MINNEAPOLIS — The progress made by Minnesota in coach P.J. Fleck's third season had been met by natural skepticism outside the long-languishing program, with even the most ardent fans in full prove-it mode for this game of unbeaten teams against Penn State.
From start to finish, the Gophers matched the moment. Jordan Howden picked off Sean Clifford's pass in the end zone with 1:01 left, the third interception thrown by Penn State's quarterback, and 13th-ranked Minnesota held on for the victory for its first win over a top-five team in 20 years.
Tanner Morgan passed for 339 yards and three touchdowns in a dismantling of fifth-ranked Penn State's staunch defense, as Minnesota (9-0, 6-0, No. 17 CFP) stayed on track for its first trip to the Big Ten championship game. For a program has not won the conference since a shared title in 1967, this is a whole new world.
The first sellout crowd for the Gophers at home in four years swarmed the field after the clock ran out, reveling in the first win at home over a top-five team since a shutout of No. 1 Michigan in 1977.
No. 3 Ohio State 73, Maryland 14
Justin Fields threw for three touchdowns and ran for another in the first half and Ohio State hardly missed suspended defensive star Chase Young in a romp over Maryland.
A team that gave the Buckeyes (9-0, 6-0 Big Ten, CFP No. 1) headaches last season was no trouble this time, even without the fierce pass rushing of Young. The preseason All-American was suspended Friday while Ohio State investigates a possible NCAA violation involving a loan.
No. 11 Baylor 29, TCU 23
Denzel Mims made a leaping 4-yard touchdown catch in the third overtime for Baylor, capping another comeback win for the undefeated Bears.
Baylor (9-0, 6-0 Big 12) finally had the win on Grayland Arnold's game-ending interception of Max Duggan's fourth-down pass in the end zone. The Bears forced overtime when John Mayers kicked a 51-yard field goal with 36 seconds left in regulation. The ball just cleared the crossbar to tie the game at 9-9. This is the seventh time in two seasons that Baylor has won after a fourth-quarter comeback.
No. 15 Notre Dame 38, Duke 7
Ian Book rushed for a career-best 139 yards and threw four touchdown passes and Notre Dame routed Duke.
Book finished 18 of 32 for 181 yards passing, Chris Finke caught touchdown passes of 18 and 6 yards, and Chase Claypool and George Takacs also had short scoring catches.
C'Bo Flemister rushed 2 yards for a TD for the Fighting Irish (7-2, No. 15 CFP). In winning their second straight and fifth in six games, they rolled up 469 total yards, led 21-0 before the Blue Devils picked up their second first down and kept them at bay the rest of the way.
No. 16 Wisconsin 24, No. 18 Iowa 22
Jonathan Taylor rushed for a season-high 250 yards and Danny Davis ran for a touchdown and caught another as Wisconsin outlasted Iowa.
Taylor became the first running back this season to rush for more than 100 yards against Iowa as Wisconsin (7-2, 4-2 Big Ten, No. 13 College Football Playoff) held on to the Heartland Trophy, given each year to the winner of this game. Wisconsin has beaten Iowa four straight times
Texas 27, No. 20 Kansas State 24
Cameron Dicker kicked a 26-yard field goal as time expired, sending Texas to victory as the Longhorns maintained their hopes of returning to the Big 12 championship game.
Dicker has won games on the final play twice this season. His 33-yarder to beat Kansas on Oct. 19 capped a wild 50-48 finish.
Texas (6-3, 4-2) had lost two of its previous three games. The victory over the Wildcats (6-3, 3-3, No. 16 College Football Playoff) made the Longhorns bowl-eligible and kept them in the hunt for a berth in the league championship with three games left.
Virginia Tech 36, No. 22 Wake Forest 17
Hendon Hooker accounted for 311 yards of total offense and ran for a touchdown to help Virginia Tech beat Wake Forest . The Hokies (6-3, 3-2 Atlantic Coast Conference) overcame a 6-0 halftime deficit, scoring 30 second-half points to beat a ranked team for the first time since last year at then-No. 22 Duke.
No. 23 SMU 59, East Carolina 51
Shane Buechele threw five touchdown passes and SMU bounced back from a first loss that dramatically changed the course of its season.
The Mustangs (9-1, 5-1 American Athletic) played from ahead and kept it that way in a second straight game with more than 1,000 combined yards. SMU had fallen behind and failed to close the gap last week in a 54-48 loss to No. 19 Memphis.