Tuesday, November 26, 2013

College Football Turkey Day Weekend Preview

With the short week, we're condensing the Weekday & Weekend College Football action into one post.

Western Michigan vs.  (14) Northern Illinois

The third consecutive mid-week game for Northern Illinois. Over the last couple weeks two of the league's better teams (Toledo & Ball State) gave them their best shot but fell well short. If they can't do it, a Western Michigan team that barely beat UMass for their only win ain't getting it done.

Northern Illinois 56 Western Michigan 10

Oregon State vs. (13) Oregon

The yearly Civil War that has a lot less at stake with Oregon's struggles over the last few weeks. Oregon has effectively played their way out of  a chance to win the Pac 12 while Oregon State is going to a low-level bowl game regardless of the results. Personally, I think Oregon may be going through the motions and is highly vulnerable to an upset.

Oregon State 49 Oregon 35

(16) Fresno State vs. San Jose State

San Jose State is basically playing out the string to end a very disappointing season while Fresno State still has high aspirations to play in a BCS bowl game. In theory Fresno State should be getting the best shot from their opponents but they have enough struggles holding their opposition to 55 or less.

Fresno State 63 San Jose State 34

Arkansas vs. (17) LSU

Last year, Brett Bielema left Wisconsin out of the blue for the SEC and Arkansas. He has yet to win a conference game while Wisconsin is rolling on to another solid season. They do not get their first SEC win in this one.

LSU 49 Arkansas 10

South Florida vs. (19) UCF

Even by the low standards of the American Athletic Conference, South Florida is not very good (even though they did somehow beat Cincinnati). Don't count on them getting another upset against UCF.

UCF 42 South Florida 14

(1) Alabama vs. (4) Auburn

In the state of Alabama, this is already the game of the year. In college football, this very well could be the game of the year. I think Auburn somehow pulls off the win here and throws all of College Football into a state of chaos and anarchy. This will be an Iron Bowl for the ages.

Auburn 42 Alabama 39 (2 OT)

(2) Florida State vs. Florida

One thing I don't like is how some schools (SEC) cough cough sorta game the system by paying an FCS school to take a beating towards the end of the year. When a team like Georgia Southern takes the money, not only wins (like they did against Florida) but do so WITHOUT COMPLETING A PASS....its not funny, its hilarious. Unless your a Florida State fan, there will be nothing hilarious or even exciting about this game.

Florida State 70 Florida 21

(3) Ohio State vs. Michigan

Another rivalry game that has reduced luster due to the mediocrity of one of the teams involved (Michigan). Ohio State definitely has plenty to play for in the event my Auburn vs. Alabama pick comes true.

Ohio State 35 Michigan 0

(21) Texas A & M vs. (5) Missouri

A battle of ex-Big 12 teams who joined the SEC and no one thought they would be good because they weren't dominant in the Big 12 and then they joined the SEC and they actually turned out to be good. In what could be Manziel's last SEC game, don't expect him to go out a winner. Missouri has the much better team and an outside chance to be more than a top-5 team if things break right this weekend.

Missouri 56 Texas A & M 35

(6) Clemson vs. (10) South Carolina

A battle between two very good teams with a penchant for losing games they shouldn't (historically) that is getting very little attention for a match up between two top 10 teams.

Clemson 42 South Carolina 28

(25) Notre Dame vs. (8) Stanford

This was a first round match up in the Mock 32. While Notre Dame has showed enough that they may be a consistently good team under Brian Kelly (if not necessarily a championship contender), Stanford just has the better team.

Stanford 27 Notre Dame 24

(9) Baylor vs. TCU

It turns out that Baylor can be stopped (along with their title aspirations). They also have a pretty terrible TCU team to take out all of their frustration on. This one isn't going to be pretty.

Baylor 77 TCU 10

Minnesota vs. (11) Michigan State

Minnesota showed that they have been a better team than usual this year (despite a loss to Wisconsin). I think Minnesota puts up a fight against Michigan State but fall short again in an attempt to upset a top-25 opponent. That still shouldn't take away from the progress their team made this year.

Michigan State 24 Minnesota 7

Arizona vs. (12) Arizona State

Not sure how to pick this one. On the one hand Arizona is coming off a blowout win over Oregon and proved themselves capable of betting top teams (such as Arizona State). On the other side of the coin, Arizona State is this close to playing in the PAC 12 title game and they don't strike me as a team that would take this for granted. Arizona State wins this one, but its not going to be easy.

Arizona State 56 Arizona 49

Penn State vs. (15) Wisconsin

Penn State has been a pretty average team this year and Wisconsin has beaten the teams they should beat and at least didn't embarrass themselves in the two games they lost. Wisconsin rolls to a win behind their loaded running attack.

Wisconsin 49 Penn State 21

(22) UCLA vs. (23) USC

Two teams located in the greater LA area and ranked very close to each other in the rankings, both getting there in opposite ways. UCLA got off to a nice start with the help of an easy early schedule but started to struggle once they competition level increased, USC was destined towards a train wreck 5-7 season before Lane Kiffin got fired in the parking lot at LAX. Even if Ed Orgeron does not get hired by USC, the job he has done will get him a head coaching gig somewhere.

USC 35 UCLA 24

(24) Duke vs. North Carolina

With this match up, you would almost expect Dick Vitale & Digger Phelps to be calling this game. In all seriousness, Duke's football team deserves a lot of credit for having their most successful season in a long time. All they have to do is win this game to earn the right to lose to Florida State in the ACC Championship game.

Duke 38 North Carolina 21