Tag Archives: Michigan Wolverines

Sweet and Elite

Wow. What a slew of games that we saw last week as a 1 and a couple of 2 seeds fell in this NCAA tournament. Villanova, Duke and Louisville all packed their bags early, heading back to their schools disappointed and ashamed.

Wisconsin, South Carolina and Michigan all have crashed the party and they did it in both dramatic and convincing fashion. We also have a clash of the titans in the south region, as seeds 1 through 4 all made it to the Sweet 16.

So let’s break down these sweet 16 games, and I will also give you my new picks for the final 4, since I had Duke in my final, my bracket is a bit busted. Here we go, let’s start up in the East.

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(8) Wisconsin vs (4) Florida

This is a great game that we would see in the Capital One Bowl during the college football season. Wisconsin led by Seniors Bronson Koenig and Nigel Hayes have brought Wisconsin back to the big time with their play in the first two games.  The Badgers have beaten Virginia Tech in a close one, and upset Villanova by 3 in a thriller.

Florida beat ETSU by 15 then smoked Virginia by 26. The Gators have been led by Junior forward Devin Robinson. Robinson has been a big time player for the Gators in this tournament. It’s an awesome matchup, and a tough one to pick. But I like Wisconsin in this one, that Senior leadership of Nigel Hayes is what will do it.

Screen Shot 2017-03-22 at 10.11.15 AM.png(7) South Carolina vs (3) Baylor

I had neither of these teams in the Sweet 16, my matchup was USC-Duke. Boy I was wrong. Let me say this, I am not a Baylor Bear believer, but Jonathan Motley has been a force this year for the Bears. He is making me contemplate changing my mind about them. Baylor walked by NMSU by a bunch and squeaked by USC by 4.

South Carolina smoked Marquette by 20, and then took out Duke by 7. The Gamecocks led by Senior guard Sindarius Thornwell, had plenty of scoring in their game with Duke. The Gamecocks had 5 fellas in double figures, 4 with fifteen points or more. I like South Carolina, they’re coming off the impressive win against Duke, and I think if Thornwell gets hot early, then it will be a long night for the Bears.

So the Elite 8 game would pit (7) South Carolina vs (8) Wisconsin, let’s stick with the Badgers to the Final 4. Hayes and Koenig led them back to the kingdom and they’re back as one of the prime teams in the Big 10.

EAST WINNER: (8) WISCONSIN

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(4) West Virginia vs (1) Gonzaga

Gonzaga is in this game because the NCAA didn’t want them bowing out early again. That game against Northwestern was officiated horribly . I think Bob Huggins will coach West Virginia and put Gonzaga coach Mark Few’s mind into a pretzel. The duo of Jevon Carter and Nathan Adrien are what will put the Mountaineers over the top in this one. The Zags aren’t as good as people think they are. If I am wrong, I will admit that. But give me WVU and convincingly.

654271336(11) Xavier vs (2) Arizona

I give Xavier all the credit in the world. They have beaten elite teams night in and night out. The Musketeers first took out Melo Trimble and Maryland then Dwayne Bacon and Florida State, now they get Arizona led by Allonzo Trier. Arizona has blown out North Dakota and slipped by St Mary’s. But this game could be a big one, if Xavier plays to their true potential, then I think they put up a fight. But then again, led by Trier and Lauri Markkanen, the Wildcats could blow this game into the stratosphere and it’ll be over at halftime. I like Arizona by at least 10.

My winner of the Elite 8 game of WVU and Arizona is going to be Arizona. I think Nathan Adrien will get into foul trouble early, and that could crush the hopes of WVU. They’ll close the deficit but Trier and company will be just too much.

WEST WINNER: (2) ARIZONA

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(5) Purdue vs (1) Kansas

Kansas may be the most complete team in this region with Frank Mason and Joshua Jackson. Jackson has had big tournament with big play after big play. Kansas should get their first true test with the Boilermakers on Thursday night.

Caleb Swanigan and Vince Edwards are the duo who I think could give the Jayhawks their toughest match-up in the tourney thus far. Swanigan has at least a double-double a game and Edwards has dropped 20. This could mean Landon Lucas and Devonte Graham will need to be huge for the Jayhawks.

Who’s my pick? I like Kansas by 7 or 8, much closer game than the 2 previous match-ups for Kansas, but I do reserve the right to say if Josh Jackson heats up early, this one could be a double-digit blowout.

Screen Shot 2017-03-22 at 10.14.35 AM.png(7) Michigan vs (3) Oregon

This game is the biggest one in the career of Dillon Brooks. This game is the legacy game I think for the guard. Brooks and company will face a Michigan team that will have overcome basically every obstacle in their way.

But do the Ducks have someone that can stop Moritz Wagner? I don’t think so, it will be one of those big man on one side and a guard on the other side games. Brooks got help from the other guard Tyler Dorsey against Rhode Island, and he will need all the help he can get in this one. Michigan on the other hand has won a majority of their games in the second half, if they wait that long, they will be blown away. I just flipped a coin and I like the Ducks by 2.

I think Kansas walks out of the Midwest. They boast way too much firepower. Jackson and Mason will eat the Oregon duo alive.

MIDWEST WINNER: (1) KANSAS

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(4) Butler vs (1) UNC

I won’t lie, I think this game comes down to the possible match-up of Kelan Martin for Butler and Justin Jackson for UNC. I think Jackson is most likely the most underrated player in the entire country and Kelan Martin is the most unnamed good player in the country.

Butler needs Martin to take over this game from buzzer to buzzer.  Then again, the starting five that UNC trots out is arguably the best in the nation. After a scare from Arkansas, I don’t think the Heels fool around with Butler, and escape with a 5 or 6 point win.

Screen Shot 2017-03-22 at 10.16.17 AM.png(3) UCLA vs (2) Kentucky

The rematch we did not think we would get to see. Bruins vs. Wildcats was a thriller earlier this season, with the Bruins leaving Rupp Arena with a win. The Monk-Fox tag-team will have to be at its utmost best from start to finish. This could be the game of the tournament, a true matchup of stars that could give us another rematch. My big pick was Kentucky and I’m sticking with it. The Cats win by 8 as Lonzo Ball has an off game, and TJ Leaf gets into early foul trouble.

I am sticking with Kentucky, no other way to put it.

MIDWEST WINNER: (2) KENTUCKY

 

 

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Making Sense Of The Final 4

The conference championships have come, and they have gone. And per usual, people are upset with whose in the final 4 for the College Football Playoff.

We will get Alabama and Washington, as well as Ohio State and Clemson going to battle. I like these match-ups, and I like them a lot. I think the contrast of styles in the first game, along with the QB play makes it very interesting. Game 2 has a coaching and QB storyline as well. But I’m not going deep into that just yet, we got a few weeks before those games actually happen. But many are fuming that two teams were left out, those two being Penn State and Michigan.

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Let’s start with the Nittany Lions of Penn State. Go back all the way to the beginning of the year and a game with the Pittsburgh Panthers. Penn State dropped the road test to Pitt., and something that could have been a credible road victory. What also killed the guys from Happy Valley was the blowout loss at the Big House to Michigan. The Wolverines made the Nittany Lions look like a box full of kittens, walloping them 41-10.Those two losses, in my opinion, are the reason why they are in the Rose Bowl against USC.

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Now for Michigan, this one will take a minute to explain. Obviously the loss to Ohio State in double OT kills them, but I don’t think that is all the reason. Losing to Iowa is a big hit, but now look at the common opponent between Washington and Michigan. Both teams played the Buffaloes of Colorado. Washington won in convincing fashion 41-10, while it took some work for Michigan to overcome the deficit by winning 45-28. That difference, along with the lack of a conference title is what essentially knocked the Wolverines out of the playoff. One last bit of info of what I look at is the quality of losses. Washington’s lone loss came against the hottest team in the country in USC. While Michigan’s lost came from a underwhelming Iowa and Ohio State. Sorry Michigan, Washington beats you there again. Maybe next year Jim Harbaugh.

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I think the committee got it right, but there needs to be some change soon. Make the playoff a 6 or 8 team bracket, not 4. Four is a good base, but eight makes it all the interesting. But the change may never come, or it could be within the next two years, college football is unpredictable.

That’s all I have for this week, keep being beautiful everyone.

Rivalry Week, Do Or Die

The final week is finally here, and per usual with college football, we have some controversy. We have multiple Big 10 teams in the running for a playoff spot. Ohio State, Michigan, Penn State and Wisconsin all have a shot at the final 4. No, this isn’t college basketball, we got ourselves some madness: college football edition.

NCAA FOOTBALL: NOV 19 Wisconsin at Purdue : News Photo

Right now, as we look at the playoff, Alabama is the top dog. No surprise there, the Tide have been steadily the best team in the country all season long. Ohio State and Michigan battle it out this week, and it looks like the winner of that could be the one to make the playoff, unless they run into a pesky squad in the Wisconsin Badgers. But they both could make some major noise. Then at 4, is Deshaun Watson and Clemson. This team needs to play Alabama, it just needs to happen. A rematch in the first round could cause a major rift and perhaps a major upset. The two on the outside that I think are VERY much alive are Oklahoma and Washington. Oklahoma, if they crash the party, could be the team to go the distance and steal the National Championship. It will be rather interesting come Conference Championship week.

So now let’s get to one of the best weeks of the year….RIVALRY WEEK.

Ohio State v Michigan State : News Photo

The big one, the one that decides, in my opinion, the Big 10 champ, Michigan vs Ohio State. Let me be blunt, this game might get ugly quickly. I think the Buckeyes are the more complete team and have one of the most important things out there, a healthy QB. JT Barrett may not be a Heisman favorite, but he is arguably one of the best in the game right now. Jabrill Peppers must be perfect and if they have their regular QB, the Wolverines have a shot at the title. Urban Meyer will be licking his chops and may serve Wolverine this Thanksgiving, because it looks like his Buckeyes are heading back to the Big 10 title game.

Arizona State v Washington : News Photo
Now we head west for the Apple Bowl between Washington and Washington State. If you were to tell me this game would decide the Pac-12 North in the beginning of the season, I would have laughed in your face. But Jake Brownie and Luke Falk look like pro-style QB’s and are destined to give us a good one in this storied rivalry (even though the two programs have struggled at times). I think that the defense of Washington is going to be too much to handle for Mike Leech’s Cougars. They may record up to 6 sacks in this one. I am not saying there won’t be fireworks, but the Huskies should come out on top.

University of Colorado : News Photo

The other side of the Pac-12 will be decided in a game between Colorado and Utah. I’m dubbing this the Rocky Mountain War, both teams ranked inside the top 15, and look primed for a date in the Pac-12 title game. Only problem is one of them goes and one sits at home waiting for a bowl game. Colorado has not looked this good in years, and this could be the turning point for their program. For Utah, they are like this every other year, and could really use a rematch with Washington. This game being on FOX in primetime and in Boulder makes me love the Buffs in this one.

Oklahoma v West Virginia : News Photo

Oklahoma and Oklahoma State will play a winner take all game for the BIG 12 on December 3rd. I like the Sooners in this game. Baker Mayfield and Dede Westbrook has been unstoppable since the early season losses to Houston and Ohio State. The Sooners can sneak into the playoff with some help around the country.

My picks are as follows, I had a tough week last week and will look to rebound this time around.

(6) Washington over (22) Washington State

(2) Ohio State over (3) Michigan

(10) Colorado over (12) Utah

LOCK (7) Wisconsin over Minnesota

(1)Alabama over (15) Auburn

 

So until next week, stay handsome everyone.

A Primetime Duo For Saturday

We had ourselves a weekend of stellar games. I’ve got to say that last weekend wasn’t as shocking as I thought it would be, but there was a major blunder inside the top 4.

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Texas A&M fell in Starkville to Mississippi State, a loss that basically eliminates them from playoff contention. With that loss, the mighty Washington Huskies jump into the top 4, and they do deserve it. That defense is elite, which is a key reason they are winning football games. Jake Browning is also something else, this kid could be a potential major player in the NFL draft in the next year or so.

JT Barrett and Ohio State also put up some points last week, and kept themselves alive while Lamar Jackson and Louisville destroyed Boston College, but no one is surprised about that.

Last week I went 4-1, and I’m pretty pumped about that. My lone loser was the Nebraska Cornhuskers. Nebraska was outwitted, outmatched, and outplayed. They’re done and cooked on the grill with some butter.

Truthfully, I am only previewing two games this week due to the fact that there really aren’t many big tilts.

at California Memorial Stadium on November 5, 2016 in Berkeley, California.

Southern Cal travels north to take on the Huskies of Washington. USC being ranked inside the top 25 is a shock to me at this point of the year. The Trojans are WAY WAY WAY overmatched in this one. I see this as a potential trap game for Washington. The Huskies are favored in this one, and could be looking ahead to the playoff/PAC-12 title game. Jake Browning has to be on point and that defense has to be on its heels.

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Iowa plays host to the third ranked Michigan Wolverines, a game Michigan NEEDS to win. I had high hopes for the Hawkeyes and CJ Beathard coming into this season, but they have massively underachieved. The Wolverines have been perfect as perfect can be. Do I smell an upset? Not a chance, this one could get ugly quickly. Iowa in the past has played the upset card, but no chance that happens this year. The Wolverines will win this game by at least two scores.

Here are the picks:

#4 Washingon 48- #20 USC 17

LOCK #1 Alabama 40- Mississippi State 16

#3 Michigan 38- Iowa 20

#18 Florida State 45- BC 6

Florida 31- South Carolina 28

Heisman is Lamar Jackson, he’s got a lead the size of a football field.

Until next week. Stay handsome folks.

CFP Contenders and Pretenders

Week 5 is now and the books and more questions, or prayers, have been answered. This was a huge week for the landscape of college football and giving us a better understanding of who is a pretender and who is a contender in this year’s college football playoff race. The committee is quietly waiting in the wind for November 1st to release the first college football playoff ranking, but it is never too early to speculate what they might be thinking. What we learned last week is Stanford can’t win the big game, Clemson still rules the ACC, and the Michigan vs. Ohio State game in late November will decide everything. So let’s see who the contenders and pretenders are for this year’s college football playoff.

Contenders:

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SEC:

Alabama: Roll Tide is rolling once again and there is no surprises about that, Nick Saban and the boys are cruising to an SEC west title once again. They haven’t faced there toughest opponents just yet, but based on everything I have seen they will win out and get into the playoff as the number 1 seed. Bama puts up plenty of points and smothers opponents constantly on defense. Their kryptonite the last few years has been Ole Miss, and the Tide took care of them already this season. I hate Alabama with pure passion, but we’ll be seeing them in the playoff.

Tennessee: The Volunteers are flying high after a huge last second Hail Mary victory over Georgia last week, and the Vols have had Lady Luck on their side all year. To me Tennessee was a pretender before last week, but Josh Dobbs is balling out so far this year, and as long as he keeps it up Tennessee is on the fast track to the SEC title game against Alabama. The reason they aren’t a pretender still is because anything can happen in a title game. Alabama will probably beat Tennessee by 28+ but you just never know.

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ACC:

Clemson: First and foremost I am still shaking from Saturday’s game against Louisville. Clemson put on an absolute show in the second quarter to get themselves to a 28-10 halftime lead, and I was well aware it wasn’t over. Louisville fought back aggressively in the third to regain the lead 36-28, but Dabo rallied the boys for the fourth quarter and led them to a 42-36 victory in Death Valley. Clemson was supposed to be this good and they are finally playing like it again. A tough road test in Tallahassee in a few weeks stands between Clemson and the ACC title game, assuming no slip ups from here on out, but let’s all knock on some wood.

Louisville: What Louisville proved to me on Saturday night was that if they win out, which would mean a huge road victory over Houston, they could potentially be a top 4 team in the country by the final college football playoff vote. They need Clemson to lose twice to get into the ACC championship game, so that seems unlikely, but the committee could absolutely put in a 1 loss Louisville team with Heisman frontrunner Lamar Jackson at quarterback. Louisville gained enormous amount of respect from me after Saturday, but better luck next year Cardinals.

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BIG 10:

Ohio State: Need I say more? It just comes with the name at this point, but the Buckeyes are nasty yet again. JT Barrett is having a stellar season and has led OSU to number 2 in the nation to this point. What will get the Buckeyes into the college football playoff? A big win over…

Michigan: A tough road lies ahead with Michigan St, Iowa, and Ohio St all on the schedule but I believe the Wolverines will get to the final week of the season undefeated. And as it is for Ohio State, Michigan needs a win in that huge rivalry game to get into the playoff. I really hope we get those two undefeated for that game.

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Big 12:

Better luck next year!!

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Pac 12:

Washington: I never thought Stanford was going to lose to Washington, let alone that badly, but here we are with Washington as a legitimate college football playoff contender. The Huskies have gotten extraordinary quarterback play from Jake Browning. The Huskies just need to win out and they are in no questions asked, but can they do it?

Group of 5:

Houston: Win out, beat Louisville, and pray to God that Oklahoma wins out as well. Houston can go undefeated but being in the AAC is making it tough for them, time to move to the Big 12. Good luck Houston, you deserve to get in if you are undefeated, but will the committee allow that?

Pretenders:

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SEC:

Texas A&M: The Aggies are good don’t get me wrong, but they cannot beat Alabama, and that is what separates them from the playoff. A&M has a huge home game this week against Tennessee and they could absolutely win that, but being in the SEC west is tough because of the likes of Alabama. I actually see the Aggies winning against Tennessee, but not the SEC west.

Florida: A huge lead over Tennessee wasn’t enough for the Gators to win, so they are out, unless by some miracle they win out and Tennessee loses twice and the Gators beat Bama, good luck to them.

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ACC:

Florida State: 63-20 loss to Louisville and another loss this week to North Carolina, smell ya later Seminoles.

Miami: Plain and simple this team hasn’t really beaten anybody that great and I don’t think they’ll even get to the ACC title game. I believe North Carolina will beat the Hurricanes and then Miami will probably fall off and finish like 9-3 or something.

North Carolina: They must win out and then beat either Clemson or Louisville in the ACC title game, no chance they do both.

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BIG 10:

Nebraska: 5-0 isn’t bad, playing Michigan or Ohio State in the B1G title game is.

Wisconsin: They have the best chance out of the B1G west, but Wisconsin couldn’t beat Michigan last week on a bad day for Michigan. But there is a chance, if they get to the title game anything could happen, but I don’t see it for the Badgers.

Iowa: They lost to North Dakota State, a very good team mind you, but how you going to lose to the Bison at home and expect to beat Nebraska, Wisconsin, and Michigan and then win the B1G title game? Answer is you’re not.

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Big 12:

Baylor: Narrowly escaping Iowa State, real impressive.

West Virginia: Apparently they are 4-0, but who knew.

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Pac 12:

Stanford: We all saw what Washington did to them, that’ll demoralize any team, they’ll lose again, I promise.

Utah: The Utes love having a solid start and then falling off the face of the earth once people start to recognize them. They won’t do anything with their season, maybe win the Las Vegas Bowl over New Mexico or someone stupid.

My playoff prediction after week 5 is Alabama, Clemson, Michigan, and Washington. Who do you have?

On To The Next One

Another week, another sub-par finish for the Emperor of Handsomeness. I don’t think it’s my expertise, maybe these teams do not like me. If you didn’t get the chance yet, Dave Nolan dropped some hot fire about the love for the college game, click here to go check it out! Might have to talk to Dave about getting his picks in the coming weeks, maybe he can help a brother out with some winners.

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Last week, I stumbled to a 3-4 finish. Georgia and Florida both got stomped in SEC play by rivals Ole Miss and Tennessee. Chad Kelly and Josh Dobbs have my respect, for now. Michigan State got attacked by a rabid pack of Badgers from Wisconsin where the Spartans lost, 30-6. Sounds like a finish to one of my freshman football games. My upset special was wrong, so I won’t be having one of those this week. I did however hit on my lock of the week in Stanford, now do I dare take the Cardinal as my lock two weeks in a row?

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So let’s start with the Cardinals: sitting at 7th in the nation and undefeated heading north to take on the 10th ranked, and also undefeated Washington Huskies. I thought Washington was going to be exposed by upset last week and I couldn’t have been more wrong. So this week, the Huskies are sitting at a 3 point favorite, an interesting betting line especially in a Pac-12 game. I think Washington has to stop one guy, and that is Christian McCaffery. Not saying who I have yet, but Washington could be the team to stop the stud back.

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Possibly Michigan’s toughest test yet, and obviously it comes at home. I really cannot believe that the Wolverines have yet to play on the road. Well, nonetheless, the Wolverines get the Badgers at Ann Arbor this week, and this one, again, has me looking at the line. Michigan is a whopping 10.5 point favorite in this one, do the odd makers think Wisconsin is soft or something? They must. It seems like they do not have too much respect for the 8th ranked team in the country.

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My last game before my picks has massive Heisman implications, with Louisville traveling to Death Valley to take on Clemson. DeShaun Watson of Clemson vs. Lamar Jackson of Louisville. I think a slight edge goes to Clemson based off home field, but Jackson is electric, so that edge is the slightest of slightness. This game is a make or break game for the Heisman race as well as the playoff. It will come down to that ONE BIG MISTAKE.

So here are the picks this week.

(7) Stanford 31-(10) Washington 21

(12) Florida State 42-UNC 24 (LOCK OF THE WEEK)

(11)Tennessee 38-(25) Georgia 17

(8) Wisconsin 27-(4) Michigan 21

(3)Louisville 49-(5) Clemson 44

I like the road teams this week except for Florida State at home against the Tar Heels.

Heisman Race

  1. Lamar Jackson
  2. Christian McCaffery
  3. JT Barrett

Follow FI on Twitter @FIsports and on Facebook.

-Jack Corsi (@jcorsi11)

 

 

 

 

Week 4 preview

Last week I hit the .500 mark. I had Michigan and Virginia Tech. Michigan did their job and blew out UCF badly. UCF may have not gotten off the bus and let the JV squad play. While Virginia Tech was blown away at Bristol Motor Speedway by Tennessee. But hey, a 1-1 record is something I will take into this week. We got ourselves some great games.

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Let’s start at the noontime games with number 2 Florida State heading into Louisville to take on the 10th ranked Cardinals. The story in this game is Cardinals QB Lamar Jackson. This kid is the closest thing we have seen to Michael Vick since well, Michael Vick. Except he might be a little bit better. Jackson has 7 passing TD’s and 6 rushing TD’s so far this season, better yet he had 4 in the FIRST QUARTER LAST WEEK. This is Jackson’s first formidable test of the season. I think this could be the biggest game of his career. This also could be the ACC game of the year if we get a thriller. The Jackson vs FSU defense is something to watch for.

at Bryant-Denny Stadium on September 10, 2016 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.

At 3:30, the top ranked Alabama Crimson Tide will head to Oxford to take on the 19th ranked Ole Miss Rebels. Ole Miss has had ‘Bama’s number the last couple seasons, and honestly they may have it again. Chad Kelly is a guy to watch this week. He could be the catalyst that leads the Rebels to victory. But don’t count out the Tide and WR ArDarius Stewart. Stewart is the next guy in the elite line of ‘Bama wideouts.

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Two BIG 10 vs PAC 12 matchup’s also highlight the 3:30 games. Michigan comes in ranked 4th and they face the Buffaloes from Colorado. Michigan has arguably their first toughest task of the season, but if they do the job right, this game could be a blowout. The other game I will mention is number 22 Oregon heading to Nebraska to take on the Cornhuskers. Nebraska comes in favorites by 3 points, and let’s say if I was a betting man (and I am), I would take Nebraska. This is a game that brings the Huskers back to prominence. I was down on them before the year, but they can really prove something with a W.

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A rivalry is renewed when the 12th ranked Spartans of Michigan State travel to South Bend to take on the 18th ranked Fighting Irish of Notre Dame. The story is DeShone Kizer, the elusive QB of the Irish. This kid has the talent in the world, and why not showcase it this weekend against the hated Spartans. This could be a party that has Kizer’s name written all over it, and help solidify him as a favorite for the Heisman.

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Ding, ding, ding. We have a HEAVYWEIGHT MATCHUP in Norman, Oklahoma. As the 14th ranked Oklahoma Sooners play host to the 3rd ranked Buckeyes of Ohio State. This is a battle of Hall Of Fame coaches, and two elite college QBs. I have been an Oklahoma guy this year because of Baker Mayfield, he is the x-factor for the Sooners. If he can’t pick up the slack, the running game of Samaje Perine and Joe Mixon will have to take care of the load. JT Barrett of OSU is dangerous and could be looking to WR Curtis Samuel a ton in this game. I think this could be OU’s last chance to make the playoff, you are reading that right, the last chance.

My Picks:

Florida State over Louisville: 38-34

Alabama over Ole Miss: 28-17

Michigan over Colorado: 42-14

Notre Dame over Michigan State: 34-21

Nebraska over Oregon: 24-17

Oklahoma over Ohio State: 31-24

Follow FI on Twitter @FIsports and on Facebook.

-Jack Corsi (@corsi_light)