It was another down week in our ESPN College Pick Em group. Only three entries had 45 points or more, and the high was 46 by espn32962731. We had a few more in the low 40’s, but there were still some shakeups at the top.
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Brian Prete’s 43 vaulted him back into first place in the group with 349 points. mdaallen is five points behind. Jay_da_gr8_1 slipped to third, two points behind mdaallen. KevShep! is hanging around, just one point out of the top three.
Another strong week by pitpenguins66 vaulted him into a tie for 5th with earleyca at 338 points. A disappointing week from BKNoleGirl dropped her all the way to seventh. keepingthelittlehumansalive is just one point back in eighth. Protege21242 sits in ninth place with 330 points. I hung on to the 10th slot with 328 points, but Protege21242’s second entry is just one point back, and Brandon8736 is just one point behind that.
Again, there were no clean sweeps, but 27 out of 28 of us took Fresno. Only three picked Northwestern’s win over Wisconsin. I was one of them, but I gave all those points back by going so high on Texas.
These picks will be for the confidence version of the game, where you assign a point value from 1-10 based on how confident you are in each pick. I will publish mine here each week. If I make a change, I will just amend the original article. The least team picked was Washington State with ten of us, so most had the same picks. It was the point values that set us apart.
This looks like another tough week. How will the group do this time around?
(1) LSU over Alabama:
Let me take you back to a simpler time. The year was 2011. Second ranked Alabama came into Death Valley against a number one LSU team, and lost 9-6 in an overtime thriller in the best defensive game of this century. Why might it happen again? Death Valley at night. Alabama looked unbeatable in 2011, and stomped that same LSU team in a rematch in the National Championship some two months later. Talk about anticlimactic. Why else might this happen again? LSU has not beaten Bama in seven games since. Bama was number one or number two in five of those seven, and never ranked lower than 5. LSU is due.
(2) Washington over Stanford:
These are arguably the two biggest underachievers in the country, with all due disrespect to Wisconsin and Michigan State. Both offenses have proven to be much worse than anticipated, and Stanford missing or having a limited Bryce Love in nearly every game hasn’t helped. I am thoroughly unimpressed with either team, and I wouldn’t be all that shocked if they both figured out a way to lose this game. When in doubt, I guess you have to go with the home team.
(3) Virginia Tech over Boston College:
This is a road game for the Eagles, and Virginia Tech’s strength is run defense. You wouldn’t have known it last week against Georgia Tech, but stopping an option is much different than straight up stopping the run. If BC gets to a point where they will have to pass to win, and they will, they wont be able to do it.
(4) Georgia over Kentucky:
Kentucky would all but clinch the SEC East with a win here. Even though they pulled out an unlikely win in Columbia, I don’t think they can stop Georgia here. I do like Kentucky, but this defense isn’t good enough to win the game outright for them. Georgia’s is. This is going to be a huge battle though, just like cats and dogs should be.
(5) Iowa over Purdue:
The Iowa defense wasn’t really the problem last week. The offense was. That was all because of the opposing defense, which Purdue has none of. The Boilermakers could keep this close, but I just don’t see them winning outright, even at home.
(6) Notre Dame over Northwestern:
The Irish have a few trap games remaining, and this is one of them. I think this game is going to be closer than the experts think, but I just dont’ see Northwestern completely shutting down the Notre Dame offense like they would have do to win. This is our chance to see if the Irish can win ugly.
(7) Michigan over Penn State:
Penn State will probably show up because that’s what they do when their backs are against the wall. They still have no chance of beating Michigan. This may get ugly in Ann Arbor. I think Michigan pulls away.
(8) West Virginia over Texas:
Many picking this have it close. Don’t bet on it. We saw what OSU’s offense, a team that has had trouble moving the ball lately, did to the Texas defense. What do you think Will Grier is going to do to them? This West Virginia defense is still pretty stout to boot as well. I really don’t see this one staying all that close.
(9) Utah over Arizona State:
The Sun Devils are probably going to bust a long play or two, but they aren’t consistent enough on either side of the ball to be a threat to win this game. Utah should run off with this based on the strength of their defense alone.
(10) Houston over SMU:
I do think that the Ponies will put up more of a threat than South Florida did. It still wont matter. Houston is going to destroy them.
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