College football picks, schedule: Predictions for key top 25 games today in Week 4

We may have been spoiled by the first three weeks of the 2018 season, particularly considering how many interesting showdowns we were given to kick off the year. That's not to say Week 4 is lacking, but while it is clearly not as loaded, there are still a number of intriguing matchups to pay attention to throughout the day on Saturday.

With action beginning early in the day and continuing late into the evening, let's take a look at the biggest games on the schedule Saturday along with our predictions for what will transpire in those contests. Our CBS Sports college football experts have picked every game both straight up and against the spread, giving you ample opportunity to decide how to make your picks ahead of kickoff.

All times Eastern

No. 2 Georgia (-14.5) at Missouri -- noon on ESPN: It's going to be tremendous watching Drew Lock go up against one of the toughest defenses in the nation, and that will be the matchup that decides the game. While Lock has been sizzling this year, the Bulldogs will force him to simmer down a bit with a few mistakes and pull away late thanks to D'Andre Swift and Elijah Holyfield wearing down the Tigers defense. This game screams "Georgia backdoor cover." Pick: Georgia (-14.5) -- Barrett Sallee

No. 22 Texas A&M at No. 1 Alabama (-26.5) -- 3:30 p.m. on CBS:  Alabama isn't just covering the spread here in the early season, it's obliterating the limits to which bookmakers feel comfortable setting these lines. The Tide are 3-0 against the number and not a single game has been a sweat with Bama covering by 13 points, 13 points and 32.5 points (vs. Ole Miss). At under four touchdowns, this might be a spot where the market, still awaiting that letdown game, hasn't caught up to the Tua Tagovailoa train.  Pick: Alabama -26.5 -- Chip Patterson

No. 3 Clemson (-16.5) at Georgia Tech -- 3:30 p.m. on ABC: Too many points here in a game where I expect Georgia Tech to play well with its back against the wall. Clemson knows it doesn't need style points, it just needs wins, and it can ride the defense to another low-scoring victory. Pick: Georgia Tech +16.5 -- Chip Patterson 

So what college football picks can you make with confidence in Week 4? And what title contender gets the scare of a lifetime? Visit SportsLine to see which teams are winning more than 50 percent of simulations, all from a proven computer model that has returned over $4,000 in profit over the past three seasons and was all over BYU's stunning upset of Wisconsin in Week 3.

No. 17 TCU (-3.5) at Texas -- 4:30 p.m. on FOX: It makes sense why the spread is what it is entering the game. TCU lost by 12 points to Ohio State and Texas pummeled the Trojans by 23. But those scores can misrepresent which team actually looked more impressive. Yes, Texas doling out the harshness in the second half of its game was a positive step. However, the Trojans had a pitiful -5 yards rushing when the Horns have allowed Maryland and Tulsa to run on them. And Texas is still a feast-or-famine offense. TCU's well-coached defense comes up big here. Pick: TCU -3.5 -- Ben Kercheval 

No. 7 Stanford (-1.5) at No. 20 Oregon -- 8 p.m. on ABC: I just can't trust Oregon to this point. It's not that I don't think it's a good team, but allowing Bowling Green to put up 24 points, and allowing 22 against San Jose State, causes me to worry about how this defense will perform against Stanford's offense. The Ducks have an offense that will keep this close, but not close enough to cover such a small spread. Pick: Stanford -1.5 -- Tom Fornelli

CBS Sports Writer

Chip Patterson has spent his young career covering college sports from the Old North State. He's been writing and talking about football and basketball for CBS Sports since 2010. You may have heard him... Full Bio

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