Welcome back to the Funvee Tailgate BLOG, The THUNDERBLOG’s Weekly College Football Series. If you noticed the emphasis on “BLOG,” that is because we also have the Funvee Tailgate Podcast that ties into the blog series. Here’s the iTunes link to go subscribe. For those newer readers, the blog version of the Funvee Tailgate looks at the full slate of Top 25 FBS teams along with a few other selections. We are getting into the heart of the college football season. Week 6 means conference schedules are completely underway. October means we’re going to start seeing rivalry matchups come onto the slate. The best part is that somewhere around the corner, a massive upset is lurking. Will it be your team this week? Let’s try to figure it out. LET’S FIIIIRRRREEEE IT UP!
Big Games This Week:
A full day of conference play is looming this weekend meaning if you so choose, you can sit on your couch at noon and be entertained for nearly fourteen hours. It really doesn’t matter if the game features a ranked school or not, conference games are almost always high in entertainment value, especially at the beginning of the conference schedule. #1 Alabama, #2 Georgia, #3 Ohio State, #9 West Virginia, #10 Washington, and #12 UCF are all MASSIVE favorites and should win. Let’s take a look at the rest of the slate:
- Maryland (+17.5) at Michigan at noon on ABC–Matty D and I talked in depth about Michigan on this week’s podcast. Michigan has a serious slow start problem that was on full display last week against Northwestern. That problem shouldn’t be a concern against Maryland but I still wouldn’t sleep on the Terps. Michigan wins and doesn’t cover.
- #19 Texas (+7) vs. #7 Oklahoma at noon from the Cotton Bowl on FOX–Texas has been riding a high wave of success since falling to Maryland in Week 1. The Longhorns struggled a bit at Kansas State last week and now runs into Oklahoma and Red River Rivalry. Oklahoma rebounded from their shocking OT win over Army by blowing the doors off of Baylor. Yes, it’s Baylor, but Kyler Murray looks to have gotten his groove back. Sooners win and cover.
- Northwestern (+10) at #20 Michigan State at noon on FS1–Northwestern has had a bit of disappointing season. NW led off the year with Big Ten win but has dropped three-straight including last week allowing Michigan to come back in the second half. Michigan State is on a similar trajectory as the above mentioned Texas. Sparty lost to Arizona State but has won convincingly in past two weeks making this not as intriguing as originally thought when the schedule was released. MSU wins and covers.
- Boston College (+6.5) at #23 NC State at 12:30 on ACC Net–NC State comes into this one having played their first Power Five opponent last week in Virginia. Their defense will be tested against a BC team that can put up points but RB AJ Dillon is questionable to play. NC State can certainly put up points as QB Ryan Finley looks to be the real deal. The game will be high scoring but close as NC State wins but doesn’t cover.
- #4 Clemson (-20) at Wake Forrest at 3:30 on ESPN–A point away from being eligible for pick’em, Clemson is in need of a statement game. QB Trevor Lawrence is expected to play but the defense will need to railroad a tough Wake squad that only failed to put up 30 points in one game, their 56-27 loss to Notre Dame. Clemson wins but doesn’t cover.
- #5 LSU (-2.5) at #22 Florida at 3:30 on CBS–Matt and I agreed that this line is close out of respect to the home team, Florida, and their big win at Mississippi State last week. I need to see more out of Florida’s offense to think they’ll be able to match up with the LSU defense and the Gator defense will struggle to hold the Tiger ground attack. LSU wins and covers.
- Florida State (+13.5) at #17 Miami at 3:30 on ABC–I’d love to say this rivalry game will be close but Florida State has been a dumpster fire and Miami is well rested after playing last Thursday. Hurricanes win and cover.
- Iowa State (+9.5) at #25 Oklahoma State at 3:30 on ESPN2–ISU has played their Big XII opponents incredibly close. That said, Oklahoma State’s is probably second only to Oklahoma in explosiveness. ISU’s close loss to OU was at home and here, they have to travel to O.K. State. Cowboys win and cover.
- Arizona State (+2) at #21 Colorado at 4:00 on Pac 12 Net–The Buffs are a high-flying squad with shutdown defense that faces a similar Sun Devil team. Both teams feature talented quarterbacks that should keep their opponents’ defenses guessing all afternoon. It’s Colorado’s rushing game that makes the difference here. CU wins and covers.
- #13 Kentucky (+6) at Texas A&M at 7:00 on ESPN–The key in this game will be Benny Snell against the stonewall front seven A&M sports. The Aggie offense should be the difference maker in this game but it should be close. A&M wins but doesn’t cover.
- #8 Auburn (-6) at Mississippi State at 7:30 on ESPN2–Another low scoring game here. Neither offense has burned down any opposing defenses and both defenses can be stifling. It’s hard to see Mississippi State losing a third-straight game except for the glaring fact that it’s Auburn. Tigers win and cover.
- Nebraska (+18) at #16 Wisconsin at 7:30 on BigTen Network–Nebraska is looking to salvage any glimpse of hope as HC Scott Frost is still looking for his first win. Wisconsin has been rolling since losing to BYU weeks ago and the Badgers should roll once again here. Wisconsin wins and covers.
- #6 Notre Dame (-6.5) at #24 Virginia Tech at 8:00 on ABC–The Hokies rebounded from the ODU loss last week by taking care of Duke in a big way. QB Ryan Willis seems to be picking up where the injured Josh Jackson left off for Tech. ND has a similar story starting Ian Book a couple weeks back and Book has been outstanding. While both teams have stables to choose running backs from, the passing game will be the ultimate difference maker. Notre Dame wins and covers.
- Utah (+3.5) at #14 Stanford at 10:30 on ESPN–The Utes have struggled over the past couple weeks. Utah’s defense is solid enough to hold teams to a few touchdowns, but their offense hadn’t been able to put up a massive amount of points on the other side. Last week, the opposite happens and the Utes fall 28-24. Stanford has been inconsistent over the last two weeks so KJ Costello, Bryce Love, and crew are in for a breakout game. Stanford wins and covers.
My Lehigh Mountain Hawks return to action as they hit the road to visit the upstart Princeton Tigers. Lehigh will need to get the ball moving early as Princeton has put up at least 45 points in each of their three games. The defense will not be able to hold this one together for Lehigh.
Make sure to check out the podcast for our full in-depth analysis. Let me know what picks you disagree with in the comments.Follow @geordo9