Not only was it an extended Thanksgiving football weekend but it was also Rivalry weekend in the college ranks. So let’s get right down to it:
In the biggest college football game of the weekend, the #4 Michigan Wolverines traveled to their arch-rival’s in Columbus, Ohio to take on the #10 Buckeyes with a trip to the Big 10 title game and possibly a spot in the National Playoff on the line. The Wolverines proceeded to get shellacked by Ohio State 62-39. Let’s just say Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh can’t be a happy camper. The vaunted Michigan defense gave up a season high amount of points and Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer remained undefeated against Michigan in his tenure. Ohio State now heads to the Big 10 title game to face Northwestern next weekend.
#1 Alabama took care of business against in-state rival Auburn in the annual Iron Bowl by the score of 52-21. Next up for Alabama is #6 Georgia in the SEC title game as the Bulldogs defeated in-state rival Georgia Tech 45-21. #2 Clemson pulled away from South Carolina in the second half of their game winning by a comfortable 56-35 margin. #3 Notre Dame held on against USC in a road game by a touchdown, defeating the Trojans 24-17.
In other big college games, the #6 Oklahoma Sooners outlasted the #13 West Virginia Mountaineers on Friday night 59-56 in an absolute barn burner. Not to be outdone, the #7 LSU Tigers were upset by the #22 Texas A&M Aggies in a 7OT marathon game that ended 74-72. That final score set an all time Division I college football record.
Things got snippy in the #18 Mississippi State vs. Ol’ Miss game as State trounced their in-state rival 35-3. Sidelines brawled towards the end of the 3rd quarter. A brawl nearly broke out at the end of the annual Florida – Florida State game as well, but the #11 gators easily defeated their opponent. 41-14.
#16 Washington stole a trip to the Pac-12 title game by defeating in-state rival #8 Washington State. The Washington Huskies will now face Utah in that championship game.
#9 Central Florida continued their nearly 2 year winning streak by defeating the University of South Florida 38-10, but lost their starting quarterback McKenzie Milton to a gruesome leg injury which required emergency surgery and could potentially end the junior qb’s career. The team will next face Memphis in the American Athletic Conference Championship.
Moving to the NFL, there were 3 games on Thanksgiving Day, but no real surprises there. Despite the Chicago Bears having their starting qb Mitch Trubisky sitting out due to injury, the team rode their defense to a 23-16 victory over the home Detroit Lions. In the 4p game, the Dallas Cowboys easily defeated a Washington Redskins team who lost their starting quarterback Alex Smith to a season ending leg injury last week by a score of 31-23. And in the primetime nightcap, the New Orleans Saints continued their winning ways by defeating the visiting Atlanta Falcons 31-17.
In today’s early games, the biggest surprise came from the Seattle Seahawks who defeated the Carolina Panthers on a last second field goal 30-27 in a tough road game for the Hawks. Seattle is now 6-5 and Carolina drops to 6-5. Late field goals also led to wins for the Buffalo Bills who defeated the Jacksonville Jaguars 24-21 and the Philadelphia Eagles who beat the New York Giants 25-22.
Cleveland Browns 35 – Cincinnati Bengals 20
New England Patriots 27 – New York Jets 13
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 27 – San Francisco 49ers 9
Baltimore Ravens 34 – Oakland Raiders 17
Today’s late afternoon games are the Pittsburgh Steelers at the Denver Broncos, the Arizona Cardinals at the Los Angeles Chargers and the Miami Dolphins at the Indianapolis Colts.
Tonight’s Sunday Night game is the Green Bay Packers at the Minnesota Vikings.
Tomorrow’s Monday Night game is the Tennessee Titans at the Houston Texans.