Senior College Football Columnist

Week 11 picks: In the end, it's Oregon in a squeaker

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I went 7-10 against the number last week, dropping me to four over .500 this year. The good: picking UCLA to upset ASU by one point. The bad: picking 'Bama to beat LSU. The ugly: picking WVU to beat Louisville handily. This week's guesses:

Virginia Tech 24, Georgia Tech 17: Paul Johnson's vaunted running game will get quite a test in the nation's No. 5 run defense. Bud Foster has made some tweaks to his personnel, and look for David Wilson to have another big game as GT's 69th-ranked run defense, which has already given up a bunch of 100-yard performances in ACC play, won't be able to contain him. Pregame: Virginia Tech-Georgia Tech

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Houston 63, Tulane 14: The country's No. 111 scoring defense will get shredded by Case Keenum as the Cougars feast on a unit that has only held one of its 10 opponents under 31 points. And none of those previous teams were as potent as UH.

Cincinnati 45, West Virginia 41: Good matchup between the Big East's two best QBs. I'll go with the more physical team with the better running game (Isaiah Pead) playing at home in the shootout.

Clemson 30, Wake Forest 17: Even though the Tigers have a big edge in speed, the Demon Deacons should hang around for a while. But Wake, which has lost three of its past four, doesn't have enough on D to get out of Death Valley with a win. Pregame: Wake Forest-Clemson

Nebraska 13, Penn State 3: The focus of the Penn State team is impossible to gauge after what has been going on around the campus the past week. Pregame: Nebraska-Penn State

South Carolina 17, Florida 9: As much as the Gamecocks miss Marcus Lattimore, they still have the more experienced D and will be able to grit out a close win over a pretty green group of Gators. Pregame: Florida-South Carolina

Michigan State 17, Iowa 13: The Hawkeyes haven't lost at home, but MSU is the best team that's come to town. The Spartans, No. 2 in total defense in the nation and No. 8 in scoring defense, should be able to neutralize Marcus Coker and James Vandenberg. MSU QB Kirk Cousins produces a solid final game against the program he grew up rooting for. Pregame: Michigan State-Iowa

Texas 28, Missouri 17: The Longhorns have become a much more physical team in the past few weeks, even though they came against a few lesser opponents, and the program has taken a big step forward. Manny Diaz's defense also has really stepped up and should be able to keep James Franklin in check.

Oklahoma State 49, Texas Tech 28: Yes, the Red Raiders have knocked off a powerful team from Oklahoma before this year, but they've been terrible since then. Don't expect Tech to be able to slow down Brandon Weeden & Co, especially since Tech has really struggled at home. Pregame: Oklahoma State-Texas Tech

Georgia 21, Auburn 17: Isaiah Crowell returns from suspension, and he gets to face the No. 84 run defense in the country. I'll go with the home team since all three of the young Tigers' losses have come on the road. Pregame: Auburn-Georgia

Illinois 27, Michigan 21: Two teams that are hobbling toward the end of the season after fast starts. I'll go with Zooker, who has more playmakers on defenses and is playing at home.

Kansas State 35, Texas A&M 30: The Aggies have fizzled so often in the second halves of games against any decent competition this year, it's hard to expect them to play four good quarters on the road here. A&M is one of the worst teams in the nation in terms of turnover margin while K-State is No. 8.

Wisconsin 42, Minnesota 17: The Gophers have improved over the past few weeks, but this is still a defense that got run over by Marcus Coker not that long ago and should be overwhelmed by Montee Ball. MarQueis Gray may do some damage early and keep things interesting for much of the first half.

Boise State 48, TCU 21: Kellen Moore has faced TCU twice in his career and has yet to throw a TD pass. That'll change this weekend. Even if this Horned Frogs D has gotten better since Robert Griffin III shredded them in the opener, it's still not up to coping with Moore and the Broncos. Pregame: TCu-Boise State

Southern California 31, Washington 23: Matt Barkley, Robert Woods and Marqise Lee should be too much for Nick Holt's struggling defense, but expect the Huskies to keep it close because both staffs know each other so well. Chris Polk will give USC problems, but QB Keith Price won't be able to pull out the upset in his return home while facing a Trojans secondary that has gotten healthy in the past few weeks.

Arkansas 38, Tennessee 20: The Hogs are coming off a solid win over South Carolina while UT hasn't had a noteworthy win since Derek Dooley took over. I don't see it happening here on the road against a team with too much firepower for a young team. Pregame: Tennessee-Arkansas

LSU 31, Western Kentucky 3: It'd be hard not to expect some letdown from the Tigers after the big OT win at 'Bama, but they still have way too much talent to get knocked off by WKU, which has taken some big steps this year, but not that big. Pregame: LSU-Western Kentucky

Alabama 30, Mississippi State 7: Don't expect Nick Saban's team to have much of a hangover from the OT loss to LSU. The Tide D takes out its frustration on a shaky offense and Trent Richardson hammers the SEC's No. 8 run defense. Pregame: Alabama-Mississippi State

Southern Mississippi 31, UCF 13: Getting RB Dezmon Johnson back from injury to go with the other weapons Austin Davis can lean on will be too much for a UCF program reeling from a very turbulent week of NCAA issues.

Oregon 38, Stanford 37: I've flip-flopped a bunch of times on this pick. Having standout safety Delano Howell back from injury looks good, but you have to wonder if he'll be rusty and ready for the ridiculous amount of speed of Oregon. The Ducks D also stepped up against Washington and should be able to keep Andrew Luck and the Cardinal from blasting them. Pregame: Oregon-Stanford


Bruce Feldman is a senior writer for CBSSports.com and college football commentator for CBS Sports Network. He is a New York Times Bestselling author, who has written books including Swing Your Sword, Meat Market and Cane Mutiny. Prior to joining CBS, Feldman spent 17 years at ESPN.
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