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Weekend wrap-up:
No more QB issues in Gainesville

By Terry Bowden
Special to
Bowden's Weekly Chat Show

Every Saturday throughout the season, ABC studio analyst Terry Bowden will weigh in his assessment of the day's games, the highlights, the lowlights and the surprises.

Three Game Balls:
Rex Grossman
Rex Grossman has emerged as Steve Spurrier's No. 1 quarterback.
  • Rex Grossman: They're ba-ack. When Steve Spurrier has a quarterback, the University of Florida has a football team -- and boy does Florida have a football team. Freshman quarterback Rex Grossman threw five touchdown passes -- three of which landed in the hands of another freshman, wide receiver Jabar Gaffney -- and the Florida Gators scored on their first five possessions to demolish the Auburn Tigers.

    Grossman was 14-for-23, for 232 yards, and put to rest any further discussion of a quarterback controversy at Florida.

  • Oklahoma Sooners: When you can bring back the glory days to a once-proud football program, you've got to dish out a few game balls. I don't know if the Sooners can make it all the way to the FedEx Orange Bowl, but you know Barry Switzer, who watched from the sidelines, has to be proud.

    As Switzer said after Saturday's game, "We're about to get real good."

    Josh Heupel had another great day, but ultimate credit must go to Bob Stoops, who was not fazed by pressure from the Old Guard, who wanted to bring back the wishbone, and instead has taken Oklahoma into the 21st Century.

  • Chuck Amato: If Tommy Bowden can go 6-6 last season and receive the Atlantic Coast Conference Coach of the Year Award, then North Carolina State head coach Chuck Amato's name should already be inscribed on this year's trophy. N.C. State is 5-1, having just beat rival North Carolina for the first time in eight years, and the Wolfpack are just one win away from an inevitable bowling trip over the holidays.

    With a great coaching staff and a star quarterback, it's obvious Coach Amato took a few notes over the last 20 years working for my old man at Florida State.

    Surprises of the day:
  • Minnesota: I have always thought of Minnesota as being one of those programs that has a winning season one year and then has to wait two or three before it gets another one. However, Glen Mason seems to have gotten the Golden Gophers to a higher plain. Not only is the University of Minnesota 5-2 and tied for the lead in the Big Ten Conference, but this past weekend, the Golden Gophers beat an undefeated Ohio State team on its own field for the first time in 51 years.

    I don't suppose Glen Mason is a very popular Buckeye alumnus this week.

  • Oregon: I felt Oregon had the better football team, but I wouldn't let myself believe they could go to the Coliseum in Los Angeles and pull off another big win against Southern Cal. Not only was this the first road victory for the Ducks, but it's also the first time since 1948 that Oregon has beaten UCLA, USC and Washington all in the same year.

    This makes Mike Bellotti's team the favorite to wind up in this year's Rose Bowl, presented by AT&T.

  • Michigan's defense: What a difference a week makes. A week ago, Michigan had its worst defensive performance in school history, giving up 530 total yards to Drew Brees and the Purdue Boilermakers. You had to think it would be ugly for the Wolverines, when Antwaan Randle El led the league's highest scoring offense into Ann Arbor. All the Maize and Blue's defense did was shut out the Hoosiers and hold Randle El to 150 yards of total offense in an easy 58-0 victory.

    Helped themselves:
  • South Carolina: Saturday's rather easy victory over Arkansas was just another feather in the cap of Lou Holtz, as he has guided the Gamecocks to one of the greatest turnarounds in NCAA history. More importantly, to the players and fans of South Carolina, they are officially bowl eligible for the first time since 1994.

  • Drew Brees: There was no question that Drew Brees would have the cumulative statistics to win the Heisman Trophy this year. In fact, he has already broken every major passing record in the Big Ten except Chuck Long's mark for career passing yardage, which he will get before the fourth quarter of Saturday's game against Wisconsin. However, I didn't think he'd win the Heisman unless he showed the country that he could lead the Boilermakers to a great season and possibly into the Rose Bowl. With back-to-back wins over Michigan and league-leading Northwestern, Drew jumps right back to the top of this year's Heisman hopefuls.

    It's a shame that if not for two miscues in the punting game, Purdue would be undefeated.

    Gabe Crecion
    Cal put another dent in UCLA's Rose Bowl dreams with Saturday's 3 OT win.
  • Cal: Any team that does not give up after a tough start like the one the University of California had, deserves some recognition. The Golden Bears' 46-38 victory over a good UCLA team is just what those players needed.

    Hurt themselves:
  • Kansas State: I know we've complained about the non-conference schedule, but K-State had me convinced that it was one of the top five teams in the country, in spite of the schedule. After Saturday's 41-31 loss to Oklahoma, I will have to change my mind.

    The Wildcats' defense looked pretty ordinary in its first real contest, and Jonathan Beasley completed less than 40 percent of his passes on a day that he needed to shine.

  • Auburn: I remember during my five years at Auburn how difficult it was to feel secure at the halfway point of the season. Three times we were 6-0, and 5-1 the other two times -- all I could think was how great of a team we were. Unfortunately, we hadn't played Florida, Georgia or Alabama yet -- games where a lot of things can go wrong.

    Almost everything went wrong in Saturday's 38-7 loss to the Gators, and 4-0 has quickly turned to 4-2. Now, the prospect of a nine-win season is more difficult. Tommy Tuberville, welcome to the tough world of college football in Alabama.

  • University of Southern California: That's three conference losses in a row. Enough said.

    Terry Bowden is ABC's college football studio analyst and hosts a weekly audio chat on on Thursdays at 5 p.m. ET.

     Antwone Savage hauls in a pass from Josh Heupel and goes 74 yards for a Sooners' score.
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     Oklahoma's Quentin Griffin uses his feet and fingers to reach the end zone on a 17-yard run.
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     Curtis Fagan hauls in a Josh Heupel pass for a 15-yard Sooners' TD.
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     Ron Johnson adjusts in the end zone to haul in a touchdown pass from Travis Cole.
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     Minnesota's Tellis Redmon puts the game away with a 20-yard TD.
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     Michigan's Drew Henson launches a 47-yard TD pass to his favorite target David Terrell.
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     Michigan's Anthony Thomas bruises his way 7 yards for the TD.(courtesy: ABCSports)
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     Purdue's Drew Brees throws 26 yards to Vinny Sutherland for the TD against Northwestern.
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     Purdue's Drew Brees fires 7 yards to John Standeford for the TD.
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     Joey Harrington lays it in nicely for Josh Line on a 23-yard TD pass.
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     Maurice Morris takes the shovel-pass from Joey Harrington and rumbles into the end zone.
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     Bob Stoops is not surprised that his offense put points on the board.
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     Aaron Lockett says the Wildcats will keep going.
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