Week 12 College Football Picks: Arkansas and Other Teams on Upset Alert

John FrielAnalyst INovember 17, 2011

FAYETTEVILLE, AR - NOVEMBER 12:   Broderick Green #29 of the Arkansas Razorbacks runs the ball against the Tennessee Volunteers at Donald W. Reynolds Stadium Stadium on November 12, 2011 in Fayetteville, Arkansas.  The Razorbacks defeated the Volunteers 49 to 7.  (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

With teams already looking forward to bowl games and their conference championship matchups, Week 12 poses a huge threat to a number of squads that could be taken advantage of if their heads are not in the right place.

In college football, you have to take it one week at a time as one loss, especially this late in the year, could derail any hopes your team ever had of making a significant bowl game. A number of upper-tier teams will be in action against average opponents this week, and they could very well fall if they're focusing on the bigger games two weeks from now instead of taking on their current assignment and then looking forward.


6. Arkansas (9-1) vs. Mississippi State (5-5)

It seems to be a lopsided matchup, at least on paper. The Arkansas Razorbacks are coming off of a 49-7 win against Tennessee and are in the midst of a six-game winning streak since suffering a 38-14 loss to Alabama. During that win streak, the Razorbacks have beaten three ranked opponents including No. 14 Texas A&M, No. 15 Auburn and No. 10 South Carolina.

Mississippi State has struggled all year long with no significant wins, its only quality victory coming by way of a win over Kentucky, their only win against an SEC opponent this year. The Bulldogs may seem harmless, but they've played well against every ranked opponent they've faced this year with a 13-point loss to LSU, a two-point loss to South Carolina and a 17-point loss to Alabama.

This could be closer than you imagine. The Razorbacks have struggled all year long with teams that were supposed to beat handily, including a 10-point win over the Sun Belt's Troy Trojans, a five-point win over 2-8 Mississippi and a three-point win over Vanderbilt. Not to mention, they may be looking towards LSU in two weeks as this week could spell out disaster for a Razorbacks team that has been flirting with failure all year long.


16. Kansas State (8-2) at Texas (6-3)

The Longhorns aren't what they used to be, but they are still an extremely dangerous team with the capability to pull off an upset over a team like Kansas State who is fighting atop the Big 12. The Wildcats have been in a number of close games this year with last week being no exception as they defeated a 5-4 Texas A&M team 53-50.

The 'Cats have had a few close defeats this season with a three point victory over Eastern Kentucky and close games against Miami, Texas Tech and Missouri, all teams who are usually regarded as inferior to a team of Kansas State's caliber.

The 'Horns are coming off of a tough week where they only scored five points against Missouri and they could be looking for a bounce back game in their final home game of the year. The Wildcats better watch out as they take on a Texas team with what is sure to be its biggest crowd of the year.


4. Oregon (9-1) at 18. USC (8-2)

A monumental last two weeks of the season where they take on the always dangerous USC Trojans before finishing up their season against lowly state rival Oregon State. The Ducks are coming off of an emotional 53-30 victory over former No. 4 Stanford and they could still have their minds stuck in that tremendous showing which could spell trouble as they take on Matt Barkley and the Trojans.

The Ducks have taken advantage of an easy schedule with their only loss of the season coming to LSU in the first week and these last three weeks of the season has easily been their most difficult stretch.

The Trojans are an embarrassing defeat to Arizona State and an overtime loss to Stanford away from being undefeated and they're looking to make their last push towards a significant bowl game with a win over Oregon. The Ducks have the benefit of playing at home and they better take advantage of that with a win to possibly secure a spot in the BCS Championship game.