Picks: Trojans no trouble for ND; Buckeyes stay unbeaten; FSU over UF
Here are this week's guesses.
|EJ Manuel and Florida State, still harboring BCS title-game hopes, take on rival Florida in Tallahassee. (Getty Images)|
I'm coming off a good week, going 12-7 against the spread, putting me at nine over .500 for the season against the line. The good: picking Baylor to give Kansas State problems. The bad: picking Oregon to handle Stanford. The ugly: picking Texas Tech to beat Oklahoma State. Here are this week's guesses:
Texas Longhorns 27, TCU Horned Frogs 14: The Horns D has seemed to gets its act together of late, only allowing 15 ppg in the past three games.
LSU Tigers 34, Arkansas Razorbacks 17: John L. Smith's last game with the Hogs comes at the end of a nightmarish year for this program. They've been blown out the past two weeks and after a solid first half, look for the Tigers to cruise.
Nebraska Cornhuskers 30, Iowa Hawkeyes 14: Kirk Ferentz's squad has lost five in a row and now faces a team that's on a five-game winning streak. I'll go with the more dynamic rushing team.
Northern Illinois Huskies 59, Eastern Michigan Eagles 17: The fantastic Jordan Lynch Show resumes against the country's No. 113 D.
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Notre Dame Fighting Irish 23, Southern California Trojans 10: The Trojans showed little effort and grit last week against one of their two hated rivals. Now they face their other rival, which has a better D than UCLA and the Trojans are going with a first-time starting QB? ND's magical season rolls on.
Alabama Crimson Tide 44, Auburn Tigers 6: Crazy things happen in big rivalry games, but not this crazy. The Tigers are in disarray and won't be able to hang with Nick Saban's team for more than a quarter.
Georgia Bulldogs 34, Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets 17: No one has scored more than 14 on the Dawgs since mid-October when they were called out by DB Shawn Williams. Tech might do just a little better than that, but not much.
Ohio State Buckeyes 24, Michigan Wolverines 17: Devin Gardner has played very well at QB, but the Buckeyes D has really come on of late. Going with the home team here, and as I said last week, until someone in the Big Ten beats Urban Meyer, I'm not picking against him.
Oregon Ducks 48, Oregon State Beavers 35: The Ducks come off the disappointing overtime loss to Stanford and now get to visit their arch-rival, which has the kind of dynamic receivers to give them some problems. Still, I don't see Chip Kelly's team losing two in a row.
Florida State Seminoles 20, Florida Gators 10: Home game for the Noles, who have the much more seasoned QB and more explosive skill talent, so I'm picking FSU.
Kent State Golden Flashes 27, Ohio Bobcats 20: KSU has won nine in a row and gets a visit from a Bobcats team that has fizzled down the stretch, losing three of its past four games.
Texas A&M Aggies 42, Missouri Tigers 17: No current Aggies player has ever beaten Mizzou. Then again, unlike many of his teammates, Johnny Manziel has never faced the Tigers. Bad news for Mizzou. You can call him Johnny Heisman.
UCLA Bruins 17, Stanford Cardinal 14: Toughest pick of the week. I flip-flopped several times, but opted for the home team with the more experienced young QB despite Stanford's edge on D.
Clemson Tigers 28, South Carolina Gamecocks 21: I know the Tigers have lost three in a row to Steve Spurrier, but Clemson has more firepower and Tajh Boyd has been sizzling.
Oklahoma Sooners 31, Oklahoma State Cowboys 28: Mike Gundy's bunch has been playing very well, but I don't see the Sooners losing again this season at home. Not to their arch-rivals.
Louisville Cardinals 34, Connecticut Huskies 17: Charlie Strong's D was embarrassed last time out when the Cards got shredded at Syracuse. Expect them to bounce back.
Rutgers Scarlet Knights 20, Pittsburgh Panthers 10: I know Rutgers is on the road, but Kyle Flood's team, led by a fierce D, has showed it responds well to the road atmosphere, going 5-0 away from New Jersey. In four of those games, the opponent has been held to 13 points or less.
Utah State Aggies 47, Idaho Vandals 3: Utah State is rolling, having won five in a row. The Vandals come to town having dropped five in a row. Idaho's D is also a mess.
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