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The Big E College Football Picks: Week Three

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It’s a slow Friday and I feel like I know enough about the college football landscape heading into week three to start predicting some outcomes.

It’s time to battle the spread!

I’m not a gambler, but that’s not going to stop me from probably going undefeated with these picks. I do this for the love of the game, profit from the picks if you so choose.

Since my hubris is dangerously high, I’ll predict quite a few games this week. Like I said, it’s a slow Friday.

Kansas (+5.5) at Southern Miss

Pick: Southern Miss

It’s really tempting to pick Kansas here after their emotionally charged victory over Georgia Tech and as a Western New Yorker I’ve got nothing but love for Turner Gill. I liked what I saw out of Southern Miss in week one against South Carolina, and this is a game the Jayhawks will not come out on top in.

UConn (-6) at Temple

Pick: UConn

Here’s a game that would have been utterly useless to watch five years ago but actually presents an intriguing match up in 2010. I’m not buying that Temple will be anywhere near as good as they were last year and UConn is looking to get back on track after that deflating opening week loss to Michigan.

The Huskies win this one comfortably.

Georgia Tech (+2) at North Carolina

Pick: North Carolina

The Tar Heels (without whoever is missing) are still good enough to make some noise. Georgia Tech is a one-trick pony who might find it hard to move the ball against North Carolina. I see a big win for Butch Davis and some light returns to Chapel Hill as the team picks up a big ACC win and begins looking past the allegations surrounding their players.

Arkansas (+2) at Georgia

Pick: Arkansas

If I’m not familiar with any players on Georgia, then they won’t be good. I just made that rule up, but I don’t see much to get excited about in Athens this year. Also, SEC rules demand that the Bulldogs be sacrificed in order for the hype to build for the Arkansas-Alabama tilt in a couple weeks.

Razorbacks win by at least ten.

Air Force (+16.5) at Oklahoma

Pick: Oklahoma

Both of these teams are coming off impressive blowout victories and this spread seems just a tad bit high for my liking. I’m only picking the Sooners because Phil Steele just whispered in my ear and told me how good they are. I figure it’s not out of the realm of possibility that Oklahoma puts a beat down on a service academy in Norman.

BYU (+10.5) at Florida State

Pick: BYU

These are the two teams that got blown out last week by Air Force and Oklahoma, and now the Falcons and Sooners are playing each other. Has this ever happened in non-conference play before? Seems really strange, especially considering the two winners are squaring off and so too are both losers.

I think the Seminoles have the same problem that Notre Dame had last year on defense, and that is no one is on the same page. BYU keeps this game close and it may go down to the wire.

Hawaii (+12.5) at Colorado

Pick: Hawaii

This is a terrible line and I feel absolutely certain that the Rainbows will cover and even steal a victory right out of Boulder. Hawaii is not great, but Colorado doesn’t deserve a line like this against the worst of teams.

Arizona State (+13) at Wisconsin

Pick: Wisconsin

Whoa look out, Wisconsin is playing an out of conference team with a pulse! Of course you wouldn’t expect the Badgers to get too crazy and really schedule a barn burner would you?

Wisconsin looked pretty uninspired last week, but I’m really high on this team and think they might be the best in the Big Ten. I think this will be the week where their offense catches fire and everyone takes notice.

USC (-12) at Minnesota

Pick: USC

Could USC have had a worse start without losing? Still Minnesota is so bad it’s not even funny. This game might get out of hand real early and we may even see a smile out of Lane Kiffin this weekend.

Nebraska (-3) at Washington

Pick: Nebraska

I am so torn over this pick! On the one hand I think Nebraska would lose more times than not to just about every team in the top 25. Yet, I don’t think there’s a more overrated player in the country than Jake Locker.

I’m super excited to see what becomes of this match up. God help us all if Locker actually puts up a game worthy of "No. 1 NFL Draft Pick" status. But if we have another 220 yard, two touchdown and one interception day where Locker only completes 54 percent of his passes and isn’t running, can we just remove him from all remaining Big Boards?

Washington still isn’t that good, so Nebraska will escape with a couple late field goals.

Florida (-14) at Tennessee

Pick: Florida

Yeah Florida has looked rusty as could be this year, but Lane Kiffin was the coach at Tennessee last year and this Vols team is about as beat up and void of experienced talent as any in recent school history.

This will be the game that Florida gets its mojo back with an easy four touchdown victory.

Baylor (+21) at TCU

Pick: Baylor

If you judged this pick based on the AP Poll then maybe this line would make sense, but I don’t think TCU is that freaking good. Baylor’s Robert Griffin is one of those quarterbacks that can keep a game like this close, which I think will happen.

Mississippi State (+8) at LSU

Pick: LSU

A lot of people are high on the Bulldogs for "playing so well" against Auburn and so many of us would love to see LSU choke this game away.

But it’s not happening. A night game in the Death Valley spells big trouble for Mississippi State, even if Les Miles is still coaching LSU.

Clemson (+7) at Auburn

Pick: Clemson

I finally got the chance to sit down and watch Auburn closely last week after not having the opportunity at all last year. I don’t see what the big fuss is about really. I like Clemson to keep this game close into the fourth quarter but just fall short.

Texas (-3) at Texas Tech

Pick: Texas

I’m very confident that this won’t be a close game at all. The Longhorns are going to shut down Tech’s offense and this will be a very comfortable victory for Texas. I don’t care what happened in Lubbock last time Mack Brown and Co. rolled in, the talent disparity is even wider now than it was then.

Houston (-3) at UCLA

Pick: Houston

I see an epic collapse on the horizon for UCLA in what is shaping up to be a forgettable 2010 and the game in hand for Houston mid-way through the fourth quarter. One wonders if that up-spike in recruiting for the Bruins will be all for naught.

Iowa (-1) at Arizona

Pick: Iowa

Look at the Big Ten brethren Wisconsin and Iowa coming out of their non-conference shells at playing both Arizona schools this week! How exciting!

A lot of people are jumping on Arizona’s bandwagon this week citing Iowa’s lack of a win in the western part of the country and all that negative history weighing on the Hawkeyes. But I think Iowa has a much more balanced and potent offense than most people realize, which will ultimately move them down field for the game-winning field goal.

Wake Forest (+18) at Stanford

Pick: Wake Forest

We’ve learned pretty quickly that Stanford probably has an efficient offense led by one of the best quarterbacks in the nation, so there’s no way they lose this game. Still, something inside of me is telling me that the Demon Deacons are going to put up a fight in this contest.

With a Cardinal victory, they will be ranked higher than they have ever been before playing a game in Notre Dame Stadium. This isn’t a Walt Harris-led Stanford program anymore!

Notre Dame (+3.5) at Michigan State

Pick: Notre Dame

This game could be close, but there’s no way Brian Kelly starts out 1-2 at Notre Dame, right?

Right!?!?!?!

Ugh, a 1-2 start would be terrible with Stanford and Pitt coming to town with a trip to Boston College thrown in between.

Go Irish.