College Football Week 5: Picks and Predictions for Every Saturday Game

Danny Flynn@FlynnceptionSenior Analyst ISeptember 28, 2013

Will Ohio State's defense be able to keep Wisconsin's explosive RB Melvin Gordon contained?
Will Ohio State's defense be able to keep Wisconsin's explosive RB Melvin Gordon contained?Robert Laberge/Getty Images

Week 4 of the college football season somehow managed to be even worse than many were predicting. After last week’s abominable slate of games, college football fans should consider themselves lucky, because there are plenty more intriguing matchups such as LSU-Georgia, Wisconsin-Ohio State and Oklahoma-Notre Dame to get excited about this weekend.

Week 5 marks the real beginning of conference play. This weekend should give us some good early indications of which top teams are really ready to compete for a championship.

Here’s a look at full predictions and picks for every Saturday game.

Note: All Lines Courtesy of

Marquee Game of the Week (LSU at Georgia) Pick
LSU Tigers

So far this season, no other player in college football has displayed the type of dramatic improvement as LSU QB Zach Mettenberger. Following a mediocre debut campaign in 2012, Mettenberger has looked like a completely different quarterback this year in Cam Cameron’s offensive system, as he’s completed 64 percent of his passes, averaged over 11 yards per attempt and thrown 10 touchdowns compared to just one interception.

Now the question is: Can Mettenberger out-duel one of college football’s top quarterbacks, Georgia’s Aaron Murray, in a hostile road environment?

Personally, I think he can.

Mettenberger and his group of explosive offensive weapons, such as RB Jeremy Hill and receivers Odell Beckham Jr. and Jarvis Landry, should do plenty of damage to a Bulldogs defense that is still showing its inexperience early in the season.

Though they’re ranked No. 6 in the current AP Poll, the Tigers have been somewhat flying under the radar so far this season, as the media’s focused mainly on their two SEC West division counterparts: Alabama and Texas A&M.

Make no mistake about it, though, LSU is a team that has the talent to not only compete for an SEC title, but a national championship as well. This tough road test early in the season will give Les Miles’ squad a chance to make a big statement to the nation. The Tigers should make the most of the opportunity.


Top "Against the Spread" Pick Of the Day
Washington Huskies (-10)

Like LSU, Washington is another team that has been a bit overshadowed by its conference counterparts like Oregon and Stanford so far this season. Nevertheless, the Huskies have looked like a legitimate conference contender thus far, and they should continue their impressive run with a big win over an undefeated Arizona team that has yet to face a quality defense. 

The Huskies dominant defense, which is allowing just 10 points and 279 yards per game, should be able to keep the Wildcats’ star rusher Ka’Deem Carey properly contained, and force first-year starting quarterback B.J. Denker to try to win the game with his arm.

Unfortunately, Denker simply won’t be able to keep up with Washington’s offensive attack, which is led by one of the top running backs in the nation, Bishop Sankey.

Before the season, Carey was the Pac-12 running back who received most of the recognition and publicity. But in this game, it will be Sankey who proves who is really the conference’s top rusher.


Top "Total" Pick Of the Day: Oklahoma-Notre Dame — Under 50

This is a game that is seemingly shaping up to be a rather low-scoring defensive battle.

Notre Dame’s defense, led by the dangerous defensive line duo of Stephon Tuitt and Louis Nix, should cause plenty of problems for Oklahoma QB Blake Bell, who has yet to shed his one-dimensional label.

This is simply not a vintage Sooners offense, as we saw in the poor performance against West Virginia a few weeks ago. The Irish have the pieces in the front-seven to cause plenty of problems for Bell and Oklahoma offense.

On the other side, Oklahoma’s secondary, led by standout CB Aaron Colvin, should be able to neutralize the threat that Notre Dame’s dynamic receiving duo of TJ Jones and Davaris Daniels present.

These two teams combined to score just 43 points in last year’s meeting. I wouldn’t be shocked at all if they scored even less in this year’s game.


Upset Special: Wisconsin Badgers Over Ohio State Buckeyes

This matchup represents the case of one team, Ohio State, being overrated coming into the season, while the other, Wisconsin, was undervalued.

The Buckeyes received plenty of hype this season, but what exactly have they proven so far this season to deserve such lofty praise?

OSU has yet to face a defense the caliber of the Badgers, and they’ve yet to see an offensive playmaker who can do the type of things that Wisconsin’s Melvin Gordon can do.

Admittedly, it’s a bit difficult to trust first-year Wisconsin coach Gary Andersen in his first tough conference road game. But I still expect Andersen to have his players ready to compete, and he should have them motivated and ready to avenge last year’s 21-14 loss to the Buckeyes.


The 10 Best Bets Of the Day

  • Washington Huskies (-10)
  • LSU Tigers (+3)
  • Rice Owls (-13.5)
  • Wisconsin Badgers (+6)
  • East Carolina Pirates (+12)
  • Buffalo Bulls (+1)
  • Iowa Hawkeyes (-2)
  • USC Trojans (+3.5)
  • Pittsburgh Panthers (-5.5)
  • Missouri Tigers (-21.5)

Full Predictions For Every Saturday Game...


Miami Hurricanes at South Florida Bulls

Spread: Miami (-19)

Total: 47

Picks: South Florida (+19), Under

Prediction: Miami 31, USF 17


Oklahoma State Cowboys at West Virginia Mountaineers

Spread: Oklahoma State (-19)

Total: 57

Picks: Oklahoma State (-19), Over

Prediction: Oklahoma State 45, West Virginia 21


Miami (Ohio) RedHawks at Illinois Fighting Illini

Spread: Illinois (-25)

Total: 50.5

Picks: Illinois (-25), Under

Prediction: Illinois 38, Miami (Ohio) 10


South Carolina Gamecocks at UCF Knights

Spread: South Carolina (-7)

Total: 53

Picks: UCF (+7), Under

Prediction: South Carolina 27, UCF 23


SMU Mustangs at TCU Horned Frogs

Spread: TCU (-19.5)

Total: 52.5

Picks: SMU (+19.5), Over

Prediction: TCU 35, SMU 24


Northern Illinois Huskies at Purdue Boilermakers

Spread: Northern Illinois (-3.5)

Total: 59

Picks: Northern Illinois (-3.5), Over

Prediction: Northern Illinois 38, Purdue 28


South Alabama Jaguars at Tennessee Volunteers

Spread: Tennessee (-18.5)

Total: 53.5

Picks: South Alabama (+18.5), Under

Prediction: Tennessee 31, South Alabama 17


East Carolina Pirates at North Carolina Tar Heels

Spread: North Carolina (-12)

Total: 60.5

Picks: East Carolina (+12), Over

Prediction: East Carolina 38, North Carolina 35


Virginia Cavaliers at Pittsburgh Panthers

Spread: Pittsburgh (-5.5)

Total: 50.5

Picks: Pittsburgh (-5.5), Over

Prediction: Pittsburgh 34, Virginia 24


Navy Midshipmen at Western Kentucky Hilltoppers

Spread: Navy (-3)

Total: 57.5

Picks: Western Kentucky (+3), Over

Prediction: Western Kentucky 35, Navy 28


Akron Zips at Bowling Green Falcons

Spread: Bowling Green (-14)

Total: 54.5

Picks: Akron (+14), Under

Prediction: Bowling Green 27, Akron 20


Colorado Buffaloes at Oregon State Beavers

Spread: Oregon State (-11)

Total: 59.5

Picks: Oregon State (-11), Over

Prediction: Oregon State 45, Colorado 24


Troy Trojans at Duke Blue Devils

Spread: Duke

Total: 68.5

Picks: Troy (+13), Over

Prediction: Duke 49, Troy 38


Toledo Rockets at Ball State Cardinals

Spread: Ball State (-2.5)

Total: 67

Picks: Ball State (-2.5), Over

Prediction: Ball State 42, Toledo 34


Connecticut Huskies at Buffalo Bulls

Spread: Connecticut (-1)

Total: 48.5

Picks: Buffalo (+1), Under

Prediction: Buffalo 24, Connecticut 17


UTEP Miners at Colorado State Rams

Spread: Colorado State (-14)

Total: 53

Picks: UTEP (+14), Under

Prediction: Colorado State 30, UTEP 19


Oklahoma Sooners at Notre Dame Fighting Irish

Spread: Oklahoma (-3.5)

Total: 50

Picks: Oklahoma (-3.5), Under

Prediction: Oklahoma 28, Notre Dame 17


Iowa Hawkeyes at Minnesota Golden Gophers

Spread: Iowa (-2)

Total: 46

Picks: Iowa (-2), Over

Prediction: Iowa 34, Minnesota 27


Central Michigan Chippewas at NC State Wolfpack

Spread: NC State (-23.5)

Total: 52

Picks: NC State (-23.5), Under

Prediction: NC State 38, Central Michigan 13


Florida State Seminoles at Boston College Eagles

Spread: Florida State (-23.5)

Total: 53.5

Picks: Boston College (+23.5), Over

Prediction: Florida State 35, Boston College 21


Wake Forest Demon Deacons at Clemson Tigers

Spread: Clemson (-28.5)

Total: 58.5

Picks: Clemson (-28.5), Over

Prediction: Clemson 59, Wake Forest 24


LSU Tigers at Georgia Bulldogs

Spread: Georgia (-3)

Total: 62

Picks: LSU (+3), Over

Prediction: LSU 37, Georgia 33


Army Black Knights at Louisiana Tech Bulldogs

Spread: Louisiana Tech (-2)

Total: 52.5

Picks: Louisiana Tech (-2), Under

Prediction: Louisiana Tech 24, Army 17


Houston Cougars at UTSA RoadRunners

Spread: Houston (-2.5)

Total: 64

Picks: UTSA (+2.5), Over

Prediction: UTSA 38, Houston 35


Temple Owls at Idaho Vandals

Spread: Temple (-7)

Total: 55.5

Picks: Temple (-7), Under

Prediction: Temple 31, Idaho 21


Ole Miss Rebels at Alabama Crimson Tide

Spread: Alabama (-14.5)

Total: 55

Picks: Alabama (-14.5), Under

Prediction: Alabama 35, Ole Miss 17


Arizona Wildcats at Washington Huskies

Spread: Washington (-10)

Total: 62

Picks: Washington (-10), Over

Prediction: Washington 45, Arizona 24


Tulane Green Wave at UL-Monroe Warhawks

Spread: UL-Monroe (-13.5)

Total: 55

Picks: UL-Monroe (-13.5) , Over

Prediction: UL-Monroe 38, Tulane 21


Kent State Golden Flashes at Western Michigan Broncos

Spread: Western Michigan (-2.5)

Total: 50

Picks: Western Michigan (-2.5), Under

Prediction: Western Michigan 27, Kent State 20


Florida Gators at Kentucky Wildcats

Spread: Florida (-12)

Total: 47

Picks: Kentucky (+12), Under

Prediction: Florida 26, Kentucky 16


Texas A&M Aggies at Arkansas Razorbacks

Spread: Texas A&M (-14)

Total: 62

Picks: Arkansas (+14), Under

Prediction: Texas A&M 35, Arkansas 24


Florida Atlantic Owls at Rice Owls

Spread: Rice (-13.5)

Total: 52.5

Picks: Rice (-13.5), Over

Prediction: Rice 41, Florida Atlantic 20


Wyoming Cowboys at Texas State Bobcats

Spread: Wyoming (-12)

Total: 55.5

Picks: Wyoming (-12), Over

Prediction: Wyoming 38, Texas State 21


UAB Blazers at Vanderbilt Commodores

Spread: Vanderbilt (-19.5)

Total: 56.5

Picks: UAB (+19.5), Under

Prediction: Vanderbilt 33, UAB 17


Arkansas State Red Wolves at Missouri Tigers

Spread: Missouri (-21.5)

Total: 62.5

Picks: Missouri (-21.5), Over

Prediction: Missouri 49, Arkansas State 14


Air Force Falcons at Nevada Wolf Pack

Spread: Nevada (-10)

Total: 59

Picks: Air Force (+10), Under

Prediction: Nevada 31, Air Force 24


San Diego State Aztecs at New Mexico State Aggies

Spread: San Diego State (-17.5)

Total: 54

Picks: San Diego State (-17.5), Under

Prediction: San Diego State 35, New Mexico State 10


UNLV Rebels at New Mexico Lobos

Spread: UNLV (-2.5)

Total: 54

Picks: UNLV (-2.5), Under

Prediction: UNLV 28, New Mexico 20


Wisconsin Badgers at Ohio State Buckeyes

Spread: Ohio State (-6)

Total: 55.5

Picks: Wisconsin(+6), Over

Prediction: Wisconsin 34, Ohio State 30


Stanford Cardinal at Washington State Cougars

Spread: Stanford (-9.5)

Total: 47.5

Picks: Stanford (-9.5), Under

Prediction: Stanford 31, Washington State 14


Southern Miss Golden Eagles at Boise State Broncos

Spread: Boise State (-27.5)

Total: 56.5

Picks: Boise State (-27.5), Over

Prediction: Boise State 52, Southern Miss 17


California Golden Bears at Oregon Ducks

Spread: Oregon (-37)

Total: 82

Picks: Oregon (-37), Over

Prediction: Oregon 66, Cal 21


USC Trojans at Arizona State Sun Devils

Spread: Arizona State (-3.5)

Total: 49.5

Picks: USC (+3.5), Under

Prediction: USC 24, Arizona State 21


Fresno State Bulldogs at Hawaii Warriors

Spread: Fresno State (-18.5)

Total: 58.5

Picks: Fresno State (-18.5), Over

Prediction: Fresno State 49, Hawaii 21


    Illinois Lands 5-Star Athlete Isaiah Williams

    College Football logo
    College Football

    Illinois Lands 5-Star Athlete Isaiah Williams

    Kyle Newport
    via Bleacher Report

    Email Reveals Leach Was Ready to Accept Vols Job

    College Football logo
    College Football

    Email Reveals Leach Was Ready to Accept Vols Job

    Rob Goldberg
    via Bleacher Report

    Guice Pulls Woman from Car After Crash

    College Football logo
    College Football

    Guice Pulls Woman from Car After Crash

    Timothy Rapp
    via Bleacher Report

    Tua's Dad: Finger Injury Required Surgery

    College Football logo
    College Football

    Tua's Dad: Finger Injury Required Surgery

    Web Staff
    via KHON