Sixth locksmith choice: week 13
We are at the end of the regular season. It’s a moan you’ll hear – not a bang.
Where does this weekend’s drama used to bring? Where are the epic showdowns? Outside of Oklahoma-Oklahoma State and Ohio State-Michigan, the weekend schedule lacks any real dynamism – unless, of course, you think 23 teams that are 5-6 and trying to becoming eligible for the bowl are compelling.
There’s a lot of intrigue in Ohio State-Michigan, with the Buckeyes having a dazzling display of offense recently and the Wolverines also hitting this point at 9-1, albeit in a much more professional manner.
Even minus eight on the road against a good defense, it’s tough to pick against Ohio State these days.
Place for games:
Florida State on FLORIDA, taking 2 1/2
Thanks to Mike Norvell for keeping the Seminoles together after a 0-4 start to reach 5-6 – while also making QB Travis Jordan a more consistent player. The Gators lost four of five (the only victory to come against Samford), fired coach Dan Mullen, lost to an extremely poor Missouri last week and have all but quit.
BAYLOR on Texas Tech, giving 14
The Bears have strong wins over Oklahoma and K-State, have won five of six and need them to stay in contention for the Big 12 title game – hoping for a loss to Oklahoma later that night. The Red Raiders, losers in four of their last six games, hold a rare distinction: They have both given up 70 points in one game and have been shut out. Being epic on both sides of the ball is no small feat.
MICHIGAN STATE on Penn State, taking 1
Have you ever wondered what $ 170 million worth of mediocrity in coaching looks like? It’s right here in full view of the college football world. Sean Clifford is back in the Lions quarterback, but he’s not CJ Stroud and he doesn’t have Ohio State receivers to pitch to. The Spartans are expected to bounce back from the Ohio state debacle, and if Mel Tucker is truly worth $ 95 million, he’ll find a way to be an average Penn State home team. One suggestion: keep giving Kenneth Walker III the ball without trying to be too cute.
LSU on Texas A&M, taking 6
We know what the LSU administration thinks of Ed Orgeron. Now we are going to find out how much his players love him, since this is his last game as head coach of the Tigers. One thing about LSU: there is talent there. It’s not always synchronized but it’s there. Aggie’s defense remains strong, but you never know which Zach Calzada will show up to play quarterback, especially on the road in a harsh environment. It looks like a game of field goal.
Oklahoma vs. Oklahoma State, taking 4
Hard to resist the Sooners plus points against a non-SEC team even during this patchy season. Their offense struggled at times, but their defense has been strong throughout – which is a lot like Oklahoma State’s season at this point. In the battle of attacks and quarterbacks, the Sooners are more talented. Hard to see that this is a lopsided game anyway.
Byu on USC, giving 7
The Cougars have a chance to go 5-0 against the Pac-12 this year and get into it on a roll, having claimed four straight wins while scoring 159 points in their last three games. It is an offense that finally seems to have been found. Looking for the definition of a football team that has quit? Look at USC. The Trojans have lost four of five – beating hapless Arizona by seven in that span – and gave UCLA an embarrassing 62 points last week.
Last week compared to the gap: 3-3
Season to date vs gap: 42-30
CAPS reception team