Article Lineup
Did You Notice? NFL Week 3
LSU - Arkansas Comments SEC Football at Its Best
Saints Comments Disgusting Game 3
Did You Notice? NCAA Football Week 4
Pivotal Pro Football Moments Super Bowl VII
Pivotal World Series Moments 1928 Game 1
Pivotal Saints Moments 1983 Falcons
Clash of Titans 1961 Oklahoma @ Missouri
LSU Pivotal Moments 1944 Swanson Rescues Tittle from Texas
Did You Notice? NFL Week 3
  • Biggest Upset
    In their first two games, the Arizona Cardinals started strong but lost the lead late. Against the Commanders in Week 1, they led 16-10 heading into the final quarter only to lose 17-16. Then they dominated the Giants 20-0 at halftime only to be outscored 31-8 in the second half. Last Sunday, they led the Cowboys 21-10 at the half, but this time they held on to win 28-16 as QB Joshua Dobbs earned his first career win. Dallas had the opposite experience in their first two games, cruising to blowout wins over the Giants and Jets.
  • Field Goal Record
    Colts K Matt Gay made all five of his field goals, including the 53y game-winner in overtime, to upset the Ravens 22-19. The wet conditions in Baltimore helped the visitors since QB Lamar Jackson and his offense lost two fumbles and botched a center snap that forced a punt. Indy's new coach Shane Steichen fielded a team that showed plenty of poise in hostile territory, winning even with backup QB Gard­ner Minshew replacing starter Anthony Richardson who left the game with a concussion.
  • Browns' Defense Best in League
    Cleveland is 2-1 after allowing only 32 points in their first three games, the lowest in the league. In the 27-3 thumping of the Titans, the Browns held Derrick Henry to just 20y on 11 carries and sacked QB Ryan Tannehill five times, with Defensive Player of the Year candidate Myles Garrett accounting for 3.5. On the other side of the ball, new QB Deshaun Watson completed 27 of 33 passes for 289y and two touchdowns.
  • Great Start, Rookie!
    Detroit's Sam LaPorta became the first tight end to catch five or more passes in each of his first three career games since the NFL-AFL merger. He snagged eight passes in the Lions' 20-6 victory over the Falcons and scored his first career touch­down on a 45y pass from Jared Goff.
  • Dual Incompetency
    The Chargers led the Vikings 28-24 with under two minutes to play. They faced 4th & 1 at their own 24. Coach Brandon Staley decided to go for it. But the Minnesota defense stuffed a run up the middle for no gain to take over on downs with 1:46 on the clock. QB Kirk Cousins and his offense could not take advantage of the break, frittering away almost 30 seconds between two snaps, then getting a delay of game penalty before finally getting a first down at the 6. But Cousins' next pass was in­tercepted in the end zone to seal the Charger victory.
  • Tua Too Much for Denver
    Miami became the first team with 350y passing and rushing in the same game. QB Tua Tagovailoa had more touchdown passes (four) than incompletions (three) in the 70-20 rout.
Intriguing Numbers - NFL Week 3
1 NFL teams since 2002 that started a season 0-3 and made the playoffs - the 2018 Houston Texans.
12 Number of the past 14 teams who started a season 3-0 and made the playoffs
8 False start penalties on the visiting Carolina Panthers caused by the noise generated by the Seahawks' crowd to aid the 38-28 victory
5 QB pressures by Eagles' rookie DT Jalen Carter against the Bucs
726 Total yardage for Miami in their rout of the Broncos, second-most in NFL history
1966 Last time a pro team scored 70 points in a game
18 Receptions by Chargers WR Keenan Allen against the Vikings, breaking his own franchise record.
SEC Football at Its Best
LSU won the heavyweight fight in Tiger Stadium Saturday night because they had the ball last. The teams traded punches for 60 minutes with the biggest lead either team enjoyed being 13-3 in favor of Arkansas in the last minute of the first half.
A key factor in the Tigers' win was the touchdown they scored in that last minute on a 49y pass from Jayden Daniels to Brian Thomas. Then they started the second half with a carbon copy 49y strike from Daniels to Thomas to take a 17-13 lead.
The Razorbacks never regained the lead although they tied the score at 24 and 31 before LSU was able to use up the remaining time by driving close enough for Damian Ramos to kick the winning field goal with a scant five seconds remaining.
While the victory shows the Tigers have the heart and grit to compete against anyone, it also revealed the glaring weakness LSU has in its secondary. Arkansas QB KJ Richardson, who was magnificent in defeat, completed 21 of 31 passes for 289y and three TDs. Fortunately, the Tigers got two interceptions.
LSU can't expect to win many more games when it gives up over 400y. The Tiger offense will probably not gain 509y on future conference opponents.
Disgusting Game 3
How can a professional team play so well for three quarters, then totally lose momentum in the final period?
Obviously the loss of Derek Carr to a shoulder injury in the third quarter stymied the Saints offense. What struck me was the contrast between how Jameis Winston throws the ball and Carr's style. Jameis fires fastballs on almost every throw while Carr shows more finesse, looping passes to receivers just over the outstretched hands of defenders although Derek can fire the ball also.
Here's what enraged me at the end of the game. On third-and-eight at the Green Bay 30 with 1:14 left in the game, the ball was in the middle of the field. Instead of running the ball up the middle, Jameis threw a pass to Michael Thomas near the left sideline for a 2y gain. That meant rookie kicker Blake Grupe would have to boot a pressure-packed 46y field goal from the left hashmark. He over-compensated and pushed the ball wide right. He would have had a much wider margin of error had he been kicking from the middle of the field.
The loss was not entirely due to the Saints playing poorly. Packers QB Jordan Love caught fire in the second half and made some pinpoint throws to well-covered receivers. That helped shift all the momentum to the home team in the final period. Still, the Saints could have won had they used a better strategy on their last possession.
Did You Notice? NCAA Week 4
  • ACC Thriving
    For years, the ACC has been considered a distant third-at best-behind the SEC and Big Ten with Clemson the only perennial power. But consider what has happened in 2023:
    Six ACC teams are undefeated, tied with the 2012 SEC for the most teams in a Power 5 conference to start 4-0 in a season. And 2-2 Clemson is not in that group.
    North Carolina is 4-0 for the first time since 1997 with nonconference wins over South Carolina and Minnesota.
    Duke is 4-0, including an opening season win over Clemson, and will host ESPN's "College Game Day" for the first time in school history before Saturday's big game against Notre Dame.
    Under new coach Jeff Brohm, who quarterbacked Louisville in 1992-93, the Cardinals are 4-0 for the first time since 2016.
    Another school that went to a former player to resuscitate its program, Miami, is also 4-0 under Mario Cristobal.
  • FSU Finally Beats Clemson
    The Seminoles finally turned a sharp corner when they won at Clemson in overtime 31-24. Clemson led 24-17 late in the third quarter and was threatening to add to their lead on the FSU 29 when a jarring hit on Clemson QB Cade Klubnik caused a fumble that Kalen DeLoach returned 56y to tie the game. After a scoreless fourth period, the Seminoles scored on the first play of overtime on Jordan Travis's perfect pass to Keon Coleman just behind the tightly-covering defense. The Noles then batted down Clem­son's desperation fourth-down pass to seal the upset.
  • Maybe Alabama's Not In Trouble
    After the loss to Texas and lackluster defeat of South Florida, Nick Saban decided freshman QB Jalen Milroe, who started the first two games, wasn't so bad after all. With the defense playing much better, Bama beat upstart Ole Miss 24-10 as Milroe went 17-21 for 225y. He was sacked four times, giving him 11 for his three games. So maybe the offensive line (especially the two new tackles) is still a work in progress.
  • Holtz Inspires Day
    Ohio State Coach Ryan Day is usually very businesslike before, during, and after games. But Saturday night he was particularly animated after the Buckeyes scored on the last play to beat Notre Dame 17-14. The consensus is that Day was set off by comments from former Notre Dame coach Lou Holtz on "The Pat McAfee Show." Holtz said the Irish would win because Day's teams aren't "tough enough," something Day has heard for quite awhile.
  • Ducks Coach Makes It Personal
    Oregon coach Dan Lanning was filled with anger that Deion Sanders and Colorado was getting so much attention. So he gave the broadcast crew permission to air his pregame speech to his players in which he compared his program with Colorado's.
    "Rooted in substance, not flash. They're fighting for clicks, we're fighting for wins. There's a difference. ... The Cinderella story is over, men. ...This game ain't going to be played in Hollywood, it's going to be played on grass."
  • Strange Start in Seattle
    Washington led California 14-0 before the Huskies ran a play Saturday night. Cal received the kickoff and, after attaining one first-and-10, threw an interception that was returned 45y for a touchdown. After the next kickoff, the Bears again made one first down before having to punt. Rome Odunze returned the kick 83y for a touchdown.
Intriguing Numbers - Week Four
1971 Last time both North Carolina and Duke started a season 4-0.
2009 Last time Texas won the Big 12 as they try to do it in their farewell season in the conference
7 Consecutive victories by Clemson over Florida State before Saturday's FSU triumph
2013 Last time Florida State won at Clemson
2010 Last time Clemson was 0-2 in conference play
Number of defensive players Notre Dame had on the field in the final two plays of their game with Ohio State, helping the Buckeyes score the winning touchdown
5 Number of opponents in Colorado's last eight games who are ranked, starting with #5 USC this week
28-2 Nick Saban's record against former assistant coaches, including Saturday's victory over Lane Kiffin's Rebels
24 Yards gained rushing by Alabama in the first half on 22 carries
5 Times Oklahoma has started 4-0 in the last seven seasons
Pivotal Pro Football Moments
Dolphins Dominate and Survive Dumb Play
Super Bowl VII: Miami vs Washington

Redskins scored their only points on a wacky play.

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Pivotal World Series Moments
1928 Game 1: Hoyt Sets Tone for Ailing Yankees
Starts sweep of Cardinals

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Pivotal Saints Moments
1983 Falcons

Stabler leads last-minute drive to set up Andersen's winning field goal.

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Clash of Titans
1961 Oklahoma @ Missouri
Bud Wilkinson vs Dan Devine

Humiliated OU alternates spark the victory.

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LSU Pivotal Moments
1944 Swanson Rescues Tittle from Texas
The quarterback decided not to compete with Bobby Layne in Austin.

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