Hoping to gather some momentum from my perfect week, I stumbled mightily last week. I’m not going to jinx myself for this week – here’s the picks.
Duke @ Georgia Tech – Has David Cutcliffe ushered in a new era of Duke Football? Standing at 3-1 and 1-0 in the ACC, the Blue Devils are different. I’d love to see Duke make a bowl game this year but Georgia Tech is rolling under Paul Johnson. I think the Blue Devils can get to six wins this year, but this won’t be one of them. Georgia Tech 24, Duke 13.
South Carolina @ Ole Miss – Houston Nutt has already earned his first big win as a Rebel coach, upsetting No. 4 Florida in the Swamp last week. The Gamecocks, despite boasting the nation’s No. 1 defense, have looked totally inept on offense. Redshirt freshman Stephen Garcia appears to have injected some excitement and may be too unpredictable for the Ole Miss defense to contain. South Carolina 17, Ole Miss 14.
No. 13 Auburn @ No. 19 Vanderbilt – Wow, how far has Vanderbilt come? Hosting Gameday for the first time ever and standing alone at the top of the SEC East, the Commodores have a legitimate shot at going bowling this year. Auburn may be ranked higher but they haven’t looked very good on offense. Last week’s match-up against Tennessee was a display of offensive ineptitude by both teams. Vanderbilt 17, Auburn 13.
No. 23 Oregon @ No. 9 USC – In what might stand as the upset of the season, USC dropped a game (and possibly out of the national championship game). It was the first time in nearly 25 years that the nation’s No. 1 team had lost to an unranked team. If this game was at Oregon and the Ducks weren’t playing their backup QB, I MIGHT have given them edge. But that’s not the case – USC rolls at home. USC 31, Oregon 10.
No. 14 Ohio State @ No. 18 Wisconsin – The Terrelle Pryor Experiment continues at Ohio State. Wisconsin is coming off a huge and embarrassing loss against a very poor Michigan team. A few weeks ago, I would’ve picked the Badgers without a second thought but the Buckeyes appear energized by the freshman QB. After stumbling last week, I’m also not sold on Wisconsin. I like the Buckeyes to get the road win here. Ohio State 24, Wisconsin 17.
No. 15 Furman @ No. 7 Elon – I wasn’t expecting a big year from the Paladins this season, but their win against Delaware served notice that they might be a factor in the SoCon race. Elon has been rolling along and will be a big challenge for the Mountaineers late in the season. Elon 28, Furman 14.