Teams & Conferences

What Happened? Everything You Need To Know About Week 5

What happened this weekend? Here’s everything you need to know about Week 5 of the college football season.

Everything You Need To Know About Week 5

Scroll down for What You Need To Know about every conference.

Week 5 Conference Rankings & Recaps 

ACC | Big Ten | Big 12 | Pac-12 | SEC

Week 5 Wrap Up
Bowl Projections | CFN No. 1-128 Rankings
What the College Football Playoff Would Be
Heisman Trophy Race | Coaching Hot Seat Rankings
Week 5 Highlights & Top Plays

What It All Means 
Notre Dame-Syracuse | Wisconsin-Michigan
Georgia-Tennessee | Oklahoma State-Texas
BYU-Toledo | Washington-Stanford 

What happened this weekend? Here’s everything you need to know about Week 5 of the college football season.

Everything You Need To Know About Week 5


The Louisville argument will be simple – win out, and the one loss will be on the road in the tightest of games against the toughest of teams. The Lamar Jackson/Deshaun Watson show was special, but with Florida State losing to North Carolina, it’s going to take more than just a Tiger loss in Tallahassee in a few weeks to get the Cardinals the Atlantic title … The Coastal race is going to be terrific. North Carolina, Miami and Virginia Tech are about to come up with a three-way battle that’s every bit as good as what’s happening in the Atlantic, while NC State isn’t going to be far off the pace. … The Florida State collapse in the final moments might be a bigger story than just how amazing North Carolina was in an epic game. It’s a shame that the classic will be overshadowed by how good Louisville-Clemson was. … Virginia looks like the thorn-in-the-side team with the passing game kicking in big-time. Duke couldn’t take advantage of the win over Notre Dame to come up with any sort of momentum, but the Cavaliers had something to do with that. … Beating Georgia Tech was nice – the defense continues to be a dominant force in the backfield – but that’s the one decent win for Miami. The Florida State game will be the national make-or-break moment after what UNC was able to do to get by the Noles.
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American Athletic

Don’t just give the title to Houston quite yet. South Florida showed once again just how good and how strong it is, coming up with a blowout win over Cincinnati. Marlon Mack won’t win the American Athletic Conference Player of the Year title, but he’s been running well considering his bumps and bruises. … Houston isn’t stuttering a bit. Connecticut was supposed to have the right blend of defense and skills to grind the Thursday night game down to a nub, and Greg Ward and the Cougars blew that idea out of the water. … The pressure is on East Carolina after three straight losses and a date with South Florida up next. Philip Nelson is still playing well, but the defense and special teams broke down in a 47-29 statement performance from UCF. … Temple’s defense still might not be a rock, but it did what it had to do against SMU. The Owls aren’t title contenders, but they’re just plucky enough to ruin someone’s day.
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Big Ten

Here’s the crazy part about Michigan State’s 0-2 Big Ten start – it doesn’t really matter in terms of wining the East. Maybe. It’ll take the Michigan-Ohio State winner to stumble along the conference way, but the Spartans still get the Wolverines and Buckeyes at home. … However, the win over the Spartans was massive for Indiana. After the Wake Forest loss, the Hoosiers needed to steal a victory somewhere to get back into bowl contention, and the nice balance between Richard Lagow and the passing attack and Devine Redding’s 100-yard rushing day got it done. … Wisconsin is playing with house money after the win over Michigan State a few weeks ago, but the loss to Michigan once again exposed the lack of a passing attack to come through when the running game doesn’t work. The running game isn’t working, and Ohio State isn’t the team to get healthy against. … If Michigan State isn’t the Big Ten’s biggest dud, that’s Iowa. The defensive front is a shadow of its former self, getting ripped up by a Northwestern team that really, really isn’t good. … Penn State didn’t save its season with the overtime win over Minnesota, but the thrilling comeback overtime win might have been a kickstarter. QB Trace McSorley is making up for the massive problems on both lines. … Nebraska and Maryland keep going about their respective business. They’re both unbeaten, and they’re both looking terrific. The real schedule for both kicks in soon.
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Big 12

What a mess. Baylor and West Virginia remained unbeaten, but the Bears were pushed way too hard in the 45-42 win over Iowa State and the Mountaineers barely got by Kansas State. Baylor worked the running game – Shock Linwood tore off 237 yards – while West Virginia QB Skyler Howard continues to show why he’s one of the keys to the Big 12 season, even if the stats aren’t there compared to the other star passers. … Texas should be unbeaten. It’s not, and now Charlie Strong is taking over the defensive coaching duties. The team is running way, way too well to be getting ripped up, but it’s not that hard – the secondary can’t tackle. That’s an issue against teams like Oklahoma State, who bounced back with a desperately needed win after starting out the Big 12 world with a loss to Baylor last week. … How fast can Texas Tech QB Patrick Mahomes come back from his shoulder injury? He threw for 277 yards against Kansas before being knocked out, and while Nic Shimonek threw four touchdown passes and looked fine, it was Kansas. … Oklahoma really, really, really needed that win over TCU, or the pressure would be unbearable for the Texas showdown. It helps that the Horned Frog defense continues to be a massive disappointment.
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Conference USA

FIU seemed to be just fine in the first week without head coach Ron Turner, and now the hot seat moves over to FAU head coach Charlie Partridge after the 33-31 loss. … Rice is awful, but Southern Miss did exactly what it’s supposed to do against a bad team. WKU and Middle Tennessee are going to be right in the mix, but Nick Mullens and the Golden Eagle offense – with 591 passing yards – seem to be just warming up. They looked the part of the lead dog in a blowout. … Middle Tennessee bent, but didn’t really break in a 30-13 win over North Texas. It wasn’t a perfect performance, but now the Blue Raiders are on a three-game winning streak. … Marshall’s defense is a disaster. Pitt’s offense is good, but without the Herd attack to pick up the slack, it could be a long year with all the high-octane passing games to deal with.
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Notre Dame still doesn’t have a defense after firing defensive coordinator Brian VanGorder. It clamped down in the second half against Syracuse, but the first half was all about the special teams and the play of DeShone Kizer. Throwing for 471 yards, he was carrying the team – get used to it. … BYU needed to be on the right side of some of these close call games. It took a massive comeback against Toledo, overtime, and a special day from Jamaal Williams – running for 286 yards and five touchdowns – to overcome the 505 passing yards allowed, but all that matters is the win to get that much closer to the bowl eligible six victory mark. … Massachusetts continues to be just good enough to lose close games against anyone.
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The world is yours, Western Michigan. The Central Michigan showdown had the makings of something special, and it was no contest – the Broncos showed why they’re the class of the MAC by far with a 49-10 win. They’re not getting enough love for the defense, but it owned the Chips. Zach Terrell and the offense will carry the team at times, but this team, as it turns out, can do anything and everything. … Welcome to the 2016 season, Northern Illinois. Against Ball State, the running game finally started to work, and NIU might have found its quarterback with Anthony Maddie running for 163 yards and throwing for 298. … Eastern Michigan is 4-1, beating the defending MAC champion, Bowling Green. Let that sink in for a moment. … The East continues to be awful. Ohio really and truly might be the league’s fifth or six-best team, and it’s going to win the division. … Akron won a game when the offense was held in check. It certainly helps to face a team like Kent State, but the fireworks weren’t needed. Star Zip QB Thomas Woodson had a shoulder injury, but Tra’von Chapman overcame an ugly day to pull through.

Mountain West

What the heck happened to the Mountain West? Last week it got clocked in non-conference play going 1-6, and this week Colorado State lost at home to Wyoming and Nevada lost at Hawaii. Yeah, that’s conference-on-conference action, but at the moment, it’s hard to project more than four teams as bowl locks. … What the heck happened to San Diego State? Granted, South Alabama beat Mississippi State earlier in the year, but the Jaguars were badly banged up and shouldn’t have been able to beat the Aztecs 42-24. … What the heck happened to Fresno State? UNLV has a backup quarterback in place of Johnny Stanton, and it still roared over the Bulldogs in an ugly 45-20 blowout. … On the plus side, Hawaii might be in bowl contention now after the win over Nevada. There have to be five more wins to get there, but now the Rainbow Warriors have to be feared even more at home. … Even with the 48-41 win over San Jose State, New Mexico has yet to look like the type of team that could get bowling. The D almost gave the game away to the Spartans.
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Call this the regression-to-the-mean week in the Pac-12 South. … Desperate after the 1-3 start and with the loss to Utah, USC finally looked like it’s supposed to. All the parts were working against Arizona State, all the athleticism was on display, and Sam Darnold looked like a keeper throwing for 352 yards. This should be the USC team every week – there’s no reason for it not to be this good. … Arizona State losing QB Manny Wilkins to an injury is going to be a major problem – obviously. The running game came to a dead stop against the Trojans. … UCLA – like USC – also looked the part. With a 350-yard day against Arizona, that’s the Josh Rosen everyone’s been waiting for on a regular basis. Remember, Arizona pushed Washington really, really hard before getting ripped up by the Bruins. … It’s still a shocker – Cal beat Utah because of its defense. That’s not going to happen often. … Shhhhh, but Oregon might be the second-worst team in the Pac-12 ahead of Oregon State. Washington State ran all over, around and through a leaky Duck D – and Luke Falk was Luke Falk, too, throwing for 371 yards. …. Colorado’s offense keeps on rolling. It’s the unbeaten team in Pac-12 South play, and soon it’s going to start commanding more respect than it seems to be getting after blasting away Oregon State. … Oh yeah, and Washington looked and played like the best team in the Pac-12 by a mile with the 44-6 win over Stanford. It took a little while this year, but the lack of a Cardinal passing game was exposed, while the offensive line was crushed by the Dawg D. It’s Washington’s world now – it has to prove it can handle it.
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Eventually, Tennessee’s streak of good fortune is going to end if it keeps doing this – and it could happen against Texas A&M. The team is far too good to need to work this hard, but it’s still unbeaten. Sometimes in a special year, you just take the breaks and move on, but this isn’t okay. The Vols have to figure out how to come out of the tunnel playing better. … Georgia was one batted down pass away from having the SEC East there for the taking. Florida needed that stopped Hail Mary, too, but unless there’s some semblance of a downfield pass at some point, this team will hit a hard ceiling. It might come next week against … LSU looked the part. Don’t think that it was only because it was playing Missouri. The West Tigers didn’t have Leonard Fournette, and it was the first game after the Les Miles experience – and they played like we’ve all been waiting for. LSU isn’t 42-7 better than Mizzou – but it was this week. … Alabama (Kentucky) and Arkansas (Alcorn State) got their tune-ups out of the way. Expect them to play one of the most physical wars of the college football season next week. … Auburn’s offense can score touchdowns. It apparently has to face ULM do that. … Texas A&M just keeps on rolling along. There doesn’t have to be a ton of flash and dash for the Aggies to beat the South Carolinas of the world, and it might not need the home runs to beat Tennessee, either.
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Sun Belt

This continues to be a nightmare of a conference to figure out. Appalachian State is good – beating Georgia State despite not having Marcus Cox to run it. Georgia Southern is good, but it didn’t play this weekend. But just when it seems like South Alabama is regressing after a loss to Louisiana-Lafayette, the Ragin’ Cajuns inexplicable lose to New Mexico State and the Jaguars beat San Diego State by double-digits. …. What’s one thing that’s quickly becoming apparent about the conference? Troy is fantastic. Remember, it’s only loss was a close call at Clemson. Beating Idaho isn’t any big deal, but the Trojans did it on the road with Brandon Silvers bombing away with a brilliant day. They might just be the class of the conference.
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