Week 13 picks: Baylor gets first true road test at Oklahoma State
Baylor plays a quality opponent in a hostile environment for the first time this season
It's a light week in college football, unless titanic tilts like Chattanooga- Alabama Crimson Tide and Idaho Vandals -Florida State turn you on. Still, there are some big games in conference races, starting with one of the four remaining major unbeatens.
Last week, I was 3-2 overall, 2-3 vs the spread. That makes me 52-21 overall and 35-36-2 vs the spread.
Baylor Bears at Oklahoma Sooners State (+9.5): Featured in the upset special column. This is the first time all season that Baylor will play in a truly hostile environment. I suppose a road game at Kansas Jayhawks State is somewhat hostile because of great fan support, but the team is mediocre, and the Bears struggled to win there. Road games at Kansas are only hostile in Phog Allen Fieldhouse. OSU wins and covers.
Michigan Wolverines State at Northwestern Wildcats (+7): MSU can clinch division with a win over the Cats, which are still looking for their first victory since ESPN ruined their season. It took them three OTs to lose last week, so things are looking up. Unfortunately, the Spartans seem to have found a rhythm on offense to go with that stifling defense. Michigan State Spartans wins and covers.
Oregon Ducks at Arizona Wildcats (+20.5): Arizona had a pretty respectable season going until the home loss to Washington Huskies State last week. Ka'Deem Carey is one of the best backs around, maybe the best you never see play, but Oregon has new life. The Ducks control their own destiny in the Pac-12 and they aren't giving it up again. Oregon wins and covers.
Arizona State Sun Devils at UCLA Bruins (+2.5): I'm a little surprised to see UCLA as an underdog in this game at home. The Sun Devils will be a tough test for the Bruins defense, which is pretty good. ASU has struggled away from home this year, save an easy win at Wazzu. UCLA wins and covers.
Missouri Tigers at Ole Miss Rebels (+2.5): Welcome back, James Franklin ! The Missouri QB will make his first start since he was injured against Georgia Bulldogs . Maty Mauk held up well in his absence, and the Tigers still control the SEC East. Ole Miss has been tough at home, having already beaten LSU Tigers and really should have beaten Texas A&M. Mizzou is tough on both sides of the ball, and they'll take care of business here. Tigers win and cover.
Texas A&M at LSU (-4.5): The Aggies are looking to win a couple more and end Johnny Football's career in the BCS. They have a problem though...Manziel can't play defense, and neither can the guys who have that job. It'll be a high scoring game, as all A&M games are, but LSU wins and covers.
BYU at Notre Dame Fighting Irish (Pk): Notre Dame lost at Pitt last week after struggling with Air Force Falcons the week before. This week's news is that DT Louis Nix is out for the year with an injury. That won't help against BYU's rushing attack. The Cougars played Wisconsin Badgers tough last week. The Irish won't scare them. BYU wins and covers.
As a bonus this week, here are picks for a few of my favorite big rivalry games:
California Golden Bears +31.5 at Stanford Cardinal Stanford has an Axe to grind after last week. Cardinal win and cover.
Wisconsin Badgers -16.5 at Minnesota Golden Gophers : Gophers are on a roll, but the Badgers are too tough. Wisconsin wins and covers.
Vanderbilt Commodores +2.5 at Tennessee Volunteers The Vols have been tough at home, so it's no surprise they are favored. I like them too. Tennessee wins and covers.
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In this week's Friday Five we rank five teams who might not be as successful in 2016