College Football Notebook: Washington Wins, Notre Dame Dominates, UNC’s Statement & Other Week 7 Notes

The Washington Huskies have officially arrived! College Football Week 7 was a lot of fun and provided us with the game of the year so far up in Seattle. USC got blown out in South Bend and appeared to get exposed. North Carolina cleared another hurdle toward a potential ACC title bid. Let’s recap the week.

College Football Week 7 Notebook

Washington Tops Oregon In Epic Thriller

What. A. Game. Washington and Oregon played what was arguably the game of the year so far, saw the Huskies hang on at home in a back-and-forth showdown with Oregon. Both teams entered the week 5-0, so the win for Washington keeps them atop the Pac-12 and in the driver’s seat for a conference championship game bid. While they lost, Oregon was still impressive in the 36-33 loss. They can still run the table and earn a potential rematch with Washington in the Pac-12 Championship.

It’s impossible to recap Saturday’s game without mentioning yet again how impressive Michael Penix Jr was in the win. It might not have been his most efficient game, but he made all the big throws when needed and tossed four touchdowns against the Ducks. And when Oregon went for it at midfield late in the 4th Quarter and didn’t get it, Penix Jr got the Huskies into the endzone and gave them a 36-33 lead in just two plays.

This week, Oregon hosts Washington State while Washington hosts Arizona State. Both teams likely still control their destiny to get into the College Football Playoff. Here’s to hoping Washington and Oregon run the table, and we get a rematch in Vegas for the conference championship and a likely playoff bid on the line.

https://twitter.com/TSV__1/status/1713337391820525898?s=20

Notre Dame Dominates USC

I talked about it a couple of weeks ago, but USC started looking like a flawed team over their last few games. On Saturday, Notre Dame saw those cracks and busted through them with a 48-20 win in South Bend. The Irish created a dominant defensive game plan that gaveย Caleb Williamsย problems all night. They pressured the reigning Heisman Trophy winner from the jump and forced Williams into several bad throws and decisions. The Irish forced five turnovers, including three interceptions.ย 

USC can still get into a Pac-12 title game, but the rest of their schedule is an absolute gauntlet. They close their schedule with Utah, Cal, Washington, Oregon, and UCLA. Three of those five teams are legitimate Pac-12 Championship contenders.

As for the Irish, that was a significant win for Marcus Freeman. After last weekend’s disaster in Louisville, questions were starting to pop up about Freeman and his ability to get the job done at Notre Dame. While the Irish won’t be getting to a playoff this year, their ability to get off the mat and put forth this dominant effort against a Top 10 team was a statement from their head coach.

Unfortunately for ND, many “what could have been” questions will be lingering after the Ohio State loss. However, a 10-2 season with an NY6 Bowl is still very much on the table, and that would be far from a bad season, even if the ultimate goal wasn’t achieved.

North Carolina Clears Another Big Hurdle

Another week and another impressive win for the Tar Heels! North Carolina beat Miami at home 41-31 behind another big performance from their quarterback, Drake Maye. Maye finished with four touchdowns through the air, and three of them went to theย newly reinstated Tez Walker, who was damn near unstoppable. Walker accounted for 132 of North Carolina’s 273 yards through the air and chipped in with three receiving touchdowns. No wonder they wanted him back so badly!

The path to an undefeated season just got much clearer for the Heels. They should beat Virginia, Georiga Tech, and Campbell before they close out the season with Duke at home, then on the road for Clemson and N.C. State. It’s wild thinking that a Duke vs Carolina FOOTBALL matchup could end up being the most important game of the season in the ACC, but November 11th’s matchup might be a battle of ACC unbeatens with a potential ACC Title Game bid on the line.

Week 7 Extra Points

  • Have to do our weekly check-in with Colorado, especially after their disastrous loss at home to Stanford. The Buffs blew a 29-0 halftime lead, and everyone should shoulder some of the blame. The play was sloppy in the second half on both sides of the ball; the playcalling wasn’t ideal, as Colorado made little effort to drain some clock. Overall, it was just a brutal loss for Colorado in a game they might have needed in their quest for bowl eligibility. They finish the season at UCLA, Oregon State, vs Arizona, Washington State, and Utah. They’ll likely be underdogs in all of those matchups. Things should get interesting!
  • https://twitter.com/StanfordFball/status/1713654078902091990?s=20

  • Some very unfortunate news out of Georgia today. Star tight end Brock Bowers will undergo ankle surgery that will likely sideline him for the rest of the regular season. It’s just a tough break for arguably the nation’s best player. Georgia’s schedule isn’t too bad the rest of the way, and they should still get themselves to the SEC Championship game without Bowers. But to win the SEC and a third straight national title, Bowers will need to get healthy. Fortunately, he should be back in time for those potential games.
  • Several people called out the potential “trap game” for Louisville when they went to Pitt this Saturday. Still, I’m not sure anyone saw a 17-point loss for the Cardinals coming. After their blowout of Notre Dame at home, Louisville put forth a big-time letdown effort against a bad Pitt team that effectively ended their College Football Playoff hopes just one week after they hit an all-time high. The Cardinals are still on track for a very successful season, but Saturday’s loss is tough.
  • Next week is another solid slate highlighted by the first of three massive Big Ten East games to come this year. No. 3 Ohio State hosts No. 6 Penn State in a battle of unbeatens. Ohio State is coming off a 41-7 win over Purdue, while Penn State rolled through UMass 63-0. Both teams are firing on all cylinders in the last few weeks leading up to this massive showdown in Columbus.
  • written by

    Matt is from the Chicagoland area and has been working in Chicago sports since 2015 with stops at WGN Radio, the Chicago Blackhawks, Stadium, and NBC Sports Chicago prior to landing at Betsperts. Matt covers just about everything for Betsperts and Bleacher Nation but focuses on the NHL and college football.

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