This week’s picks are as follows:
OREGON over USC … the lightning-fast Ducks against a USC team that is nowhere near as good as it thinks it is.
WASHINGTON over CAL … the good ship Golden Bear just keeps sinking, sinking, sinking, and along with it goes the head coaching career of Jeff Tedford, a good man if there ever was one.
ALABAMA over LSU … a repeat of last year’s national championship game, only uglier. Don’t mess with the Tide. They’re for real.
NOTRE DAME over PITTSBURGH … speaking of “for real,” how ’bout them Irish? Now that tough stuff is over, the Irish enter Bakery League competition against the Three Creampuffs: Pittsburgh, Boston College and Wake-me-when-it’s-over Forest, before trying to complete a dream season against USC and maybe earn a bid to the national title game.
ARIZONA over UCLA … don’t look now, but the Wildcats are suddenly thinking postseason.
BOISE STATE over SAN DIEGO STATE … these aren’t your daddy’s Broncos, but they get better every week and still aren’t afraid of anyone.
UPSET OF THE WEEK: Arizona State over Oregon State … after opening 6-0 with some eye-popping wins, the Beavers’ season will start to unravel if they can’t solve some emerging problems at quarterback. (Upset record: 3-6).
ROUT OF THE WEEK: Ohio State over Illinois … it hasn’t been pretty the last few weeks, but the no-bowl bound Buckeyes are still among the nation’s unbeaten. (Rout record: 9-0).
DON’T BET ON IT, BUT: Kansas State over Oklahoma State … how did those Wildcats get so good so fast? (Don’t bet record: 8-1.)
FIVE EASY PICKS: This week’s sure-to-please selections are Northern Illinois (over Massachusetts), Stanford (over Colorado), Utah State (over Texas State), Louisiana Tech (over Texas-San Antonio) and Fresno State (over Hawaii). (FEP record: 45-0).
AGGIES over BYE … a much-needed respite before a tough home stretch. Take the Ags by 40.
OTHER GAMES: Florida over Missouri, Louisville over Temple, Oklahoma over Iowa State, Texas A&M over Mississippi State, Vanderbilt over Kentucky, Michigan over Minnesota, Air Force over Army, Cincinnati over Syracuse, Tennessee over Troy, Auburn over New Mexico State, Marshall over Memphis, Georgia over Mississippi, Texas Tech over Texas, Nebraska over Michigan State, Baylor over Kansas, Navy over Florida Atlantic, Penn State over Purdue, Clemson over Duke, Wyoming over Colorado State, and San Jose State over Idaho.
Last week: 25-12, season: 299-72, percentage: .806.
— Reach Bob Dunning at email@example.com