I’m out of town this weekend and will probably miss many, if not most, of these games! Despite that, let’s do our thing, though with a pretty heavy dose of LIGHTNING ROUND.
As usual, all times Eastern and all predictions wrong.
- Nebraska @ Ohio State (FOX): Well, Scott Frost day came and went, which is good because this figures to put the Cornhuskers back on the schnide.
- Louisville @ Clemson (ABC): Louisville’s defense is… really, really bad. This will get ugly.
- Texas A&M @ Auburn (ESPN): The Internet angst regarding Gus Malzahn is really something, which will be really confusing when the Tigers win. Well, provided they can figure something, anything on offense.
- Michigan State @ Maryland (ESPN2): Sparty.
- Oklahoma State @ Baylor (FS1): Pokes.
- Memphis @ East Carolina (ESPNU): Tigers.
- South Carolina @ Mississippi (SEC): Gamecocks.
- Iowa State @ Kansas (FSN): Cyclones.
- Rutgers @ Wisconsin (BTN): Do I really even need to specify for this one?
- Air Force @ Army (CBSS): Army begins its Commander-in-Chief’s Trophy run with this game, which at the rate they’ve been going this year they should handle easily.
- Syracuse @ Wake Forest (ACC/RSN): One of the great current mysteries of this college football season is: “Is Syracuse actually good? And why are they ranked?” So suffice it to say, they need to be Wake so we can keep asking ourselves that question.
12:15: Georgia Tech @ North Carolina (Raycom): After beating VPI last week, there’s an uptick in optimism surrounding Georgia Tech. The maddening thing about this season, though, has been the inconsistency. Even in the Virginia Tech game it looked like it was going to be a track meet before they muffed that punt. The main thing I will be watching here is the defense, and whether or not we can consistently get stops. The offense, of course, bears mentioning. They played lights out with Oliver in and while I think Marshall is a superior all-around QB, Oliver’s lack of hesitancy (in fairness, this is due to a simplified playbook with less reads) has made a lot of difference. If we want to have any hope of going bowling this season, this game is a must-win, full stop. It is hard to see how we will get in otherwise, and even then…
- Florida State @ North Carolina State (ABC): It’s been a rough couple of weeks for the Wolfpack, and while FSU has looked better I don’t think they’ve looked that much better.
- Georgia @ Kentucky (CBS): Georgia looked a little bit more like themselves against Florida, and all they need to do is sustain that against a pesky Kentucky team. If they can get their offense rolling at all, Kentucky won’t be able to keep up with them.
- West Virginia @ Texas (FOX): So Texas got everyone back in and re-invested, and then they went out and lost to Oklahoma State. Whoops! And now you have a pain-in-the-neck Mountaineer team that could definitely still make their way to the Big 12 title game (which, yes, is a thing again for some reason) and all sorts of problems. I’ll go with the Horns here, but sheesh nothing is easy with those guys.
- Iowa @ Purdue (ESPN2): Iowa?
- Kansas State @ Texas Christian (FS1): This looks to be it for Bill Synder, but the problem with a coach like that is that he very much wants to go out on his own terms.
- Navy @ Cincinnati (ESPNU): Cincy was probably smoke-and-mirrors, running out to that undefeated start, but Navy has just been not good this year.
- Minnesota @ Illinois (BTN): Minnesota?
- Tulane @ South Florida (CBSS): USF.
- Pennsylvania State @ Michigan (ESPN): This finally looks like the year Michigan will finish above third in the Big Ten East. All they have to do is not screw this up. Which, well, I don’t blame you for being nervous, but by all rights this year’s Wolverines should beat this year’s Nittany Lions.
- Boston College @ Virginia Tech (Raycom): This game figures to be, uh, low-scoring. And I’m taking BC.
- Missouri @ Florida (SEC): Mizzou is 0-4 in the SEC, and by all rights they should be 2-2. Such is life, and probably losing in the Swamp.
- Utah @ Arizona State (Pac12): Arizona State is 4-4 and no one knows what to do, which is a good time for the Utes to swoop in and remind them who really rules the roost in the Pac-12 South these days (since USC continues to be AWOL).
- Duke @ Miami (ESPN2): Miami is sort of not good, but I don’t care how good Duke is, I don’t see them out-atheleting Miami.
- Houston @ Southern Methodist (ESPNU): Houston.
- Connecticut @ Tulsa (CBSS): Tulsa?
7:15: Notre Dame @ Northwestern (ESPN): I’m picking Notre Dame here, not because I like the Irish (I certainly don’t), but having a division leader be 5-1 in conference and 5-4 on the year will surely deepen the existential crisis in the Big Ten offices.
- California-Los Angeles @ Oregon (FOX): Speaking of the Utes causing crashes back down to Earth, Chip Kelly’s little two-game win streak got a rude awakening by the Utes. And now they head up to Eugene, Chip’s old stomping grounds, and a Ducks team that really themselves will be looking to get back on the ball. This could get ugly.
- Louisiana Tech @ Mississippi State (SEC): Miss State.
- Texas-San Antonio @ Alabama-Birmingham (beIN): Go Blazers!
- Florida Atlantic @ Florida International (Stadium): Yep, welcome to the loathsome universe where it turns out the reason that Lane Kiffin was fun and good at FAU was because Kendall Briles was his offensive coordinator last year. Taking FIU here.
- Alabama @ Louisiana State (CBS): This game is nuts. As I said elsewhere, these are the #1 and #3 teams in the country and the spread is Alabama by two touchdowns on the road, in Death Valley, at night. This is nuts. But then again, everything about Alabama’s season so far is nuts. Even more nuts might be to bet against them, but… I’d probably still take LSU to cover. It’s almost inconceivable. Fourteen points!
- Oklahoma @ Texas Tech (ABC): In the meantime, the Red Raiders are having themselves a nice little season, and stranger things have happened in Lubbock but… Oklahoma is real good, y’all.
9:00: Stanford @ Washington (Pac12): Remember when the Pac-10/12 was a fun conference, full of teams that liked to throw it all over the place? Yeah, if that’s what you’re nostalgic for then stay far, far away from this game. Which, in fairness, will probably be pretty easy since you don’t live on the West coast and probably don’t get DirecTV. Anyway, I’ll take UDub.
10:00: Southern California @ Oregon State (FS1): Oregon State did beat Colorado somehow, and the Trojans are reeling, but yeah, I’m going with USC here.
- Brigham Young @ Boise State (ESPN2): BYU just lost 7-6 to Northern Illinois, so I will go with Boise here.
- San Diego State @ New Mexico (ESPNU): Aztecs.
10:30: Fresno State @ Nevada-Las Vegas (CBSS): Bulldogs.
10:45: California @ Washington State (ESPN): How in the world did Cal beat UDub? You know what, don’t tell me, I don’t want to know. Going with Wazzu.