Pick Six: Rolling with road favorites in Notre Dame-Miami, Georgia-Auburn
Trust the Process as Tom Fornelli leads you toward his best bets for Week 11 of the season
Pick Six is on a heater. After a 4-1-1 performance last week, Pick Six has now gone 14-3-1 over the past three weeks, and it is looking to keep wrecking shop this week. So let's get down to business.
Games of the Week
No. 1 Georgia (-2.5) at No. 10 Auburn: Have you seen it lately? You know, that thing we all tend to do when crazy things start happening in the college football world? We see teams losing games we didn't expect, so we talk ourselves into other possible upsets in the coming weeks, even if they don't make a whole lot of sense. The team receiving that kind of talk right now is Auburn. The Tigers can be a very important team over the final few weeks of the regular season because they not only play Georgia this week but finish the regular season with Alabama. It's the Chaos Agent we've been dreaming of!
Of course, Auburn is also the team that lost to LSU and Clemson -- quite possibly the two best teams it has played. Its win over Mississippi State was nice, but after that, Auburn's best win is, what? Texas A&M? So you'll have to forgive me if I'm not buying into the Auburn as a possible spoiler talk. Sure, it's possible. A lot of things are possible, but I don't think it's probable.
That's why I'm rolling with Georgia this weekend because, unlike Auburn at times, Georgia knows what it's good at and sticks to those things. If you would like some trends to support the pick, I have those, too. Georgia is 7-0 against the spread in its past seven road games. Auburn is 1-4 ATS in its past five home games against teams with a winning record. The favorite in this rivalry is 6-1 ATS in the past seven, and Georgia is 5-1 ATS in the past six. I look for all these trends to continue. Georgia 27, Auburn 20
No. 3 Notre Dame (-3) at No. 7 Miami (Fla.): I saw some premature declarations of Miami being "back" last week. Don't get me wrong, the win over Virginia Tech was big, and it was nice to see the Canes put somebody away rather than take things to the last drive. Notre Dame is a much more difficult test, though, and it's not one I expect Miami to pass.
Miami is a good team, but it's a good team with flaws. The one that concerns me in this matchup is its run defense. Using the advanced metric S&P+, Miami's run defense is ranked No. 82 in the country. Using the same metric, Notre Dame's run offense is No. 2. Seems problematic for Miami, no?
I just see Brandon Wimbush and Josh Adams posing a lot of problems for this Miami defense, and I don't see the Irish defense having the same kind of trouble with Miami's offense. Notre Dame 31, Miami 20
Lock of the Week
No. 2 Alabama at No. 16 Mississippi State (under 51): In all honesty, I nearly made Alabama (-14) the Lock of the Week based on how Mississippi State performed against Georgia and Auburn. I couldn't pull the trigger due to the injuries on the Alabama defense, though. So I believe the under is the safer play here. Even with the injuries, I expect Alabama's defense to do enough to limit the Bulldogs offense, and I wouldn't be surprised to see Alabama take a more conservative, slower approach on offense to protect its defense a bit more. Oh, and in the past 18 meetings between these two, the under has come through 14 times. Alabama 31, Mississippi State 14
Underdog of the Week
SMU (+4.5) at Navy: You can consider this me fading Navy. The Mids are in the midst of a bad run, losing three straight, including an eight-point loss to Temple last week. It's also a Navy team that struggles in pass defense going against an SMU team that can efficiently move the ball through the air and exploit that. While I'm taking SMU and the points, I do think there's a strong chance SMU wins outright, so I don't think making a money line play here is a bad idea, either. SMU 38, Navy 34
Over of the Week
Western Kentucky at Marshall (over 50): I've always been better at finding unders than overs, and this week doesn't give me many overs I feel great about. This one is the best of a mediocre bunch. Marshall has been a strong under team this season, but I just think this number is a little too low. Marshall 28, Western Kentucky 24
Under of the Week
No. 20 Iowa at No. 8 Wisconsin (under 46): This game is, and always has been, an under treasure. I know Iowa scored 55 points last week, but that only gives me more confidence that the Hawkeyes will struggle to move the ball this week. Plus, Iowa is on the road this time. The Hawkeyes are averaging 31 points at Kinnick Stadium and 21 points outside of it this season. Wisconsin is allowing 14 points per game at home. The past four times these two have played at Camp Randall, the game stayed under. It has also gone under in three of the past four meetings overall, and that fourth was a push. Expect an old-school, sluggish, Big Ten brouhaha in this one. Wisconsin 24, Iowa 17
| ||Last Week||2017 Overall|
|Games of the week||2-0||14-6|
|Lock of the week||1-0||6-4|
|Underdog of the week||0-0-1||6-3-1|
|Over of the week||1-0||5-5|
|Under of the week||0-1||7-3|
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