Bobby: 5-3 (46-41)
Jamison: 5-3 (42-45)
Blake: 5-3 (46-41)
#12 Syracuse v. #3 Notre Dame (ND -9.5)
Bobby: I cannot express how badly I want Syracuse to beat Notre Dame. One out of Clemson, Notre Dame or Michigan need to lose for OU to have a window of getting into the College Football Playoff and if you ask me, this is the best shot we have. Clemson ain’t losing in the weak ACC and while Michigan still faces a tough challenge from Ohio State at the Horseshoe next weekend, a Buckeye win would just swap them with the Wolverines.
However badly I want Syracuse to win, they most likely won’t. They have a worse S&P Defensive rating than OU, for God’s sake. With that being said, the stars might be aligning here for a close game with ‘Cuse’s ranking, ND’s crappy Yankee uniforms and just the weirdness of it all. Syracuse, +9.5
Jamison: I would LOVE to see Syracuse win this one. This game is the biggest one to watch for Sooner fans. Great 1:30 kickoff (thanks NBC).
A huge dilemma for me in picking this game, due to Blake’s saying of “look good, play good”. Notre Dame’s Yankee inspired uniforms are atrocious. One would think that since they look good, they would play bad. I think that trend breaks on Saturday. Notre Dame’s performance vs. FSU last Saturday really pleased me. Ian Book has been their glue, and without him, with a QB who threw multiple picks, they still looked dominant. Give me Notre Dame by 17. Notre Dame, -9.5
Blake: I am a big uniform guy and over the past few weeks I have been picking winners like no other solely based on the uniforms that they have worn. Barry Sanders throwbacks (winner), Tech Black Raiders (winner), and the Sailor Bear helmet (winner). When you got that icy drip, you are going to 100% play better. It’s just a fact.
The opposite is true as well; Notre Dame’s uniforms for this game are booty. I don’t know who thought mixing a baseball jersey and football jersey was a good idea, but well it is happening this Saturday. There is no way you can win in these uniforms, they are that bad. Dino Babers is the man and will not allow these trash uniforms to beat him. Syracuse by a million. Syracuse, +9.5
#24 Cincinnati @ #11 Central Florida (UCF -7.5)
Bobby: The UCF story just won’t end. The Knights clearly aren’t a good team as they produce struggle win after struggle win against mediocre American teams. While Cincy comes into this one with a Top 25 ranking, I think the Gameday effect pushes the Knights over the hump just enough to cover. Just stay away from this one. Central Florida, -7.5
Jamison: Cincy, my adopted #2 team from middle school. I remember the good ol days with Tony Pike and Marty Gilliard. They were a fun team to watch, until Tim Tebow destroyed them. UCF’s defense has been atrocious, and I have a feeling this will be a shootout. UCF by a touchdown. Cincinnati, +7.5
Blake: I can’t believe we actually have to care about this game. UCF is not good at all. But yet since they whine so much on Twitter, we have to discuss them each week. There is no scenario in which UCF should be allowed in the playoff. There conference sucks, their strength of schedule sucks, they should not be allowed to get in the playoffs just because they are trucking crappy teams. The CFP through fairness out the window when Baylor or TCU was not allowed in the playoff in 2014, so there is no way UCF should ever get a shot at the thrown.
I heard this idea this week though and I absolutely love it; if there is not going to be an 8-team playoff, there needs to be a mid-major playoff. There is nothing I want more than watching UCF, UAB, UNT, and Troy battling it out to be the top mid-major program. It would be a cash cow and a gamblers paradise. Until that happens, give me Cincy so UCF will finally shut up. Cincinnati, +7.5
USC @ UCLA (USC -2.5)
Bobby: While I was initially thinking USC, after thinking about it more, I think I like UCLA. The Bruins have slowly (VERY slowly) been improving, while the Trojans just bombed against Cal last weekend. Chip Kelly gets his a signature win. UCLA, +2.5
Jamison: My brain is telling me to pick USC, but its too much fun to pick against USC. UCLLLLLA had its skid this year, but they are beginning to cover spreads and show some competitiveness. USC and UCLA are both teams with talent, but are not utilizing it this season. I am rolling with UCLA due to them being at home, and USC playing a QB that should be a high schooler, and only knows how to throw to his Mater Dei teammate Amon Ra St. Brown. UCLA, +2.5
Blake: WHY IS THIS GAME ON THE PICK EM SLATE!?! I know this is a week does not have many good college football games, but this matchup is the lowest of the low. The only positive about having to care about this game is I get to watch USC’s continued demise towards college football irrelevancy. Most college football fans whose team was in the position of USC would stick by their team’s side and support the university to ensure a brighter future for their program, but USC is just full of fake fans so they won’t care about the team or do anything for them unless they are winning.
All the USC fans I know cheer for multiple college programs anyways, so they will just move to whichever of their “teams” are doing well at the time. UCLA has real fans, produce stars (Lonzo Ball), and have supported some of the most successful companies in the world (Big Baller Brand). Give me the Bruins. UCLA, +2.5
TCU @ Baylor (BU -2.0)
Bobby: Uhhhh what are you doing Vegas? Have you seen TCU the past few weeks? The Horned Frog dumpster fire has been in full effect for weeks and at this point it will be a tall task just to make a bowl game. Baylor has been playing better this season and needs this one to lock down their bowl eligibility. The Sailor Bear helmet makes this pick even more solid. Bears roll big. Baylor, -2
Jamison: Durdy’s Lock of the Week. I am not picking them due to Blake’s look good, play good, but the Sailor Bear unis are hard to pass up. This is more of a “see TCU, pick against them”. VEGAS, THIS IS THE THIRD WEEK NOW YOU HAVE NEGLECTED TO REALIZE HOW BAD TCU IS. It has been EASY money picking against them. Baylor by double digits easy at home. Baylor, -2
Blake: For the first time in three years, the Revivalry (Editor’s Note: Can we still call it that?) might actually be a good game. The past three years, TCU has blown the barn doors off of Baylor and its sad for me to think that won’t be the case this year.
Before I break down this years matchup, I want to enlighten the readers on why this is a one of the best rivalries in college football that not many people know about. Before 1910, both TCU and Baylor were located in Waco. However, in March of that year, the TCU campus somehow was “accidentally” burned to the ground. As a future lawyer, I do not like to rush to conclusions, but I am a connect the dots type of guy. At the time, Waco was a small town and there was only room for one university. If I had to guess, one school *cough cough Baylor* got jealous of TCU and decided to sabotage it and burn it down. Well, TCU ended up getting the better end of the deal after the city of Fort Worth offered them fifty acres of land to rebuild their campus and has been on those fifty acres ever since.
Fast forward close to a little less of a century later, there were rumors that when the Big 12 was first created that Baylor made it in over TCU because the Governor of Texas was a Baylor graduate and was influential in getting Baylor in as the 12th school in the newly formed Big 12. TCU fans have since put that behind them as both schools are on an even playing field and over the past few years TCU has been dominant in the series.
For some reason, I have a feeling that this game is going to be wild. These two teams are going in opposite directions. My Frogs are having the worst season ever, while the Bears are exceeding expectations. However, it’s a rivalry game so you gotta throw out the record books because anything can happen. TCU has been a dumpster fire this year and have broken my heart in every way possible, but for some reason I still hold out hope that we can win this game. The Frogs hate the Bears and the Bears hate the Frogs, it is as simple as that. Give ’em hell tomorrow boys and go Frogs. TCU by a million. TCU, +2
#16 Iowa State @ #15 Texas
Bobby: This is going to be an absolute classic that nobody is going to see simply because it’s on the “2005 Rose Bowl Replay” Network. That really grinds my gears. I know Texas needs to do something substantial with its overpriced, useless, bloated network, but depriving the nation of one of the best games of the Big 12 is a prime reason why the Longhorn Network and its titular intitiution is a cancerous cyst on this conference. It damn near killed the conference in 2010 and it only continues to be torn in the side of everyone who is stuck in this stunted disaster of a conference.
Okay, rant over. As for the game, I have no idea what to think of it. Iowa State has been red hot with Brock Purdy at the helm, while Texas has been…less so. The Longhorns have shown life after staving off an upset bid in Lubbock and I assume will show up strong on senior night. However, I’m going with the hot team here in the Cyclones, even though they let me down last week failing to cover for the first time this season by just half a point. Iowa State, +3
Jamison: I like Texas in Austin. Montgomery being out the first half is going to be huge in impacting Iowa State’s offensive flow. Iowa State is going to need to come up big defensively, which is possible, but I believe they will be fighting from a large gap in the second half. It’d be a great game to watch, if Longhorn Network didn’t snag it. Texas, -3
Blake: WHY IS THIS GAME ONLY ON THE LONGHORN NETWORK?!?! The one Texas game that I actually want to watch this year and of course they put in on the network that nobody has. People in Austin aren’t even able to get the Longhorn Network on their TV, while everyone in Montana has it in their cable package and are trying to get rid of it. Just out of spite, I am picking Iowa State because this stupid network has doomed the future for the Big 12 and all they show (if you can get the channel in the first place) is Rose Bowl reruns from the mid-2000s. Iowa State, +3
Texas Tech @ Kansas State (Tech -6.5)
Bobby: Don’t let the Red Raiders 0-3 record in the past three weeks fool you; Tech isn’t a bad team. Those three games have been dogfights and they haven’t even had Alan Bowman in half of them. While Jett Duffy is not a great QB by any means, I expect them to beat this just awful Kansas State team. Texas Tech, -6.5
Jamison: I picked K-state to cover against Kansas last week in a game they nearly lost. That was rough. I hate betting on K-State so much, and its honestly trash I’ve had to pick them every week. Screw it, give me Jett Duffy and -6.5 to roll over the Wildcats. Not a big fan of Tech without Bowman, but they showed some optimism and flash at the end of that Texas game. Texas Tech, -6.5
Blake: Hehehehehe Crowleyman cashing in on his spot-on analysis with how Kansas was going to beat (Ed.: cover against) this K-State team. Predicting Kansas State to lose that game (Ed: not cover) was as easy as predicting that the sun is going to rise tomorrow. When I saw this spread, I immediately burst into tears laughing because Vegas obviously has not learned that the Wildcats cannot beat anyone. Texas Tech could play with five players and still put a fifty burger on this team. The Raiders are my lock of the century in this game because honestly Vegas is just giving people money with this spread. Bet all of West Texas on this game. Texas Tech, -6.5
#9 West Virginia @ Oklahoma State (WVU -5)
Bobby: Look, I fully get the temptation to pick Oklahoma State here. The Cowboys are riding high after a near upset of Oklahoma and West Virginia might be looking ahead to their game next week against those same Sooners; this should be a classic trap game. With that being said, this line is simply too low. The Mountaineers might struggle in this, but they are going to pull this one out by at least a touchdown. West Virginia, -5
Jamison: Yes, I agree there should be some upset talk on this matchup due to the Cowboys’ win against Texas in Stillwater. But, for me, I think its either 80% blowout WVU, or an upset; no in-between. The Mountaineers are hot right now, and that’s what puts them over the top. If they look past this game to OU, that’s where they’d find trouble. West Virginia, -5
Blake: I don’t want to touch this game with a ten-foot pole, but I know I have to because of this column. OSU has been the strangest team this year. At one point I thought they would not make a bowl, but then they beat Texas and were a two-point conversion away from beating OU last week. I have no idea what type of performance this team is going to put up and Russian Roulette is more predictable than betting on this OSU team. I guess I’ll go West Virginia? I do not like this one bit, but I think West Virginia is the better team. West Virginia, -5
Kansas @ #6 Oklahoma (OU -36.5)
Bobby: The best advice I can give to you here: stay far, far away from this. High lines are always hard to figure out with this OU team and considering this is a game where absolutely no injuries can be risked, expect to see the starters pulled early. However, this KU team will be so hapless against the Sooner offense that I still can see a cover. Eh, why not. Oklahoma, -36.5
Jamison: Hate this pick again. It is relying a lot that OU’s defense can step up and hold KU to 10ish-20ish points. In the past, that would be laughable, but our defense has hit a farther rock bottom than we every thought was plausible. I am HOPING OU’s defense will look as they did vs. FAU this game, and hold KU to around 13. OU 52-13. Oklahoma, -36.5
Blake: KANSAS HIRED LES MILES!!! (Ed.: Allegedly) This is awesome for the Big 12 and the only thing that could make this better is if somehow Tech brought back Mike Leach. Kansas might become a unit in the conference, which is scary to think about. I think the Jayhawks will be fired up by the fact that they have for the first time an actual coach that understands football. Even though he won’t be coaching this season, I think the Jayhawks will be excited to show their new coach what they got (or don’t got) when OU routes them this weekend. I think this excitement will get them the cover. Kansas, +36.5