Every Thursday during the college football season, I'll be picking the 10 best games of the week against the spread, plus one upset special. Here are my picks for Week 7.
Last week ATS: 6-3-1
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West Virginia at Texas Tech (PK)
The Mountaineers’ dreams of an undefeated season may die in Lubbock. Red Raiders QB Pat Mahomes is averaging a ridiculous 454.8 passing yards per game. West Virginia has been decent defensively, but this test might be too much.
This season hasn’t yet had a truly seismic upset. Alabama hasn’t gone through an SEC season undefeated since 2009 and is playing the second of back-to-back road games. Tennessee got one monkey off its back last month against Florida. Now, the Vols beat Alabama for the first time in a decade.
So far, USC coach Clay Helton’s decision to turn to QB Sam Darnold has paid off. He’s won his past two starts and is the nation’s eighth-rated passer. A desperate Arizona team doesn’t want to start 0-4 in Pac-12 play but falls just short here.
At long last, Indiana possesses a capable defense, one that limited Ohio State QB J.T. Barrett to nine completions last week. The Hoosiers will give Huskers QB Tommy Armstrong similar trouble but not quite enough to pull off the upset.
Miami’s defense performed admirably in its 20-19 loss to Florida State but now must face another normally explosive offense. The ‘Canes might give up some big plays, but QB Brad Kaaya, if healthy, will do more damage to the Heels.
Arkansas’ defense has been brutal, allowing an average of 44 points and 560 yards against its three Power 5 foes. That does not bode well going against QB Chad Kelly and a Rebels offense averaging 7 yards per play, 10th-best nationally.
As bad as 2-4 Notre Dame’s defense has been, Stanford’s offense has been worse the past two games. And now star RB Christian McCaffrey is banged up. The Irish badly need this win, and QB DeShone Kizer makes sure it happens.
The atmosphere at Camp Randall should be electric, and the Badgers’ defense can definitely give J.T. Barrett and the Buckeyes trouble. But the Buckeyes’ defense has been every bit as dominant. Wisconsin, minus its usual powerful rushing attack, will struggle to score.
The Scarlet Knights have been a national punchline for a week. They’re about to put the Ann Arbor Ruth's Chris out of business. They need someone to take it out on. Enter 1-4 Illinois, coming off an overtime heartbreaker against lowly Purdue.