JT Daniels made quite a debut between the hedges, throwing for 401 yards and four touchdowns in Georgia’s 41-34 victory over Mississippi State on Saturday in Athens, Georgia.
Playing for the first time since the 2019 opener with USC, Daniels became the third quarterback to start for the Bulldogs (5-2, 5-2 Southeastern Conference) this season.
The transfer from USC delivered one big play after another, capped by a 40-yard touchdown pass to Kearis Jackson that broke a 24-24 tie with 9:50 remaining. What made it more impressive: Jackson and George Pickens had dropped potential TD passes on back-to-back plays, and a holding penalty left Georgia with third-and-20 . But Jackson slipped behind the secondary in the middle of the field, and Daniels spotted him to finally finish off pesky Mississippi State (2-5, 2-5).
Daniels became the first Georgia quarterback to pass for more than 400 yards since Aaron Murray against Auburn in 2013.
Freshman Jermaine Burton was Daniels’ favorite receiver, hauling in eight passes for 197 yards — including TD catches of 18 and 48 yards, no to mention another grab of 49 yards.
(6) Florida 38, Vanderbilt 17: In Nashville, Tennessee, Kyle Trask passed for 383 yards and three touchdowns and Florida overcame an early deficit to beat Vanderbilt.
The Gators (6-1, 6-1) pulled into Vanderbilt Stadium an hour before kickoff already in uniform, hoping to avoid the visitors locker room as a coronavirus precaution. The Commodores (0-7, 0-7) opened the game by driving for a touchdown, but Trask helped get Florida on track for its seventh consecutive win in the series.
Trask completed 26 of 35 passes to nine receivers. He’s the first quarterback in SEC history with 30 touchdown passes in seven games.
LSU 27, Arkansas 24: In Fayetteville, Arkansas, A targeting penalty in the fourth quarter helped LSU continue its go-ahead drive, scoring with 3:59 left to dispatch Arkansas, 27-24, on Saturday.
TJ Finley found Jaray Jenkins for a 13-yard touchdown to put LSU (3-3, 3-3) ahead by three points. It was the capper to a 10-play, 67-yard drive on which Arkansas safety Jalen Catalon was flagged for a 15-yard targeting penalty and ejected.
LSU sealed the game when Jay Ward got his hands on an AJ Reed 44-yard field goal attempt with 1:24 left, the ball falling well short of the crossbar.
Finley threw for 271 yards and two scores, the other in the second quarter on a 30-yard pass to Racey McMath.
Arkansas (3-5, 3-5) had taken its first lead late in the third quarter when Feleipe Franks led a 5-play, 95-yard drive. Reed’s 22-yard field goal early in the fourth put Arkansas ahead 24-20 ahead of Jenkins’ final touchdown.
Franks finished 17 of 26 for 339 yards with an interception and a touchdown. He ran for 43 yards and a touchdown, as well. Four of Franks’ completions went for more than 50 yards.
(1) Alabama 63, Kentucky 3: In Tuscaloosa, Alabama, DeVonta Smith caught nine passes for 144 yards and set the Southeastern Conference career record with two more touchdowns in Alabama’s victory over short-handed Kentucky.
Mac Jones passed for 230 yards and two touchdowns and Najee Harris ran for a pair of scores for the Crimson Tide (7-0, 7-0), both in less than three quarters. A slow start turned into a breezy return from a three-week layoff after LSU was forced to call off last week’s scheduled game because of COVID-19 troubles.
The outmanned Wildcats (3-5, 3-5) were missing a number of key players because of injuries or coronavirus protocol. They were competitive early on the stat sheet, but it didn’t hold up particularly long on the scoreboard.
Smith broke Amari Cooper’s SEC and Alabama record with his 32nd touchdown catch, a 10-yarder from Jones in the second quarter. He added an 18-yarder from freshman backup Bryce Young.
Jones completed 16 of 24 passes but also had a pass intercepted at the goal line.
(23) Auburn 30, Tennessee 17: In Auburn, Alabama, Smoke Monday returned an interception 100 yards for a touchdown and No. 23 Auburn overcame a slow start to beat Tennessee 30-17 on Saturday night.
Auburn (5-2, 5-2) fell behind 10-0 to Tennessee (2-5, 2-5) and dealt with injuries to star running back Tank Bigsby and its two starting offensive tackles.
Bo Nix completed 17 of 26 passes for 220 yards, with a 54-yard touchdown to Anthony Schwartz and his first career interception in a home game. Tennessee’s Jarrett Guarantano started strong, but finished with only 156 yards of passing and the interception return for a touchdown that gave Auburn a two-score lead late in the third quarter.
Tennessee had its best offensive outing in weeks, yet struggled after halftime. The Volunteers have been outscored 108-14 in the second half during their five-game losing streak.