Eleven things we learned during college football Week 4


Just hours after losing his father, Terry, to cancer, Penn State defensive lineman Anthony Zettel turned in an inspired performance in the Nittany Lions' 37-21 win over San Diego State on Saturday.

Terry Zettel lost a 19-month battle with cancer at age 46 on Friday night, according to The York Daily Record.

Zettel (6-foot-4, 285 pounds), a senior who will be a top NFL draft prospect next year, led the team with seven tackles and made 2.5 tackles for loss, with an assisted sack, a fumble recovery and a pass breakup. NFL Media draft analyst Lance Zierlein rated Zettel the No. 4 defensive lineman in college football before the season.

Here are 10 other things we learned in Week 4 of college football:

2. Train ride. LSU's Leonard Fournette is no more stoppable on artificial turf than he is on natural grass. Syracuse learned that in the Carrier Dome.

3. Quarterback woes. Despite a 34-0 win over Louisiana-Monroe, Alabama didn't exactly get the confidence builder it needed for quarterback Jake Coker. The fifth-year senior was inconsistent again, although his inexperienced wide receivers were inconsistent right along with him, accounting for several drops. Coker completed 17-of-31 passes for 158 yards and three touchdowns, with an interception, and took a pair of sacks. He'd better find his groove quickly -- Alabama visits unbeaten Georgia next week.

4. Skidding Vols. It's bad enough that Tennessee has lost 11 consecutive years to archrival Florida. But as ESPN.com's Chris Low notes, the Volunteers' performance since 2009 against its top three rivals is even more disturbing: a 1-21 mark against Florida, Georgia and Alabama. On Saturday, the latest Tennessee loss came in the form of a heartbreaker. UT coach Butch Jones has recruited exceptionally well, but if his teams don't stop finding ways to lose, he might never get to see those recruits mature.

5. Spurrier spin. South Carolina's 31-14 win over UCF might look OK in the box score, but it doesn't bode well for Steve Spurrier's team that one of the worst teams in college football took a 14-8 lead into the half on the Gamecocks' home field. South Carolina is already 0-2 in SEC play, and nothing about Saturday's game suggests it will crack the win column against two-time defending SEC East champ Missouri next week. Spurrier has taken the Gamecocks' program to new heights in his tenure there, but sooner or later, South Carolina fans will be quicker to forget that than remember it.

6. Make a tackle. Offensive outputs around teams in the Top 25 were out of control Saturday. A few point totals, just among ranked teams: Baylor 70, Notre Dame 62, Utah 62, UCLA 56, TCU 55.

7. Pitch and catch. TCU QB Trevone Boykin and WR Josh Doctson made it look easy against Texas Tech on Saturday as Doctson pulled in 18 catches for 267 yards and 3 TDs. But that doesn't mean the win was easy.

8. Upset averted. Less than four minutes from an upset of Texas A&M that would have pulled the stinger out of Arkansas' disastrous September, coach Bret Bielema watched his 2015 sink deeper into the abyss in a 28-21 overtime loss to the Aggies. Up 21-13 and one first down away from game-clinching field goal range, Arkansas couldn't finish the game and Texas A&M stormed back for a game-tying touchdown and two-point conversion to force overtime. Bielema luck is no luck.

9. Roadkills. Things are looking a bit lopsided in the Pac-12. Three key matchups Saturday proved to be routs, and all three hammers were dropped by the visitor. UCLA dumped host Arizona 56-30 in a game that was put away by the half. Utah drummed Oregon 62-20 in Eugene and Southern Cal handled host Arizona State 42-14. Raise your hand if you foresaw Cal, Utah and UCLA as the league's only unbeatens just a month into the season.

10. Every loss is big in Texas. The Longhorns found a way to lose another close one, this time 30-27 to Oklahoma State. Freshman punter Michael Dickson mishandled a punt snap and scrambled to get off a desperation punt that netted just 10 yards. OSU then kicked a game-winning field goal with six seconds left. The Longhorns fell to 1-3, and allowed the Cowboys to become the first team to beat Texas in Austin four consecutive times.

11. Sitting out. If it seemed like a quiet Saturday in the ACC, that's because three of the league's four undefeated teams -- FSU, Clemson and Miami -- were idle.

Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter *@ChaseGoodbread*.

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