5 Takeaways from Week One of College Football

The first full week of college football action is officially in the books and, boy, was it a doozy. Fans were treated to historic upsets, incredible comebacks and surprise stars like Rutgers’ jacuzzi and Tennessee’s trash can. Week one of the college football season clearly had something for everyone. While we don’t want to overreact to just one week of games, we also learned quite a bit amid all of the fun. Here are the top five takeaways from opening week.

MICHIGAN JUST MIGHT BACK UP THE HYPE

There’s no denying that Michigan looked like a contender in its week one victory over Florida. The Wolverines’ young defense, in particular, looked the part, holding the Gators to 192 total yards (including just 11 rush yards) and scoring a touchdown. Whether or not this is an indication of a step forward after consecutive third-place Big Ten East finishes remains to be seen. Florida, which was without 10 players due to various suspensions, led Michigan at halftime due to consecutive pick-sixes thrown by Michigan quarterback Wilton Speight.

If the Wolverines are really worthy of College Football Playoff hype, they will need Speight to play more like a championship-level QB. With the fewest returning starters in the FBS, Michigan needs a capable veteran presence under center to be elite.
Image via Bleacher Report

HEAT CHECK: YES, THOSE HOT SEATS ARE STILL TOASTY

The non-conference showdown between Texas A&M and UCLA was pegged by some as the battle of the hot seats. While the game was a thriller, with the Bruins storming back from a 34-point deficit to defeat the Aggies, it still lived up to those expectations. TAMU head coach Kevin Sumlin finds his hot seat scalding after his team blew the biggest lead in an FBS game since 2006 and, even in victory, UCLA head coach Jim Mora finds himself in a similar situation. His team was en route to a massive whooping at home before Bruins QB Josh Rosen saved the day. Sumlin has a lot of work to do if he hopes to keep his job, while Mora can’t afford a losing streak to dampen the high spirits generated by the comeback.
Image via Austin American-Statesman

TEXAS SCHOOLS COULD BE IN FOR LONG SEASONS

The Aggies’ meltdown was the capper to an already frustrating week for Texas’ college programs. Baylor was stunned by FCS Liberty at home in Matt Rhule’s debut as the Bears’ head coach and Texas fell to Big Ten afterthought Maryland at home in Tom Herman’s head coaching debut. A&M faces a tough SEC schedule that looks even more daunting following its collapse, while the Longhorns and Bears appear destined for mediocre seasons, at best. TCU and Texas Tech may need to carry the state’s flag in 2017.
Image via Yahoo Sports

ALABAMA IS STILL ALABAMA

Any whispers of concern about the status of Alabama football following the Crimson Tide’s national championship loss to Clemson were dismissed in Bama’s 24-7 week one victory over no. 3 Florida State. As if those concerns were ever valid. The Tide gave themselves a real challenge by playing a fellow title contender in week one and, while they weren’t perfect, rose to the occasion. Now, Alabama can work on perfecting itself against a succession of far-inferior opponents. November games against LSU and Auburn could be tough, but by then, the Tide should be really rolling. It’s business as usual in Tuscaloosa.
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BIG 12 MAY HOLD ITSELF BACK AGAIN

The Big 12 opted against adding new members this past off-season, but did adopt a conference title game in an effort to improve its future bids for the playoff. That may not even matter if its members do not start playing better football. While Oklahoma and Oklahoma State look like potential playoff contenders, the overall depth of the conference could prevent either from making it — especially if the Sooners lose to Ohio State next week and/or the Cowboys fail to go undefeated.

The Big 12 had high hopes that Texas was back and Baylor could rebound to boost the perception of the conference, but saw that dream come crashing down in just a few hours. West Virginia also lost a key non-conference game against Virginia Tech. TCU and Kansas State will likely need to be better than expected to get a Big 12 team in the playoff.
Image via Bleacher Report