Ohio State coach Urban Meyer called it the best he has ever seen a quarterback play.
J.T. Barrett capped the greatest game of his decorated career with a 16-yard touchdown pass to Marcus Baugh with 1:48 left in the fourth quarter and No. 6 Ohio State rallied from 11 down in the final five minutes to hand No. 2 Penn State its first loss, 39-38, on Saturday in Columbus, Ohio.
Barrett was near flawless, going 33 for 39 for 328 yards and four touchdown passes, three in the fourth quarter after the Buckeyes (7-1, 5-0 Big Ten) were down 35-20.
‘‘I’ve never had a kid play perfect, but damn he was close tonight,’’ Meyer said.
Penn State led, 38-27, with 5:42 left and it looked as if the Nittany Lions (7-1, 4-1) were going to knock the Buckeyes out of the College Football Playoff race and put a firm grip on the Big Ten East. Saquon Barkley scored two long touchdowns for Penn State, but it was Barrett who surged into the Heisman Trophy race in what was billed as the Big Ten game of the year and lived up to the hype.
Barrett hooked up with Johnnie Dixon for two touchdowns in the fourth and then got the ball back down five with 3:20 left. The Buckeyes quickly marched down the field and then Barrett found his big tight end Baugh open for the lead.
Iowa State 14, TCU 7 — Kyle Kempt threw for 202 yards and two touchdowns and 25th-ranked Cyclones upset the fourth-ranked Horned Frogs in Ames, Iowa, handing TCU its first defeat and leaving the Big 12 without an unbeaten team.
Marcel Spears intercepted a Kenny Hill pass with 1:16 left to seal it for Iowa State (6-2, 4-1), who forced a pair of turnovers in the red zone in the second half in winning their fourth straight game.
Kempt put Iowa State ahead, 14-0, at the break with touchdown passes to Matt Eaton (17 yards) and Hakeem Butler (4 yards).
TCU (7-1, 4-1) answered to open the second half on a 94-yard kickoff return by KaVontae Turpin. But Brian Peavy intercepted Hill in the end zone in the third quarter and brought it back 70 yards, and Willie Harvey caused Hill to fumble a ball recovered by Iowa State at its own 15-yard line with 7:11 to go.
Hill had his worst game of the season, finishing 12-of-25 passing for 135 yards and those two very costly interceptions. The Horned Frogs also committed 11 penalties for 104 yards.
Georgia 42, Florida 7 — Sony Michel put third-ranked Georgia (8-0, 5-0 SEC) up big early and put Florida (3-4, 3-3) away late, scoring on two long runs in a drubbing in Jacksonville, Fla., that might have been the final game for Gators coach Jim McElwain.
Athletic director Scott Stricklin said there had been no buyout talks with McElwain but he stopped short of giving the embattled coach a vote of confidence.
Wisconsin 24, Illinois 10 — Alec Ingold and Garrett Groshek scored on short runs in the first half, offensive lineman Michael Deiter added another touchdown on a trick play late in the game, and the No. 5 Badgers (8-0, 5-0 Big Ten) knocked off the host Illini (2-6, 0-5).
Miami 24, North Carolina 19 — Malik Rosier threw for a career-high 356 yards with three touchdowns to help the eighth-ranked Hurricanes (7-0, 5-0 ACC) hold off the host Tar Heels (1-8, 0-6).
Notre Dame 35, N.C. State 14 — Julian Love returned his second interception of the season for a touchdown and running back Josh Adams had another big day, rushing for 202 yards, to help the No. 9 Fighting Irish (7-1) beat the 14th-ranked Wolfpack (6-2) in South Bend, Ind.
Oklahoma State 50, West Virginia 39 — Mason Rudolph threw three touchdown passes and ran for another score to outshine Will Grier to lead the No. 11 Cowboys (7-1, 4-1 Big 12) over the No. 22 Mountaineers (5-3, 3-2) in Morgantown, W.Va.
Washington 44, UCLA 23 — Myles Gaskin led Washington’s running onslaught with 169 yards and one touchdown, Lavon Coleman added 94 yards and three touchdown runs, and the 12th-ranked Huskies (7-1, 4-1 Pac-12) routed the visiting Bruins (4-4, 2-3).
Virginia Tech 24, Duke 3 — Josh Jackson threw for a touchdown and ran for another to lead the No. 13 Hokies (7-1, 3-1 ACC) past the visiting Blue Devils (4-5, 1-5).
Northwestern 39, Michigan State 31 — Clayton Thorson threw a 22-yard TD to Flynn Nagel in the third overtime, Nate Hall intercepted Brian Lewerke, and the host Wildcats upset the No. 16 Spartans.
UMass 30, Appalachian State 27 — Logan Laurent’s 36-yard field goal in the second overtime lifted the Minutemen (2-6) past the Mountaineers (5-3) in Amherst.
Denver 6, BC 1 — Henrik Borgstrom and Blake Hillman each scored twice and the top-ranked Pioneers (4-0-2) blitzed the No. 19 Eagles (1-5-1) at Conte Forum to complete a weekend sweep of BC and Boston University. BC has dropped four in a row.
Providence 3, BU 0 — Hayden Hawkey made 22 saves and the No. 11 Friars (5-2-0, 2-1-0 Hockey East) got second-period goals from Vimal Sukumaran, Erik Foley, and Brandon Duhaime to dispatch the sixth-ranked Terriers (3-4-1, 1-1-1) at Agganis Arena.
NU 5, UMass Lowell 4 — Patrick Schule scored 2:10 into overtime and the host No. 20 Huskies (4-2-1, 2-0 Hockey East) beat the 17th-ranked River Hawks (3-5-0, 0-4-0) for a weekend sweep.