No. 4 Mississippi at South Carolina (+4)—Ole Miss boasts their highest ranking in almost 40 years, while Heisman sleeper Jevan Snead looks to take on a South Carolina team that is putting up some offense of their own the last two weeks (79 points in their last two games). All signs point to a good old-fashioned shootout in Columbia but I’ll give the four points and think Snead keeps the Rebels on top of the rankings. Ole Miss 34-South Carolina 27.
Michigan State at Wisconsin (-3)—Michigan State may be reeling from two consecutive last-minute losses but there is no rest for the weary as they head to Madison to take on the 3-0 Badgers. This conference opener should be another down to the wire battle but until Sparty can come through in late-game situations, there is no reason to back them here. Wisconsin 27-Michigan State 20.
Southern Miss at No. 20 Kansas (-14)—Southern Miss is one of only four teams in FBS to post a winning record for 15 consecutive seasons and they find themselves off to a 3-0 start in 2009. We will see contrasting styles as Kansas has the nation’s third most prolific offense while Southern Miss can really shut down the run (6th best run defense in FBS). Kansas makes it 20 non-conference wins at home in a row this weekend but I like it close enough to take the points. Kansas 30-Southern Miss 21.
No. 22 North Carolina at Georgia Tech (-3 ½)—The Yellow Jackets rank 16th in the country in rushing utilizing their triple-option attack while the Tar Heels have yielded very little on the ground, good for 7th best run defense in the country. Five straight losses in Atlanta for Carolina means they need to exorcise whatever demons plague them in Bobby Dodd Stadium in a hurry. The Wreck has looked to inconsistent in ACC play thus far so I’ll take the Heels in an upset. North Carolina 23-Georgia Tech 20.
No. 6 California at Oregon (+5 ½)—The ultimate trap game for the Cal Bears who face USC next weekend in what may be their first shot at overthrowing the perennial Pac-10 Champ. The Ducks have rebounded since their embarrassing opening night performance against Boise and Autzen is always a tough place to play. Cal almost always comes up small in these spots even though Jahvid Best is a playmaker that can make a difference. I think this one will be tight enough to take the points. California 31-Oregon 30.
No. 9 Miami (FL) at No. 11 Virginia Tech (+2)—This is probably the highlight game of the weekend in college football, a rivalry that goes way back to some hard-hitting Big East affairs in the 1990s. Blacksburg is always a tough venue but Miami has played as well as any team in the country. Randy Shannon will force Virginia Tech QB Tyrod Taylor to throw it and Miami QB Jacory Harris will continue to impress. Miami 31-Virginia Tech 20.
No. 15 TCU at Clemson (-2 ½)—TCU looks to continue a BCS-buster type of run in the first meeting between these two schools since 1965. TCU trounced fellow ACC member Virginia in their opener and have amassed nearly 500 yards on the ground in two games. Clemson looks to avoid another letdown like they had at Georgia Tech and will need to do so against a formidable out of conference opponent. Clemson needs this game to gain the national respect they seek and build a solid foundation for ACC play. Clemson 20-TCU 17.
No. 1 Florida at Kentucky (-21 ½)—You know things are going well when beating conference opponents by 10 points is considered a letdown as the Gators did to Tennessee last weekend. Going on the road will be just what the doctor ordered for Florida so they can get back to football and avoid the media hype/bulletin board material. Kentucky’s wins over Miami (OH) and Louisville will not prepare them for a team they have lost to 22 straight times. Florida 35-Kentucky 10.
Texas Tech at No. 17 Houston (Pick)—This game may resemble an arena league football game when all is said and done. Houston’s Case Keenum (3rd in NCAA passing yards) will look to outplay his adversary in Tech’s Taylor Potts (1st in NCAA passing yards). Expecting a record crowd, can Houston handle the pressure of their ranking and success thus far? If they can’t, it won’t be until later this season as right now they are the better team. Houston 42-Texas Tech 38.
No. 24 Washington at Stanford (-7)—No, I do not know why Stanford is 7-point favorites. Something is rotten in Denmark…but head coach Steve Sarkisian and his QB Jake Locker has spread great vibes all over the state of Washington. Stanford has taken three out of the last four in this series and has won seven of eight games at home. Huskies should continue their roll outright and won’t let down against the Cardinal. Washington 24-Stanford 16.
This article was originally published at Fantasy Football Maniaxs.
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