Wednesday, January 29, 2020

The Top 100 NCAA College Football Games of 2019-2020 (Part Two: #080-#060)

A five-part series taking a fond look back at the absolute best the college football season that was had to offer


By: Jimbo X
JimboXAmerican@gmail.com

If you’re like me, we’re just a couple of weeks removed from the National Championship game but you’re already depressed and jonesing for some hot college pigskin action. While there’s nothing I can do to make August roll around any faster, in the interim I can at least placate your NCAA football D.T.s with our official countdown of the top 100 college football games of the 2019-2020 season, which we’ve broken down into five installments covering 20 games at a time.

Yep that’s right, we managed to review and rank a full hundred of the absolute best Division I games of the college football season  that was, and we even managed to sneak in a few FCS games in there to REALLY give you some stuff to dig up on the DVR. So what are you waiting for? Grab yourself a bowl of Tostitos and your favorite fondue and get ready to reminisce on what was undoubtedly one hell of a year for college football … aye, we’re going to really be missing this shit come the middle of June, so start making that streaming video checklist now, fellas.

#080
Utah 33, Washington 28 (Nov. 02, 2019)

A prototype for the inevitable PAC-12 Championship contest, this early November barnburner saw Jacob Eason collect 316 aerial yards and four touchdown passes on the day but STILL walk away a loser. A one-yard Tyler Huntley run gave Utah a five-point lead in the opening minutes of the fourth quarter, with a two-yard TD gallop from Zack Moss with under five on the game clock effectively driving the dagger through the hearts of Huskies fans coast-to-coast.

#079
Navy 41, Tulane 38 (Oct. 26, 2019)

One of those totally random and utterly meaningless non-Power Five contests that ended up being WAY more entertaining than it had any right to be. The two teams combined for almost 1,000 total yards of offense, with Navy’s Jamale Carothers collecting a mere three touchdowns and 154 yards on 14 carries. By the way, the final rushing yardage differential was 385 to 187, favoring the Midshipmen.

#078
Air Force 17, Army 13 (Nov. 02, 2019)

With just 687 total yards combined, this was practically a defensive struggle for the two programs. It was until the last three minutes of the their that Jabari Laws broke things wide open for Army, hitting Camden Harrison on a BEAUTIFUL 87 yard TD pass. Alas, just a few minutes later, Joshua Stoner turned in the game winner, a five-yard run up the gut that gave Air Force the thin four-point margin of victory.

#077
Cincinnati 15, Temple 13 (Nov. 23, 2019)

The game that gave the Bearcats an automatic AAC title berth, despite QB Desmond Ridder concluding the contest with an absurdly low 62 passing yards. Cincinnati held a 13-0 lead after Michael Warren II’s 13-yard TD run in the third quarter, but Temple came storming back in the fourth with a seven-yard TD run by Re’Mahn Davis. Oddly enough, what gave Cincy the coup de grace here was DEFENSIVE PAT conversion, which, let’s face it, WAY more college football games oughta’ end on, anyway.

#076
Tulsa 34, Central Florida 31 (Nov. 08, 2019)

In which the overachieving Golden Hurricane (no, it’s not plural) stopped the underachieving Knights on 23-yard field goal from Jacob Rainey with about five minutes left in the fourth — this, after Seth Boomer hit Sam Crawford, Jr. on a 17-yard TD strike to tie things up 31-all. Also memorable: Adrian Killins, Jr.’s AWESOME 57-yard TD run in the second quarter — even though, you know, his team still lost and everything. 

#075
New Mexico 55, New Mexico State 52 (Sept. 21, 2019)

A defense-deficient, utterly remorseless score-fest that saw both teams combine for 107 points and damn near 1,100 yards of total offense. JTevaka Tuioti had 355 aerial yards and three TD passes for the victorious Lobos, who bounced back from a 55-38 deficit to begin the fourth to eke out a three-point win thanks to rushing scores from Jason Huntley and Jos Adkins, respectively, around the midpoint of the final quarter.

#074
Appalachian State 34, North Carolina 31 (Sept. 21, 2019)

The Mountaineers pull off another major upset, this time stuffing what would’ve been a game-tying Tarheels field goal from 56 yards out in the waning seconds of the fourth quarter. In the losing bid, NC QB Sam Howell had 323 passing yards and three TD passes, while Darrynton Evans of App State made himself famous with 3 rushing scores on 19 carries.

#073
Georgia 19, Texas A&M 13 (Nov. 23, 2019)

The epitome of a hard-nosed, defensive SEC struggle, the two teams exchanged six field goals while Jake Fromm’s 16-yard zip to George Pickens constituted the Bulldogs’ only touchdown on the day. The Aggies made it interesting with a 19-yard Kellon Mond to Jhamon Ausbon TD pass in the opening minutes of the fourth quarter, but Georgia’s defense held stout en route to the six-point victory.

#072
Virginia 38, North Carolina 31 (Nov. 02, 2019)

On any other day, it seems like North Carolina QB Sam Howell’s 353 passing yard, four touchdown performance would’ve been the best on the gridiron. Alas, Cavaliers’ QB Bryce Perkins had no problem stealing his thunder this Saturday afternoon, not only going 30 for 39 for 378 yards and three TD passes, but also running the rock 24 times for 112 yards and TWO MORE touchdowns.

#071
Penn State 28, Michigan 21 (Oct. 19, 2019)

Nittany Diddlers’ QB Sean Clifford had quite the day for himself in this impressive win over Big 10 nemesis Michigan, ultimately chalking up 182 yards and three passing touchdowns — and recording one rushing touchdown in the opening seconds of the second quarter, just for the heckuvit. Michigan’s late comeback attempt was valiant — they did manage to battle back from a 21-0 deficit, after all — but Big Blue just couldn’t get much of anything going after Shea Patterson’s QB keeper score made it a seven-point game with about nine to go in the fourth.

#070
UNLV 33, Nevada 30 (Nov. 30, 2019)

A wacky Mountain West showdown that saw the Rebels put her away with a 19-yard Kenyon Oblad to Steve Jenkins TD pass in the first round of overtime action. UNLV actually had a 17-0 lead heading into the second, only for Nevada to claw their way back into the contest and tie things up 27-all via Devonte Lee’s one-yard TD gallop with about 90 seconds left in regulation. Of course, the most shocking thing about the game has to be the fact that, despite the name, Kenyon Oblad is actually a VERY white person.

#069
Penn State 17, Iowa 12 (Oct. 12, 2019)

A hard-fought, down in the ditches slugfest that saw Noah Cain give the Nittany Diddlers all the wiggle room they needed to earn the “W” via a five-yard TD run with about five minutes to go in the fourth. Still, give Iowa some dap on their comeback attempt efforts — if nothing else, Nate Stanley’s 33-yard frozen rope TD pass to Brandon Smith in garbage time play sure was purdy.

#068
Minnesota 38, Fresno State 35 (Sept. 07, 2019)

A wild double-overtime thriller that saw Golden Gopher defenseman Antoine Winfield, Jr. play hero of the day with a game-closing interception on what probably would’ve been a game-winning TD for Fresno State. Pretty much the game that started the legend of Tanner Morgan, who closed out the outing 16 for 23 for 234 yards and two touchdowns, overall.

#067
USC 35, Colorado 31 (Oct. 25, 2019)

A back-and-forth slugfest that saw the Trojans battle back from a 24-14 hole to begin the third en route to a narrow four-point win over the overachieving Buffaloes. Kedon Slovis hooked up twice in the fourth quarter to give USC the edge; first, on a 44-yard TD pass, and then a 37-yard laser with just 2:15 left in regulation … a rather fitting endocarp for a 90-yard, 12-play, four-minute game-winning drive, ain’t it?

#066
Toledo 37, Eastern Michigan 34 (Oct. 26, 2019)

In a game that saw Rockets running back Bryant Koback collect 259 yards and two touchdowns 32 carries, it all boiled down the heroics of Toledo QB Eli Peters, who ended up tagging Drew Rosins on the game’s 15-yard game-winner in sudden death O.T. Amazingly, Toledo had a 31-10 lead around the midway point of the third, only for Eastern Michigan to score 24 unanswered before the Rockets decided to come back alive and dagger this one away for good.

#065
Coastal Carolina 36, Troy 35 (Nov. 02, 2019)

After CJ Marable turned in a three-yard rushing TD with 30 seconds left in regulation, Coastal Carolina’s coaching staff had to make a decision. Should the team go for the game-tying field goal and try their luck at OT, or was Marable still good for the two-point, game-winning conversion attempt? Well, considering the 36-35 final score, I think the answer is pretty apparent. You gotta’ feel pretty bad for Troy QB Kaleb Baker though — the L negated what was otherwise a career day for the Trojan gunslinger, who went 26 for 35 for 385 yards and three passing touchdowns.

#064
Minnesota 31, Auburn 24 (Jan. 01, 2020)

Finally, an Outback Bowl that was WORTH its weight in Bloomin’ Onion sauce. The game found itself tied 10-10, 17-17 and 24-24 in the first, second and third quarters, with Tanner Morgan ultimately bombing receiver Tyler Johnson on a BOOMIN’ 73-yard go-ahead TD with about 10 and a half left in the fourth. From there on out, the Golden Gophers’ defense held steady, while pretty much everybody playing for the Tigers not named Noah Igbinoghene just stood there scratching’ their asses until the play clock expired.

#063
Georgia Southern 24, Appalachian State 21 (Oct. 31, 2019)

Believe it or not, statistically-speaking, this was one of the biggest overall upsets in college football in 2019. The Eagles jumped out to a quick 10-0 lead, which ultimately bloomed into a 24-7 heading into the fourth. Zac Thomas would connect with Corey Sutton twice in the fourth quarter to cut the lead down to 24-21, but Georgia Southern managed to hold onto the ball en route to the shocking three-point win — which, as it turned out, was to be App State’s only loss of the season.

#062
Louisville 41, Boston College 39 (Oct. 05, 2019)

An unabashed ACC score-a-thon that saw both times eclipse 500 total yards of offense, with Louisville ultimately ending the day with 664. The wacky back-and-forth action, however, would end with special teams taking front and center. With about three and a half minutes to go, Boston College’s Aaron Boumheri booted a 45-yard field goal to give the Eagles a 39-38 lead — only for Louisville to turn right around and see Blanton CReque connect on the 41-yard game-winner with just barely a minute left in regulation.

#061
Oklahoma State 34, TCU 27 (Nov. 02, 2019)

As expected, these thing was ALL offense, with TCU finishing the outing with 450 total yards and Oklahoma State calling it a day with 459. Although Chubba Howard had 223 yards and two scores on 20 carries, the hero of the day in this one was Matt Ammendola, whose 43-yard field goal with about two minutes left in the fourth gave the Cowboys all the padding they needed to hold onto the one-score margin of victory. 

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