Halloween football around the country. For the first time since 2015, Halloween falls on a college football Saturday. Unfortunately, Covid will not give us the full stadiums of dressed up college kids. The week isn’t the best of weekends with only 1 matchup of ranked opponents. There are several other big games around the country to take a look at.
The week 9 slate had it’s game of the week lose a little bit of it’s luster with Penn State losing to Indiana with the controversial call at the end of the game Saturday night. That game is still going to be crucial in terms of the Big Ten standings as the Nittany Lions are the biggest test for the Buckeyes on their road the playoffs. Ohio State will still have to go through ranked opponents, Indiana and Michigan to end the season. They get those two at home though so a win in State College this weekend will put the Buckeyes in a good position. Justin Fields looked impressive in last week’s dismantling of Nebraska. Fields had only one incompletion while throwing for 276 yards and 2 touchdowns while adding a rushing touchdown.
Penn State’s Sean Cliff would have liked to see more from their redshirt junior quarterback Sean Clifford. He impressed on the ground and while throwing for 238 yards looks impressive on the stat sheet, two interceptions in the first half led to 10 points to help Indiana jump out to an early lead. Penn State’s defense will have it’s hands full on Saturday looking for a way to shut down the spread out attack the Buckeyes will bring. Fields completed a pass to 8 different receiver against Nebraska. I think in the end, it will be too much for the Nittany Lions to handle.
Spread: Ohio State -12.5
Total: O/U 63.5
Prediction: Ohio State 41 Penn State 27
The SEC only has one matchup this week with a spread in single digits. That game will be between the LSU and Auburn Tigers. LSU may have figured something out last week as their defense held South Carolina to 24 points. That may seem like a lot for an SEC team but after giving up 45 to Missouri and 44 to Mississippi State, I think Ed Orgeron will be satisfied with 24. I am the biggest Bo Nix hater there is. He squeaked out a victory last week against a terrible Ole Miss defense. I think LSU takes care of this one with a few turnovers from Auburn in the second half.
Spread: LSU -3.5
Total: O/U 66.5
Prediction: LSU 31 Auburn 24
One of my favorite games of the weekend will be Texas going into Stillwater and taking on Oklahoma State. I was very impressed with what the Oklahoma State offense looked like against Iowa State last week. Make no mistake about it, Iowa State is one of the top defenses in the Big XII and they don’t get enough credit for it. I don’t think the Longhorns will be able to give the same looks for Spencer Sanders that he saw against the Cyclones that resulted in two interceptions. Chubba Hubbard is averaging around 113 yards per game but he should see some holes against the Longhorn front 7 and Oklahoma State will continue to roll as the only chance for the Big XII to make the playoffs.
Spread: Oklahoma State -3.5
Total: O/U 58.5
Prediction: Oklahoma State 38 Texas 35
Cincinnati continues they’re fuck you tour after beating SMU last week. There were a lot of analysts picking Shane Buechele and the Mustangs to win. Cincinnati stomped on the gas early and never looked back with a 42-13 win. This proved that they were legit and deserved their top ten ranking. The schedule doesn’t get any easier as Memphis, a feisty Houston team and UCF all face off against the Bearcats in the next four weeks. The Memphis offense has some fire power so this has a chance to turn into a high scoring affair. However, Cincinnati proved that they can handle big offenses and should continue undefeated for another week
Spread: Cincinnati -6.5
Total: O/U 55.5
Prediction: Cincinnati 41 Memphis 24
Illinois got off to a rough start against Wisconsin last week losing 45-7. The Fighting Illini could not get anything going on offense as Brandon Peters ended with only 87 passing yards. After jumping out to a lead, the Wisconsin defense really stepped up and dominated much of the game. Purdue was able to squeak out a win against Iowa. This is a game that Vegas doesn’t know what to do with after one week. I think these teams are much more even matched than what the 6.5 point spread would have you believe. For that reason, I think there is value in taking Illinois to win outright.
Moneyline: Illinois +220
Prediction: Illinois 30 Purdue 20