College Football: Predictions for Saturday's Top Games

Ryan Bothmann@tripleCfanSenior Analyst IISeptember 15, 2012

College Football: Predictions for Saturday's Top Games

0 of 10

    Week 3 of the college football season is already upon us, and the games continue to get more heated with each passing week.

    As conference play continues to open up for many teams this week, games are becoming more and more crucial. This week there will be a large collection of crucial games with BCS implications.

    Here is a look at the top games for Week 3 of the college football season.

Wake Forest vs. No. 5 Florida State (-27.5)

1 of 10

    If there is one team in college football who can stop the dominance of the SEC this season, it is the Florida State Seminoles.

    Florida State opens up ACC play on Saturday with a home test from the Wake Forest Demon Deacons. The Demon Deacons are currently 2-0 and 1-0 in ACC play after escaping with a 28-27 win over North Carolina last week.

    Behind a strong defense and quarterback E.J. Manuel, the Seminoles should have no problem taking care of business on Saturday against Wake Forest.

    Prediction: Florida State

    vs. Spread: Florida State

California vs. No. 12 Ohio State (-16.5)

2 of 10

    On Saturday Urban Meyer will be looking to lead Ohio State to their second consecutive 3-0 start, when they take on California.

    Ohio State is coming into the game after two easy wins over Miami-Ohio and UCF, and will look to continue the trend against a Golden Bears team that has stumbled out to a 1-1 start to begin the season.

    Look for quarterback Braxton Miller to have a huge game for Ohio State, who should win things very easily in Columbus on Saturday.

    Prediction: Ohio State

    vs. Spread: Ohio State

No. 1 Alabama vs. Arkansas (+20)

3 of 10

    If there is one game that has fallen off the radar this week, it is the battle between Alabama and Arkansas.

    At the beginning of the season, this was hyped as one of the biggest college football games of the season. After Arkansas' stunning upset loss to Louisiana-Monroe last week though, no one is giving Arkansas a chance.

    Many people think that the Razorbacks will be able to at least keep things close and cover the spread, but last year they were fully healthy and lost by 24 to the Tide. Without quarterback Tyler Wilson, the Razorbacks simply have no chance in this football game, and will be quickly rolled over by the Crimson Tide.

    Prediction: Alabama

    vs. Spread: Alabama

North Carolina vs. No. 19 Louisville (-3.5)

4 of 10

    The Louisville Cardinals have looked extremely good in their first two wins so far this season, but they face their first true test of the year when North Carolina comes to town tomorrow.

    Carolina suffered a heartbreaking loss in their ACC opener last week against Wake Forest, but will be looking to bounce back and get an upset win on the road against the Cardinals.

    The Cardinals will simply be too much for the Tar Heels to handle this week. Look for the game to be close throughout, but Louisville will finally pull away in the fourth quarter for the victory.

    Prediction: Louisville

    vs. Spread: Louisville

No. 18 Florida vs. No. 23 Tennessee (-3)

5 of 10

    In arguably the biggest game of the weekend, the Florida Gators travel to Tennessee to take on the Vols white hot offense.

    So far each team has looked very impressive in their two games. Florida fought through a tough test from Texas A&M last weekend in the Aggies' first SEC game, while the Vols have run wild offensively against their opponents.

    Florida will put up a very strong fight on defense, but in the end the Vols just have a little too much offense for the Gators to compete with.

    Prediction: Tennessee

    vs. Spread: Tennessee

Arizona State vs. Missouri (-3)

6 of 10

    Mizzou got their first taste of SEC football last weekend, and after their loss to Georgia, they will be looking to bounce back at home against Arizona State this weekend.

    The Sun Devils routed Illinois last week to improve to 2-0 on the year, and will be looking for another big win against a non-conference opponent win they travel to Mizzou.

    The Tigers will be hungry after falling short to Arizona State on the road last season in overtime, and will not want to lose back to back home games before traveling to South Carolina next weekend. Look for Missouri to show up big and win by double digits at home against the Sun Devils.

    Prediction: Missouri

    vs. Spread: Missouri

No. 2 USC vs. No. 21 Stanford (+9)

7 of 10

    If you want an easy game to win against the spread this week, then this is the game for you.

    The Stanford defense has been very unimpressive so far this season, and the USC offense is ready to light them up with quarterback Matt Barkley at the helm.

    USC should have no problem scoring early and often against the Cardinal, and will get a huge blowout win on the road.

    Prediction: USC

    vs. Spread: USC

No. 20 Notre Dame vs. No. 10 Michigan State (-6)

8 of 10

    Whenever these two teams meet up, get ready for an instant classic.

    Notre Dame struggled a bit last week against Purdue, but expect them to play very well in this pivotal game against the Spartans. Meanwhile, the Spartans have looked very impressive in both their wins, especially on the defensive side of the football.

    The difference in the game will be the performance of Michigan State running back Le'veon Bell. If Bell can be productive, then the Spartans will win. However, if the Irish can slow him down and keep him out of the end zone, then they will win.

    Look for Bell to have a 100-yard game with a touchdown, and look for Michigan State to escape by a touchdown.

    Prediction: Michigan State

    vs Spread: Michigan State

No. 14 Texas vs Ole Miss (+10)

9 of 10

    While many people will overlook this game because of Texas' No. 14 ranking, they shouldn't.

    Ole Miss has been impressive in their first two wins of the season and could cause some problems for the Longhorns if they can play some strong defense. Texas meanwhile, will need a strong game from quarterback David Ash if they want to win.

    Look for Texas to get the win Saturday night in Mississippi, but they will not cover the 10 point spread.

    Prediction: Texas

    vs. Spread: Mississippi

Brigham Young vs. Utah (+3.5)

10 of 10

    One of the biggest rivalries in college football, The Holy War, will be showcased late Saturday night in Utah.

    BYU has looked impressive on both sides of the football so far this season, while Utah was upset last week by Utah State, snapping a 12-game losing streak against the Utes.

    The Cougars of BYU have a few tough tests on their schedule this season, and if they can continue to produce wins in these games against power conference teams, they could find themselves as a BCS buster.

    Look for BYU to get a really quality win on the road against the Utes in the Holy War.

    Prediction: BYU

    vs. Spread: BYU