College football scores, schedule, games today: UCLA handles Hawaii plus NCAA top 25 rankings

Sports

CBSSports.com 28 August, 2021 - 07:47pm 14 views

The first day of the college football season delivered interesting storylines, even with only a handful of games on the slate and a couple left to play Saturday evening. Chief among the headlines made Saturday is Illinois' 30-22 win against Nebraska, which only ignited the already warm hot seat of coach Scott Frost. UCLA also got off to a great start with its dominant 44-10 win over Hawaii as it tunes up for a big-time scrap with LSU in Week 1.

The evening slate featured a rivalry game between UTEP and New Mexico State, along with San Jose State's 2021 debut against Southern Utah. CBS Sports was here every step of the way to update you with the latest scores, highlights and storylines throughout the day as college football gears up for its full-time return next week.

Losing to Illinois looks bad from every direction, beginning with the fact that the Cornhuskers were favored by a touchdown. Toss in the loss of Illinois starting quarterback Brandon Peters in the first half, and Nebraska fans have to wonder if there's any silver lining to this. The issues go deep, too. Amassing penalties and giving up pivotal turnovers only continue themes that have been present in recent years. What's different about this team in 2021? Not much, apparently, and that's a problem for Frost in Year 4. 

The Bruins started hot in its Week 0 win, jumping out to a 24-3 lead on Hawaii in the first quarter and riding that advantage for the rest of the game. Former Michigan running back Zach Charbonnet rushed for 106 yards and three touchdowns on just six carries. In all, the Bruins rolled up 249 yards on the ground at 5.7 per attempt. There was some concern about senior quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson's performance early in the game as the passing attack struggled, but a 44-yard touchdown pass to Kazmeir Allen early in the third quarter delivered a spark. Up next is LSU in the Rose Bowl in a game that definitely has more charge following Saturday's result. 

UConn had not played a college football game since November of 2019 and it showed. Fresno State dispatched the Huskies by halftime as part of the 45-0 shutout. Bulldogs quarterback Jake Haener threw for 331 yards and three touchdowns against a Huskies defense that finished 128th in the nation in points allowed per game two seasons ago. 

UTEP took care of New Mexico State 30-3 behind an offensive show on the ground and through the air. Wide receiver Jacob Cowing had a career night with 158 yards and a touchdown on five receptions. Big plays were a staple for the Miners, with quarterback Gavin Hardison connecting with Cowing for 59 yards early in the third quarter. Meanwhile, UTEP racked up 203 yards on the ground with three running backs hitting at least 50 yards. 

The Spartans are a Group of Five team to watch after finishing 7-1 in 2020. Their 2021 season is off to a great start after handling Southern Utah as a warm-up to a big road game at USC in Week 1. Quarterback Nick Starkel picked up where he left off last year with a five-touchdown game and nearly 400 yards through the air. It was a FCS opponent, but the Spartans look like a fun team. Sept. 4 in the Coliseum could be interesting. 

Spartans handle business to earn their first victory of the season.@SanJoseStateFB pic.twitter.com/83FzYh0u7o

That'll do it for San Jose State's 2021 debut: a 45-14 win over Southern Utah. Nick Starkel was great this evening, throwing for nearly 400 yards and notching five touchdowns. You can tell the journeyman really has a feel for the offense and there are some real weapons at pass-catcher. Southern Utah isn't going to put up much of a fight, but the Week 1 game at USC next week could be interesting if the Trojans are rusty coming out of the gate. 

Have a night, Nick Starkel. pic.twitter.com/l7VZ0dZhCU

UTEP handles New Mexico State 30-3. Wide receiver Jacob Cowing had 158 yards and a touchdown on five receptions. Big plays were a staple for the Miners, with quarterback Gavin Hardison connecting with Cowing for 59 yards early in the third quarter. New Mexico State only played two games in the spring and might have one of the toughest seasons of any team in the FBS. 

More points for San Jose State? More points for San Jose State. pic.twitter.com/ckSxdzaiMO

UTEP wide receiver Jacob Cowing now up to 163 yards receiving and a touchdown ... on four receptions. He's having a night. 

JACOB COWING WILDIN’ OUT TONIGHT pic.twitter.com/XZLJ2CajjJ

San Jose State is taking care of business against Southern Utah, leading 38-14 at the end of one half. It's been big play after big play for the Spartans with touchdowns of 70, 65 and 23 yards. Quarterback Nick Starkel is having a game with 348 yards and three touchdowns, though he did have a pick-six late in the second quarter. In all, five different Spartans have scored and it seems as though Southern Utah will need a couple more non-offensive scores to even stay in this one. 

Pick 6! Thunderbirds doing whatever they can to fight back.@SUUFB_ | @SUUThunderbirds pic.twitter.com/Szll1uiPND

5 drives. 5 TDs. This Spartan offense is clicking on all cylinders. pic.twitter.com/Z3raLYohqU

*DJ Khaled voice: "Another one." pic.twitter.com/hhpHJseKVX

After one half, UTEP leads New Mexico State 20-3 in the Battle of I-10. The Miners jumped out to a quick 17-0 lead thanks to a pair of rushing touchdowns from Ronald Awatt and Deion Hankins. UTEP has more than doubled the number of first-half yards (273 to 110) on basically the same number of plays as the Aggies. 

PHILLY SPECIAL ALERT!@SUUFB_ | @SUUThunderbirds pic.twitter.com/SmDw5jADuT

.@SanJoseStateFB couldn't have asked for a better way to start the season. 21-0 lead. pic.twitter.com/t6gwY8zlvu

Early season dimes. pic.twitter.com/7bH89Q8PCA

Oh my. This cutback from Jermaine Braddock. 👀@SanJoseStateFB pic.twitter.com/hwQJpNndaL

Broken ankles. And 7 more points. Good start for the Spartans. pic.twitter.com/3SvIXmcH6E

.@SanJoseStateFB is on the board here in 2021. pic.twitter.com/bgrSE2tOIi

YES! College Football Week 0 continues with a nightcap right now on CBS Sports Network.@SanJoseStateFB | @SUUFB_ pic.twitter.com/WbxXT0Q81t

We have FCS football, too. Indiana State leads Eastern Illinois 24-14 early in the fourth quarter. Alcorn State and North Carolina Central are tied at 7-7 at halftime. 

THE DIVE FOR SIX 😤 pic.twitter.com/Jit8QDzZe3

Time for the @PBR Tractor Supply Company Invitational on CBS Sports Network! pic.twitter.com/FLTiFPt9uz

Zach Charbonnet is going off in his @UCLAFootball debut 😤 pic.twitter.com/4WtREvhMQG

At this point I'm willing to concede my earlier point about Dorian Thompson-Robinson, because I think UCLA's staff figured that there was no way the Bruins were going to lose even with a spring game-style play sheet against Hawaii. It's far more troubling for Hawaii that basic plays have powered a dominant win, and now the Bruins get to go into LSU week knowing that they haven't put too much on tape that will give LSU an edge next Saturday in the Rose Bowl. 

.@FresnoStateFB picks up a dominant win over UConn and secures its first shutout win since 2017. pic.twitter.com/4gxnMB1gFk

UCLA leads Hawaii 31-3 at halftime, but I think the takeaways are a mixed bag for the Bruins. You love the fast start and how the ground game is looking, especially with former Michigan running back Zach Charbonnet ripping off a 47-yard run among 3 touchdowns and the team as a whole totaling 203 yards on the ground. But the passing game has not been effective and Dorian Thompson-Robinson has not looked sharp. It might just be a bad day (or a basic game plan for UCLA in Week 0) but it's something to watch as we look ahead to the Bruins hosting LSU next weekend. 

👀🔥 @IlliniFootball just picked up back-to-back wins against Nebraska for the first time since 1923-24 pic.twitter.com/fxRks0qkEv

Live look at @IlliniFootball fans after taking down Nebraska and starting the season 1-0: pic.twitter.com/mcnhnEIxGv

Final. pic.twitter.com/lhueuc2fVW

© 2004-2021 CBS Interactive. All Rights Reserved.

CBS Sports is a registered trademark of CBS Broadcasting Inc. Commissioner.com is a registered trademark of CBS Interactive Inc.

Images by Getty Images and US Presswire

Read full article at CBSSports.com

Nebraska Football - It's Time (Cave Reveal)

Nebraska Huskers 29 August, 2021 - 12:50am

Nebraska Cornhuskers at Illinois FIghting Illini | Full Game Highlights

ESPN College Football 29 August, 2021 - 12:50am

Nebraska's season-opening loss 'the same movie'

ESPN 28 August, 2021 - 05:42pm

No teams in your favorites yet.

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. -- The most frustrating thing about Nebraska's 30-22 season-opening loss at Illinois is that the mistakes that have hamstrung the Huskers in recent years all seemed to show up.

The scariest thing is that coach Scott Frost and his players don't know why the same things keep happening to them.

"If I had that answer, it wouldn't have happened today," quarterback Adrian Martinez said. "It's just a matter of continuing to get better, understanding what those mistakes are and understanding that they're hurting this football team. We have to get better."

Players and coaches spent the offseason focusing on the errors that have contributed to Nebraska going 12-20 with three fifth-place finishes in the Big Ten West Division since Frost returned to the program he quarterbacked to a national title in 1997. Frost felt he had his best team entering the season, one with the experience and maturity to play cleaner games in a conference that punishes the error prone.

But Huskers blunders contributed to almost every Illinois score on Saturday, starting with Cam Taylor-Britt catching a punt inside of his 2-yard line and being dropped for a safety while attempting to fling the ball out of the end zone. Nebraska appeared to be in control up 9-2 when Taylor-Britt intercepted a pass from Illinois backup quarterback Art Sitkowski. But linebacker Caleb Tannor was flagged for roughing Sitkowski, and also received an unsportsmanlike conduct foul on the play. The Illini drove for a game-tying touchdown.

Disaster struck in the final minute of the first half as Martinez fumbled and Illinois' Calvin Hart Jr. recovered and raced 41 yards to the end zone. Nebraska's lone turnover along with five penalties and two missed extra-point attempts from Connor Culp, the 2020 Big Ten Kicker of the Year, all contributed to the program's first-ever loss in August.

"It looked like the same movie," Frost said. "I just got done telling the guys, 'We can't have this season look like the same movie,' because this game looked like the same movie today. I don't know what we're doing trying to field the punt inside the 1 [yard line] and then trying to throw it out of the end zone, missing a couple extra points certainly didn't help.

"I felt like every time we got something started on offense, we got a holding or offensive pass interference or bad snap. Haven't seen any of those all camp. So it looked like the same movie today. We can't let it be that way."

Special teams mistakes have been a theme of Frost's tenure. While outside linebackers coach Mike Dawson oversees special teams, the Huskers don't have a dedicated special teams coordinator. Frost noted that while Nebraska didn't have a lot of penalties Saturday, flags seemed to arrive at the worst possible times.

None were more damaging than two 15-yarders on Tannor. Frost said he didn't receive an explanation for either foul, and didn't think Tannor hit Sitkowski late.

"The guys really believe they're better, they know they're better, and they are better," Frost said. "They're better than they've ever been. We've got more talent, more depth, I've been saying that. But they need some good things to happen if they're really going to believe, and sometimes I feel like we're snakebit with the timing of when these things happen."

Martinez noted that Saturday's loss is just the start of a long season and Nebraska has plenty of time to rebound. The fourth-year quarterback had a 75-yard touchdown run and passed for 232 yards, but completed only half of his attempts and had several misfires to open targets.

Nebraska outgained Illinois 392-326 but allowed a 75-yard touchdown drive to begin the second half and fell behind 30-9 before rallying.

"If I had all the answers, I would be a rich man in Nebraska," defensive lineman Ben Stille said. "We're working through it. ... Not letting those catastrophic sequences happen, is the answer. We've just got to play smarter."

Stille and his teammates didn't feel preparation was the problem, despite facing an Illinois team under a new coaching staff. Nebraska returns home to face Fordham and Buffalo before visiting No. 2 Oklahoma on Sept. 18.

The loss will increase pressure on Frost, who is signed through the 2026 season and earns $5 million annually.

"This league, man, a lot of games are going to ride on a play here and a play there, and we didn't make enough of them today," Frost said. "So I need to do a better job of making sure we avoid the mistakes and keep putting them in situations where they can rise up and make those plays.

"I believe in my heart this team can still have a special season."

Nebraska's season-opening loss 'the same movie'

Big Ten Network 28 August, 2021 - 05:42pm

No teams in your favorites yet.

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. -- The most frustrating thing about Nebraska's 30-22 season-opening loss at Illinois is that the mistakes that have hamstrung the Huskers in recent years all seemed to show up.

The scariest thing is that coach Scott Frost and his players don't know why the same things keep happening to them.

"If I had that answer, it wouldn't have happened today," quarterback Adrian Martinez said. "It's just a matter of continuing to get better, understanding what those mistakes are and understanding that they're hurting this football team. We have to get better."

Players and coaches spent the offseason focusing on the errors that have contributed to Nebraska going 12-20 with three fifth-place finishes in the Big Ten West Division since Frost returned to the program he quarterbacked to a national title in 1997. Frost felt he had his best team entering the season, one with the experience and maturity to play cleaner games in a conference that punishes the error prone.

But Huskers blunders contributed to almost every Illinois score on Saturday, starting with Cam Taylor-Britt catching a punt inside of his 2-yard line and being dropped for a safety while attempting to fling the ball out of the end zone. Nebraska appeared to be in control up 9-2 when Taylor-Britt intercepted a pass from Illinois backup quarterback Art Sitkowski. But linebacker Caleb Tannor was flagged for roughing Sitkowski, and also received an unsportsmanlike conduct foul on the play. The Illini drove for a game-tying touchdown.

Disaster struck in the final minute of the first half as Martinez fumbled and Illinois' Calvin Hart Jr. recovered and raced 41 yards to the end zone. Nebraska's lone turnover along with five penalties and two missed extra-point attempts from Connor Culp, the 2020 Big Ten Kicker of the Year, all contributed to the program's first-ever loss in August.

"It looked like the same movie," Frost said. "I just got done telling the guys, 'We can't have this season look like the same movie,' because this game looked like the same movie today. I don't know what we're doing trying to field the punt inside the 1 [yard line] and then trying to throw it out of the end zone, missing a couple extra points certainly didn't help.

"I felt like every time we got something started on offense, we got a holding or offensive pass interference or bad snap. Haven't seen any of those all camp. So it looked like the same movie today. We can't let it be that way."

Special teams mistakes have been a theme of Frost's tenure. While outside linebackers coach Mike Dawson oversees special teams, the Huskers don't have a dedicated special teams coordinator. Frost noted that while Nebraska didn't have a lot of penalties Saturday, flags seemed to arrive at the worst possible times.

None were more damaging than two 15-yarders on Tannor. Frost said he didn't receive an explanation for either foul, and didn't think Tannor hit Sitkowski late.

"The guys really believe they're better, they know they're better, and they are better," Frost said. "They're better than they've ever been. We've got more talent, more depth, I've been saying that. But they need some good things to happen if they're really going to believe, and sometimes I feel like we're snakebit with the timing of when these things happen."

Martinez noted that Saturday's loss is just the start of a long season and Nebraska has plenty of time to rebound. The fourth-year quarterback had a 75-yard touchdown run and passed for 232 yards, but completed only half of his attempts and had several misfires to open targets.

Nebraska outgained Illinois 392-326 but allowed a 75-yard touchdown drive to begin the second half and fell behind 30-9 before rallying.

"If I had all the answers, I would be a rich man in Nebraska," defensive lineman Ben Stille said. "We're working through it. ... Not letting those catastrophic sequences happen, is the answer. We've just got to play smarter."

Stille and his teammates didn't feel preparation was the problem, despite facing an Illinois team under a new coaching staff. Nebraska returns home to face Fordham and Buffalo before visiting No. 2 Oklahoma on Sept. 18.

The loss will increase pressure on Frost, who is signed through the 2026 season and earns $5 million annually.

"This league, man, a lot of games are going to ride on a play here and a play there, and we didn't make enough of them today," Frost said. "So I need to do a better job of making sure we avoid the mistakes and keep putting them in situations where they can rise up and make those plays.

"I believe in my heart this team can still have a special season."

Illinois QB Brandon Peters leaves Nebraska showdown after big hit

247Sports 28 August, 2021 - 09:36am

Go VIP - One Month for Only $1

Peters had completed 3 of 4 passes for 35 yards. He was carted off the field with a towel over his head and Illinois leading 2-0.

Brandon Peters goes down and Artur Sitkowski comes in for Illinois pic.twitter.com/hi4Hn12CT7

Illinois moved dynamic dual-threat athlete Isaiah Williams to wide receiver because they trusted in the depth behind Peters. Now, they have to trust that depth way earlier than they would have hoped.

Go VIP - One Month for Only $1

These cookies are essential for the proper functioning of our Services. Essential cookies cannot be switched off in our systems. You can set your device to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the Service will not work.

These Cookies allow us to collect information about how visitors use our properties. Some examples include counting visits and traffic sources, so we can measure and improve the performance of our services. If you do not allow these Cookies we will not know when users have visited our properties and will not be able to monitor performance.

These Cookies enable the services to provide enhanced functionality and personalization. They may be set by us or by third party providers whose services we have added to our services. If you do not allow these Cookies then some or all of these services may not function properly.

These Cookies may be set by us or through our services by our advertising partners. They may be used by those companies to build a profile of your interests and show you relevant advertising on this and on other properties. If you do not allow these Cookies, you will still see ads, but you will experience less relevant advertising.

These Cookies are set by a range of social media services that we have added to the services to enable you to share our content with your friends and networks. They are capable of tracking your browser across other sites, building up a profile of your interests to show you relevant content and advertisements on the relevant social networks. If you do not allow these Cookies you may not be able to use or see these sharing tools.

Nebraska-Illinois is the most important game of the Scott Frost era, and everyone will be watching

Saturday Tradition 27 August, 2021 - 03:00pm

In some ways, Nebraska’s opening game in 1997 is similar to 2021. When they take the field in Champaign on Saturday, college football fans across the country will be keeping an eye on Scott Frost and the Huskers.

The reason why so many eyes will be on the game is what has changed.

Back in 1997, Nebraska was asserting its dominance over everyone that stepped onto the same grass. Frost was running over defenders on his way to a national championship. The Huskers were college football’s premier program.

Saturday is a much different story. Rather than tuning in to see whether or not the Huskers roll up 70 points against Illinois to kickstart a national title run, the country is going to be wondering if it’s Frost’s last first game wearing the “Block N” logo on his collared shirt.

Nobody needs a reminder of the situation at Nebraska, but here it is anyway: Frost is 12-20 in 3 seasons. His team has yet to make a bowl game. The Huskers have a winning record against just 1 B1G West program, Illinois, during Frost’s tenure.

It’s no mystery why Saturday’s game against the Fighting Illini is labeled as the most important of Frost’s career. The result of one game has the chance to dictate the entirety of a season.

If Nebraska goes on the road and beats Illinois to start the season, then it’s almost a guarantee it’ll win the next 2 games, against Fordham and Buffalo, and enter the showdown against No. 2 Oklahoma with a perfect 3-0 record. The entire week leading up to the 50th anniversary of “The Game of the Century” will have similar vibes as it did five decades ago.

Whether the Huskers win or lose to the Sooners is almost irrelevant in the grand scheme of things. If they get through the first 4 games with a 3-1 record, hitting the critical 6-win mark seems almost unavoidable with games against Michigan State, Northwestern, Michigan, Minnesota and Purdue over the next 5 weeks.

As unlikely as it may seem based on past performances, it’s within the realm of possibility that Nebraska is 8-1 entering the month of November before a brutal 3-game stretch against No. 4 Ohio State, No. 12 Wisconsin and No. 18 Iowa.

How about that for Frost’s 4th season?

Suddenly, new athletic director Trev Alberts is working on a contract extension for Frost, pounding away at the keyboard faster than the popular Kermit the Frog GIF. It would end all hot-seat conversations.

That’s if Nebraska wins on Saturday. What happens if the Huskers lose to Illinois?

If Nebraska drops its season opener to an Illinois team in transition, you might as well drop Frost off in a sauna in the middle of the desert. His job security is going to be in question for the next month, only intensifying with each tally that gets chalked up in the “L” column.

One loss isn’t necessarily the end of the world for the Huskers, but if they can’t beat the Illini, it’s fair to question where they’ll find those 6 wins to get to bowl eligibility. And if Frost can’t reach the postseason in Year 4, his time in Lincoln is probably ending.

Suddenly, that 5-game stretch against Michigan State, Northwestern, Michigan, Minnesota and Purdue seems a bit more challenging. Nebraska is 4-7 against those 5 teams in the last 3 seasons. The Huskers are 0-8 against Ohio State, Wisconsin and Iowa.

It’s fair to wonder if a loss on Saturday is the first indication of history repeating itself. That is, the Huskers falling short of expectations and a bowl berth.

The 2021 version of the Huskers is Frost’s most talented and most experienced team. He’s raved about this team being his favorite to be around. He’s talked about improving on the “little things” that have cost Nebraska so many one-possession games — 12 to be exact — over the past 3 seasons.

Frost and the Huskers are back at the center of the college football world this weekend, but for a very different reason.

Nebraska needs to prove it’s making progress. It will have it’s opportunity, with everyone watching, on Saturday.

You must be logged in to post a comment. Please sign in or register

Sports Stories