Last week ATS: 11-4 (6-2 National. 5-2 B1G)
Season ATS: 81-59-3 (39-29 National, 42-30-3 B1G)
Hopefully every weekend in November shakes out just like last week did. This is MC&J’s best season, and we are so happy you are along for the ride.
(All lines courtesy of Draftkings sportsbook.)
No. 8 Oklahoma (-5.5) v. No. 13 Baylor - 12:00 PM EST - FOX
Since replacing Spencer Rattler in the Texas games, Caleb Williams has thrown for 14 touchdowns and ran for another four scores. The freshman was incredible last week against Texas Tech, throwing for 402 yards and six touchdowns. Williams will face his toughest test in his young career, as he will hit the road to take on a Baylor defense that is giving up 365 yards per game.
This matchup would have a little more shine to it had Baylor not inexplicably lost last week to TCU. Even though the Bears lost, they’re still a big threat to hand Oklahoma their first loss of the season. Gerry Bohanon and Abram Smith are a dangerous combination that could exploit a Sooner defense that can’t be trusted.
I like Baylor in this spot. Oklahoma struggled at Kansas last month in their only game on the road since Williams took over as starting quarterback. The Bears are going to provide a lot stiffer test than they got from the Jayhawks in Lawrence. Baylor isn’t quite as explosive as the Sooners, but I feel like they are a better all-around team. The Bears snap a seven-game losing streak to the Sooners.
Baylor 38, Oklahoma 34
Mississippi State v. No. 17 Auburn (-5.5) - 12:00 PM EST - ESPN
One of the bigger surprises in college football this year has to be Mississippi State. The Bulldogs come into this game at 5-4 this year after going 4-7 last season. In true Mike Leach fashion, Mississippi State is all pass and no run. Quarterback Will Rogers is completing 75% of his passes and has thrown for 3,307 yards and 23 touchdowns. The difference from this team and a lot of other Mike Leach teams is this one actually plays a little defense.
There aren’t many teams in college football that resemble a roller coaster more than Auburn. Just look at their last four games: The Tigers get blown out by Georgia, beat Arkansas and Ole Miss, and most recently lost to Texas A&M 20-3. If Auburn falls down early, they could be in trouble since their offense isn’t exactly built to put up points quickly.
Even though Auburn is the ranked team, I feel like Mississippi State is the better team right now. Prior to last week’s close loss to Arkansas, the Bulldogs had won three of four games, with the only loss in that span coming to Alabama. I could definitely see this game coming down to the wire and being decided by a field goal. Even if Auburn does end up winning, I don’t think they’ll do so by more than six points.
Mississippi State 28, Auburn 24
No. 1 Georgia (-20) v. Tennessee - 3:30 PM EST - CBS
It’s amazing that through nine games the most that Georgia has given up in a game this season is 13 points. That could change after this week, since the Volunteers have an offense that is averaging 38 points per game. Hendon Hooker has thrown 21 touchdowns this year, and added 457 yards rushing and four touchdowns on the ground.
When your defense is as good as Georgia’s, you can be pretty average on offense. The Bulldogs are doing all this with Stetson Bennett IV at quarterback, while USC transfer J.T. Daniels is on the bench after suffering an injury earlier in the season. It would be interesting to see Georgia in a game where their defense falters a bit. Can the offense respond and pick up the slack?
This will be the first game in Knoxville since Tennessee fans threw all kinds of items on the field at Neyland because of their displeasure with the officiating late in the game against Ole Miss. I’m not crazy enough to think that Georgia is on upset alert here. I do think they’ll give up at least 14 points for the first time in a game this season, though. The Bulldogs finish their SEC regular season schedule undefeated with what’ll be a 14-17 point win.
Georgia 31, Tennessee 17
No. 11 Texas A&M (-2.5) v. No. 15 Ole Miss - 7:00 PM EST - ESPN
I figured we could start throwing dirt on Texas A&M after losses to Arkansas and Mississippi State earlier in the season. Could you blame me? Nobody knew that Zach Calzada could be a solid quarterback, and the Aggies had Alabama coming to town. Instead of packing it in, Texas A&M have won their last four games.
There might not be quite as much hype around Ole Miss as there was earlier in the season. That doesn’t mean they still aren’t a dangerous team. The Rebels might not have quite as strong of a defense as Texas A&M, but they do have more to offer on offense. Matt Corral is nearing 30 total touchdowns on the season, and a big performance here could strengthen his case as a Heisman Trophy finalist.
I feel like I’m missing something. Even though Texas A&M is the hotter team, I don’t know if they are the better team. The Aggies haven’t really had to play a tough true road game. How is Calzada going to respond to a hostile environment in Oxford? While the Texas A&M defense might be better, I like Corral and company to find some holes and snap the winning streak of the Aggies.
Ole Miss 31, Texas A&M 27
This should be a very fun game on Saturday night. I’d hate to be a fan of either of these teams, since it feels like it is going to be a back-and-forth game that will have fans either celebrating wildly or pulling out their hair on every possession down the stretch. Wake Forest is averaging 44 points per game this year, while NC State’s defense is the toughest the Demon Deacons has faced this year.
Even though Sam Hartman has gotten most of the headlines since Wake Forest was undefeated until last week, NC State quarterback Devin Leary has put up numbers that aren’t that far off from what Hartman has posted. I do like the Wolfpack in this matchup since they do actually play some defense. If NC State can get even a few stops, they should be in good shape, as it feels like Wake Forest can’t stop anyone.
NC State 48, Wake Forest 41
Washington State v. No. 3 Oregon (-13.5) - 10:30 PM EST - ESPN
Washington State certainly hasn’t suffered without Nick Rolovich, who was fired in mid-October after refused to get the COVID-19 vaccine. Since Rolovich was canned, the Cougars lost a close game to BYU before beating Arizona State a couple weeks ago. Washington State has had a couple weeks to prepare for this massive contest in Eugene against the Ducks.
It might have not been pretty, but Oregon escaped Washington’s upset attempt last week. Now imagine if the Huskies had a head coach who wasn’t a dope like Jimmy Lake. For the most part, Oregon hasn’t been blowing opponents out this year. In their last four games, three of the wins by the Ducks have been by 10 points or less.
This isn’t like Oregon teams over the past decade where they would pile up points on their opponents. Now with Mario Cristobal as head coach, the Ducks keep racking up the wins without all the flash. With Washington State coming into this game a little fresher, I think we see more of the same from Oregon. The Ducks avoid the upset bid, but not by all that much.
Oregon 34, Washington State 27
Nevada v. No. 22 San Diego State (-2.5) - 10:30 PM EST - CBS Sports Network
If San Diego State’s outstanding defense does have one weakness, they are vulnerable against the pass. In their lone loss of the season to Fresno State, the Bulldogs were able to pass for over 300 yards in the victory. Nevada certainly fits the bill as a team that can throw the football, as quarterback Carson Strong has 3,197 yards passing and 25 touchdowns this year.
I’m just not all that impressed with this San Diego State team. They have a cool punter and a strong defense, but that’s it. Nevada has only lost two games this year, with one of those losses being a 34-32 setback to Fresno State. The Aztecs don’t have an answer for Strong and the Wolfpack offense.
Nevada 28, San Diego State 21