Miami squeaked by Wake Forest to remain undefeated and set up another marquee matchup in the Atlantic Coast Conference next week.
The seventh-ranked Hurricanes needed a late touchdown to beat Wake Forest 24-21 at home Saturday, and will head to Tallahassee, Fla., next week to face No. 3 Florida State.
The Hurricanes and Seminoles once regularly played huge games, but since Miami joined the ACC in 2004, only once have the rivals played with both teams ranked in the Top 10.
The Hurricanes came from behind for the second straight week to stay unbeaten. Last week, Miami rallied to beat North Carolina. This time it was Wake Forest giving the Hurricanes all they could handle.
Florida State is just a week removed from playing a top-five matchup against ACC rival Clemson. Keeping the Hurricanes undefeated also will help the Seminoles in the BCS standings as they jockey with Oregon for the second spot behind Alabama.
No. 1 Alabama 45 Tennessee 10
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) — One thing quarterback AJ McCarron and No. 1 Alabama won’t stand for is being labeled something as mundane as "the red team."
They prefer the defending national champions, thank you. The Crimson Tide hammered that point home with Saturday’s 45-10 victory over the Tennessee Volunteers, who used that anonymous label as a motivational ploy during the week.
McCarron said he took that personally and "wanted to come out and score as many points as possible on them" and not leave the game whatever the score.
"For (them) to kind of say we haven’t deserved their respect to call us Alabama, they call us ‘Red Team,’" McCarron said. "And for their head coach to come out and say they can play against anybody, I don’t think we’re just anybody.
"We won two national championships in a row and we’re undefeated right now. So we’re not just anybody."
Indeed, Alabama (8-0, 5-0 Southeastern Conference) has outscored its last six opponents 246-26.
No. 3 Florida State 49 North Carolina State 17
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Jameis Winston threw three touchdown passes and No. 3 Florida State scored 35 points in the first quarter on the way to a 49-17 victory against North Carolina State on Saturday in Bobby Bowden’s return to Doak Campbell Stadium.
Bowden, the NCAA career leader in major college football victories, planted the spear at midfield before the game — a job usually done by Florida State’s Seminole mascot. The school honored the 83-year-old Bowden with a pregame ceremony that included nearly 400 former players.
Then the current Seminoles went out and put on display that Bowden’s best teams would have been proud of, setting up a huge game with unbeaten Miami next week in Tallahassee.
Winston completed 16-of-26 passes for 292 yards with one interception and left the game after the opening series of the second half.
Rashad Greene topped 100 yards receiving for the third consecutive game with eight receptions for 137 yards and a touchdown for the Seminoles (7-0, 5-0).
No. 7 Miami 24 Wake Forest 21
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. — Duke Johnson ran for two fourth-quarter touchdowns, the second a 1-yard plunge with 53 seconds left, as No. 7 Miami rallied twice to beat Wake Forest.
Johnson finished with 168 yards on 30 carries for the Hurricanes (7-0, 3-0 Atlantic Coast Conference),
Tanner Price’s 44-yard touchdown pass to Dominique Gibson with 4:02 remaining put Wake Forest on top, but the Hurricanes went 73 yards on their next 10 plays, with Johnson scoring to keep Miami unbeaten heading into next week’s showdown at No. 3 Florida State.
Wake Forest (4-4, 2-3) fell to 1-53 against Top 10 teams — the lone win coming exactly 67 years ago Saturday. The Demon Deacons trailed for less than 3 minutes against the Hurricanes, and still dropped their fifth straight in the series.
No. 9 Clemson 40 Maryland 27
COLLEGE PARK, Md. — Tajh Boyd threw for a touchdown and ran for a score, Sammy Watkins had a school-record 14 catches for 163 yards and No. 9 Clemson wore down injury-riddled Maryland 40-27 on Saturday.
Boyd went 28 for 41 for 304 yards with an interception and Roderick McDowell rushed for 161 yards and two touchdowns to help the Tigers (7-1, 5-1 ACC) rebound from last week’s 51-14 defeat against Florida State.
Clemson ran 98 plays compared to 70 for Maryland (5-3, 1-3) and finished with a 551-364 advantage in total yardage. But the Tigers needed four field goals from Chandler Catanzaro to take a 19-13 lead into the fourth quarter.
After that, however, Maryland’s defense finally caved. Boyd scored on a 5-yard run and McDowell ran it in from the 3 to make it 33-13 with 7:57 remaining, and a 45-yard touchdown run by McDowell gave Clemson a 40-20 lead with 5:03 to go.
No. 14 Texas A&M 56 Vanderbilt 24
COLLEGE STATION, Texas — Johnny Manziel threw for 305 yards and four touchdowns in less than three quarters, and Texas A&M bounced back from a loss last week.
Manziel showed no signs that the right shoulder he injured last week was bothering him. He threw three TDs in the first quarter to help A&M (6-2, 3-2 Southeastern Conference) build a 28-point lead. He tacked on another score before sitting down with 6 minutes left in the third quarter and the Aggies leading 42-17.
The Aggies rebounded from last week’s upset loss to Auburn despite playing a messy game where they had five turnovers.
Freshman Patton Robinette had a tough time in his first start filling in for the injured Austyn Carta-Samuels for Vanderbilt (4-4, 1-4). He threw two interceptions — one was returned for a score — and was sacked five times.
Duke 13 Virginia Tech 10
BLACKSBURG, Va. — Anthony Boone ran for a touchdown, Ross Martin kicked two long field goals and Duke ended a long history of losing to ranked teams with a 13-10 victory against No. 16 Virginia Tech on Saturday.
The Blue Devils (6-2, 2-2 Atlantic Coast Conference) beat a ranked team for the first time since they stopped No. 13 Virginia in 1994, and beat one on the road for the first time since Stanford in 1971. And they did it without a third-down conversion all game, and a 2-to-1 time of possession deficit.
Virginia Tech (6-2, 3-1) had its six-game winning streak end as Logan Thomas threw four interceptions, the last on a deflected pass in the closing minutes that allowed Duke to finally run out the clock. The Hokies held the ball for 39:27 and outgained Duke 387-198, but still lost.
Two flags against Virginia Tech and some shifty running by Boone helped Duke take a 13-0 lead in the third quarter.
Linebacker Jack Tyler was flagged for pass interference, and Kyshoen Jarrett for defensive holding, setting up Duke at the Hokies’ 26. From there, Boone ran for six yards, for 11 yards and for the final 9 on consecutive plays, and the Blue Devils were poised for a historic win.
No. 18 Louisville 34 USF 3
TAMPA, Fla. — Teddy Bridgewater threw for 344 yards and three touchdowns and Louisville rebounded from its first loss of the season.
Charles Gaines returned a fourth-quarter interception 70 yards for a TD as the Cardinals’ defense reverted to the form that helped Louisville (7-1, 3-1 American Athletic Conference) climb into the top 10 before blowing a 21-point, second-half lead at home during a 38-35 loss to Central Florida.
Bridgewater completed 25 of 29 passes with no interceptions, hiking his totals for the season to 23 TDs with two picks. In three career games against USF (2-5, 2-1), the junior from Miami has gone 65 of 82 for 841 yards, eight touchdowns and no interceptions.
USF failed to score an offensive touchdown for the third straight game, all in conference play. The Bulls used three quarterbacks and were outgained 485 yards to 133.
No. 19 Okla. State 58 Iowa State 27
AMES, Iowa — Desmond Roland ran for a career-high 219 yards and four touchdowns and Oklahoma State won its third straight.
Quarterback Clint Chelf had 163 total yards in his second start of the season for the Cowboys (6-1, 3-1 Big 12), who ran for a season-high 342 yards.
Oklahoma State scored 14 points in a 2-½ minute stretch late in the third quarter to extend its lead to 45-20. Roland ran 58 yards for his third touchdown of the day, and Tyler Johnson took a fumble 54 yards for a TD with 4:17 left in the third.
Sam Richardson had 95 yards passing and a touchdown for Iowa State (1-6, 0-4) before leaving the game late in the first half after an apparent blow to the head.
No. 21 UCF 62 Connecticut 17
ORLANDO, Fla. — Blake Bortles threw for four touchdowns and ran for another as No. 21 UCF routed winless Connecticut.
Bortles completed his first eight passes of the game and ended his day early in the third quarter, connecting on 20 of 24 for 286 yards.
The junior ran for a TD as the Knights (6-1, 3-0 American Athletic Conference) scored on their first nine possessions of the game. They remain the favorite to claim the league’s BCS berth.
UConn’s offense was anemic throughout and helped dig its own hole early, thanks to two first-half interceptions by freshman quarterback Tim Boyle. A Huskies’ fumble in the second-half set up another UCF score.
The Huskies (0-7, 0-3) have lost eight straight games dating to last season.
No. 23 N. Illinois 59, E. Michigan 20
DE KALB, Ill. — Jordan Lynch threw four touchdown passes and caught another as No. 23 Northern Illinois reached its best start as a major program with a 59-20 victory over Eastern Michigan on Saturday.
The Huskies (8-0, 4-0 Mid-American Conference) never trailed on the way to a season-high in points and second-highest total offense (658 yards).
The Eagles (1-7, 0-4) lost their seventh straight.
Lynch, the nation’s No. 7 rusher entering Saturday, also ran for a touchdown while rushing 18 times for 99 yards. He was 16-of-20 passing for 223 yards while tying a career high with four TD passes in less than three quarters.
Tommylee Lewis had eight catches for 107 yards and a touchdown. Da’Ron Brown caught three passes for 28 yards and two scores.
Eastern Michigan’s Bronson Hill rushed 17 times for a team-high 66 yards while Brogan Roback was 7-of-17 passing for 109 yards.
MINNSOTA 34, No. 25 NEBRASKA 23
MINNEAPOLIS — Philip Nelson rushed for two touchdowns and passed for another, guiding Minnesota to its first win against the Cornhuskers since 1960.
Nelson made all of his seven completions count, totaling 152 yards, and carried the ball eight times for 55 yards. He spun across the goal line from the 1 with 48 seconds left to seal the victory for the Gophers (6-2, 2-2 Big Ten), who became bowl-game eligible and stopped a 16-game losing streak to the Huskers.
Taylor Martinez returned from a turf-toe injury that kept him of the last three games for the Huskers (5-2, 2-1), but he had only 16 yards rushing on eight attempts and 139 yards on 16-for-30 passing, plus one touchdown and one interception.
David Cobb gained 138 yards on 31 rushes for the Gophers, who outgained the Huskers 271-189 on the ground.
Ameer Abdullah had 165 yards on 19 carries for Nebraska.