College Football Week 6 Picks: Teams That Will Overcome Difficult Tests

Chris RolingFeatured ColumnistOctober 4, 2013

Sep 28, 2013; Columbus, OH, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes quarterback Braxton Miller (5) escapes a Wisconsin Badgers defender during the first quarter at Ohio Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports
Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

Conference play is all the rage in college football now that we have seen the sport come out of cruise control with cupcake matchups that have littered the first few weeks of action.

Last week perhaps showcased the toughest test of the season as Georgia moved past LSU in an SEC showdown.

While that battle is an obvious example, it simply serves as a precursor to what is ahead in Week 6. A variety of teams face difficult tests this week to determine if they will compete for the top spot in their conference and more.

Here are three teams that will pass their test in a big way on Saturday.


Ohio State Silences Northwestern

A hot upset pick by many, the undefeated No. 16 Northwestern Wildcats host the similarly undefeated No. 4 Ohio State Buckeyes in a Big Ten matchup sure to entertain.

While Ohio State has won 28 of the last 29 meetings and holds the nation's longest winning streak at 17 straight, the Wildcats tout an impressive offense as the rebuilding process continues.

The best matchup here is the Wildcats' running attack versus the Buckeyes' ground defense. Northwestern averages about 250 rushing yards per game, while Ohio State only surrenders 85 per contest.

The deciding factor is simple—Ohio State's quarterbacks are too talented for Northwestern to handle. Braxton Miller was a Heisman candidate before an injury, but no matter, backup Kenny Guiton came in and threw for 643 yards and 12 touchdowns.

Miller returned last week against Wisconsin and went for 181 yards and four scores. Not only are the quarterbacks great, recent weeks have shown the talent in Columbus is top notch.

Prediction: Buckeyes 42, Wildcats 24


Florida Overcomes Arkansas

No. 18 Florida has done much to bounce back after a crippling loss to Miami in the second game of the season. On the other hand, Arkansas has lost two straight and enters desperation mode against the Gators.

Arkansas is a dangerous team with or without a sense of urgency, so Florida better be up to the task. The Razorbacks average 237 yards per game on the ground and hardly surrender an average of 22 points.

Sep 28, 2013; Lexington, KY, USA; Florida Gators quarterback Tyler Murphy (3) passes the ball against the Kentucky Wildcats at Commonwealth Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports
Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports

The Razorbacks are led by a rejuvenated Brandon Allen who threw for 282 yards and three touchdowns as Arkansas just missed on scoring an upset over No. 9 Texas A&M last week.

Florida has a youngster playing solid football under center as well. In place of the injured Jeff Driskel, Tyler Murphy has thrown for 290 yards and two scores. His efficiency paired with an elite defense that allows just 13 points per game will propel the Gators to a statement victory.

Prediction: Gators 31, Razorbacks 21


LSU Brutalizes Mississippi State

The road does not get much easier for the No. 10 LSU Tigers after a heartbreaking loss last week to the Georgia Bulldogs.

Mississippi State is dangerous thanks to an elite defense that gives up just 15 points per game and as a team overall ranks in the top 50 in important categories such as points scored, passing and rushing yards.

Sep 28, 2013; Athens, GA, USA; LSU Tigers quarterback Zach Mettenberger (8) throws a pass in the second half against the Georgia Bulldogs at Sanford Stadium. Georgia won 44-41. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports
Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

Not only that, LSU could potentially experience a hangover after an emotional loss, and it would be easy to overlook the Bulldogs because LSU has won 20 of the last 21 encounters and won 13 straight.

While Mississippi State touts an impressive defense, it has faltered against legitimate competition such as Oklahoma State and Auburn, giving up 21 and 24 points, respectively.

LSU and exciting quarterback Zach Mettenberger, who has thrown for 1,398 yards to go with 13 touchdowns, average 43 points per game and will be able to take out their aggression on the Bulldogs.

Prediction: Tigers 35, Bulldogs 20



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