This Saturday marks the last full day of games for college football’s regular season and perhaps its biggest with a number of classic rivalries on the slate. The following is a look at our top two plays as well as an update of which teams the OddsShark Consensus is backing this week.
Pick of the Week
The Ohio State Buckeyes are one of two undefeated teams in Division-IA but you will not see them playing for a national championship this season due to NCAA sanctions. Given the situation, this Saturday’s game against No. 19 Michigan is a chance for Urban Meyer’s squad to not only complete a perfect 12-0 run but to make a statement that the Buckeyes are one of the best, if not the best, teams in the country. The Wolverines are 3.5-point road underdogs at 5Dimes in this matchup and they have already lost two previous road games this season as a dog. Overcoming an extremely high level of intensity and motivation in Columbus to try and snap this streak will be a tall task to say the least.
The other undefeated team in the country is playing for a spot in the BCS title game. No. 1 Notre Dame is on the doorstep of its own 12-0 run as it squares off against USC this Saturday night as a 5.5-point road favorite at 5Dimes in one of college football’s biggest rivalries. The Trojans limp into this showdown with three losses in their last four games both straight-up and against the spread. They will also be starting a freshman quarterback against one of the best defenses in the nation. The Irish will not hesitate to kick their bitter rivals when they are down, especially when you consider that USC has won nine of the last 10 meetings dating back to 2002.
The OddsShark Consensus
Friday’s Ball State vs. Miami (OH) game is the consensus’ top pick this week with 72.1 percent of them picking the Cardinals giving seven points on the road against the RedHawks. Another Friday matchup has Bowling Green as a 10-point home favorite against Buffalo and 70.5 percent of the consensus favors the Falcons to win and cover the spread.
Turning to Saturday’s games, the top pick has Louisiana-Monroe beating Florida International by more than five points on the road at 71.6 percent. Another pick high on the list at 71.2 percent has Western Kentucky knocking off North Texas as an 11.5-point home favorite. The top play on the total line this week at 72.7 has the South Carolina vs. Clemson game going OVER 61.5 points.
The Best of the Rest
In addition to the No. 12 Gamecocks renewing their long-standing feud against the No. 11 Tigers (-3.5 at 5Dimes) in a battle for supremacy in South Carolina, there are a number of showdowns for state bragging rights being staged all across the country.
Staying in the southeast, No. 2 Alabama plays host to Auburn as a prohibitive 31.5-point favorite at 5Dimes in one of the biggest rivalries in college football. A little farther south, the No. 4 Florida Gators will try and keep their remote BCS title hopes alive when they travel to Tallahassee to tangle with the No.1 0 Florida State Seminoles as 8-point underdogs in a battle of bragging rights for the Sunshine State. Going all the way out the Pacific Northwest, the Civil War will be renewed with No. 5 Oregon heading into Reser Stadium to face No. 15 Oregon State as a 9.5-point road favorite.