Plenty of top teams are in action as college football's BCS race continues to heat up in Week 9. Here is a closer look at some of the marquee matchups, underdogs who will cover and more spread information for the rest of the ranked teams in action on Saturday.
(Note: All betting information courtesy of Odds Shark & Bovada)
No. 12 Mississippi State (+23) to Beat Spread at No. 1 Alabama
The competition that the Bulldogs have faced this season hasn't been all that impressive. That still doesn't justify how high this line is, though.
As clear as it is that the Crimson Tide are the best team in the nation right now, their most impressive win was against Michigan. This will easily be their toughest test to date.
Dan Mullen has his program making huge strides in his fourth season. Miss. State has slogged through its schedule and looked less than dominant at times, but has emerged unscathed to this point in the season.
One of the keys for the Bulldogs is ball security and making plays on defense, as they lead the nation in turnover margin with a plus-17 advantage (21 takeaways, four turnovers).
Alabama does rank third in that statistic, but that further fortifies the notion that there will be little margin for error in this game.
Two opportunistic SEC defenses will be squaring off against two nearly mistake-free QBs: Bama's A.J. McCarron and Miss. State's Tyler Russell. The Tide's two-headed monster at running back is sure to pose problems, but the Bulldogs' LaDarius Perkins leads the conference in rushing with 724 yards.
Something will have to give eventually—and Alabama will likely emerge victorious—but this contest should be anything but a blowout.
No. 14 Texas Tech (+7.5) to Beat Spread at No. 3 Kansas State
For the second consecutive week, Wildcats QB Collin Klein will go up against a Big 12 counterpart who is also in serious contention for the Heisman Trophy. This time, though, Klein is the front-runner.
But Texas Tech's Seth Doege has been on an absolute tear recently, throwing for a combined 817 yards and 13 touchdowns to just one interception in his last two games.
A spread that is more than one score seems a little much even on the road, considering the explosiveness of the Red Raider offense. Even if Kansas State is leading late in this one, Doege can orchestrate a scoring drive as quickly as anyone in "garbage time."
Optimus Klein and Co. have a fantastic offense themselves and Klein, who is not typically known for his passing, looked just as good as Doege in that regard in a 55-14 drubbing of West Virginia last week. Passing against the Mountaineer secondary, though, is basically analogous to doing a walk-through practice.
The Red Raiders sport the nation's 12th-best pass defense, which will give Klein a much sterner test.
Even in the friendly confines of Bill Snyder Stadium, the Wildcats will be forced to be one-dimensional. That's not necessarily a bad thing with Klein and stud runner John Hubert in the backfield.
No. 10 Georgia vs. No. 2 Florida
Started: Florida -3.5
Current: Florida -7
No. 4 Oregon at Colorado
Started: Oregon -47.5
Current: Oregon -47
No. 5 Notre Dame at No. 8 Oklahoma
Started: Oklahoma -10
Current: Oklahoma -13
No. 7 Oregon State at Washington
Started: Oregon State -5
Current: Oregon State -3.5
No. 9 Southern Cal at Arizona
Started: Southern Cal -8
Current: Southern Cal -7
Duke at No. 12 Florida State
Started: Florida State -26
Current: Florida State -27
Tennessee at No. 13 South Carolina
Started: South Carolina -14
Current: South Carolina -14
Kent State at No. 15 Rutgers
Started: Rutgers -11.5
Current: Rutgers -13.5
Washington State at No. 17 Stanford
Started: Stanford -21
Current: Stanford -24.5
No. 20 Texas A&M at Auburn
Started: Texas A&M -8.5
Current: Texas A&M -14.5
No. 21 Boise State at Wyoming
Started: Boise State -14
Current: Boise State -16
No. 22 Michigan at Nebraska
Started: Nebraska -2
Current: Nebraska -1.5
No. 23 Texas at Kansas
Started: Texas -23
Current: Texas -19.5
No. 24 Ohio at Miami (OH)
Started: Ohio -9
Current: Ohio -7
Michigan State at No. 25 Wisconsin
Started: Wisconsin -5.5
Current: Wisconsin -6
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