College football report card: Iowa’s offensive offense among the lowlights of Week 1

The College Football Report Card got off to a great start last week despite a less-than-appealing slate of games. This week promises to be exciting with most of the nation’s teams seeing their first action.

The same thing goes as far as grading from last season. High marks will be only for the spectacular, and failing grades have no chance of being reversed. Also, mean tweeters will be blocked and emails to the inbox to complain will directly enter the trash folder.

Last week’s low marks went to Week 0’s name, Spygate 2.0 against Jacksonville State and Dabo Swinney’s lack of rhythm, with a high grade going to Nebraska and Northwestern fans who were able to get free beer in Dublin after the credit card machines malfunctioned. 

Week 1 winners and losers:Georgia off to dominant start, ECU stumbles

College football Top 25 Week 1 scores:Everything you need for the biggest games

Here is the Week 1 analysis of how fans, teams, players and coaches fared:

And the Golden Raspberry goes to…

Some football players are in their own element and perhaps forget there are many cameras looking at the action. That appeared to be the case for Tennessee offensive lineman Darnell Wright in Thursday’s game against Ball State.

After Wright was smacked in the facemask by a Ball State defender, he turned into Morris Chestnut in “Boyz N The Hood” (if you don’t get the reference, that’s why Google was invented. RIP, Ricky) and did a flop so unbelievable it would put Boston Celtics guard Marcus Smart and many soccer stars to shame.

Now, look closely. Notice the legs. Then the arms start to “fail,” and for the finale, he goes face-first into the turf. Plus, that kind of hit would rarely put someone on the turf that is listed at 6-foot-6, 335 pounds. There is nothing Oscar-worthy about the flop.  

EGOT, not: F, trending toward expulsion

First game jitters?

Special teams, believe it or not, is one of the three phases of football and could win or lose a game. South Carolina State wasn’t winning against UCF, so when the Bulldogs lined up to punt in the first quarter, one commentator stated he wouldn’t anticipate a fake punt on fourth-and-19 from their own 30-yard line

Well … SC State punter Dyson Roberts was seconds away from getting drilled by the punt block team and took off, but then inexplicably punted the ball after he was 12 yards past the line of scrimmage. “If you are confused watching, so are we,” the broadcast booth quipped. 

Roberts’ day got worse from there. In the fourth quarter and with his team down 49-10, Roberts again went back to punt and this time the rush got home. His kick was blocked and returned for a touchdown. For his punting woes, Roberts gets a 5-out-of-5 Orlovskys on the “what the hell?” scale. 

Good job, good effort: D-

One yard and a cloud of nothing

Iowa won a college football game on Saturday … supposedly. The Hawkeyes welcomed South Dakota State, a two-touchdown underdog more than willing to take its $600,000 payday and bruised pride and bodies back to The Mount Rushmore State.

Iowa was completely inept. The Jackrabbits, though, couldn’t take advantage, playing plenty of sorry football themselves. 

The 7-3 final score (two safeties and a field goal for Iowa) evoked memories of leather helmets and grainy football highlights. The teams combined for 21 punts, 286 total yards, just seven third-down conversions (on 33 attempts) and they each averaged less than two yards per rushing attempt. Oh, and neither team had a drive longer than 4:45 in 31 possessions. 

It got so bad the game went from one of the greatest traditions in college football – Iowa fans waving to kids in the children’s hospital – to fans booing their beloved Hawkeyes off the field. 

Iowa City Blues: F

This week’s other high scorers

High grades this week go to: North Carolina State running back Demie Sumo-Karngbaye, who literally goes through the whole East Carolina team before he is tackled short of the goal line.   

—The defenses of North Carolina and Appalachian State, who didn’t play defense but were out there anyway, especially in the fourth quarter when the Mountaineers scored 40 points and still lost. It takes effort to be that bad.

—And Florida quarterback Anthony Richardson for pulling out his bag of tricks with a fake jump pass on a two-point conversion in the fourth quarter against Utah 

The Dog of the Week: Maine at New Mexico

(Send a pic of your pup to my Twitter account, so they can be featured in this column.)

Check out this beauty, named Hudson, who is the definition of cool and is the pride of Old Dominion football.

Now back to the game… Not sure how this one even ended up on the schedule, but the Black Bears took their crew to Albuquerque, New Mexico, to face a team that has won 13 games in the last five years, including a 3-9 campaign in 2021. The teams had never faced each other in football, and hopefully we will never see this matchup again.

There isn’t much of a silver lining for the Lobos, except maybe three-plus hours of extra practice time, as they coughed up $350,000 to host a team from the Colonial Athletic Association. (New Mexico did win at least, 41-0.)

Maine will continue to collect those Benjamins as it plays Boston College on Sept. 17.

Follow Scooby Axson on Twitter @scoobaxson.   

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