Week 4: When The True Contenders Arise

Jon LuncefordCorrespondent ISeptember 16, 2008

With the fourth week approaching, elite teams will finally begin to separate themselves from the bunch.  The key match-up this week is between Auburn and LSU.  Two stingy defenses will go at it, so it will be easy to see another 5 point game like last week against Miss. St. 

Auburn's spread offense has yet to prove itself with only one passing TD all year.  Alabama finally heads on the road to their first SEC game against the Razorbacks.  Notre Dame gets a chance for redemption with a win this week, as well as Arizona State if they can defeat the Dawgs from Georgia. 

Tennessee has to try and fight Tebow and the boys from Florida, but it won't be much for the Gators to pull this one out.  So without further ado, I give you my week four predictions.


Iowa at Pittsburgh (-1)

The Hawkeyes remain undefeated after a slim win over the Cyclones from across the state. The Panthers are 1-1 after a loss to Bowling Green, then a close win over Buffalo.  Iowa has yet to prove anything either, but at least defeating Iowa State is worth something.  With this line almost not worth it, take Iowa to win.


Alabama (-9.5) at Arkansas

The Crimson Tide finally head into their first conference game, and it's their first true away game also.  Arkansas is two 4th-quarter drives away from being 0-2 to Western Illinois and Louisiana-Monroe.  Alabama has proven themselves against Clemson, but every week can be different as shown by the Tulane game.  The offense has started to click, and the defense is stout, so look for Alabama to make a statement going into Athens next week.  Take Alabama to win by 10 or more.


UCF at Boston College (-10.5)

Seriously?  No way.  UCF is underrated, and after the shocker loss against South Florida, UCF is ready to rebound and take it to the Eagles.  Matt Ryan is gone, but the home field advantage could be a bit much for the Bulls.  Look for BC to pull out the win, but by a field goal.


Notre Dame at Michigan State (-8.5)

Michigan State's win over California doesn't look so impressive now.  Don't count ND out of this one just yet.  A win over Michigan last week is just what this team needed to jump start their team.  Watch out for Notre Dame to not only beat the spread, but to beat Michigan State.


Virginia Tech at North Carolina (-2)

North Carolina has proven they can be competitive with the Thursday night rout of the Knights from Rutgers last week.  Look for their offense to come alive, and take this win and cover the spread.  Virginia Tech heads in with a non-impressive win over Furman and Georgia Tech, and that horrific loss against East Carolina.


Florida (-7.5) at Tennessee

I think the guys in Vegas are being nice to UT having home-field in this game.  Florida is a powerhouse that will contend for the title this year, and UT looks a whole lot worse after that UCLA loss when BYU laid it on the Bruins 59-0.  Offense finally looked good against the Blazers, but UAB also has to be one of the worst teams in the league.  No question that Florida covers this and more.


Wake Forest at Florida State (-4.5)

FSU has the most freshman of anyone in the nation playing this year.  Wins over Western Carolina and UT-Chattanooga aren't impressive enough to prove anything.  Wake Forest has that SEC win under it's belt, and could be the last hope for the ACC to prove something to the world.  Granted it was just Ole Miss, but SEC is SEC.  Look for this to be a close game, but WF will be able to pull this out with better experience this year, and years past.


LSU (-2) at Auburn

Expect a game like last week's 3-2 defensive squeaker against Miss. St.  This game is full of defense, with Auburn having one of the best in the country allowing only five points a game, but with having a new spread offense that has only produced one passing touchdown, and a QB situation that Tommy Tuberville doesn't even know about, it shouldn't be hard for one of the best teams in the country to come into Jordan-Hare and pull off the win.  Auburn will hang with them, but if LSU pulls it by a FG like I think they will, the -2 wins.


Georgia (-7) at Arizona State

After Arizona St's upsetting loss to UNLV, this match-up has diminished.  Traveling to Tempe could be a little much for the Bulldogs, but they aren't the No. 3 team in the nation for nothing.  Georgia continues to be underrated as they drop from No. 2 to No. 3 after a close game in Columbia last week.  Look for Georgia to come close to this line, but have the W with ease.  I'd take Georgia right here no matter what.


So now you know more than your friends do.