College Football Picks- Week 12
If you are like me, then you are going about your days and weeks still thinking that it is the month of October. Meanwhile, the rest of the world, and especially your wife, are simultaneously preparing for Thanksgiving and Christmas!!! Unbelievable!!!
But here we are, entering the 3rd weekend of November and approaching the final stretch of the regular season. As always, there are a few “Notable” games that should be exciting to watch, and there are many other match-ups that will be significant in the college football landscape.
I am coming off back-to-back (8-2) weeks, and would love to make it 3 in a row! So here are the 10 games that I have selected for College Football Picks- Week 12.
1. “TTFDB” (9-1) at Maryland (5-5)
I am upset at myself for not going with “TTFDB” at Michigan State last week. The game was close, 9-6 at the beginning of the 4th quarter, but who knew that the “TTFDB” punter was going to have the game of his life! If you follow college football then you know that Maryland has faced a lot of turmoil and drama all season. It’s actually quite amazing that they’ve played as well as they have. However, last week against Indiana things got even worse for the Terrapins when they lost their starting quarterback, Kasim Hill, for the rest of the year with an ACL injury. Over the past 16 years, I’ve never seen a team catch more breaks than “TTFDB”!!! Maybe their luck will run out one day…But it won’t be this Saturday.
Winner: “TTFDB”, 38-17
2. Northwestern (6-4) at Minnesota (5-5)
I never thought at the beginning of the season that I would be picking so many Northwestern games! And I definitely did not think that the Wildcats would be playing for a Big Ten Championship in a couple weeks! But somehow, Northwestern keeps finding ways to win football games…So here we are! Minnesota is coming off a very nice win against Purdue, 41-10, and the Golden Gophers have demonstrated the ability to put-up a lot of yards and points. Minnesota seems to be a much better team when playing at home, and I’m very curious to see how this game plays out. I know that I will probably regret this decision, but I am going to pick against the Wildcats for the second week in a row.
Winner: Minnesota, 31-24
3. Pitt (6-4) at Wake Forest (5-5)
This game has many similarities to the one mentioned above. (1) The teams involved have identical records. (2) If Pitt wins 1 more game, then they will win the ACC Coastal Division and play in their conference championship game. (3) Pitt was not expected to win their division (not even close). (4) Wake Forest is coming off a very nice win at NC State, 27-23. The Pitt Panthers have won 4 out of 5 games, and their only loss was a close contest at Notre Dame, 19-14. I think that Pitt will continue to roll!
Winner: Pitt, 42-28
4. Syracuse (8-2) vs. Notre Dame (10-0)
This will be the most “high profile” game on Saturday. Syracuse moved up to #12 in the CFP Rankings while Notre Dame remained #3. This match-up is also unique because the game will be played at Yankee Stadium, a neutral site location. Syracuse has an experienced quarterback and a fairly explosive offense, averaging just over 44 points per game. As much as I would enjoy seeing the Orange upset the Fighting Irish, I just don’t think that it’s going to happen. Notre Dame has been really good on defense all season, and their offense is very balanced. The Fighting Irish have talent, depth, and an awful lot to play for!
Winner: Notre Dame, 34-24
5. West Virginia (8-1) at Oklahoma State (5-5)
This could very well be the most exciting game on Saturday! Despite Oklahoma State’s record, they are more than capable of pulling off this upset. The Cowboys have already defeated Texas, 38-35, and just last week they nearly knocked-off Oklahoma, losing 48-47 on a missed 2-point conversion in the final minute. Each team is explosive, and each team can score a lot of points. There are 2 main questions for this Big 12 showdown. (1) Which defense will make more stops? (2) Can Oklahoma State rebound after a tough, emotional loss last week? I really, really, really want to go with the Cowboys in this one, but I just can’t “pull the trigger”.
Winner: West Virginia, 45-38
6. Missouri (6-4) at Tennessee (5-5)
This is a very difficult game to predict! Each team has been “up-and-down” all year, sometimes playing really well and sometimes playing really bad. Each team is also riding a 2-game win streak! Statistically, Missouri has the better offense, but the Volunteers have the edge on defense. In the past five weeks, Tennessee has played well (outside of Alabama), and they have shown much improvement since the beginning of the season. Not sure if this is a wise decision, but I like the Volunteers at home!
Winner: Tennessee, 27-23
7. Duke (7-3) at Clemson (10-0)
The Blue Devils continue to show “fight”! After losing back-to-back games, they have responded with two, solid wins. Outside of a couple games, Duke has proven themselves to be capable and efficient on offense. The main problem for the Blue Devils is that their defense has been very inconsistent, and they are giving up over 400 yards per game. This is not good when your playing a team like Clemson! The Tiger offense was not great against Boston College this past Saturday. Therefore, I have a feeling that Trevor Lawrence and company will come out and make a big statement!!!
Winner: Clemson, 45-20
8. Iowa State (6-3) at Texas (7-3)
This is a very intriguing match-up for many reasons. Each team is still in the hunt to play in the Big 12 Championship Game, and possibly a New Year’s 6 Bowl as well. So obviously, the stakes are very high! Texas has a more explosive offense, while Iowa State has a much “stingier” defense. This is a game that could go either way, and I am anticipating a very close outcome. Because it is a night game in Austin, I will give the edge to the Longhorns. But it wouldn’t surprise me at all if the Cyclones arise victorious.
Winner: Texas, 33-30
9. Cincinnati (9-1) at UCF (9-0)
This is a “Big-Time” game in the American Athletic Conference (AAC)! The UCF Golden Knights have the nation’s longest win-streak (22 Games), and are currently ranked #11 in the CFP Rankings. The Bearcats are also having a great season and are sitting at #24 in the rankings. UCF has not looked as sharp in recent weeks compared to the beginning of the season, and they have survived a couple “close calls” along the way. I definitely think that Cincinnati can come away with a “signature” win, but it will be difficult in such a tough environment. This should be a fantastic game to watch, fast-paced and full of action. I like the Bearcats, but it’s hard to pick against a team that has won 22 in a row!
Winner: UCF, 38-34
10. Arizona (5-5) at Washington State (9-1)
Can the Cougars keep going??? I can’t wait to find out! Each week Washington State continues to rise-up to the challenge, and each week they are coming away with impressive wins. On Saturday night, they will be welcoming in the Arizona Wildcats. A team that began the season (0-2) and looked like a mess. But Arizona has really turned things around as of late, and they are playing much better football. Even though the Wildcats are sitting at (5-5), they still have an opportunity to reach the Pac-12 Championship Game if they win-out. You can bet that Arizona will play with a lot of energy and passion! If you’re able to stay up late, be sure to check-out this game because it should be very competitive and fun to watch!
Winner: Washington State, 38-28