College football has been back for a week, but really, it came back on Saturday. It was the first full weekend of the 2017 season and no game was bigger than the matchup between No. 1 Alabama and No. 3 Florida State.
Sadly, the most anticipated game of the offseason didn't quite hold up to the hype. A defensive battle dominated the first half, but Florida State miscues piled up at a faster rate in the final 30 minutes as the Crimson Tide rolled to an.
Of course, that wasn't the only game going on Saturday, even if it felt like it. Purdue put Louisville on the ropes while a pair of Big 12 teams were upset at home. With so much action happening around the country, we here at CBS Sports want to get you caught up on all the noteworthy things that happened -- both the good and not so good.
What were the highlights from Saturday of Week 1? What were the moments some programs want to forget? We hash out the best and worst below.
Winner -- Alabama's defense: Duh. You don't walk out of the biggest nonconference game of the year with a double-digit victory and not make the top of the Winners and Losers list. The Crimson Tide didn't play their best overall game, but the defense was stifling against Florida State. The Tide hauled in a pair of interceptions and limited the Seminoles' ground attack to a mere 1.5 yards per carry. In the second half alone, the Tide limited Florida State's offense to 65 yards. It wasn't a pretty game, but it was the type of slow suffocation that Alabama has become infamous for under coach Nick Saban. Even with all the departures to the NFL, do we expect anything less from the Tide?
Loser -- Florida State's meltdown: Boy, things unraveled quickly for the Seminoles, didn't they? A 10-7 halftime deficit was by no means insurmountable, but mistakes really began to pile up in the second half. A blocked punt was followed by a Keith Gavin fumble on a kickoff return and Alabama scored one play later. Then, on FSU's two ensuing drives, Francois was picked off on back-to-back passes. Things went to an all-time low when Francois was sustained an apparent leg and had to be helped off the field.
Leading into the game, both Saban and Florida State coach Jimbo Fisher talked at length about how these types of high-profile games reveal how prepared teams really are. In its last two games as a top-three team, Florida State has been outclassed by their opponents by a combined 60 points.
In it's last two games as a Top-3 team, Florida State has been outscored 87-27 (last year vs Louisville & tonight)— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) September 3, 2017
Winner -- Alabama defensive lineman Raekwon Davis: Last week, a report surfaced that Davis had suffered a gunshot wound while at a bar. The injury was considered minor, but nonetheless, it was an injury with the Florida State game right around the corner. Well, Davis played Saturday night against the Seminoles and recorded a sack. Even if the injury was minor, it doesn't quite roll off the tongue to say he played in spite of a gunshot wound. Congrats to Davis, I think.
Loser -- Louisville's ball security: While Alabama and Florida State were playing, Louisville got a fight from Purdue in Indianapolis. The Cardinals held on to win 35-28, and while it would be easy to pin such a close win on Heisman Trophy winner Lamar Jackson, the reality is he played just fine with 485 total yards and three touchdowns. He did, however, have a fumble at the Purdue 2-yard line on the opening drive of the game. It was one of three fumbles for the Cardinals on the night. Purdue played better than expected, but ball security -- an issue for the Cardinals last season -- is how this was a one-score game.
Winner -- The person who bet on Howard University straight-up, whoever you are: Howard beat UNLV 43-40, which you probably don't care about. However, you would care about that if you, for some reason, put money down on Howard to actually beat UNLV. Why? That would make you a winner in the biggest upset in college football history. The Bison, , were 45-point dogs and won.
BIGGEST UPSET in CFB History!— RJ Bell (@RJinVegas) September 3, 2017
Howard +45 beats UNLV
$100 on outright win pays $55,000!!
Loser -- BYU and the legend of plus territory: BYU's 27-0 loss to LSU wasn't just lopsided, it was a depressing mismatch. The Cougars , had negative yards rushing and never even crossed midfield. This game figured to be a grinder, and LSU had the athletic advantage, but the sheer defensive dominance shown by the Tigers was a little unexpected. Did anyone really think BYU would never get into plus territory? Amazing.
Winner -- South Carolina receiver Deebo Samuel: One of the more entertaining games of the day was highlighted by Samuel's three touchdowns. The redshirt junior took the opening kickoff 97 yards for a score and had 83 receiving yards and a pair of scores in the Gamecocks' 35-28 statement win over NC State.
Loser -- Florida's stale offense: Where would the Gators be if not for their defense? Take away Florida's and the offense scored just a field goal and mustered 192 yards of offense during a to Michigan. Florida ran just 53 plays, averaging 3.6 yards per play. Touted freshman Feleipe Franks couldn't move the ball through the air, and the run game was non-existent. It didn't help that Florida's two best offensive players -- receiver Antonio Callaway and running back Jordan Scarlett -- were suspended, but this was about as poor an offensive showing as anyone could imagine. Now in Year 3, it's even more amazing that coach Jim McElwain, an offensive coach by trade, hasn't gotten this thing going.
Winner -- Ohio State running back J.K. Dobbins: The true freshman had 181 yards in Ohio State's 49-21 win over Indiana on Thursday, breaking Maurice Clarett's school record for rushing yards in a true freshman debut. Dobbins wasn't supposed to get the start, but a hamstring injury to Mike Weber dictated the move. Dobbins was easily the best offensive player on the field for the Buckeyes, showing tremendous lateral movement and wiggle. On a night when quarterback J.T. Barrett struggled to connect with his wideouts, having Dobbins as a reliable weapon helped. Now comes the question on what coach Urban Meyer does moving forward. When asked who the starting running back would be for Week 2, he replied "J.K. Weber."
Loser -- Tom Herman's Texas debut: Texas fans will have to wait a little longer to see if Herman can bring this program back to the promised land following a 51-41 home loss to Maryland. In reality, losing to the Terps isn't the worst thing in the world, even if the Horns were a double-digit favorite; Maryland has some impressive players and looks better overall than expected. But for Texas, there are troubling signs that this team hasn't taken a step forward. An offensive line that Herman compared to Ohio State's from 2014 gave up a sack on the first play from scrimmage and paved the way for a rushing offense that averaged a meager 3.2 yards per carry. The defense still gave up big plays and got beat off the ball. In time, Herman may get this thing turned around. Just keep in mind he's inherited a better situation than his predecessor, Charlie Strong.
Winner -- USC long snapper Jake Olson: USC got way more than it bargained for in a 49-31 win over Western Michigan. The best moment of the game, however, came towards the end when long snapper Jake Olson, who is blind, snapped his first live ball to help the Trojans tack on an extra point. You can watch the video below. The snap was perfect and the reaction from Olson's teammates was priceless.
Loser -- Mother nature: Early-season games always run the risk of being delayed by lightning when the weather is still hot. In the case of Navy and Florida Atlantic, however, the delay became overbearing. Friday night's game continued into the early hours of Saturday morning thanks to not one, not two, but three weather delays spanning the third and fourth quarters. Sandwiched in between, oddly enough, were back-to-back touchdowns by the Midshipmen and Owls. Instead of calling the game, however, FAU and coach Lane Kiffin opted to play until the very end. Because this was a nonconference game, a commissioner could not make the call. FAU didn't have much of a chance to win, but Kiffin wasn't about to call it quits, which is a very Kiffin move.
Winner -- Illinois wide receiver Mikey Dudek: It won't get a ton of play nationally, but a feel-good story came out of Illinois' 24-21 win against Ball State. Receiver Mikey Dudek caught a 16-yard touchdown on his first reception of the game. It also happened to be his first reception since Dec. 26, 2014. Dudek has missed the past two years due to injury, but folks around Big Ten territory will tell you he's one of the conference's better wideouts when healthy. He led the Illini in receiving as a freshman in 2014. With any luck, he'll be back on top of the stat sheet again this year. Welcome back.
Loser -- Wyoming punter Tim Zaleski: Even though this is the "Loser" category, I don't particularly enjoy harping on players. Mistakes happen. Nobody's perfect. But ... damn, man. Zaleski flat-out missed this punt. It was tough to watch in the same way a car accident is tough to watch. There aren't many words of consolation to offer other than better days are ahead, Tim. Iowa beat the Cowboys 24-3.
Winner -- Clemson quarterback Kelly Bryant: Clemson had a lot of star power to replace off last year's national championship-winning team, but no starter was under a greater spotlight than Bryant as he succeeded Deshaun Watson. Yes, it was just Kent State, but Bryant could have done a lot worse than 16-of-22 passing for 236 yards through the air plus another 77 yards on the ground with two scores in an easy 56-3 win. Bryant showed good command of the offense and hit Deon Cain for a beautiful deep ball on lone touchdown pass. The connection those two have should be thrilling to watch throughout the season. Bryant isn't Watson, but he never needed to be. He can sling it and run it in a style all his own. This offense should be just fine.
Loser -- Defense, anyone? Here's a nominee for the Missouri throttled Missouri State 72-43 in a game that featured nearly 1,300 yards of offense. This was a 48-35 game at halftime, and Tigers quarterback Drew Lock had 1-2-3-4-5-6-7 -- 7! -- touchdown passes. This is amazing theater if you're a casual observer, but not so much if you're a defensive-minded coach like Barry Odom. Somebody stop someone..
Winner -- St. John's (MN): Week 1 is always going to produce some lopsided box scores. You'd expect that when a FBS team faces a FCS team or something. But goodness, St. John's (MN) of the Division III rankson St. Scholastica with -- say it with me -- a 98-0 win. That's a Division III record. Look, there's photographic proof and everything. At some point, though, St. John's needs to up the difficulty on this "NCAA Football" game. Put it on All-American or something.
Loser -- South Florida: A quick glance at South Florida's first two games will show that everything is fine. The Bulls are 2-0 with wins over San Jose State and Stony Brook by a combined score of 73-39. But that's surface level stuff. The reality is South Florida trailed the Spartans 10-0 in a disastrous first quarter in Week Zero and were tied with Stony Brook in the fourth quarter on Saturday. The Bulls are way, way too talented to let lesser teams stick around. Is this going to be a theme this season?
Winner -- UAB: There's nothing like winning your first game back as a restarted football program in front of an announced attendance of 45,212 -- a school record. The Blazers topped Alabama A&M 38-7. It's the first game the program has played since it was announced that football would be shut down in 2014. As for the cherry on top, how about this large man pick-six from Blazers defensive lineman Anthony Rush ...
Loser -- Baylor: The Matt Rhule era is off to a bad, bad start. There aren't many positives you can take away from a 48-45 loss to Liberty, an FCS program. That's especially true when you realize the Bears' young defense allowed 585 yards of offense against a non-Big 12 group. This was going to be a setback year for Baylor, but after losing as a 32.5-point favorite, it turns out 2017 may be even longer than expected.
Winner -- This John Carroll tip drill to end all tip drills: You want to see an improbable tip drill for a touchdown? Check out this long score by John Carroll of the Division III ranks. You'll need to watch it over and over again just to believe what you saw. This puts Auburn's tip-ball touchdown against Georgia in 2013 to shame.
Loser -- Troy wide receiver Deondre Douglas: It went largely unnoticed, but one of the weirdest plays from Saturday's action took place during Boise State's 24-13 win over Troy. Down 17-10 in the third quarter, Troy quarterback Brandon Silvers threw an ill-advised pass toward to the far sideline that was nearly intercepted by Boise State defensive back Cameron Hartsfield. Instead, the tipped pass went straight into Douglas' hands, who miraculously ran 13 yards for the score -- or so it looked like. A replay showed that Douglas had the ball knocked out of his hands before he crossed the goal line and replay ruled the play a touchback for Boise State. So to recap: A near pick-six instead turned into a touchdown that was instead ruled a touchback.
You can view the insane play below at the six-minute mark. You know what they say: The #FUNBELT giveth and the #FUNBELT taketh away.
Winner -- Marshall running back Keion Davis: Davis returned not one, but two kickoffs back for touchdowns in a 31-26 win over Miami (OH) -- a 99 yarder to open the game and a 97 yarder in the second quarter. That's impressive by itself, but it also turned out to be the difference in the game. Marshall's offense scored just 10 points and was outgained by Miami's by nearly 200 yards.