Tallahassee, Fla. — North Carolina State finally has a statement win in Dave Doeren’s fifth year as coach.
The Wolfpack broke a 10-game losing streak to ranked teams Saturday, defeating No. 12 Florida State 27-21. It is Doeren’s first victory in nine attempts since he took over in 2013.
“We beat a lot of teams that people think we should beat, and knocked on the door with a ton of teams and didn’t finish. Now we finished,” Doeren said after his team improved to 3-1 and 1-0 in the Atlantic Coast Conference. “If you want to be in the conversation you have to win games like today.”
The Wolfpack’s last win over a Top 25 team coincidentally was against Florida State in 2012.
N.C. State led ranked teams twice late in games last year but fell short. It had a 10-point, third quarter lead over FSU last year before the Seminoles rallied to win. The Wolfpack also took Clemson to overtime but lost.
“Just being in this situation and to finally just pull it out meant a lot. We’ve been working all year at finishing,” said defensive end Bradley Chubb, who had seven tackles, two sacks and a forced fumble.
Ryan Finley completed 22 of 32 throws for 230 yards and two touchdowns as the Wolfpack got their first road win over a ranked team since 2008 at North Carolina. His 71-yard touchdown pass to Jakobi Meyers late in the second quarter extended the lead to 17-7. Meyers had his first 100-yard receiving game with 112 yards on five receptions.
Jaylen Samuels also accounted for two touchdowns. His 2-yard run on fourth-and goal gave the Wolfpack a 10-0 lead in the first quarter. In the fourth quarter he took a shovel pass from Finley and went 17 yards to put them up 27-16.
Nyheim Hines rushed for 94 yards on 24 carries, including a 15-yard run late in the fourth quarter that allowed N.C. State to run out the clock.
The Seminoles (0-2, 0-1), who had a 21-day layoff because of Hurricane Irma, have dropped their first two games to open a season for the first time in 28 years. It also marks the first time since 2011 that FSU dropped back-to-back games.
Freshman James Blackman was 22 of 38 for 278 yards in his first start. Auden Tate had nine receptions for 138 yards, including a 4-yard touchdown early in the second quarter that drew the Seminoles within 10-7.
The Seminoles struggled to score touchdowns in the red zone, with just one in seven trips. Ricky Aguayo had four field goals, but missed a 30-yarder. Blackman also had a fumble deep in Wolfpack territory.
“They were always one play ahead and we didn’t make the plays that we needed to make,” Florida State coach Jimbo Fisher said. “We got to get that cleaned up to have a nice football team. It’s been done around here before with this kind of start.”
No. 1 Alabama 59, (at) Vanderbilt 0: Damien Harris ran for a career-high 151 yards and three touchdowns, and Bo Scarbrough added two TDs for Alabama (4-0) , which now has won 19 straight over the SEC East.
The Crimson Tide hasn’t lost to Vanderbilt since 1984 or in Nashville since 1969. Both streaks were assured at the end of the first quarter with Alabama up 21-0 after the second of Harris’ TDs.
Vanderbilt (3-1) came in as one of the five remaining undefeated teams in the SEC with the nation’s stingiest defense in points, total yards and against the pass. The Commodores had allowed just 13 points combined through three games.
(At) No. 2 Clemson 34, Boston College 7: Adam Choice had a 6-yard tiebreaking touchdown in the fourth quarter and Travis Etienne had two scoring runs in the final six minutes for Clemson.
The Tigers, who came in off top-15 wins over Auburn and Louisville the last two weeks, were five-touchdown favorites over the Eagles (1-3, 0-2 Atlantic Coast Conference). But Boston College quieted the large Death Valley crowd on AJ Dillon’s 1-yard TD late in the third quarter to tie the game at 7-all.
Clemson finally got going in the fourth quarter. Quarterback Kelly Bryant led the Tigers on a 76-yard drive, capped by Choice’s go-ahead score. The next series, they were at it once more on a 90-yard series and the speedy freshman Etienne burst through the weary Eagles to finally give the Tigers some breathing room. Bryant added a 4-yard TD before Etienne closed the scoring with a 10-yard run.
Clemson (4-0, 2-0) won its seventh straight over the Eagles and opened 4-0 for a third consecutive season.
No. 3 Oklahoma 49, (at) Baylor 41: Baker Mayfield threw three touchdowns, including the go-ahead score the next snap after his unsportsmanlike conduct penalty, and Oklahoma stretched the nation’s longest winning streak to 14 games.
Abdul Adams had a 99-yard touchdown for the Sooners (4-0, 1-0 Big 12), his school-record run coming after a botched kickoff return.
Baylor (0-4, 0-1) led 31-28 after Connor Martin’s 46-yard field goal late in the third quarter.
No. 5 Southern California 30, (at) California 20: Stephen Carr ran for a fourth-quarter touchdown two plays after Southern Cal’s defense forced one of its six turnovers and the Trojans won their 13th straight.
USC (4-0, 2-0 Pac-12) has dominated the series with its in-state rival by winning 14 straight against the Golden Bears (3-1, 0-1).
Sam Darnold threw for 223 yards and two touchdowns for the Trojans but also had an interception.
No. 16 TCU 44, (at) No. 6 Oklahoma State 31: Darius Anderson ran for a career-high 160 yards and three touchdowns for TCU.
Kenny Hill passed for 228 yards for the Horned Frogs (4-0, 1-0 Big 12).
Oklahoma State’s Mason Rudolph completed 22 of 41 passes for 398 yards and two touchdowns, but he threw two interceptions.
James Washington caught six passes for 153 yards and a touchdown and Marcell Ateman caught six passes for 100 yards for the Cowboys (3-1, 0-1).
No. 7 Washington 37, (at) Colorado 10: Jordan Miller's two interceptions and Myles Bryant's pick-6 helped seventh-ranked Washington overcame a slow start and hand Colorado its first loss.
Myles Gaskin rushed for 202 yards and two touchdowns for the Huskies (4-0, 1-0), who didn't manhandle Colorado (3-1, 1-1) from the start like they did in a 41-10 rout of Colorado in last year's Pac-12 championship.
(At) No. 11 Georgia 31, No. 17 Mississippi State 3: Freshman Jake Fromm threw a pair of touchdown passes for Georgia, which scored on a 59-yard flea flicker in the first quarter.
Fromm threw for 201 yards on just 9-of-12 passing for Georgia (4-0, 1-0 SEC)P.
Chubb rushed for 81 yards and a pair of TDs.
Mississippi State is 3-1, 1-1.
(At) No. 13 Virginia Tech 38, Old Dominion 0: Josh Jackson (Chelsea) threw for three touchdowns and Steven Peoples scored three Saturday for Virginia Tech.
Peoples scored on receptions of 17 and 43 yards, the latter when Jackson threw for a well-covered Cam Phillips in the end zone and the ball was tipped into Peoples’ arms. Peoples also scored on a 1-yard run, and Jackson hit C.J. Carroll with a 5-yard scoring pass for the Hokies (4-0).
The Monarchs (2-2), playing an Atlantic Coast Conference opponent for the second week in a row, fell to 0-9 against Power Five schools.
(At) No. 14 Miami 52, Toledo 30: Malik Rosier threw for 333 yards and three touchdowns, and Mark Walton needed only 11 carries to rush for a career-best 204 yards and another score, for Miami.
Travis Homer ran for two touchdowns and Braxton Berrios, Dayall Harris and Christopher Herndon each caught TD throws for the Hurricanes (2-0), who hadn’t played in 21 days because of the effects of Hurricane Irma.
Logan Woodside completed 28 of 48 passes for 342 yards and three touchdowns for Toledo (3-1), which cut a 22-point deficit down to eight midway through the fourth quarter. Terry Swanson rushed 20 times for 79 yards for the Rockets, who outgained Miami 186-32 in the second quarter and outscored the Hurricanes 16-0 in that period.
No. 15 Auburn 51, (at) Missouri 14: Kerryon Johnson rushed for a career-high five touchdowns for Auburn.
Johnson, who had missed the previous two games with a hamstring injury, finished with 48 yards rushing on 18 carries and fell one short of Carnell Williams’ school record of six rushing touchdowns in a game.
Jarrett Stidham added 218 yards passing and a touchdown while completing 13 of 17 passes for Auburn (3-1, 1-0 Southeastern Conference). Auburn’s Carlton Davis also had an interception, one of four Missouri (1-3, 0-2) turnovers.
(At) No. 18 Washington State 45, Nevada 7: Luke Falk threw five touchdown passes for Washington State, off to the team’s best start in 16 years.
Washington State (4-0), which opened the 2001 season by winning its first seven games, piled up 560 yards of offense and five sacks.
Nevada was held to just 151 total yards as the Wolf Pack (0-4) fell to 0-17 on the road against opponents in the Top 25.
(At) No. 19 Louisville 42, Kent State 3: Lamar Jackson accounted for three touchdowns to set a Louisville (3-1) career record.
Despite missing Jaylen Smith, the team’s top receiver , the reigning Heisman Trophy winner threw for 299 yards and two touchdowns on 18-of-22 passing. His 16-yard touchdown pass to Javonte Bagley in the third quarter ended the scoring and gave him 88 total touchdowns, breaking Chris Redman’s career mark. In all, Jackson, who did not play in the fourth quarter, finished with 333 yards total offense.
Kent State’s Paul Haynes, who served as Louisville’s secondary coach in 2002 and as Louisville coach Bobby Petrino’s defensive coordinator at Arkansas, coached from the press box for the second straight week after returning from prostate cancer surgery
No. 20 Florida 28, (at) Kentucky 27: Freddie Swain caught a 5-yard touchdown pass from backup quarterback Luke Del Rio with 43 seconds remaining to cap Florida’s rally from a 13-point, fourth-quarter deficit.
The Gators extended their winning streak over the Wildcats to 31 games, the nation’s longest streak in FBS, and took early control of the Southeastern Conference’s Eastern Division.
Down 27-14 in the fourth quarter, Florida (2-1, 2-0) got within a touchdown on Brandon Powell’s 6-yard TD run with 7:58 left. Del Rio then marched the Gators 58 yards for the winning score.
Kentucky’s last chance to win ended when Austin MacGinnis’ 57-yard field goal fell short as time expired.
No. 22 San Diego State 28, (at) Air Force 24: Rashaad Penny scored three times, including a 53-yard scamper with 5:39 remaining, for San Diego State in a game that was delayed 88 minutes by lightning.
The nation’s leading rusher struggled early in the soggy conditions, but finally found some running room as the Aztecs (4-0, 1-0 Mountain West) began their quest to capture a third straight conference title. Penny finished with 128 yards rushing, which was 68 below his season average.
Penny’s go-ahead run came moments after Air Force (1-2, 0-1) took the lead when Tim McVey took a pitch, jumped over a San Diego State defender on the ground, landed backward and twirled into the end zone for a 12-yard score.
(At) Arizona State 37, No. 24 Oregon 35: Freshman Brandon Ruiz kicked a 41-yard field goal with 2:33 to play and Arizona State held on to upset Oregon in the Pac-12 opener for both teams. The win ended the Sun Devils' 10-game losing streak to the Ducks.
Manny Wilkins completed 24 of 39 passes for 347 yards and a touchdown and ran for two more scores as Arizona State beat the Ducks for the first time since 2004. K'Neal Harry caught seven passes for a career-best 170 yards and a score.
(At) No. 25 LSU 35, Syracuse 26: Danny Etling threw touchdown passes of 87 and 43 yards for LSU.
Darrel Williams rushed for 92 yards, including a 20-yard touchdown in the third quarter.
Backup quarterback Myles Brennan entered the game in the middle of the third quarter with LSU (3-1) leading 21-10. It was unclear if Etling, who was sacked twice and leveled as he released several passes, was in pain. He remained standing on the sideline wearing a headset for three series, returning in the fourth quarter after Brennan threw an interception which helped Syracuse (2-2) pull as close as 28-26 with 5:40 left.