3 Up 3 Down (College Week 6)

By John Ewing, Director of Research and Analytics, @johnewing
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

Mississippi State Bulldogs

2014 Record: Straight-Up 5-0, Against-the-Spread 4-1

A Mississippi State-ment! The Bulldogs are true contenders in the SEC West. Mississippi State crushed Texas A&M 48-31.

Heisman hopeful Dak Prescott threw for two touchdowns and rushed for three more scores against the Aggies. Prescott led the Bulldogs to the school's largest win ever against a top 10 team.

Undefeated Mississippi State is eyeing just its second ever SEC West crown. When the new AP Poll is released, the Bulldogs could be a top 10 team; it would be the first time since 1999.

Mississippi State is already a top 10 team in our Power Rankings and has been even before the team's upset of LSU.

Next Up: Auburn

Mississippi State is 4-8 against-the-spread in its last 12 games against Auburn.
The total has gone under in 4 of Auburn's last six games.

Ole Miss Rebels

2014 Record: Straight-Up 5-0, Against-the-Spread 5-0

Two fourth quarter touchdown passes from Bo Wallace rallied Ole Miss for a 23-17 win over Alabama. The victory gives the Rebels its first 5-0 start since 1962 and ends a ten game losing streak to the Crimson Tide.

Ole Miss trailed 17-10 halfway through the fourth quarter. A Rebel touchdown followed by an Alabama fumble on the ensuing kickoff plus another Ole Miss score less than three minutes later increased Mississippi's expected win probability from 25 percent to 85 percent.

Saturday was a good day for teams from the state of Mississippi, except for Southern Miss, which lost 37-31 to Middle Tennessee and is 2-4 on the season.

Next Up: Texas A&M

The total has gone under in five straight Ole Miss games.
Texas A&M is 1-4 against-the-spread in its last five games at home.

Notre Dame Fighting Irish

2014 Record: Straight-Up 5-0, Against-the-Spread 4-1

The Irish are 5-0 for just the third time since 1996. Notre Dame needed a last minute touchdown to knock off Stanford 17-14.

On 4th and 11 from the Stanford 23-yard line and trailing 14-10, Everett Golson found Ben Koyack in the end zone for the go-ahead score. Notre Dame's expected win probability increased from 33 percent to 65 percent.

The Fighting Irish won the game by doing something no other team has been able to do against Stanford, move the ball. Notre Dame racked up 370 total yards of offense, the Cardinal defense entering the game was allowing fewer than 200 yards per game.

Next Up: North Carolina

North Carolina is 0-5 against-the-spread in its last five games.
The total has gone under in 8 of Notre Dame's last 9 games.

Three Down

Oregon Ducks

2014 Record: Straight-Up 4-1, Against-the-Spread 1-4

Oregon was shocked at home 31-24 by Arizona; it was the second consecutive season that the Wildcats have upset the Ducks as heavy underdogs (23 points Thursday night). Oregon had issues on both sides of the ball. The team's offensive line, missing three starters, allowed five sacks including two blindside hits that resulted in lost fumbles.

The Ducks' defense was flagged for taunting and pass interference on successive plays that setup the Wildcats' go-head touchdown. The penalties increased Arizona's odds of winning from 49 percent to 62 percent. The biggest issue for the defense was that it allowed 495 total yards.

The loss snapped Oregon's 28 game home winning streak against unranked teams and possibly knocked the Ducks out of the College Football Playoff.

Next Up: UCLA

The total has gone under in 4 of Oregon's last 5 games at UCLA.
UCLA is 2-4 against-the-spread in its last 6 games at home.

Wisconsin Badgers

2014 Record: Straight-Up 3-2, Against-the-Spread 2-3

The Badgers were looking to avoid a slow start offensively. Against Western Illinois and South Florida, Wisconsin needed big second halves to earn a victory. Against Northwestern, the Badgers fell behind 10-0 and never recovered.

Melvin Gordon rushed for 259 yards but the Badgers committed four turnovers leading to a 20-14 Northwestern victory.

This is the fourth straight time Northwestern has beaten Wisconsin in Evanston. All four times the Wildcats were unranked while Wisconsin was part of either the AP or Coaches poll.

Next Up: Illinois

Illinois is 2-4 against-the-spread in its last 6 games when playing at Wisconsin.
Wisconsin is 1-4 against-the-spread in its last 5 home games.

Ranked Teams

This is the first time in the history of the AP Poll that five of the top eight teams lost in the same weekend (ESPN Stats & Info). A total of 11 ranked teams lost and only 10 unbeaten teams remain.

Next week could be just as unpredictable as there are six games projected to feature matchups of top 25 programs.