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College Football Throwaround, Week 9: It could have been worse

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Florida lost to Georgia yesterday, but things were going south for a lot of teams on Saturday.

Florida v Georgia Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

At Alligator Army, we love and cover the Florida Gators - but the Gators are part of a larger national landscape of collegiate gridiron goodness.

Here’s a look at what happened this past Saturday in college football.

So you’re bummed about the Gators’ loss to Georgia yesterday. Florida battled, but made mistakes which ultimately cost them. Sure, it sucks to lose but I’m here to tell you in the grand scheme of college football, the Gators’ on-field struggles - their “worst” effort of the season - was nothing compared to some of the calamities which befell other teams.

It could have been a walk-off touchdown

On an un-timed down added after the game ended, no less.

Missouri led No. 12 Kentucky 14-9 at the end of the fourth quarter on Saturday. The Wildcats were goal to go in the last seconds of the game but time expired on Kentucky’s incomplete pass. But - Missouri was subsequently given a (potentially questionably) pass interference call, giving the Wildcats another shot with an untimed down.

It’s not just the SEC West will that will be decided next weekend (in Alabama and LSU’s showdown), but the SEC East too – with Georgia and Kentucky facing each other for full control of the driver’s seat.

Go get ‘em, ‘Cats.

It could have been a loss to an unranked underdog

What’s up, Wisconsin, South Florida, NC State, Washington, Texas, and Oregon?

All six of those ranked teams fell to unranked opponents on Saturday.

No. 21 South Florida coughed up their very first loss of the season and exited the ranks of the unbeatens. It’s been coming for the Bulls though, frankly: USF struggled with terrible UConn, East Carolina, and Illinois teams, and also notched a one-point win over one-win Tulsa. Things finally caught up to them yesterday as D’Eriq King and the Houston Cougars took them down, 57-36.

No. 6 Texas was in for a fight at Oklahoma State and the Cowboys kept the Longhorns on their heels the whole game, eventually upsetting the ‘Horns 38-35 in Stillwater.

No. 22 North Carolina State extended their nascent losing streak to two, going down to Syracuse in the Carrier Dome a week after getting routed by Clemson.

No. 15 Washington now finds themselves with three losses after being on the wrong end of a 12-10 struggle with Cal.

No. 20 Wisconsin fell to Northwestern, 31-14. The Badgers picked up their third loss and gave the Wildcats a leg up in the Big Ten West.

And No. 19 Oregon was rocked by unranked Arizona, 44-15.

The Pac-12 is devolving into kind of a mess — outside of Washington State, that is.

It could have snapped a meaningful streak

Speaking of the Pac-12 cannibalizing itself, USC fell to Arizona State at home, 38-35, breaking a 19-game run of home victories which stretched back to 2015 — and their last head coach. 2018 is not shaping up kindly for the Trojans.

Colorado was undefeated not too long ago before dropping back-to-back contests to USC and Washington. But the Buffs did something truly incredible yesterday in letting Oregon State snap the nation’s longest road losing streak (22 games). Colorado blew a 28-point lead over the hapless Beavers, eventually losing 41-34 on homecoming. The win marks Oregon State’s first in conference since 2016, also snapping the nation’s longest conference losing streak (13).

And that Oregon State streak was the nation’s longest only because the true holders of the nation’s longest conference losing streak (14) — the Kansas Jayhawks — finally won a conference game earlier in the day. It was TCU that gave Kansas their first conference win since 2016, as the Horned Frogs continue imploding their 2018 season.

It could be a distinct inability to beat Will Muschamp

Did you know that one William Larry Muschamp has yet to be defeated by Tennessee as a head coach at either Florida or South Carolina? That is still a true statement!

That’s 7-0 against the Vols. Those wins include the very special 2013 and 2014 Florida vintages, with hints of Driskel and notes of Murphy and Harris.

*kisses fingers like a chef*

It could end with missing a bowl game

…and possibly not win another game period. Louisville is bad y’all. The Cardinals were rolled by Wake Forest yesterday afternoon, 56-35, at home. The thoroughly mediocre Demon Deacons were quite possibly Louisville’s last chance to pick up another win this season. The Cardinals have all of two of those at present.

It could be sitting on the verge of snapping a decades-long bowl streak and losing by nearly half a hundred at home and a fan reading the absolute perfect book in the stands

You knew it was coming. This is a Florida Gators’ blog after all.

Florida State was thoroughly demolished by No. 2 Clemson yesterday, with the Tigers blasting the ‘Noles, 59-10, in a game which that lopsided score somehow indicates was even closer than it was. Absolutely nothing went right for the Seminoles on Saturday afternoon. This was, naturally, the biggest win ever in this rivalry and the first time FSU had lost by more than 21 to Clemson.

Announcers go on weird tangents and camera crews look for strange things in the stands once these blowouts get going. The star of this Saturday was this shirtless Florida State fan who elected to read a Gillian Flynn novel, appropriately titled Dark Places, instead of watching the product on the field.

Things are so dire in Tallahassee that Florida State fans are learning how to read.

The Seminoles’ streak of 36 consecutive bowl game appearances is in serious jeopardy, with Florida State needing to take at least two of its remaining games to reach six wins and bowl eligibility. This is FSU’s remaining schedule: at NC State, at Notre Dame, Boston College, and Florida. The Seminoles are unlikely to be favored in any of those games — and they need to win two to bowl.

That’s a tall ask for this current version of Willie Taggart’s team.

Yes, Florida lost and it’s disappointing. But keep in mind that things could be much worse.