Posted: 11:15 a.m. Friday, Sept. 27, 2013
By Graham Reaves
Let's get right to it. Here are the games to watch and when to watch them:
With no ranked vs. ranked matchups early, here is your Florida-filled timeslot.
No. 12 South Carolina at UCF, ABC (-7.5 UFC)- The Golden Knights are on the cusp of getting a nod to the Top-25 list and have their first sellout welcoming a SEC foe. Spurrier's team has 17 consecutive wins over non-conference teams. Look for them to win and, being the SEC homer I am, cover the spread.
No. 15 Miami at South Florida, ESPNU (-18.5 UM)- Their last meeting in 2011 was a barnburner, consisting of three field goals as the Hurricanes won 6-3. The Miami defense may hold the Bulls to that same number with their talented defense. With a win, Miami starts 4-0 for the first time in nine years (and no, they're not "back.") and cover.
No. 6 LSU at No. 9 Georgia, 3:30 p.m., CBS (-3 UGA)-Aaron Murray and Mark Richt in a big game vs. Les Miles and his quirks in big games. It's hard to have confidence in the former of that matchup though they did come up big hosting South Carolina two weeks ago. On a neutral field the Tigers win (See 2011 SEC Championship), but on a Saturday in Athens I'll take the Bulldogs and the points.
No. 14 Oklahoma at No. 22 Notre Dame, 3:30 p.m., NBC (-3 OU)- Given that where most of our audience for this site comes from, you're probably an SEC homer yourself. But if you get tired of two top-10 SEC teams beating up on each other (yeah right) or grow weary of Verne and Gary, this game is on, too. I'm not sold on Oklahoma's Blake Bell being the next Sam Bradford, but a win here would go a long way. My money is on Bell; don't let me down, son.
No. 21 Ole Miss at No. 1 Alabama, 6:30 p.m., ESPN (-16 Ala)- Sure Ole Miss' freshman have played well, but in Tuscaloosa? At night? There are prisons that are less intimidating to visitors than these circumstances. No matter what sort of motivator Hugh Freeze is, motivation is not enough to win in those circumstances. Bama. Bigger than the experts think.
No. 10 Texas A&M; at Arkansas, 7 p.m., ESPN2 (-15, -3, or whatever you want it to be)- As much as been made about the spread for this game, I'm not sure that number can be set high enough. With a backup quarterback facing off against the defending Heisman winner this one could get as ugly as Kevin Sumlin wants to make it. In what has been a rather odd two years for the Hogs, check out this tidbit of research.
With Brandon Allen out, Arkansas will be hosting a top 10 team with a backup QB for the second consecutive year.— Matt Jones (@NWAMatt) September 26, 2013
No. 23 Wisconsin at No. 4 Ohio State, 8 p.m., ABC (-7 OSU)- You just know Jen Bielema will have the TV in her suite on this game and watching it out of the corner of her eye. And don't be surprised, given her (and her husband's) history on Twitter, if she lets Badgers fans have it if this game gets ugly. This has been a close game over the past few seasons, so naturally give me the points and Bucks.
No. 5 Stanford at Washington State, 10 p.m., ESPN (-10 Stan)- The Cardinal are everything a program strides to become--minus the lack of national titles. They keep doing everything the right way with no end in sight. If you're up late and don't want to watch Lane Kiffin ruin the USC program watch this game. Cards cover.
California at No. 2 Oregon, 10:30 p.m., Pac-12 Network (-33 Ore)- Much like the A&M-Arkansas; game, no line is high enough for the Ducks offense. The Bears' offensive attack is nothing to look over, though. That said, with the late start, this is a great chance to see everything the Duck offense and, my bet to win the Heisman, Marcus Mariotta has to offer.
USC at Arizona State, 10:30 p.m., ESPN2 (-5 ASU)- You will hear the boos from 380 miles away in Los Angeles if the Trojans don't score more than a few offensive touchdowns. Arizona State is coming off of being embarrassed by Stanford last week, so I'd put my money on the Sun Devils.
Last Week: 5-3 (Note: Two games were lost by half a point. Vegas is good.)