GAINESVILLE, FL - OCTOBER 1: Quarterback Jeff Driskel #16 of the Florida Gators sets to pass against the Alabama Crimson Tide October 1, 2011 at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium in Gainesville, Florida. (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)
It was another wild weekend in college football, and it always feels better when Notre Dame covers a sizable spread in a victory.
Just wait until this week's spread for the Irish---it's only for the extremely pro-Irish contingent out there.
We have a lot of early and mid-afternoon games this week, with a smaller sampling of games into the night.
As always, here's a look back at week five before the picks for week six.
Last Week: 8-4
*As already mentioned, Notre Dame easily covered against Purdue.
*Air Force were underdogs on the road against Navy, but pulled out a thrilling overtime victory.
*Ohio State got the 3-point home favorites, but Michigan State suffocated the Buckeye offense and pulled off the outright upset.
*USC were sizable favorites against Arizona, but just couldn't quite cover. The Trojan defense continues to leak massive amounts of oil.
*Auburn were a ridiculous 10-point underdog to South Carolina, but left with a victory---spoiling the Gamecocks undefeated season in the process.
*To continue the upset theme, Clemson bounced Virginia Tech from the ranks of the undefeated.
*Texas laid a whoopin' on Iowa State and easily covered.
*It looked like Florida was going to make it a close game (possibly even win), but then Alabama got a pick six, Brantley got hurt, and the Tide rolled all over the Gators.
*The Texas A&M pick was looking golden in the first half, then the Aggies went and collapsed for the second week in a row. No, I'm not happy about this Mike Sherman. Not happy at all.
*Vegas nailed the Georgia-Mississippi State game as Georgia lived up to the billing as the 7 point favorite. Is this the end of the line for all the good feelings in Starkville for Dan Mullen---the Bulldogs are 2-3 with 3 more ranked teams still to play.
*Boise was teetering on the edge of covering their large spread all game long, but eventually let Nevada back into the game. It was a surprisingly mediocre (even bad) offensive performance by Kellen Moore and the Broncos.
*Stupid me for thinking Nebraska would keep it close in Madison. The Corn scored first but then were soundly beaten up and left for dead by a Wisconsin team that is looking like it might breeze to 13-0 and a possible national title game.
Now on to this week's picks....
Air Force (+15) at Notre Dame
Pick: Air Force
Maryland (+14) at #13 Georgia Tech
Pick: Georgia Tech
How did the Yellow Jackets get so good on offense? I remember watching them during their bowl game at the end of last year and they struggled picking up first downs, let alone putting points on the board. Now, they're 5-0 and averaging almost 52 points a game.
I don't love this pick but there is just so much bad karma with Maryland right now and I don't see them keeping Georgia Tech under 35 points, nor scoring more than 20 themselves. Burn your diplomas Terp fans!!
#3 Oklahoma (-10) at #11 Texas
Oklahoma controlled this game last year, but the score was pretty close at the end of regulation. This year, Texas has been much improved, and while they might not be back to elite status yet, I think they keep this game very close well into the fourth quarter.
I'm still not convinced that this Oklahoma team is really lights out national title caliber, so I'm pretty confident with this pick. An outright upset wouldn't shock me in the least bit.
Boston College (+21) at #8 Clemson
Two things: First, Clemson's offense has been on fire this year and is completely revitalized. Second, Boston College is really stinky awful this year.
Add it up, with a splash of Death Valley and you have the makings of an epic blowout. This might be the type of game where Clemson scores on their first three possessions and never looks back. Watch out for a 40-point win here---the Eagles are 1-4, have lost to Duke and Wake Forest already, and might go winless in the ACC.
Miami (+7.5) at #21 Virginia Tech
Arghhh, Miami's victory over Ohio State doesn't look as good now, and they've lost to Maryland and Kansas State. Then, Virginia Tech struggled a little bit with some inferior opponents, and got spanked in their first real test this year.
I was never that confident in the Hokies this year, just way too many questions marks and too many people pointing to their schedule as the reason why they'd be good this year. I'll take the points and ride with Da U this weekend.
Missouri (-3) at #20 Kansas State
Pick: Kansas State
As always, Kansas State is flying under the radar, pulling off Kansas State-type upsets in the past two weeks against Miami and Baylor. Missouri has played pretty well in both of their losses, but teams generally have a hard time playing in the Little Apple.
Like 99.9% of the college football world, I know next to nothing about Kansas State, but I'll take the points and the home team in this game---I think it's a sound strategy.
#17 Florida (+13.5) at #1 LSU
I'm just slightly afraid of this large of a spread with an LSU team that doesn't have an explosive offense and will be more than happy running the ball 400 times and punting to their defense. Yet, the Tigers are likely going to score some points on defense anyway as they go up against a true freshman quarterback making his first career start.
Good luck Weis---I'm taking LSU all the way in this one in a likely mini-blowout.
#22 Arizona State (-4) at Utah
Pick: Arizona State
A new Pac-12 matchup that I'm not entirely comfortable picking. You could make a case for picking either team here, but I'll go with the Sun Devils.
I think they've proved they are a pretty good team, and Utah is 4-5 over their last 9 games dating back to last year and doesn't seem to be the powerful Utes we got used to in the past. They're already 0-2 in conference play and just got blown out at home by a mediocre Washington team. Get out the pitchforks!
Georgia (-1) at Tennessee
I'm starting to come around to the thought that Georgia might be on a little roll and could very likely sneak into the SEC championship game. They have the easy schedule, their losses were early in the season, and Florida and South Carolina now have their own problems to deal with.
This is a game Mark Richt absolutely has to win, no excuses. Tennessee is okay, but Georgia should go into Neyland Stadium and pick up a "W" here if they want to make any serious noise in the SEC this year.
#15 Auburn (+10) at #10 Arkansas
The Razorbacks are not missing Ryan Mallett right now, scoring nearly 40 points per game with the 7th best passing offense in the country. And they've already taken their beaten from Alabama!
I just don't see how Auburn's defense can keep Arkansas contained for very long. The Hogs will gash you for runs, and then just go crazy passing the ball seemingly at will for series after series. Both teams are 4-1 right now, and it has to be Auburn that suffers a big defeat this week to fall back in the competitive SEC west division.
Ohio State (+11) at #14 Nebraska
We wondered how Ohio State would deal with all the drama and adversity this year, and it's looking like they are ready to fold up shop and get through this year as quickly as possible. They're not getting their star players back for this game, and the offense looks truly anemic.
Nebraska is coming off it's own crushing loss, but they should cruise in this one in front of their home fans. It's their Big Ten home opener and the Buckeyes literally struggle to get 5 yards. Pelini & Co. should notch that first league win this weekend.
TCU (-3.5) at San Diego State
I'm telling you SDSU misses offensive coordinator Al Borges more than anything this year. How do you only score 7 points against Michigan? Luckily for the Aztecs they have been resting after a bye week in preparation for a Mountain West showdown against TCU.
The Frogs are coming off their own crushing loss against SMU, but I think Gary Patterson is going to have his boys ready for this one. I just can't see TCU falling to 3-3 on the season---a comfortable Horned Frog victory wouldn't surprise me here.
Enjoy the weekend!