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Week 8 college football standouts

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Playmakers help team in conference battles.

NCAA Football: Louisiana State at Florida Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

This last weekend, conference matchups heated up with a handful of good games. Conference play always brings out the best in players and Saturday was no difference as Travis Etienne and Kristian Fulton helped their respective teams to huge wins.

Clemson has been an odd team this year. After steamrolling Alabama in the National Championship, all the hype was behind Trevor Lawrence and Clemson’s chances of a repeat. The sophomore quarterback has regressed under the weight of heavy expectations, but the rest of the team is still extremely talented. While Lawrence was up and down against Louisville on Saturday, it was Travis Etienne who carried the Tigers to a win. The junior speedster averaged 13.7 yards on his 14 carries for the day, scoring once in the process and adding another 35 yards on receptions. Etienne has been the engine of the Clemson offense as Lawrence finds his bearings. The runner continues to be an excellent playmaker. Etienne seemed to injure himself during the game, limping off the field after a big run. However, reports are that the injury is relatively minor and Etienne should be back at the latest next week. There are a bevy of very good running backs in college football right now and Etienne continues to run hard towards top runner status while keeping Clemson’s title hopes afloat.

In SEC play, Joe Burrow continued to grab headlines as LSU pummeled Mississippi State. Despite the quarterback’s ongoing ascendancy, it was Kristian Fulton who stuck out. The senior had arguably his best game of the season as he knocked away two passes and picked off his first pass of the season. Fulton is a key piece in LSU’s stingy secondary and playing among the best defensive back football in the country. The senior is hardly a ballhawk, just nabbing his second career interception on Saturday. But he did flash playmaking against the Bulldogs and more games like that will have people paying closer attention to the six foot defender.