Last year Ohio State's Keith Byars had to sit out the last half of the Buckeyes' loss at Iowa with a bruised knee. This time, before a crowd of 89,733 in Columbus, Byars led Ohio State to a 45-26 triumph by scoring twice on the ground and once on a pass reception and by throwing a 35-yard TD pass, his first ever, to flanker Mike Lanese. "I was in oblivion until it hit Mike's hands," said Byars. Mike Stoops, the Hawkeyes' strong safety, was awed: "He's so quick, so hard to bring down. He's probably the best back I'll see in my life."
In Oklahoma's 34-15 win over Baylor, the Sooners passed a most un-Soonerly 23 times. "This is bad for my reputation," said coach Barry Switzer. "Somebody might think I like to throw the ball." Another note: Oklahoma started two freshmen, halfback Patrick Collins and fullback Lydell Carr, in the backfield. "They kept asking in the huddle what to do each play," said quarterback Danny Bradley. "No wonder we didn't score more."
Notre Dame returned to form, romping over Colorado 55-14 in South Bend as Steve Beuerlein completed 10 of 11 passes. The Buffaloes were plainly distracted by their concern for tight end Ed Reinhardt, who had been in a coma since taking a blow to the head in the Oregon game the previous week. "Something as tragic as they're going through has to take its toll," said Irish tailback Allen Pinkett, who ran for three TDs.
"It was like electricity going all through my body," said Georgia kicker Kevin Butler. "There has never been anything like it." With 11 seconds remaining against Clemson in Athens and the score tied 23-23, Butler had drilled an SEC-record-equaling 60-yard field goal to win the game 26-23. Earlier he had kicked field goals of 34, 51 and 43 yards but had missed a 26-yard attempt in the second quarter. "I thought I had already lost the game for us by missing that one," said Butler. "There was no way I could feel worse."
Georgia, which trailed 20-6 at halftime, survived five interceptions thrown by Todd Williams and was aided by Clemson quarterback Mike Eppley's three interceptions and four lost fumbles. Butler's kick didn't end the action. Ray Williams of Clemson fielded the ensuing kick on his 20, ran 10 yards and then shoveled a lateral across field to Terrance Roulhac, who reached the Georgia 35 before going out of bounds with—he thought—one second on the clock. However, referee Robert Aillet ruled that time had expired. The players exchanged words and a shove or two, and Clemson coach Danny Ford pushed Georgia's Vince Dooley. They quickly shook hands, and Ford later paid a call on the Dawg locker room to apologize for "conduct unbecoming gentlemen."
Before Florida State's game at Miami, Seminole coach Bobby Bowden was concerned about the fancy coverages his team had installed to befuddle Hurricane quarterback Bernie Kosar. "I was scared to death," said Bowden. "I figured Kosar would catch our guys moving and burn us but good." Instead, the defense sacked Kosar six times, intercepted him once and limited him to 154 yards passing before Hurricane coach Jimmy Johnson benched him. In handing Miami its worse loss (38-3) since 1977, FSU allowed the Hurricanes just 10 yards on the ground. On offense, the Seminoles took advantage of Miami's aggressive defense with options, fakes to tailback Greg Allen and reverses—two to receiver Jessie Hester, who went for touchdowns of 25 and 77 yards. Said Bowden, " Miami has had to claw and dig and fight for five straight weeks. There's no way a team can stay on an emotional peak. It's just one of those things. Miami was tired and we weren't."
Nobody argued with Army coach Jim Young's decision to go for the one-point conversion and a 24-24 tie with Tennessee. "When you're a 20-point underdog against a team like Tennessee, and you've been losing to teams like that for 10 years, a tie can be a pretty good thing," Young said. Quarterback Nate Sassaman directed the Black Knight wishbone to 292 rushing yards. He himself ran one yard for the final TD with 1:17 to play.
By defeating Bethune-Cookman 35-17, Grambling earned Eddie Robinson his 314th coaching victory. Robinson is now tied with Amos Alonzo Stagg and nine games behind Bear Bryant on the alltime list. His record for 43 years: 314-104-15.