NCAA week eight has more questions than answers

Only a few undefeated teams remain in the college football landscape



Oregon wide receiver Seven McGee runs past WSU defenders during an NCAA college football game, Sep. 24.

BRANDON WILLMAN, Evergreen reporter

Can TCU gain favor with the playoff committee? Will the Pac-12 have representation? What will Clemson do going forward? 

Following the games of week eight of the NCAA football season, there still remain many unanswered questions.

The TCU Horned Frogs continue their season as the cinderella team to look out for, as they won a big matchup against No.17 ranked Kansas State. They are now 7-0 on the season and have their toughest matches behind them. 

Max Duggan has been one of the biggest surprises of the season and could be a sleeper pick for the Heisman Trophy if it were not for historical statistical seasons by the quarterbacks in front of him.  

Despite their standing at the top of their conference and their huge wins over ranked opponents, they remain as only the seventh-ranked team in the AP polls and have to have a couple of things go their way if they want to see the playoff. 

Another big question of the weekend was who would win the ESPN College Gameday matchup between undefeated UCLA and one-loss Oregon. Both teams were ranked in the top 10 and looked to be title contenders. 

If the Bruins pulled off the win, they would just need to win out to make the playoff, for the Ducks, they would need to win out and look extremely dominant in doing so to make it. 

Oregon would defend their home field, prevailing by a score of 45-30. Bo Nix was utterly dominant, finishing 22-28 for 283 yards and five touchdowns. UCLA’s defense had no answers for the quarterback and he had his way all game.

The Ducks still have a solid chance to make the playoff, but any loss would spell the end of the Pac-12’s chances to represent themselves in the playoff, assuming USC continues to struggle.

The final big question of the weekend revolves around Clemson football. After a terrible start from the offense and DJ Uiagalelei, who threw two picks, the Tigers looked at their backup to get something going. 

Clemson squeaked out the win 27-21 despite the struggles, but they certainly do not look like a team that can contend for a title. If the season ended today, they would be on the outside looking in at the top four and if they want to end up in that top four, something needs to change.

In one of the biggest upsets of the week, unranked LSU dominated undefeated Ole Miss at home leading to a 45-20 final score. Ole Miss QB Jaxson Dart had no touchdowns and threw a pick in a game where momentum was never on his side. 

LSU is now 6-2 on the season and will look to play spoiler against Alabama to solidify this season as a lost one for the Crimson Tide. 

Week nine has several top 10 teams facing ranked competition in games that are must-win for their playoff hopes this late in the season. 

No. 2 Ohio State has its first test against No. 13 Penn State, No. 3 Tennessee looks to continue its magic against No. 19 Kentucky and No. 9 Oklahoma State heads on the road to take on No. 22 Kansas State. 

It is to the point in the season where the fans and analysts have a feel for which teams and players are legit, but with the nature of college football, anything is possible from week to week. 

As it stands, the college football playoff will consist of TCU, the winner of Michigan-Ohio State, the winner of Oregon-USC and Georgia.