This is a huge rivalry week across the country. There are rivalry games like Michigan/Ohio State and Washington/Washington State that will factor in who will appear in conference championship games. The OSU/Michigan game will help weed out the logjam at the top in the College Football Playoff rankings.
This week’s schedule has a lot of large point spreads, but I still see value across the board.
We at ‘America’s White Boy’ pick against the spread for all the big college football games on Saturday (November 26th, 2016) and a few Friday games. We also pick five extra games as a bonus.
Florida at Florida State (-7.5) – My pick is Florida State Seminoles
This game opened up at -5, but was quickly bet up. I would have loved to jump on this game at the opening line, but I still think the line is favorable where it stands. Florida’s record is better than I thought it would be at this point. Thanks to their defense and a weak SEC conference schedule, the Gators are 8-2, but only 4-5-1 ATS. Florida State was blown out by Louisville in mid-September, but has been pretty damn good since. Yes, they did lose to North Carolina and Clemson, but both losses were by a field goal or less. I expect a big game from FSU RB Dalvin Cook since Florida’s run defense has been weak at times. I’m taking Florida State to cover at home.
UCLA at California (+3) – My pick is California Golden Bears
I hit California heavy early this season since I’m a fan of QB Davis Webb. I laid off them since about mid-October when their defense fell off a cliff. They’ve given up 45 points or more in six straight games…that is atrocious. This is also a lost season for UCLA after QB Josh Rosen was injured early in the year. The Bruins have struggled with QB Mike Fafaul taking over. I predict a shootout, and even though Cal’s defense is very weak, I think their offense will keep up. I’m taking the points.
Michigan at Ohio State (-7) – My pick is Michigan Wolverines
Ohio State has dominated Michigan for a decade. The Buckeyes have won nine of their last ten games against the Wolverines and have went 7-3 ATS in that span. Neither team comes into this game pounding their chests. Michigan lost to Iowa and then beat Indiana by ten in a very competitive game. Ohio State is coming off a 17-16 game against Michigan State that could have went either way. This could be a tight game and Michigan’s defense is so damn good. I think Ohio State could pull out a close win, but I have to take the points.
Notre Dame at USC (-17.5) – My pick is Notre Dame Fighting Irish
The Irish have lost some heartbreakers this season. They haven’t played many complete games. They’ve had really bad drives late in many of their losses. That being said, they haven’t really been blown out this season and have kept games close. I’ve already announced my man crush for USC QB Sam Darnold in previous betting posts, but he just keeps on getting better. Darnold is helped by the ground game lead by RB Ronald Jones. A cover could be tight for USC and I think Notre Dame’s defense is much better than anything USC has faced recently, so I’m taking the points.
TCU at Texas (-3) – My pick is Texas Longhorns
The Charlie Strong era in Austin is nearly over. His fate was clearly sealed when Texas lost to Kansas last week. Texas is still a talented team and could dominate TCU in the trenches. If the Longhorns get a lead, they could just feed RB beast D’Onta Foreman and control the clock. TCU did manhandle Baylor three weeks ago, but I don’t trust them. I’m taking Texas to cover at home.
Washington at Washington State (+6.5) – My pick is Washington Huskies
This one is tough. I was late to the party when it came to the Washington Huskies. QB Jake Browning came out of nowhere and is a legitimate Heisman Trophy candidate. I also have love for Wazzu. I’ve always enjoyed the chaos the comes from teams coached by head coach Mike Leach. I also think QB Luke Falk is the best NFL quarterback prospect Leach has ever had. I’m going to give Washington a little edge due to their better defense. I have to take the Huskies to cover.
Georgia Tech at Georgia (-4) – My pick is Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets
This is an interesting game. Georgia is on a three-game winning streak, but have lost to a few bad teams this season. Georgia Tech is in a similar situation by coming into this game winning four of five games, but struggled early this season. Historical evidence is key when picking Georgia Tech & Navy games. The triple-option rushing attack is hard to defend and some teams can’t handle it. Georgia has done well in the past, but I like how Tech is playing right now, so I’m taking the points.
Kentucky at Louisville (-26) – My pick is Kentucky Wildcats
If this game occurred in September, it would have been a bloodbath. Louisville was clicking on all levels and Kentucky was trying to just find traction on both sides of the ball. The Cardinals have sine slipped, though not much, and Kentucky found its quarterback when QB Stephen Johnson took over. The Wildcats offense is up to the task to battle this point spread. Louisville will almost certainly win, but I think Kentucky keeps it within the margin, so I’m taking the points.
Auburn at Alabama (-17) – My pick is Auburn Tigers
Alabama is clearly the best team in the nation right now and have dominated all season. Auburn didn’t have the fanfare early this season, but come into this game 8-3. Alabama’s defense will tighten the screws on Auburn, but I think the Tigers keep it within two touchdowns. I’m taking the points here.
Appalachian State at New Mexico State (+17.5) – My pick is Appalachian State Mountaineers
This is when we pick a game with smaller conference teams. Appalachian State has been solid and have taken care of all the teams they should. They did recently lose to Troy, but that was a battle. New Mexico State is a weak program and just doesn’t match up against bowl-eligible teams. The cover will be close, but I’m taking App State.
Arizona State at Arizona (+3) – My pick is Arizona State
Virginia at Virginia Tech (-18.5) – My pick is Virginia
Utah at Colorado (-10) – My pick is Colorado
Tennessee at Vanderbilt (+7.5) – My pick is Tennessee
East Carolina at Temple (-20.5) – My pick is Temple
Navy at SMU (+7) – My pick is Navy
West Virginia at Iowa State (+7) – My pick is West Virginia
Boston College at Wake Forest (-3) – My pick is Wake Forest
Purdue at Indiana (-20.5) – My pick is Purdue
South Alabam at Idaho (-5.5) – My pick is Idaho
Troy at Texas State (+27) – My pick is Troy
Wyoming at New Mexico (+3) – My pick is Wyoming
Western Kentucky at Marshall (+24) – My pick is Western Kentucky
Tulane at UConn (pk) – My pick is Tulane
San Jose State at Fresno State (+3) – My pick is San Jose State
Sweetbob’s college football picks against the spread record in previous seasons:
*These picks are for entertainment purposes
Bobby Roberts (otherwise known as Sweetbob) is the creator of ‘America’s White Boy’ and contributor at Project Shanks. His writing has been featured on ESPN’s ‘SportsNation’, Sports Illustrated’s Hot Clicks, Guyspeed, and various other sites. You can follow him on Twitter at @Sweetbob.