We had a feeling that last week would be characterized by swings from so many even odds games and it was.
There were a few mild upsets on the road but nothing remarkable. This week has some huge underdogs that would be outlandish picks so let’s try and focus on more realistic upsets if there are any games in that category. 2,875 points when Old Dominion beat VA Tech is the record so far.
Upset Specials > 300 Point Difference
Wake 725 at NC State: A longshot on the road for defensively challenged Wake against the 23rd most efficient offense.
Florida State 775 at Notre Dame: Have you seen the Seminoles this year? Their only chance is to get into a defensive brawl with ND and somehow come out +5 in turnovers on the road. Ian Book is out for this game so the ND offense with Wimbush makes this possible.
Mississippi State 1600 at Bama: Only if Bama has a major post-LSU letdown and Nick Fitzgerald continues his passing ability from the ATM game. AND this only means losing by 17 if they are lucky.
LSU at Arkansas 500: Now this is something to possibly consider? Arkansas is bad but they had two weeks to get ready for an LSU team coming off an absolute thrashing from Bama. Will LSU be motivated? As we have seen many times this year, a defensive team like LSU can go on the road and sputter. Last week it almost worked again with ND at Northwestern. Arkansas is a bad team.
TCU 535 at West Virginia: Have you seen TCU over its last four games? Awful slump. WVU is peaking.
Clemson at BC 750: Clemson is on fire. It looks like Bama vs Clemson for the title this year. Could BC shock Clemson? They have the 65th most efficient offense and that does not sound like the answer for Clemson’s massive D line.
Oklahoma State 700 at Oklahoma: Bedlam would be more entertaining at Boone Pickens where the cowboys are tough. They are not a good road team and lost to Baylor last week. They have a good offense but can they outscore OU? Most likely not.
Baylor 590 at Iowa State: Speaking of Baylor, they go on the road to play Iowa State in Ames. The Cyclones have a pretty good defense and enough offense to be functional. Baylor probably cannot pull this off.
South Florida 455 at Cincinnati: Last week teams ranked 18-25 were the victims. There is not a lot of difference between these two. Cincy has a good defense and a struggling offense. USF is the exact opposite, but they have looked bad for four weeks now.
Auburn 550 at Georgia: Auburn went air raid on huddle in the fourth quarter and came back to beat Texas A&M. They have the personnel to run that offense but I expect Gus Malzahn to continue to run straight ahead into the Georgia D without a good RB and a poor offensive line while wasting the talent of his NFL caliber QB. Slim chance Auburn scraps their normal offense and does something to help their great D.
So I cannot really see any of those occurring but as we know at least one will!
Clemson and Michigan seem like guaranteed points.
Even Odds Battles
Seven games under 300 point differences that will most likely crown the winner for this week, just like last week.
Fresno 163 at Boise 240: Fresno is having a great year. Boise is always tough at home. I haven’t seen either of these teams play, but Fresno has more potential.
Texas 183 at Texas Tech 200: The Red Raiders would love to beat Texas. They played OU tight last week at home and I think they can beat Texas, but it should be close.
Wisconsin 375 at Penn State 130: Both teams have underachieved this year. Wisconsin has the better offense but shakier defense in this game. On a neutral field, these points would be more even.
Washington State 150 at Colorado 290: I give up even trying to understand the PAC 12. Washington State is their only consistent team, and they are pretty good. Colorado has lost four straight games so it is difficult to have any confidence in them. Altitude is a funny thing though.
Ohio State 158 at Michigan State 255: Ohio State is discombobulated right now. A very talented team that is having chemistry issues. You don’t want that on the road against the Spartans. Ohio State’s third-ranked offense crashes against the seventh-ranked Spartan D. This usually favors Michigan State.
Kentucky 154 at Tennessee 260: Offensively challenged UK ran into a Georgia team that was better. What does UK have left in the tank? Tennessee looked awful last week against Charlotte, but maybe that was because they were resting? This is a tougher call than I thought.
South Carolina 330 at Florida 137: Florida got blown out by Missouri in the swamp last week. UF lost to Georgia and rolled belly up. Will it happen two weeks in a row? Missouri is a better team than South Carolina.