College football is back

This weekend’s slate of football games includes big-time match ups with highly ranked teams. The University of Alabama played against Florida State University in a highly ranked No. 1 versus No. 3 matchup. The University of Florida played the University of Michigan in a ranked No. 11 versus No. 17. West Virginia and Virginia Tech squared off in a No. 22 versus No. 21 game to conclude the weekend.

The highly anticipated Alabama and Florida State game featured the highest ranked teams to play in the opening weekend in AP poll history. The defense was the key for Alabama’s win against the Seminoles. Alabama proved once again that defense and special teams are their strongest assets. The team was able to hold Florida State to only seven points in the game and it’s special teams unit changed the game with a blocked punt that gave their offense great field position late in the third quarter. Alabama controlled most of the game as they would go on to win 24-7.

The Florida and Michigan game was another matchup with big playoff implications early in the year. Michigan had a lot to prove, losing a majority of their players from a season ago. Florida was in need of a win to show that they are the team to beat coming out of the SEC East. There was plenty of defense and big plays. Florida’s defense provided two defensive touchdowns, each on interceptions. Those two touchdowns weren’t enough though since the team’s offense could not do much against the defense of Michigan. Michigan’s offense was able to do enough to squeeze out a victory. Senior quarterback Wilton Speight was able to hit freshman receiver Tarik Black on a 46-yard touchdown pass in the first quarter, along with other drives that resulted in field goals and a closing defensive touchdown. This was all that was needed for the 33-17 victory for Michigan.

A ranked matchup that could possibly have playoff implications included West Virginia and Virginia Tech. This game was a back-and-forth type of matchup as these two teams were evenly matched. Great quarterback play on both teams made this game such a tightly-contested matchup. West Virginia had a chance to tie the game late with a touchdown, but a couple of flags and missed opportunities made them unsuccessful. Virginia Tech was able to sneak by with a win in this renewed rivalry with a score of 31-24.

Alabama and Michigan were the big winners of the weekend. Alabama will still be ranked number one. Michigan is likely to move up in the rankings after an impressive showing. These two teams rode defense to the keys to their victories on Saturday.

College football is back, and if this first week is any indication, this season is going to be a special one.

Noah Enns can be reached at [email protected] or @theorion_sports on Twitter.