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The college football report: Week 5

Chip Kelly - and Scott Frost - are still looking for wins. Harry How/Getty Images

The Red River Rivalry is nationally relevant

The Longhorns and Sooners are ranked for the first time since 2012 going into game but they’ve taken two different paths to get to this point. The Sooners are undefeated but have been kind of a afterthought this season and it has nothing to do with their play. The offense has been dominant outside of the close call against Army and Kyler Murray is a legitimate Heisman candidate. The Sooners just haven’t played a schedule so far that would draw any national interest. That finally changes this Saturday in the Cotton Bowl as they will see a Texas team that has righted the ship since a disappointing Week 1 loss to Maryland. The last two weeks the Longhorns have beaten two ranked teams at home in USC and TCU and are in the top 20 for the first time in Tom Herman’s tenure. The best thing for the rivalry would probably be a Longhorns win. A victory would let the college football world know that Texas is a legit contender in the Big 12 this season. A good defense is important to a championship team and Texas has that but the college game is one where you have to score. Can Texas score enough to keep pace with one of the best offenses in country in the Sooners? We’ll find out Saturday.

Scott Frost and Chip Kelly are a combined 0-8

That record is startling when you compare it to the energy that was created in both the Nebraska and UCLA fanbases when the Frost and Kelly hires were announced. Frost was the golden boy coming back home to reignite a program that had slipped into mediocrity. Wisconsin, Ohio State and Michigan State remain on the schedule for a Husker’s team that had a players -only meeting this week. Huskers fans are praying this season ends with mediocrity.

Frost’s former boss is having just as tough a time in Westwood. UCLA fans watched Chip Kelly run up, down and over them and others in the PAC-12 for years. That same success for Oregon continued when Kelly took a job in the NFL. You can understand why they were excited. I don’t think they expected to be the worst team in the conference through the first five weeks of the season. With no Oregon State on the schedule the Bruins have a real shot to go winless in Kelly’s first season. They’re best chance for a win might be when Arizona comes to the Rose Bowl on Oct. 20.

Hate Watch Game of Week: FSU vs Miami

This one is easy. I’ve never rooted against a team more than I have the Florida State Seminoles. Miami vs Florida State is the rivalry that molded my love for college football. I grew up in California and Canes against Noles was a big game throughout my childhood. That meant noon kickoffs on the East Coast and early 9 a.m. starts in the Los Angeles area. Back then a nationally televised at that time meant your team was a major player. National title implications plus family bragging rights meant I was locked in on those games from start to finish. I can’t stand the Noles and hope they lose every game so Saturday won’t be anything new. A loss for them on Saturday will just mean more.

Hate Watch Record 2-3

After starting off 2-0 by simply rooting against Miami’s in-state rivals, diversifying my hate has resulted in three straight losses. The latest being a heartbreaker for Penn State to Ohio State. The Nittany Lions blew a two-score lead at home to the Buckeyes in the fourth quarter. I’d like to say thank you to Penn State Head Coach James Franklin for taking the ball out of his best player’s hand with the game on the line. I know Trace McSorley was the best player on the field in the second half, but that is clearly no reason to trust him with the game’s most important play. Full sarcasm on.

 

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Houston's losing streak extended to five games

With key Astros missing, Detroit completes the series sweep

An overall bad day for the Astros on Wednesday. Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images

On Wednesday afternoon, the Astros received a big blow to their chances in the series finale against Detroit and potentially longer. Five players: Jose Altuve, Alex Bregman, Yordan Alvarez, Martin Maldonado, and Robel Garcia would all be moved to the IL due to health and safety protocols, leaving them scrambling to get a whole team together for the game against the Tigers.

The Astros would not be able to overcome both the loss of players and the onslaught of another strong start by Detroit in Wednesday's game which put them too far out front for Houston to come back from to avoid a series sweep.

Final Score: Tigers 6, Astros 4

Astros' Record: 6-6, third in the AL West

Winning Pitcher: Michael Fulmer (1-0)

Losing Pitcher: Lance McCullers Jr. (1-1)

Tigers knock out another starter early

Detroit continued their success of making Houston's starter work hard in early innings, getting after Lance McCullers Jr., and giving him an early exit. After a lengthy fist, they broke through in the second getting two hits, a walk, a hit batter, and an RBI groundout to put up three runs on 34 pitches.

He would have a quicker 1-2-3 third, but after giving up a single, a walk, and hitting another batter to load the bases and reach 87 pitches, he would be removed in favor of Joe Smith. Smith would allow all three of the inherited runners to score, adding those runs to McCullers Jr.'s final line: 3.2 IP, 4 H, 6 R, 6 ER, 3 BB, 3 K, 87 P.

Astros try to claw back into it

After Smith would go on to load the bases again in the inning, still with two outs, Houston made another pitching change to bring in Brandon Bielak to get the third out and stop the bleeding at 6-0. The Astros would get on the board in the fifth, getting a runner on base to set up a two-run homer by Jason Castro to cut the lead to 6-2.



Bielak remained in the game to try and eat up as many innings as possible. While he continued to hold the Tigers to their six runs through the six innings, the Astros clawed back into the game. In the bottom of the sixth, Houston put their first two batters on base with a walk and single before an RBI-single by Yuli Gurriel to make it 6-3. They would threaten for more but be held there for the time being.

Astros can't cash in, Tigers complete sweep

Ryne Stanek was Houston's next reliever in the top of the seventh, getting a 1-2-3 frame to keep it a three-run game, as did Brooks Raley in the eighth. In the home part of the inning, the Astros put their first two runners on base on an error and a walk, then loaded them with a one-out single by Carlos Correa. They'd waste their chance to make something happen, though, with an inning-ending double-play.

Ryan Pressly, who had no save opportunities in recent games, entered to get some work in the top of the ninth. He worked around a leadoff double for a scoreless inning, sending the 6-3 game to the bottom of the ninth. The Astros had yet another chance to make something happen, loading the bases with no outs to bring the go-ahead run to the plate. After two outs, Yuli Gurriel would bring one run in with a walk, but that's as close as they'd come, extending their losing streak to five games and getting swept by the Tigers.

Up Next: Houston will get a much-needed day off tomorrow to try and leave this poor homestand behind them. They'll pick things up in Seattle on Friday, with first pitch of the opener of three games at 9:10 PM Central. The expected pitching matchup is Jose Urquidy (0-1, 5.23 ERA) for the Astros and Yusei Kikuchi (0-0, 3.75 ERA) for the Mariners.

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