This season, The Six Pack has been a lesson in humility. There's a standard operating procedure in this column for picking the six games I'm going to include each week. I take the two biggest games of the weekend and break them down to find a pick, even if I don't love anything in particular about those games. Sometimes, I'm in love with the play and would make it no matter how "big" the game is, but not always. It's not until after I break down the two Games of the Week that I get to the plays I genuinely love.
Those next four picks are the ones I spend hours working on. These are the picks in which I try to find the cracks in the system to to help myself ... and you, of course. They're my babies.
And that's why this season has been so humbling. After going 4-2 last week, The Six Pack is now 21-15 on the season. That's fantastic! The problem is that I've gone 9-3 with my Games of the Week, but 12-12 with my babies. Sure, I've considered a few of the Games of the Week to be my babies too, but it's still a punch to the gut. Here's hoping my babies will learn from the Games of the Week that precede them and make us all proud.
All odds courtesy of Caesars Sportsbook
Games of the Week
No. 11 Kentucky at No. 1 Georgia: I feel like I've seen this story so many times already. Georgia's defense isn't fair. It's the best unit in the country and has strangled opponents to death. Granted, the Bulldogs haven't run into many explosive offenses, but I'm not sure how much of a difference it would've made. Plus, while Kentucky has no reason to feel bad about its 6-0 start or its ranking, it's not as if the Wildcats have an explosive offense.
Kentucky reminds me of Arkansas in a lot of ways. It's a physical team that can run the ball and play solid defense, but doesn't offer much threat in the passing game. A one-dimensional offense isn't going to have a lot of success against Georgia, and we saw what the Dawgs did to the Hogs a couple of weeks ago. I'm expecting something similar in Athens on Saturday. Georgia 34, Kentucky 10 | Georgia -22.5
No. 12 Oklahoma State at No. 25 Texas: I've caught a lot of grief from Iowa fans for pointing out the ineffectiveness of their team's offense. I'm not convinced what the Hawkeyes have done is sustainable in the long run. Well, Oklahoma State is the Big 12's version of Iowa. It's crazy to think of what Oklahoma State used to be under coach Mike Gundy vs. what it's become, but this is a defensive football team trying to outslug opponents because it just doesn't have the offensive firepower to get into a shootout.
The difference is Iowa's defense is incredible at forcing turnovers to give its offense short fields with which to work; plus, it has elite special teams. Oklahoma State has neither of those things. The Cowboys have a negative turnover differential on the season, have only made three of their six field goal attempts and rank 69th nationally in net yards punting.
It's not complementary football if you don't have anything to complement your defense. That's the biggest reason why I have a tough time seeing the Cowboys going on the road and hanging with Texas. Even with the Longhorns coming off a heartbreaking loss to Oklahoma, their offense is explosive and talented enough to move the ball on the Cowboys, and I don't trust Oklahoma State to score enough. Texas 34, Oklahoma State 24 | Texas -5
Lock of the Week
Army at Wisconsin: Wisconsin has plenty of flaws. I'm not here to tell you to ignore them. This is a one-dimensional offense that offers little value in its passing game. It's slow, stodgy and operates with almost not room for error. But it's also a team that's played a challenging schedule. And for as bad as Wisconsin's offense has been, there's never been any question about the defense.
Wisconsin enters this contest ranked first in the nation in success rate against the run -- and Georgia still exists in this universe! As an option team, Army has no other reliable way of moving the ball than on the ground. While option offenses can be tricky to prepare for, I have no doubts about Wisconsin's defensive mentality. This game isn't likely to look all that different than Wisconsin's 24-0 win over Illinois last week, except Army should find the end zone once. Wisconsin 28, Army 10 | Wisconsin -14
Underdog of the Week
UCLA at Washington: Washington is getting a little too much credit for its home-field advantage here. Don't get me wrong, Husky Stadium is an incredible atmosphere and a difficult place to play, but that only does so much for a team. The Bruins are not as good as they looked earlier in the season, but they still have the most explosive offense that the Huskies will have faced this season. Washington, on the other hand, is bipolar. For a couple of weeks, the Huskies looked downright feisty with the ball, but they reverted to believing they could just hand it off constantly in a loss to Oregon State.
The Bruins pose some matchup problems for the Huskies defense that other teams haven't been able to exploit. I'm taking the points, but I don't hate taking the underdog to win straight up. UCLA 28, Washington 24 | UCLA +2
Under of the Week
No. 10 Michigan State at Indiana: Michigan State is going to lose a game at some point. I don't want to disrespect this Spartans team because I think it is legitimately good ... I just don't think it's elite. Once it gets into the tougher part of the schedule, some warts will show. I even considered this road game against Indiana a potential trap for Sparty's first loss, and while I think it's possible, I'm not willing to bet on it.
Instead, I'm going to attack the total here. Michigan State's offense has been more explosive than any in recent memory, but I don't know how sustainable it is. This week, it faces an Indiana defense that, while not great, is still one of the better units on the schedule. This matchup reminds me a lot of Michigan State's game against Nebraska earlier this season. The Huskers were able to limit Michigan State's rushing attack, holding Kenneth Walker to a season-low 61 yards. Michigan State still won the game, but it was a lower-scoring 23-20 affair. Michigan State 24, Indiana 20 | Under 48.5
Principle Play of the Week
No. 13 Ole Miss at Tennessee: What are we without our principles? I'm sorry, but when I see a total for a game listed in the 80s, I must go under because I believe in a moral and ethical society. (OK, it's also because this total got steamed up by a bunch of people who watched what happened between Ole Miss and Arkansas, and who have paid attention to Tennessee's offense in recent weeks.)
Everybody saw this matchup and thought it would be a points bonanza and immediately bet the total up from 78.5 to 82. Now, this game could very well bang the over, and I fully anticipate it being a 60-minute sweat in which I might be begging for Lane Kiffin or Josh Heupel to go for two to avoid an ugly death in overtime. Still, I'd rather die on my shield than take the coward's way out and bet the over. Ole Miss 41, Tennessee 38 | Under 82.5
SportsLine Pick of the Week
No. 19 Arizona State at Utah: Whoops! I ran out of room in The Six Pack and there's another bet this weekend I love. If you want to know what it is, you can find it on my SportsLine page.
Games of the Week
Lock of the Week
Which college football picks can you make with confidence in Week 7, and which top-10 team will get a huge scare? Visit SportsLine to see which teams will win and cover the spread -- all from a proven computer model that has returned almost $3,800 in profit over the past five-plus seasons -- and find out.