Friday, October 28, 2011

Week nine: College football predictions

Last week: 7-3
Season to date: 69-23

Texas over Kansas. The Longhorns are favored by 28 at home. Is there any reason to believe that Kansas can beat the spread? It’s not likely—UT by 30.

Game of the week--Oklahoma over Kansas State. ESPN’s College Game Day bypassed Manhattan, KS this weekend, likely because of Oklahoma’s loss last week to Texas Tech. That should in no way diminish the importance of this game. OU needs a win badly to maintain hopes of a Big 12 championship. Undefeated Kansas State will play in front of a wild home crowd and wants this win to not only prove the doubters wrong but to also keep pace with Oklahoma State in league play. OU by nine.

Texas A&M over Missouri. Call this the “defector bowl”—two probable future SEC foes do battle in College Station and A&M will prevail by 10.

Texas Tech over Iowa State. I’m tempted to go with this as an “upset special,” but the Red Raiders are at home and I doubt that Tommy Tuberville will allow his team to gloat over the OU upset win for too long. Look for Tech to start slow and then pull away for a 14 point win.

Oklahoma State over Baylor. No one has stopped OSU’s offense yet and it surely won’t be Baylor’s porous defense. This is one of those Big 12 games where the offenses are likely to put up a combined 90 points. Oklahoma State by 17.

Florida over Georgia. It would be easy to pick the Dawgs in this one—they’ve won five in a row and are due to beat rival Florida. But, John Brantley is back at QB for the Gators and that will help their inconsistent offense. Florida by four at the “World’s Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party.”

Wisconsin over Ohio State. Wiscy was ready for overtime at Michigan State last Saturday night and then the wacky batted ball touchdown gave Sparty the win. The Badgers will rebound tomorrow with a 10 point win on the road in Columbus.

Stanford over USC. This will be billed as the Quarterback Bowl—Andrew Luck of Stanford against Matt Barkley of USC. But, that misses the story line of Stanford’s relatively quiet rise as a football power—the nation’s longest winning streak (15 games), the first team in 75 years to win 10 games by at least 25 points, and winner of three of the last four against perennial power USC. The Trojans have won three straight but Stanford’s overall, balanced offense coupled with their stout defense will be too much—Stanford by 10.

Clemson over Georgia Tech. This is a tale of teams headed different directions. Clemson is ranked fifth in the country, is undefeated, and is very much in the national title chase. Georgia Tech was off to its best start in years before blowing a gasket against Virginia Tech and Miami. This will be a tough road test for the Tigers but look for them to win a by a touchdown.

Nebraska over Michigan State. The hottest team in the league—Michigan State—plays a team who still has hopes of making the inaugural Big Ten conference championship game. I think Michigan State’s killer October schedule will trip them up, finally, this week. Nebraska by four.

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