At Williams-Brice Stadium in Columbia, the South Carolina Gamecocks scored on their first-four possessions as Connor Shaw threw for three touchdowns and Jadeveon Clowney forced a third-quarter fumble Saturday night to aid in a 35-25 win over SEC East foe Vanderbilt. The win was the 13th straight at home for the Gamecocks, who are tied with Georgia for the second-longest active streak in the nation. The Gamecocks, who tallied 579 offensive yards, will enjoy a bye week before heading to Orlando to face Central Florida, winners over Penn State on Saturday.
At Paladin Stadium in Greenville, Hank McCloud had his second consecutive game with at least 100 yards rushing and scored two second half touchdowns as Furman slipped past Presbyterian 21-20 in a game heard on 96.3 WGOG. McCloud carried the ball 20 times for 106 yards for the Paladins, who had just 182 yards of total offense and possessed the ball for only 15:16 after the first quarter. Reese Hannon completed 10 of 19 passes for just 51 yards but added 31 yards on the ground and capped off a 16-play, 66 yard drive to open the game with a 6-yard touchdown yard run. Presbyterian then rattled off 20 straight points, but a missed extra point by Brett Wilson proved to be the difference in the game. PC had a chance to win on a field goal in the closing seconds, but a block of the kick by the Paladins gave Furman its 15 consecutive win over the Blue Hose. Furman is off next week.
At Kyle Field in College Station, Texas, the top-ranked Alabama Crimson Tide held on to defeat defending Heisman winner Johnny Manziel and Texas A&M 49-42 in the most heralded game of the weekend. Alabama quarterback A.J. McCarron threw four touchdown passes, Vinnie Sunseri returned an interception 73 yards for a score — sidestepping “Johnny Football” on the way to the end zone, too — as ‘Bama avenged last season’s loss to the Aggies in Tuscaloosa. Manziel was his spectacular self, throwing for a career-best 464 yards, running for 98 and throwing five TDs. His 562 total yards is the second-most in Southeastern Conference history, ranking only behind the 576 he had against Louisiana Tech.