Despite a Week 2 schedule that didn’t feature too many must-see matchups, college football did what it does best: produced several jaw-dropping plays.
We rounded up our 12 favorites and ranked them based on athleticism, absurdity, outrageousness and overall contribution to that specific game.
This is less about the teams playing, the conferences they’re from or the implications of a win or loss going forward. It’s more of a tribute to greatness in individual plays.
12. (Almost) coast-to-coast
Not just one, but TWO punt return touchdowns for Greg Dortch in @WakeFB‘s win today! #MustSeeACC pic.twitter.com/p72Adjwm01
— ACC Digital Network (@theACCDN) September 8, 2018
It’s hard not to love watching Wake Forest’s Greg Dortch weave around defenders for these two punt-return touchdowns. One was for 70 yards while the other was for 60.
11. 1-play drive
“All the way to the ”
That’s Duhart’s 2nd TD of the night for @ODUFootball! pic.twitter.com/pM1E0mhMsz
— Conference USA (@ConferenceUSA) September 9, 2018
Ignore the lack of excitement in the announcer’s voice here. This pass — the only play of Old Dominion’s drive — from quarterback Blake LaRussa to Jonathan Duhart was dead-on up the middle for an 83-yard TD.
10. Silver lining
This throw was PERFECT. pic.twitter.com/1hHdmV1SRZ
— SEConCBS (@SEConCBS) September 8, 2018
South Carolina got rocked by Georgia, but this 44-yard touchdown pass from Jake Bentley to Bryan Edwards is nothing short of impressive.
9. Consecutive kick-return TDs FTW
USF’s Terrence Horne had TWO return TDs … in one quarter. pic.twitter.com/THx7tsCPS2
— ESPN (@espn) September 8, 2018
We here at FTW are suckers for awesome kick- and punt-return touchdowns. One is impressive enough, but two back-to-back is incredible for USF freshman Terrence Horne with these 98- and 97-yard returns. Both of these plays make you want to yell, “Holy cow! Look at him go!”
8. N’Keal Harry is a beast
N’Keal Harry is mossing people out here pic.twitter.com/ZcPR5rV0aV
— The Mick Nartin (@themicknartin) September 9, 2018
Nothing like dragging your defender into the end zone with you.
7. Jonathan Taylor’s 4-yard hustle
It was a BIG DAY for Jonathan Taylor pic.twitter.com/mHGIB1XGHD
— ESPN (@espn) September 8, 2018
This touchdown was on the shorter side of the Wisconsin running back’s stellar day, but he muscled his way through four tough yards.
6. Kyler Murray’s near-perfect bomb
“BOY HE DROPPED THAT BALL IN A BUCKET”
Kyler Murray Ceedee Lamb pic.twitter.com/xZUZelYVKg
— FOX College Football (@CFBONFOX) September 8, 2018
A tad overthrown with a spectacular diving catch from Ceedee Lamb, this is just one of many plays that bumped Murray up into the serious Heisman Trophy conversation.
5. Tate Martell’s gonna do just fine in college
Here’s another look at Martell’s bomb to McLaurin, the first touchdown pass of the quarterback’s Ohio State career. pic.twitter.com/nuii6uqNsy
— Eleven Warriors (@11W) September 8, 2018
For the first touchdown pass of the Buckeye freshman’s young career, he came up with a stunning 51-yarder to Terry McLaurin.
4. Ty Jones’ crazy one-handed TD grab
Look Ma, one hand!
Hand to give y’all the better angle on that one.
That’s two weeks in a row @UW_Football put up one-handed TD grabs. #UNDvsUW is live rn: https://t.co/V3J34Q4GCx pic.twitter.com/2uHQu4qtHI
— Pac-12 Network (@Pac12Network) September 8, 2018
Who needs two hands anyway? Obviously, Washington declined this blatant pass interference call.
3. So close for Kellen Mond and the Aggies
kevinmcguire: What a clutch catch for a Texas A&M touchdown. ESPN College Football Scoreboard https://t.co/raLR3b8WWB pic.twitter.com/Z4qGFa0qRW
— FanSportsClips (@FanSportsClips) September 9, 2018
Had this 24-yard touchdown pass to Kendrick Rogers turned out to be the difference-maker and led Texas A&M upsetting Clemson, it’d definitely be No. 1 on this list. However, the only difference it really made was giving the Aggies an extra slice of hope until the two-point conversion attempt failed. But regardless, with the clock winding down in a nationally televised game with a chance to spoil Clemson’s season early on, this play was on the money.
2. Tee Higgins’ jaw-dropping catch
Trevor Lawrence’s first throw of the game… pic.twitter.com/4doXi1tx8g
— CBS Sports (@CBSSports) September 8, 2018
They don’t get much better than this. In Clemson’s two-quarterback system, this was Trevor Lawrence’s first throw of the game. And it was great and all, but if you’re not amazed by this catch — watch it again from another angle below — maybe you’re not the football fan you think you are. This is just bonkers.
— ESPN (@espn) September 9, 2018
ANTOINE! WINFIELD! JUNIOR!@liltweeze26 | @GopherFootball pic.twitter.com/tAMyxfBi6B
— FOX Sports North (@fsnorth) September 9, 2018
You’ll absolutely want to watch the slow-motion replay on this. Without Antoine Winfield Jr. incredible awareness, timing and athleticism, Fresno State for sure scores a touchdown and ties the game with just more than a minute left. The Minnesota sophomore defensive back saved the game and the Gophers’ record, and he’ll surely be remembered for this clutch play for a while.
BONUS: Bravo, Kansas
ROCK. CHALK. pic.twitter.com/HmUxVYWAqU
— Kansas Football (@KU_Football) September 8, 2018
While this is not a play in the literal sense, the Jayhawks snapped their 46-road game losing streak — the second-longest of its kind in college football history with their 31-7 win over Central Michigan. That deserves a nod.