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Top 25 college football results most important takeaways

West Virginia and Ohio State were the big winners from the early slate of games as they kept their playoff hopes alive with wins.

What else have we learned so far in Week 11? Check back all day for updates as each game ends.


No. 9 West Virginia 47, TCU 10

With the resounding win over TCU, the Mountaineers are one step closer to playing in the Big 12 championship game, but still have arguably their two most difficult opponents remaining — at Oklahoma State and home against Oklahoma on the final Friday night of the regular season. It was the third straight game West Virginia had scored at least 40 points, but the lopsided win came against a struggling TCU team that has now lost four of its last five. As long as the Mountaineers have just one loss, they remain in the playoff conversation, but might have to beat OU twice in two weeks to actually get there. — Heather Dinich


No. 10 Ohio State 26, No. 18 Michigan State 6

Ohio State’s offensive line struggled early on against Michigan State, specifically with defensive end Kenny Willekes. The entire offense struggled to get anything going and was held to only 14 rushing yards in the first half. After trying to emphasize the run game against Nebraska, it looked as though the Buckeyes were trying to get some kind of production against the stout Michigan State defense to no avail. The Buckeyes got some help from an intentional safety by Michigan State and the Ohio State defense falling on a fumble in the end zone for a touchdown. But there are still a lot of questions as this team heads toward its final game against Michigan. The Buckeyes play Maryland first and have a chance to correct their mistakes, but they haven’t been able to fix the problems yet this year and show no signs of doing so before Michigan travels to Columbus.– Tom VanHaaren

For the most part, Michigan State’s defense did its job against Ohio State, but the offense made mistakes and couldn’t get into any kind of rhythm. The offense fumbled the ball in the end zone, resulting in a touchdown for Ohio State, and it was the offense that couldn’t move the ball away from the one-yard line that led to Michigan State intentionally snapping the ball out of bounds on a punt to give the Buckeyes a safety. Quarterback Brian Lewerke only completed 50 percent of his passes in the first half and still looks as though he was nursing an injury, as his passes were erratic all game. This was the fourth loss for Michigan State overall and the third conference loss, so its hopes to make a big-time bowl game are all but over. — VanHaaren


No. 12 UCF 35, Navy 24

UCF won its 22nd straight game and has scored at least 30 points in all of them, tying for the third-longest streak in the AP Poll Era (since 1936) with that many points. But the 13 members of the CFP selection committee have made it clear that they’re not influenced by streaks. The No. 12 Knights are unlikely to improve their spot much in Tuesday’s ranking after beating a Navy team that has lost eight games this year, but McKenzie Milton did have another outstanding performance. Milton had his 18th career game with at least three touchdowns responsible for (two passing, one rushing). UCF’s defense struggled to slow down Navy’s option offense and allowed the Midshipmen 374 total yards — all on the ground. — Heather Dinich


No. 13 Syracuse 54, Louisville 23

The Orange took their turn beating up on Louisville, scoring at least 40 points in their fourth straight ACC game. It is the first time the Orange have scored at least 40 points in four consecutive conference games since 1996, when the team shared the Big East championship. Syracuse now has five ACC wins, the most since joining the conference in 2013. Taking advantage of a weak run defense, Syracuse ran for more than 300 yards on the ground. But the competition gets way tougher next week against Notre Dame, with a possible playoff spot on the line for the Irish, and a possible New Year’s Six bowl berth on the line for the Orange. Though the outcome against the Cards was never really in doubt, there will be plenty for Syracuse to work on this week. The Orange made multiple red-zone errors that led to field goals, and they also turned the ball over three times. If they want to have any shot against a top-five team like Notre Dame, they are going to have to play a near perfect game. Making mistakes like that against Louisville is one thing. Making them against Notre Dame is an entirely different story. — Andrea Adelson


Wake Forest 27, No. 14 NC State 23

The annual rite of passage for Wolfpack fans happened again, as NC State lost a game it had no business losing. The culprit? Plenty of blame to go around but the lack of any serious ground attack has been an ongoing concern and meant the Wolfpack struggled to finish drives and were 0-for-2 on fourth down. — David M. Hale


No. 15 Florida 35, South Carolina 31

The Gators showed some fight on Saturday. After looking like they were headed for another regrettable defeat — a week after an embarrassing loss to Missouri — they put together their best finish of the season, scoring 21 unanswered points after being down 31-14 at one point. It’s an encouraging sign for Dan Mullen’s crew to get off the mat after digging itself such a significant hole. The running game was outstanding, compiling a season-high 367 yards, and even quarterback Feleipe Franks — who has taken his share of criticism of late — was solid down the stretch, leading the go-ahead drive in the fourth. All positive signs for this Florida squad, which needed some positivity in a big way. — Sam Khan Jr.


No. 20 Penn State 22, Wisconsin 10

The Nittany Lions turned Wisconsin’s offense into a one-man show and kept workhorse Jonathan Taylor from hurting them on the scoreboard. Quarterback Trace McSorley (19-of-25 passing) continues to show his mettle while playing through a leg issue, but it was running back Miles Sanders who did a lot of the heavy lifting while getting Penn State over its toughest remaining hurdle in the regular season. — Dan Murphy


Boise State 24, No. 23 Fresno State 17

After climbing into the College Football Playoff Top 25 rankings, Fresno State won’t be back next week, and the Bulldogs’ loss to Boise State means their hopes of reaching a New Year’s Six bowl are just about shot. Had they won out and UCF faltered at some point, there would have been a case for Fresno State to receive the Group of Five bid, but with two losses, that scenario is much more unlikely. In the Mountain West, Fresno State can win the West division with a win against San Diego State next week and would play either Utah State or Boise State in the conference title game. — Kyle Bonagura


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