WhatIfSports college football Week 13 predictions: OSU wins fifth straight vs. Michigan

WhatIfSports.com's college football simulation engine submits predictions for every matchup of Week 13.

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Each Monday, WhatIfSports.com’s college football simulation engine generates predictions for every Division I FBS game for the coming week. Our highly sophisticated algorithms simulate every play of every game to produce each team’s likelihood to win. Each matchup is simulated 101 times.

Week 12 in Review

Our Game of the Week is back to its winning ways. Last week, we had Oklahoma defeating West Virginia and they did. We also nailed another upset…

Nailed It: Virginia Tech 34 – Notre Dame 31

Our computer simulation said the Hokies would upset Notre Dame last week and they did. We predicted Virginia Tech to win 51.9 percent of the time, by an average score of 27.5-27.0. Now, our Upsets of the Week are above .500 for the first time this season (6-5).

Wide Right: Kansas 24 – Texas 21

How does a team hang tough with West Virginia one week and then lose to one-win Kansas the following week? Our computers don’t understand, either. We predicted Texas to win 73.3 percent of the time, by an average score of 29.5-19.9.

Track our 2016 performance or view our accuracy last season, when we correctly picked the winner in 80.0 percent of all games involving FBS teams.

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Week 13 Top 25 vs. Top 25 Matchups

No. 25 LSU at No. 22 Texas A&M

The final week of the college football regular season has quite the list of ranked opponents facing one another. These two SEC West teams meet on Thanksgiving. Alabama has already locked up the division and both teams are already bowl-eligible. Both teams have also dealt with big injuries to their offenses. The Aggies are without senior QB Trevor Knight and the Tigers’ star running back, Leonard Fournette, has a nagging ankle injury. His backup, Derrius Guice, has surpassed the Heisman-hopeful in rushing yards and TDs this season. According to our computers, Guice will get it done. LSU wins 65.8 percent of the time, by an average score of 29.7-26.6.

No. 6 Washington at No. 23 Washington State

The Apple Cup isn’t the only thing on the line in this matchup. The winner of this rivalry advances to the Pac-12 championship game as the representative from the North region. The Cougars were undefeated in conference play until last week. They lost to Colorado, 38-24. Junior quarterback Luke Falk is third in the FBS in passing yards (3,935) and TDs (36), yet he’s only thrown seven interceptions this season. As for the Huskies, Jake Browning is second in passing TDs with 37. He’s also committed seven interceptions. It looks like Browning will best Falk after this week, too. Washington wins 53.5 percent of the time, by an average score of 32.7-30.0.

No. 3 Michigan at No. 2 Ohio State

This is arguably the biggest rivalry in college football. It’s even better that both teams are ranked in the top three. What’s crazy is the fact that there is a chance that neither one advances to the Big Ten championship. If Michigan wins, it advances to the Big Ten championship. If Ohio State wins, the Big Ten East spot depends on the outcome of the Penn State vs. Michigan State game. Either way, it’s possible that this is a play-in game for a spot in the College Football Playoff. Expect this game to be a defensive battle. The Wolverines lead the FBS by only allowing an average of 10.9 points per game. The Buckeyes are tied for third with 13.0 PPG allowed. The committee could be put in a difficult situation since OSU is projected to win 52.9 percent of the time, by an average score of 26.2-25.6.

No. 16 Auburn at No. 1 Alabama

The Tide have trounced all opponents in their path this season. They are set to play in the SEC championship and basically have an automatic bid to the College Football Playoff. However, Auburn would love to put a blemish on Nick Saban’s season. For that to happen, the Tigers will need to produce points. That will be a tough task. Alabama has surrendered three points or fewer in each of the last three games. Auburn’s defense is stingy, too. They’ve allowed an average of 14.3 points per game (seventh-best in FBS). It looks like Alabama’s perfect season will continue, though. The simulations say Alabama wins 68.8 percent of the time, by an average score of 27.4-21.8.

No. 21 Utah at No. 9 Colorado

The Buffs have a trip to the Pac-12 championship hanging in the balance. Senior quarterback Sefo Liufau gets it done in the air and on the ground. Last week, he ran 23 times for 108 yards and three TDs against Washington State. Now, they are one game away from playing in their very first Pac-12 title game. In fact, Colorado hasn’t played in a conference championship game since 2005 (in the Big 12). The Utes lost on a last-second touchdown to Oregon last week. Instead of playing for a shot at a conference title, they are only playing for a better bowl game. Our computer simulations predict Colorado winning 51.2 percent of the time, by an average score of 26.4-26.0.

No. 13 Florida at No. 15 Florida State

Not only does Florida have a chance to play for an SEC title, but the Gators could potentially run the table and make a surprise appearance in the College Football Playoff. It started last week with an impressive win over LSU on the road. They stuffed the Tigers at the goal line to secure the win. Florida State dropped three ACC games this season and is just looking to improve its bowl situation. Dalvin Cook is also looking to boost his Heisman stock. Last week, against Syracuse, Cook cruised for 225 rushing yards and four TDs. Looks like Cook will continue to dominate. FSU wins 51.7 percent of the time, by an average score of 25.4-25.1.

Week 14 Upset Pick

Nebraska (+3) over Iowa

The Cornhuskers climbed to 17th in the AP rankings this week, yet Vegas isn’t a believer. Nebraska has only lost to Wisconsin and Ohio State this season. Both teams are currently in the top five and both games were on the road. Quarterback Tommy Armstrong Jr. may not be ready for Friday’s matchup, but Nebraska still has Terrell Newby to run the ball. He accumulated 98 yards and three TDs last week. Nebraska wins 53.4 percent of the time, by an average score of 27.0-26.1.

College Football Week 13 Predictions
Matchup Win % Avg. Score  
South Carolina Gamecocks 31.7 22.8 Box Score
@ Clemson Tigers 68.3 29.7  
Syracuse Orange 34.7 23.3 Box Score
@ Pittsburgh Panthers 65.3 29.1  
Virginia Cavaliers 37.6 23.8 Box Score
@ Virginia Tech Hokies 62.4 28.4  
Kentucky Wildcats 38.6 27.8 Box Score
@ Louisville Cardinals 61.4 32.9  
Duke Blue Devils 39.6 27.3 Box Score
@ Miami (FL) Hurricanes 60.4 29.7  
Boston College Eagles 48.1 23.6 Box Score
@ Wake Forest Demon Deacons 51.9 24.3  
Florida Gators 48.3 25.1 Box Score
@ Florida State Seminoles 51.7 25.4  
North Carolina State Wolfpack 48.5 26.6 Box Score
@ North Carolina Tar Heels 51.5 26.9  
Rutgers Scarlet Knights 29.2 23.4 Box Score
@ Maryland Terrapins 70.8 31.6  
Michigan State Spartans 36.6 24.3 Box Score
@ Penn State Nittany Lions 63.4 27.7  
Minnesota Golden Gophers 40.6 22.6 Box Score
@ Wisconsin Badgers 59.4 25.2  
Purdue Boilermakers 42.6 28.3 Box Score
@ Indiana Hoosiers 57.4 30.9  
Illinois Fighting Illini 45.5 24.5 Box Score
@ Northwestern Wildcats 54.5 26.2  
Michigan Wolverines 47.1 25.6 Box Score
@ Ohio State Buckeyes 52.9 26.2  
Nebraska Cornhuskers 53.4 27.0 Box Score
@ Iowa Hawkeyes 46.6 26.1  
Akron Zips 44.9 28.5 Box Score
@ Ohio Bobcats 55.1 29.9  
Buffalo Bulls 45.5 28.5 Box Score
@ Bowling Green Falcons 54.5 29.8  
Ball State Cardinals 46.9 29.6 Box Score
@ Miami (OH) RedHawks 53.1 30.3  
Toledo Rockets 47.1 31.2 Box Score
@ Western Michigan Broncos 52.9 31.7  
Central Michigan Chippewas 50.9 31.1 Box Score
@ Eastern Michigan Eagles 49.1 30.9  
Northern Illinois Huskies 60.3 29.6 Box Score
@ Kent State Golden Flashes 39.7 25.8  
Rice Owls 21.8 23.6 Box Score
@ Stanford Cardinal 78.2 32.8  
Notre Dame Fighting Irish 42.4 27.6 Box Score
@ USC Trojans 57.6 30.2  
Utah Utes 48.8 26.0 Box Score
@ Colorado Buffaloes 51.2 26.4  
Washington Huskies 53.5 32.7 Box Score
@ Washington State Cougars 46.5 30.0  
UCLA Bruins 56.5 32.8 Box Score
@ California Golden Bears 43.5 31.2  
Oregon Ducks 58.4 30.2 Box Score
@ Oregon State Beavers 41.6 26.9  
Arizona State Sun Devils 67.3 32.8 Box Score
@ Arizona Wildcats 32.7 28.0  
Auburn Tigers 31.2 21.8 Box Score
@ Alabama Crimson Tide 68.8 27.4  
Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets 37.6 23.8 Box Score
@ Georgia Bulldogs 62.4 26.3  
Mississippi State Bulldogs 44.6 29.2 Box Score
@ Ole Miss Rebels 55.4 30.7  
Arkansas Razorbacks 51.9 25.2 Box Score
@ Missouri Tigers 48.1 24.4  
Tennessee Volunteers 65.3 26.0 Box Score
@ Vanderbilt Commodores 34.7 22.7  
LSU Tigers 65.8 29.7 Box Score
@ Texas A&M Aggies 34.2 26.6  
Utah State Aggies 40.6 27.0 Box Score
@ BYU Cougars 59.4 31.1  
Kansas Jayhawks 44.6 24.1 Box Score
@ Kansas State Wildcats 55.4 26.0  
Baylor Bears 54.5 32.9 Box Score
@ Texas Tech Red Raiders 45.5 31.7  
TCU Horned Frogs 59.5 29.2 Box Score
@ Texas Longhorns 40.5 26.6  
West Virginia Mountaineers 61.9 28.3 Box Score
@ Iowa State Cyclones 38.1 24.5  
Florida Atlantic Owls 43.1 27.2 Box Score
@ Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders 56.9 29.0  
Charlotte 49ers 46.5 27.1 Box Score
@ UTSA Roadrunners 53.5 28.5  
FIU Golden Panthers 48.0 30.1 Box Score
@ Old Dominion Monarchs 52.0 32.1  
North Texas Mean Green 53.5 31.2 Box Score
@ UTEP Miners 46.5 29.6  
Western Kentucky Hilltoppers 57.4 33.5 Box Score
@ Marshall Thundering Herd 42.6 30.3  
Louisiana Tech Bulldogs 60.9 34.6 Box Score
@ Southern Miss Golden Eagles 39.1 30.2  
Colorado State Rams 34.7 26.8 Box Score
@ San Diego State Aztecs 65.3 31.6  
Massachusetts Minutemen 34.7 27.7 Box Score
@ Hawaii Rainbow Warriors 65.3 32.8  
Nevada Wolf Pack 48.9 29.0 Box Score
@ UNLV Rebels 51.1 29.3  
San Jose State Spartans 52.0 29.9 Box Score
@ Fresno State Bulldogs 48.0 28.7  
Wyoming Cowboys 59.1 30.0 Box Score
@ New Mexico Lobos 40.9 27.9  
Boise State Broncos 69.8 31.6 Box Score
@ Air Force Falcons 30.2 25.5  
South Alabama Jaguars 43.1 29.6 Box Score
@ Idaho Vandals 56.9 31.1  
Arkansas State Red Wolves 54.5 28.1 Box Score
@ Louisiana-Lafayette Ragin’ Cajuns 45.5 27.2  
Appalachian State Mountaineers 73.3 35.4 Box Score
@ New Mexico State Aggies 26.7 28.1  
Troy Trojans 73.3 35.6 Box Score
@ Texas State Bobcats 26.7 29.9  
Tulane Green Wave 37.6 23.7 Box Score
@ Connecticut Huskies 62.4 28.2  
Cincinnati Bearcats 39.1 27.5 Box Score
@ Tulsa Golden Hurricane 60.9 30.5  
UCF Knights 42.6 26.3 Box Score
@ South Florida Bulls 57.4 29.4  
East Carolina Pirates 44.6 27.2 Box Score
@ Temple Owls 55.4 31.9  
Navy Midshipmen 56.4 30.0 Box Score
@ SMU Mustangs 43.6 26.9  
Houston Cougars 61.6 30.0 Box Score
@ Memphis Tigers 38.4 26.1  

In addition, view our Week 13 power rankings or visit our college football archive for predictions from past weeks. For more statistics, view our weekly college football predictions.