College Football Picks Week 7: Ranked Teams Facing Big Defeats

John DornCorrespondent IIIOctober 10, 2012

SALT LAKE CITY, UT - OCTOBER 4: Quarterback Matt Barkley #7 of the USC Trojans calls a play during a game against the Utah Ute's during the first half of a college football game on October 4, 2012 at Rice-Eccles Stadium in Salt Lake City, Utah. (Photo by George Frey/Getty Images)
George Frey/Getty Images

Last week, we saw several Top 10 teams come crumbling down when facing lesser opponents. There's more where that came from this week.

Week 7's lineup of games gives us several instances to predict major upsets and flip the BCS upside-down. Ignoring Vegas numbers, and going by AP Polling, here are some matchups to keep your eye on this week.


No. 3 South Carolina vs. No. 9 LSU

South Carolina enjoyed a hop in the polls last week after a 35-7 trouncing over Georgia. This week won't be nearly as easy for Steve Spurrier's boys, as they take on LSU.

Last week's game heavily favored the Gamecocks; sure the Bulldogs were averaging 48 points a game heading into last Saturday, but South Carolina's defense was among the country's best, allowing only 11 a game. 

Marcus Lattmore's hungry play didn't hurt the Gamecocks either—he was fed the ball and watched the yardage pile up.

This week, South Carolina faces off with LSU, who's fresh off a tough loss to Florida. It'll be a battle of the defenses, as LSU's defense gives up a shade less than 13 points a game.

Marcus Lattimore hasn't faced a defense as high-grade as LSU's, and if he struggles, it's hard to imagine a scenario where South Carolina comes out on top.


No. 11 USC v. Washington

Washington has given USC fits for the better part of the last five years, and don't expect that trend to die down this week.

The Trojans managed to beat their Pac-12 rival last November pretty convincingly, but that's far from enough reasoning to say they'll come out on top this week. In the teams' previous two meetings, Washington came out on top each time, ending USC's stretch of seven straight wins against the Huskies.

Washington is undefeated at home this season, a run that's included a win over then-eighth-ranked Stanford. 

USC excels over their rival in nearly every stat except third down conversion rate. The Huskies convert at a rate of 40 percent, while the Trojans are successful just 34 percent of the time. If this game turns into a grueling, grind-it-out affair, Washington has a shot to kill USC's Rose Bowl hopes.


No. 15 Texas vs. No. 13 Oklahoma

Oklahoma is trying to get their season back on the right track after a disappointing loss to Kansas State earlier in the year, but facing Texas isn't a prime situation on the road to recovery.

The teams have split their last four meetings dating back to 2008. The Longhorns outgain and outscore the Sooners this season, but Oklahoma boasts a stronger defense.

Texas is on the heels of a tough loss to Geno Smith's West Virginia team, that sports one of the most efficient offensive attacks we've seen in recent history. Texas fell a field goal short last week, and this week is facing a much less powerful team in Oklahoma. 

This in-conference matchup will likely take all 60 minutes to determine a winner. Turnovers will be key, as is the case with any rivalry game—momentum is everything. The Sooners should be on alert, as their season could be spoiled with one miscue on Saturday.