3 Up 3 Down (College Week 2)

By John Ewing Director of Research and Analytics @johnewing
College Football Review - Week 2.

A review of the week that was with a look at three college football teams that stood out for good reasons and three whose weekends did not turn out as successfully as anticipated.

Three Up

Oklahoma Sooners
2015 Record: Straight-Up 2-0, Against-the-Spread 2-0

Boomer Sooner only had a 7 percent chance of winning down three scores early in the second quarter. Two overtimes later and Bob Stoops had knocked off another SEC opponent. The Sooners rallied from a 17-point deficit to win 31-24 in Tennessee.

Baker Mayfield's 18-yard pass to Sterling Shepard in double overtime completed the comeback.

Oklahoma has beaten an SEC team for the third straight year. “Big Game Bob” is back. The Sooners have won six straight nonconference road games including wins on the road at Florida State and Notre Dame.

Tennessee continues its long journey back to respectability. The Vols had never lost a home game in which they led by 17 points. Tennessee is now a dreadful 2-34 against the AP Top 25 since 2008.

Next Up: Tulsa

Oklahoma is 2-5 against-the-spread in its last seven games at home.
Tulsa is 1-4 against-the-spread in its last five road games in Norman.

Michigan State Spartans
2015 Record: Straight-Up 2-0, Against-the-Spread 1-1

In Saturday's marquee matchup, Michigan State earned a statement win defeating Oregon 31-28. Sparty stopped the Ducks four times on fourth down including once from the one-yard line and again at the end of the game to seal the victory. Michigan State has now won five of its last six meetings against AP top-ten teams.

Connor Cook threw for 192 yards and two touchdowns. Michigan State enjoyed success rushing the ball. Madre London and LJ Scott combined for 29 carries and 176 yards – of which, 128 came after contact.

The Spartans don't play Ohio State until November but the Buckeyes have been put on notice. There are two teams in the Big Ten that can compete for a spot in the College Football Playoff.

Next Up: Air Force

In the last ten non-conference games, Michigan State is 6-4 against-the-spread.
The total has gone under in four of Air Force's last six games on the road.

LSU Tigers
2015 Record: Straight-Up 1-0, Against-the-Spread 0-1

It was the Leonard Fournette show in Starkville. LSU's sophomore running back carried the rock (and the team) 28 times for a career-high 159 yards and three touchdowns. LSU defeated Mississippi State 21-19, it was the Tigers 15th win over the Bulldogs in 16 seasons.

LSU got the win but not before some tense final moments. MSU scored 13 unanswered points to make it a two point game late in the fourth. The Bulldogs drove into the Tiger territory again in the closing seconds but Mississippi State's kicker Devon Bell missed a 52-yard field goal as time expired. The field goal attempt was five yards longer because of delay of game penalty the play before. The penalty lowered Mississippi State's expected win probability from 39 percent to 23 percent.

Next Up: Auburn

The total has gone under in six of LSU's last seven games.
Auburn is 2-6 straight-up in its last eight games in Death Valley.

Three Down

Virginia Cavaliers
2015 Record: Straight-Up 0-2, Against-the-Spread 0-2

Here is a quick recap of the final minutes of Notre Dame vs. Virginia.

The Irish squander a 26-14 lead and a 99 percent win probability.

The Cavaliers scored with 1:54 to play and took a 27-26 lead. Virginia became 74 percent likely to win.

With Notre Dame's starting quarterback out of the game, backup DeShone Kizer threw a 39-yard touchdown pass with 12 seconds remaining to beat the Cavs 34-27.

The Cavalier faithful were devastated.

Notre Dame avoided the upset bid and remains in the hunt for the College Football Playoff. However, the victory was costly as Irish quarterback Malike Zaire has a broken ankle and is out for the year.

Next Up: William & Mary

The total has gone under in seven of Virginia's last nine games.
William & Mary have lost five straight road games.

Boise State Broncos
2015 Record: Straight-Up 1-1, Against-the-Spread 0-2

The Broncos had designs to go undefeated and crash the College Football Playoff. After a win over former coach Chris Peterson and with a ten point lead to start the fourth quarter (92 percent likely to win) against BYU, Boise State seemed well on its way. Then Tanner Mangum ruined everything.

For the second week in a row, BYU's backup quarterback led the Cougars to a comeback victory. With less than a minute to play, trailing Boise State and on fourth down, Mangum threw up a prayer.

The Hail Mary pass was caught and BYU upset Boise State 35-24 (the Cougars returned an interception for a touchdown in the closing seconds).

For Broncos fans it was a real punch to the…well, you know.

Next Up: Idaho State

The total has gone over in nine of Boise State's last 11 games.
Idaho State is 1-3-1 against-the-spread in its last five games on the road.

Arkansas Razorbacks
2015 Record: Straight-Up 1-1, Against-the-Spread 1-1

When you beat a team in time of possession, yards and first downs, you expect to win. Unfortunately for Arkansas, that was not enough against Toledo. The Razorbacks fell 16-12 to the Rockets Saturday. Arkansas lost the turnover battle and committed nine penalties for 85 yards. Mistakes and blown opportunities cost the Hogs.

It was a day of firsts for Toledo. The victory was the first ever for the Rockets over a Southeastern Conference team. This was the first ever win for Toledo over an AP top 25 team on the road.

As is tradition in upsets like this, Arkansas paid Toledo $1 million – the Rockets took the money and the win.

Next Up: Texas Tech

The total has gone under in four of Arkansas' last five home games.
The total has gone under in five of Texas Tech's last seven games on the road.