on the cause of death. Snead was just 32 years old. All of us at LWOS send our condolences to his family and friends.

And those are my week four Midweek Musings. Don’t forget that Maryland and Penn State play on Friday night. It will be interesting to see which Terps team shows up.

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