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November 16, 2012

College Football Report - Saturday Picks - Week 12

#18 USC (7-3) @ #17 UCLA (8-2)

3:05 ET, FOX, Sat. Nov. 17, Rose Bowl, Pasadena, CA
Jim Mora was supposed to be UCLA’s savior to the program. A long, storied past, brought back to the forefront of college football. He’s done just that, but nobody, probably not even Mora, figured it would be this soon. He can thank redshirt freshman quarterback Brett Hundley for that. Hundley has stepped into the starting role this season, throwing for over 2,700 yards and 24 touchdowns. He’s also added 272 yards and six scores on the ground. He may be the big reason “little brother” sits ahead of “big brother” in the rankings. The Trojans, with Matt Barkley, still own one of the nation’s best offenses, though. They proved their offensive firepower last year, by dropping the Bruins in a 50-0 contest. This is far from last year’s UCLA team, though. They’ve got it working on defense, as well, where linebacker Anthony Barr leads the Pac-12 in sacks with 11. The Bruins rank fourth in the country with 37 total sacks, a big reason why the Bruins will win in a squeaker. Pick: UCLA 37 – USC 34
 (Game of the week…)
#13 Stanford (8-2) @ #2 Oregon (10-0)
8:00 ET, ABC, Sat. Nov. 17, Autzen Stadium, Eugene, OR
Although the Ducks never trailed against the Cardinal last year, their 22-16 score was still too close for comfort. But, then again, that was just the first half. Oregon exploded after halftime, lying 31 second half points on Stanford. The Ducks come into this year’s game with nine defensive players, including five starters, either questionable or ruled out. Their lack of depth defensively has led to scares against USC and last week, in the first half at least, against Cal. The Ducks offense has been its best defense, though. A relentless group, conditioned better than anyone, quarterback Marcus Mariota is leading his group better than anyone in the country at this point in the season. The Cardinal are seasoned vets, but bring in an inexperienced quarterback in Kevin Hogan. It’ll be too much at Autzen Stadium. Pick: Oregon 47 – Stanford 27
#23 Texas Tech (7-3) @ #24 Oklahoma State (6-3)
3:30 ET, Sat. Nov. 17, Boone Pickens Stadium, Stillwater, OK
The popular saying in football goes “defense wins championships.” The lesser known, and even lesser said, however, is “offensive line’s stop defenses from winning championships.” OK, so the latter isn’t a saying at all, but it is true. Thanks much in part to its offensive line, Oklahoma State has been able to win with freshman quarterbacks and stay in games this season. They’ve given up just six sacks all season, good for third nationally. They’ve also given up just 46 stops behind the line, good for No. 11 nationally. As a team, the ground game averages 5.3 yards a rush. Running Back Joseph Randall, over 1000 yards on the season, will get his carries and yards, while junior quarterback Clint Chelf gets his second start of the year, a week after tossing four touchdowns against West Virginia. The better offensive line wins this one, which goes to Lane Taylor and OK State. Pick: Oklahoma State 34 – Texas Tech 24
Iowa (4-6) @ #21 Michigan (7-3)
12:00 ET, ESPN, Sat. Nov. 17, Michigan Stadium, Ann Arbor, MI
Luck always seems to be on Michigan’s side when it comes to late game heroics and last second heaves. Last week was no different. Filling in for the injured Denard Robinson once again, Devin Gardner connected with wideout Roy Roundtree on a 53 yard toss, setting up a field goal to push the Wolverines and Wildcats into overtime. Michigan later walked out with the narrow victory. Gardner has completed 60 percent of his passes since taking over for Robinson, and added 286 yards through the air, 47 on the ground and three total touchdowns last week. It remains to be seen if Robinson will sit again this week, but Michigan fans don’t seem worried if he does. Iowa has lost four straight and have little offensive production. Finding room against a Michigan defense allowing just 302 total yards a game won’t be easy, or a challenge the Hawkeyes will walk away from. Pick: Michigan 26 – Iowa 17
 (Upset pick…)
Ohio State (10-0) @ Wisconsin (7-3)
3:30 ET, ABC, Sat. Nov. 17, Camp Randall Stadium, Madison, WI
The last time the Buckeyes visited Camp Randall Stadium, OSU walked in with an undefeated mark and No.1 rank in the country. They left that game, and that season, with a lone one marked in the loss column. This year, they’re not ranked No. 1, but the Bucks are unbeaten. The Badgers have won two of their last three games played against the Buckeyes at home in Madison. With Ohio State ineligible for the Big Ten Championship, the Badgers already sit with the Leaders division wrapped up, but would love to top their season off by ruining the Bucks clean streak. The Badgers running game will need to be working at full strength, much like last week against Indiana when Montee Ball and James White combined for 359 yards and five touchdowns. Ranking No. 15 nationally in total defense, Wisconsin has what it takes to slow down Braxton Miller and the Bucks offensive push, as well. Camp Randall strikes again. Pick: Wisconsin 23 – Ohio State 20
(Give me a ticket to see…)
Utah State (8-2) @ #20 Louisiana Tech (9-1)
4:00 ET, ESPN3, Sat. Nov. 17, Joe Aillet Stadium, Ruston, LA
Louisiana Tech ranks No. 1 in the country in scoring offense and No. 1 in the country in total offense, but they give up just 71 fewer yards a game than they bring in. That’s too close for comfort from week-to-week. Tech holds the No. 119 (of 120 team) total defense while playing in the WAC. They’ve given up 49 points to Houston, 37 points to rice and just last week 55 points to Texas State. Utah State is two field goals away from an undefeated season, losing by two to Wisconsin and three to BYU. Other than those games, the Aggies, who hold the No. 12 total defense, have rolled through the rest of their schedule. Utah State will take half the Bulldog offense away, as they give up just 94 yards a game on the ground, at 2.9 a rush. Meanwhile, quarterback Chuckie Keeton proves to Tech just how much of a liability their defense really is. Pick: Utah State 48 – Louisiana Tech 41
#22 Rutgers (8-1) @ Cincinnati (7-2)
12:00 ET, BEN, Sat. Nov. 17, Nippert Stadium, Cincinnati, OH
If not for a total team collapse against Kent State, the Scarlet Knights would hold a clean slate, making their November 29 meeting between No. 19 Louisville all the more special. They’ll have to settle instead for a one loss, Big East Championship season. However, they’ll need to get past another Ohio team first. Senior quarterback Brendon Kay took the starting job from Munchie Legaux last week, completing 62 percent of his passes for 244 yards and two scores. He also added 71 yards on the ground. Rutgers has seldom beaten themselves this season, however. Quarterback Gary Nova will need to limit mistakes, as he threw six interceptions against Kent State. The key will be to get running back Jawan Jamison going. He’s just 47 yards away from 1000 on the season. The Knights No. 5 ranked scoring defense will do the rest of the work from there. Pick: Rutgers 34 – Cincinnati 20
Northwestern (7-3) @ Michigan State (5-5)
12:00 ET, ESPN2, Sat. Nov. 17, Spartan Stadium, East Lansing, MI
The Wildcats have been trading wins and losses throughout their Big Ten schedule, at 3-3 in conference play. Their schedule would suggest they’re in line for a win against the Spartans, but Michigan State, who enters the game off a bye, has had an extra week to prepare for the Wildcats and for fans sake, an extra week to add in new offensive sets. Quarterback Andrew Maxwell hasn’t played bad this season, but he’s done little more than manage the game. Twice this season (both losses) Maxwell has thrown for below a 40 percent completion percentage. Luckily, for Maxwell’s sake, the Wildcats hold the nation’s No. 105 ranked pass defense and gave up 286 yards last week to a former wide receiver. Defense is still the Spartans strong point, but they’ll need to contain Kain Colter far better than they did Taylor Martinez (205 rush yards) in their last game. Pick: Michigan State 24 – Northwestern 23
Tennessee (4-6) @ Vanderbilt (6-4)
7:00 ET, ESPN2, Sat. Nov. 17, Vanderbilt Stadium, Nashville, TN
Vol’s head coach Derrick Dooley is most likely far beyond fighting for his job this week. Tennessee faithful have already let him know it no longer exists. As far as he’s concerned, however, he’s still the head coach of the football program and fighting to become bowl eligible. Tennessee, 0-6 in SEC play, has not been winless in conference play since 1924. They’ve never finished winless in SEC play, though. The defense has been horrendous, giving up an SEC record 38 points in six straight games. Not even Vanderbilt has been that bad defensively. The Commodores, who will be going to a bowl for the second straight season, will be looking to put together their first eight win season since 1982 and possible first nine win season since 1915. It took a last minute score to get past Ole Miss last week, and they’ll be without leading rusher Zac Stacy. Quarterback Jordan Rodgers will be able to find plenty of open receivers on the nation’s No. 111 total defense, though. Pick: Vanderbilt 34 – Tennessee 31
Last Week: 4-6 – Overall: 46-31

November 9, 2012

College Football Report - Saturday Picks - Week 11:

(Give me a ticket to see...)

#11 Oregon State (7-1) @ #14 Stanford (7-2)
3:00 ET, FOX, Sat. Nov. 10, Stanford Stadium, Stanford, CA
A lot of people are putting the Beavers on upset alert this week, as they face off against one of the better defensive teams in the country. I’m here to throw a “not so fast my friend,” out to the nation, however. Stanford’s defensive proficiency is skewed this season. The Cardinal rank first in the nation in rush defense and rightfully so, are good at shutting down the run. BUT, of the nine teams they’ve faced, five rank within the 25 worst rushing teams in the country. Three within the bottom 10. The Cardinal pass defense is ranked No. 104 in the country, yet they’ve faced just one quarterback, USC’s Matt Barkley, who ranks within the top 50 in the country in passing efficiency. The competition just hasn’t been there for the Cardinal. With Oregon State receivers Brandon Cooks and Marcus Wheaten, one of the nation’s best wideout tandems, in town this week, expect more big numbers and a smooth ride for the Beavers. Pick: Oregon State 31 – Stanford 23
 (Game of the week…)
#15 Texas A&M (7-2) @ #1 Alabama (9-0)
3:30 ET, CBS, Sat. Nov. 10, Bryant-Denny Stadium, Tuscaloosa, AL
Just went Johnny Football gets his groove back, he has to face off against one of the nation’s best. Johnny Football, AKA Johnny Manziel, A&M’s do everything quarterback, has gone on a two game terror through SEC country, all in recovery of his three interception, 27 rush yard disaster against LSU . Alabama shouldn’t go much smoother for Mr. Football. It took last minute heroics to take down the Tigers in Death Valley last week, but the Tide is who we thought they were. A balanced offense and hard hitting, disciplined defense. We just now know they’re a resilient group, as well. Bama has faced only one other rushing quarterback this season, that being Michigan’s Denard Robinson, who was held to just 27 yards. The same amount LSU held Manziel. I’ll give Johnny Football the benefit of the doubt, though. He’ll have 45 yards here; he’s in a groove after all. Pick: Alabama 30 – Texas A&M 18
#21 Mississippi State (7-2) @ #7 LSU (7-2)
7:00 ET, ESPN, Sat. Nov. 10, Tiger Stadium, Baton Rouge, LA
It’s salvage the season time for the Bulldogs and Tigers. Neither carries your normal salvage the season record, but can attest it’s warranted here. LSU is in jeopardy of losing their third game of their last five, while the Bulldogs could fall for the third straight week after opening the season on a 7-0 mark. Defense has carried both teams to this point, and it was the Tigers defense that nearly had them back in National Title talks last week in a near upset of No. 1 Alabama. They won’t be able to let the Tide beat them twice, though, against a good Mississippi State team. After just 42 yards rushing against the Gators, LSU has gotten back to its rushing roots, averaging 205 yards over their last three games. All three against top 20 teams. The Bulldogs don’t necessarily slow anyone down on the ground, giving up 168.2 yards a game. LSU will let Jeremy Hill work out their frustrations this week. Pick: LSU 27 – Mississippi State 16
(Upset pick…)
Penn State (6-3) @ #16 Nebraska (7-2)
3:30 ET, ABC, Sat. Nov. 10, Memorial Stadium, Lincoln, NE
Sooner or later Nebraska’s mistakes are bound to catch up with them. That time may just be this week. The Huskers, who sit in the driver’s seat of the Legends division, have been playing far from mistake free football as of late, or all season for that matter. They rank No. 106 in the country in turnover margin and No. 80 in fewest penalties a game. Over the last four weeks, they’ve averaged 8.5 penalties for 78 yards a game, and three turnovers. That much negative yardage a game can’t be game planned for and can be crippling in itself. PSU on the other hand, knows how to play mistake free football, ranking No. 14 in the country in turnover margin. Running back Zach Zwinak has three 100 yard games in his last five and faces a Nebraska defense giving up 183 yards a game. Its Lions quarterback Matt McGloin’s game management that gives Penn State the upset, though. Pick: Penn State 24 – Nebraska 20
#2 Kansas State (9-0) @ TCU (6-3)
7:00 ET, FOX, Sat. Nov. 10, Amon Carter Stadium, Fort Worth, TX
There haven't been a whole lot of problems as of late for the Wilcats. They’ve jogged through the toughest three game stretch of their schedule, against three ranked conference opponents, like Usain Bolt at a freshman track meet. They haven’t had a hiccup since their road trip to Iowa State. But even then, they were still up 24-21 late in the fourth. A trip to Forth Worth may be just the game everyone around the country, and the Wildcats themselves, don’t see coming. The Horned Frogs assemble the nation’s No. 8 ranked rush defense, holding opponents to 96 yards a game on the ground. The Frogs have fallen apart through their Big 12 schedule, however, dropping three of their last five. The Wildcats are too complete of a team and too well coached to let the Horned Frogs get the best of them in an unsuspecting time. Colin Klein has his best passing day yet. Pick: Kansas State 37 – TCU 20
West Virginia (5-3) @ Oklahoma State (5-3)
3:30 ET, ABC, Sat. Nov. 10, Boone Pickens Stadium, Stillwater, OK
Someone’s got to win here. Whether they like it, or want to. It’s going to happen. Not exactly models for consistency this season, the Cowboys and Mountaineers have teased experts, fans and themselves with lofty expectations to start the season. The Mountaineers have dropped three straight and seem to be fading faster than the coal industry in their own state. The Cowboys have had letdowns in their three biggest games of the season thus far, coming away winless in all three.  They’re game last week against Kansas State wasn’t even as close as the score would illustrate. The Mountaineers have played just two road games all season and need to get something going before their home stint with Oklahoma. Don’t expect a lot of defense, but Dana Holgorsen knows this OK State team. They break their three game slide in Stillwater. Pick: West Virginia 45 – Oklahoma State 42
#24 Northwestern (7-2) @ Michigan (6-3)
12:00 ET, ESPN, Sat. Nov. 10, Michigan Stadium, Ann Arbor, MI
There’s still no word on whether or not Michigan quarterback Denard Robinson will suit up, or like last week, suit up and not play. Head coach Brady Hoke has been mum on the situation all week. Wideout Devin Gardner, who had caught 16 passes for 266 yards and four scores heading into last week, stepped in at quarterback against the Golden Gophers, passing for 234 yards and two scores. Gardner was one of the more sought after quarterbacks out of high school, though. Northwestern has played better than expected this season, thanks much in part to their ability to play disciplined football. Defense will be the key here though, and the Wildcats 107 ranked pass defense looks good for whoever is behind center for Michigan. An ugly game, but Michigan gets it done at home. Pick: Michigan 29 – Northwestern 21
Miami (FL) (5-4) @ Virginia (3-6)
12:00 ET, ABC, Sat. Nov. 10, Scott Stadium, Charlottesville, VA
A win here for Miami moves them one game closer to clinching the ACC Coastal and first trip to the ACC Championship game, setting up a potential rematch with rival FSU. Or does it? The Miami athletic department and president are thinking of disqualifying themselves from postseason play once again, in hopes of a lesser penalty once the NCAA decides. Virginia dropped six straight before their 33-6 beatdown of NC State last week, in which they held the Wolfpack to just 216 total yards and forced five turnovers. The Cavaliers have held the ‘Canes number as of late, but freshman running back Duke Johnson, who had yet another 200+ all purpose yard game last week, want a trip to the ACC title game, even if the administration doesn’t. The skill position players get it done for Miami, as they find out their fate once bowl eligible. Pick: Miami 28 – Virginia 23
Vanderbilt (5-4) @ Ole Miss (5-4)
7:00 ET, ESPNU, Sat. Nov. 10, Vaught-Hemingway Stadium, Oxford, MS
Picked to once again be the bottom dwellers of the SEC, the Commodores and Rebels both find themselves one win away from bowl eligibility and far from last place finishes in their respective conference divisions. The Rebels need a win here more, with slim chance of making a bowl in their final two games against ranked LSU and Mississippi State. With a loss Saturday, Vandy has opportunities against both Tennessee and Wake Forest. Vandy has won four of their last five against the Rebels and bring the better defense to Oxford, including the nation’s No. 3 ranked pass defense. The Commodores have other chances for bowl eligibility, but they won’t need them. Senior running back Zac Stacy has his second straight 150+ yard game against Ole Miss. Pick: Vanderbilt 27 – Ole Miss 19
Last Week: 6-3 – Overall: 42-25

November 8, 2012

College Football Report - Thursday Night - Week 11

#10 Florida State (8-1) @ Virginia Tech (4-5)

7:30 ET, ESPN, Thur. Nov. 8, Lane Stadium, Blacksburg, VA
For the second week in a row the Hokies receive a Thursday night matchup. It’s sink or swim time for Tech as they enter their final three game stretch needing two wins just to become bowl eligible. They’re 11-3 all-time at home on Thursday nights, much of which can be credited to the hostile environment of Lane Stadium. FSU has rebounded from a midseason loss to NC State, winning their last three games by a combined score of 132-34. It’s a homecoming for 'Noles quarterback E.J. Manuel who hails from Virginia Beach. If the Hokies are going to win, they’ll need to force Manuel (70% comp.) to beat them, as odd as it may sound. The Hokies can’t match the FSU ground attack and their defense is too thin to be in long ground gaining drives. Tech quarterback Logan Thomas can’t throw interceptions and will need to do most of the work with his legs, keeping drives alive. If Tech gets creative and the crowd gets into it, FSU, who since 2007 is 1-6 on the road against unranked ACC teams when they themselves are ranked, better watch out. Pick: Virginia Tech 24 – Florida State 23

November 2, 2012

College Football Report - Saturday Picks - Week 10

(Game of  the week...)
#1 Alabama (8-0) @ #5 LSU (7-1)
8:00 ET, CBS, Sat. Nov. 3, Tiger Stadium, Baton Rouge, LA
Once again the Tide and Tigers matchup looks to be the game of the year in college football. This one doesn’t feel as close as last year’s bout, however. If the Tigers are going to stay close here, they’ll need to find point’s elseware from their offense. LSU was able to get a running game going in their last game, totaling 219 yards on the ground against Texas A&M. They won’t be able to fall behind 12-0 and expect to come out with a win, though. Alabama hasn’t allowed more than 14 points all season and brings in an offense, led by AJ McCarron, which scores 40 points an outing. McCarron, the nations pass efficiency leader, has tossed 18 touchdowns to zero interceptions on the year. LSU is good, but they’re not ‘Bama good. A night game at Death Valley is all that keeps this one close.  Pick: Alabama 23 – LSU 10
(Give me a ticket to see…)
#4 Oregon (8-0) @ #17 USC (6-2)
7:00 ET, FOX, Sat. Nov. 3, Los Angeles Coliseum, Los Angeles, CA
Finally, a real test for Oregon this season. Their first was supposed to be against Arizona. They passed that one with a 49-0 final. Next was Arizona State. The Ducks dropped 43 on the Sun Devils…in the first half. In USC the Ducks face off against an offense that just might be able to hang with them, for a few quarters at least. SC has come up short in big games this season, squandering opportunities against Stanford, and last week, Arizona. Averaging 330 yards a game on the ground, the Ducks running game has struck fear into opponents about as much as Alabama’s defense has. For the Trojans to score with the Ducks,  they’ll need to limit their turnovers and pound the ground to keep the pressure off Matt Barkley. In their two losses SC has a combined eight turnovers and just 151 yards rushing. It’ll be the Ducks closest game yet, but with 23 takeaways already this year, they’ll force Barkley and the offense into mistakes. Pick: Oregon 45 – USC 30
#24 Oklahoma State (5-2) @ #2 Kansas State (8-0)
8:00 ET, ABC, Sat. Nov. 3, Bill Snyder Stadium, Manhattan, KS
The only reason the Cowboys visit to Manhattan feels bigger than it really is, is because of the hype ESPN gave it for their ABC night game. Don’t be fooled. Freshman Wes Lunt takes over the starting reins for the Cowboys and will walk into an environment like nothing he’s played in to date. Colin Klein continues to roll with the offense, but it’s the K-State defense that may be the most improved and impressive part of the No. 2 ranked Wildcats. In back-to-back weeks the defense forced West Virginia and Texas Tech, two of the nation’s most potent offenses, into five total turnovers. Tech was held to just 17 points late in the third, while the Mountaineers entered the fourth quarter with just seven points. Joseph Randall will get his yards for OSU, but a freshman quarterback with four interceptions in two starts won’t get it done in Manhattan. Pick: Kansas State 51 – Oklahoma State 20
#16 Texas A&M (6-2) @ #15 Mississippi State (7-1)
12:00 ET, ESPN, Sat. Nov. 3, Davis Wade Stadium, Starkville, MS
The Aggies head to Starkville fresh off an Auburn beatdown on the road, just a week after losing a close opportunity to take down LSU. A week ago, Mississippi State was undefeated. Until their visit to Alabama. Neither team is on the same level as the Tigers and Tide, yet. A win for both here, though, would make their recent losses and seasons turn in a much brighter direction. A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel was back with his feet in the water last week, accounting for 350 total yards and five scores. The Bulldogs are far from the defense Auburn put on the field though. Manziel needs to be weary of State’s No. 21 ranked pass defense, as interceptions (3) were what lost the Aggies the LSU game. As a whole, however, the Bulldogs have been too inconsistent against a rather weak schedule. The Auburn game was just what A&M needed before this one. Pick: Texas A&M 28 – Mississippi State 24
#23 Texas (6-2) @ #18 Texas Tech (6-2)
3:30 ET, ABC, Sat. Nov. 3, Jones AT&T Stadium, Lubbock, TX
The final game of the Red Raiders five game stretch against ranked opponents. They’ve survived so far, winning two of four. They did turn in blowout losses to Oklahoma and last week Kansas State, though. Quarterback Seth Doege has done a phenomenal job leading an offense this year that averages over 500 total yards a game. Texas, however, is beginning to fade. The Longhorns followed losses to West Virginia and Oklahoma with squeakers past Baylor and a near upset loss to 1-7 Kansas last week, scoring with 12 seconds remaining to pull out the win. Texas, a team looking for an answer to their problems and a turnaround on the season, will need to look outside from Lubbock. It’ll be all Red Raiders Saturday for the first time in three years. Pick: Texas Tech 35 – Texas 21
(Upset pick…)
#20 Nebraska (6-2) @ Michigan State (5-4)
3:30 ET, ABC/ESPN2, Sat. Nov. 3, Spartan Stadium, East Lansing, MI
If there were ever a must win game for the Spartans it was last week. Once a top 10 team this season, MSU was in jeopardy of falling below the .500 mark last week. Quarterback Andrew Maxwell played a mistake free game as the offense opened up the passing game more so than in previous weeks. The Spartans defense was on point as usual, holding the Badgers to just 19 yards rushing and 10 points entering overtime. Nebraska heads to East Lansing fresh off a win over the Wolverines. The Cornhuskers turned the ball over twice, committed eight penalties for 104 yards and settled for field goals twice inside the redzone, though. All mistakes they won’t be able to make against MSU. Last week’s close win was what the Spartans needed to instill some confidence in them after two close losses. Nebraska, who’s been even more mistake prone on the road this season, drops a close one in favor of the Spartans. Pick: Michigan State 17 – Nebraska 14
Arizona State (5-3) @ #11 Oregon State (6-1)
10:30 ET, ESPN2, Sat. Nov. 3, Reser Stadium, Corvallis, OR
Once one of the nation’s top scoring defenses, the Sun Devils have had the Ducks and Bruins drop 43 and 45 points on them respectively over their last two games. The Beavers lost their undefeated season last week at Washington and will now make a change at quarterback after Sean Mannion’s four interceptions a week ago. It can be dangerous switching quarterbacks halfway through the season, but junior Cody Vaz has played well in two starts and off the bench last week. The Beavers have one of the nation’s top defenses led by defensive end Scott Crichton’s eight sacks. They also welcome back top wideout Marcus Wheaton, who returns from a concussion. Under the friendly confides of Reser Stadium, the Beavers get back on track and send ASU home with their third straight loss. Pick: Oregon State 27 – Arizona State 18
Michigan (5-3) @ Minnesota (5-3)
12:00 ET, BTN, Sat. Nov. 3, TCF Bank Stadium, Minneapolis, MN
The battle for the Little Brown Jug features a pair of quarterback questions looming. The Wolverines appear to have Denard Robinson back, a week after he sat half the Nebraska game with an apparent arm injury. The Gophers may have true freshman Philip Nelson under center once again this week, fresh off a three touchdown win over Purdue. Nelson is currently filling in for Max Shortell, who looks to miss his third straight game. The Wolverines can’t afford to lose Robinson again, after a horrendous performance displayed by backup Russell Bellomy last week. The ground game is going to have to get it done for the Wolverines if they expect to win against a pass defense ranked No. 7 in the country. With last minute news that Robinson is out and Bellomy in, the Gophers get the upset win behind thier defense. Pick: Minnesota 27 – Michigan17
Last Week: 7-4 – Overall: 36-22

All writing and views subject to © Drew P. Kochanny, All Rights Reserved. Photo's credited to rights owner.