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2014 NCAA College Football Week Ten Picks
Last week’s 7-4-1 mark against the spread brought my season total to 50-41-4. This week I’m picking sixteen games spanning across nine conferences in hopes of adding to that record and starting the final full month of the season off in the right direction.
Before getting into this weeks many selections, here is a brief rundown on how last week went -
East Carolina -27 Connecticut
Up 14-0 in the first quarter and poised to take over the game, ECU throws an interception in the endzone that changes momentum and eventually needs a strong fourth quarter to win at home against UConn, 31-21. (L)
South Alabama -13 Troy
Two South Alabama backs run for over 100 yards and a touchdown each on their way to a 27-13 victory. (W)
Boise State -6 BYU
BYU continues to miss injured and out for the season quarterback Taysom Hill, losing their fourth straight 55-30 as Boise State’s offense explodes for 637 yards of total offense. (W)
Arkansas -21 UAB
Once up 45-3, Arkansas rolls all over UAB, highlighted by a touchdown pass (below) thrown by the heaviest player on the Razorback roster, 350 pound offensive lineman Sebastian Tretola, eventually winning 45-17. (W)
Minnesota -6 Illinois
David Cobb rushes for 118 yards and two touchdowns, but his late in the fourth quarter fumble is returned for a touchdown by the Illinois defense and my Gophers pick loses for the second straight pick, as they fall 28-24 in Champaign. (L)
Rice -13 North Texas
Holding North Texas to a mere 26 yards net rushing for the game, Rice scores 27 unanswered points in the second half on their way to a 41-21 win. (W)
San Jose State +10 Navy
Navy quarterback Keenan Reynolds ends up playing, disappointingly for those of who picked San Jose State as he was originally expected to miss the game, as San Jose State needs a last minute touchdown to push the ten point line, losing 41-31. (PUSH)
Georgia Southern -15 Georgia State
Taking the number one rushing offense vs the 120th ranked rushing defense works out well, as Georgia Southern runs for 613 yards on route to a 69-31 rout of Georgia State. (W)
Arizona -2.5 Washington State
Arizona State goes up 31-0 and then cruises for a 55-31 win on the road. Washington State quarterback Connor Halliday attempted 79 passes in the game, which is only the second highest total of his career. Last year he broke the record for passing attempts in a game with 89 in a loss to Oregon, and a few weeks back broke passing yards in a game record with 734 in a loss to Cal. (W)
Ole Miss -3 LSU
Bo Wallace throws a costly interception with seconds left rather then throw it away and go for a game tying field goal, as Ole Miss loses in Baton Rouge, 10-7. (L)
Alabama -16 Tennessee
Bama running back Jalston Fowler fumbles while walking in for a touchdown late in the game, ruining Alabama’s chance at a well deserved cover in a game they dominated, as they win only by fourteen, 34-20. (L)
Nevada -3 Hawaii
I extend my undefeated record in picking Mountain West teams to 9-0-1 for the season as Nevada beats Hawaii 26-18. (W)
Last weeks record – 7-4-1 Season record – 50-41-4
THIS WEEK'S PICKS
Georgia Southern (-25) vs. Troy Thursday 7:30 PM
Georgia Southern is 5-2 on the year, with their only losses close ones against Georgia Tech and NC State, and is a very impressive 11-1 against the spread in their last twelve games. Last week I picked them and their number one in the nation rushing attack, now averaging over 400 yards per game on the ground, against the 120th run defense in the country, and again this week the team they are playing is now also ranked 120th against the run.. Their success continues under the lights Thursday night for a rare televised game in Statesboro, Georgia.
PICK Georgia Southern -25
Cincinnati (-6) at Tulane Friday 8:00 PM
The Bearcats have fired off two strong wins in a row after a three game slide, and have had recent success playing on Friday nights, covering in four of their last five games, while their opponent Tulane is 0-6 against the spread in their last six on Saturday eve. Go with Cincinnati and their two awesomely named quarterbacks, Gunner Kiel and Munchie Legeaux.
PICK Cincinnati -6
Air Force (-3) at Army Saturday 11:00 AM
Saturday’s first game has Air Force attempting to clinch this year’s Commander-in-Chief’s Trophy against Army. In the series matchup between the two teams, Air Force is 22-3 in the last 25 games, including 6-2 against the spread in the last eight. Go with the Falcons.
PICK Air Force -3
East Carolina (-7) at Temple Saturday 12:00 PM
ECU is 6-1 on the season with an average winning margin of over 21 points per game. Last week’s unexpected struggle against UConn served as an eye opener for the Pirates, and this week they play focused and win by double digits on the road at Temple.
PICK East Carolina -7
Central Florida (-10) at Connecticut Saturday 12:00 PM
The UCF Knights has won five games in a row after since losing early on in the season to Penn State and Missouri. This week they travel to Storrs to play Connecticut, who they beat a season ago by 45 points. Expect a similar result this year.
PICK Central Florida -10
North Carolina (+17) at Miami Saturday 12:30 PM
The line for this game opened at 11.5 and has since gone up to 17, seemingly because of giant distraction for the Tar Heels due to their recently uncovered, massive cheating scandal that has been going on for decades where fake classes were set up so students with academic issues could be guaranteed higher grades and in turn boost their GPAs to be able to remain eligible. It’s not like their opponents the Miami Hurricanes are a hotbed for Mensa recruitment either, and despite the all the hoopla I still like UNC to cover in this game. The favorite in this series has only beaten the line once in the last ten matchups and the last three games between the two teams have been decided by a total of fourteen points. In what should be a very high scoring game, take the points.
PICK North Carolina +17
Washington (-4) at Colorado Saturday 1:00 PM
Quarterback Cyler Miles is expected to return for the Huskies against Colorado after sitting out last week’s game due to a concussion. The Huskies have won the last five games between the two teams, including the last three by an average of almost 40 points per game. They’re also 7-0 against the spread in their last seven games when favored between three and ten points. The trend continues.
PICK Washington -4
Western Michigan (-6) at Miami Ohio Saturday 2:30 PM
Miami Ohio got their second win of the year last week, and therefore has reached their quota for the season. Their short lived success will come to an end this week against Western Michigan, who has covered in seven straight games including their last four on the road. Random notable alumni fact - Tim ‘The Toolman’ Taylor met his wife Jill at Western Michigan. Above we see him before they settled down to raise a family.
PICK Western Michigan -6
Louisiana Tech (-6) vs. Western Kentucky Saturday 3:00 PM
Two teams heading in opposite directions, with La. Tech having won three in a row (and covering in six of their last eight games) battling Western Kentucky, who has won just two of their last six games. The Bulldogs win at home.
PICK Louisiana Tech -6
Georgia (-10) vs. Florida Saturday 3:30 PM
Georgia is 6-1 this season with an average winning margin of over 30 points per game. They have beaten Florida in each of the last three seasons and should have problem doing so again this time around, even with the Gators finally making the logical choice and benching Jeff Driskill in favor of freshman Treon Harris. It may be the last decision Florida coach Will Muschamp makes, as he will likely be fired sooner then later as his team has lost ten of their last thirteen games.
PICK Georgia -10
TCU (-3) at West Virginia Saturday 3:30 PM
TCU comes in as the only team to have covered in all of their games so far this year, starting out the year 7-0 against the spread. More importantly, sort of, they’re 6-1 and with all the upsets so far this year, they have a realistic chance of making it into the College Football Playoff if they win out. In what should be a very high scoring battle between TCU quarterback Trevone Boykin and West Virginia’s Clint Trickett, I see TCU continuing their against the spread dominance in the 2014 season and preventing Mountaineer fans from ‘celebrating’ another victory like they did above after upsetting Baylor.
PICK TCU -3
Colorado State (-6) at San Jose State Saturday 7:00 PM
Colorado State is a surprising 7-1 this year, with their only loss on the road in week two to Boise. They’re also 15-6 against the line in their last 21 games, including 9-2 on the road. The Rams continue their success in San Jose, where the hometown team hasn’t covered in their last four games as an underdog.
PICK Colorado State -6
South Carolina (-6) vs. Tennessee Saturday 7:30 PM
Steve Spurrier and the Gamecocks started the season ranked 9th in the polls but a 4-4 record, including three losses in a row to FBS teams, has dropped them far out of the top 25. They should get their season back on track against Tennessee, who has only covered once in their last five games as road underdog. The Volunteers upset South Carolina last year, history doesn’t repeat itself this time around.
PICK South Carolina -6
Arizona (+7) at UCLA Saturday 10:30 PM
Two one-loss teams battle it out in Pasadena, and in this one I like the underdog to not only cover, but also win the game outright. With road wins already this season against Oregon and Washington State, Arizona has proven they can win in hostile road environments and with a passing offense ranked 8th in the nation they should be able to exploit UCLA’s porous pass defense, which ranks 105th. The Bruins have also only covered once this entire season, as their offensive linemen has continuously failed to give former Heisman hopeful quarterback Brett Hundley any time on the pocket to pick apart defenses. UCLA is one of two teams left in the PAC 12 that Rich Rodriguez has yet to beat as coach of Arizona, he gets the notch in his belt this week in Los Angeles. Which for fans of one of the greatest movies ever, Step Brothers, is located just around 22 miles north of the home of the Catalina Wine Mixer.
PICK Arizona +7
Nevada (-3) vs San Diego State Saturday 10:30 PM
Dual threat quarterback Cody Fajardo has been his own one man Wolfpack, with eleven passing and ten rushing touchdowns this season for Nevada, and should lead his team to a victory against a San Diego State team that has only covered once in their last five games.
PICK Nevada -3
Utah State (-2) at Hawaii Saturday 11:00 PM
Tough to pick a third string quarterback on the road, but after throwing three touchdowns in last weeks game I’m going with Craig Harrison and Utah State to avoid the Bobby Brady Tiki curse and win in Hawaii.
PICK Utah State -2
As always, good luck with all your picks this weekend and thanks for reading. Vote below on who you believe will win this year's Heisman Trophy.