College Football Odds, Picks: Michigan-Ohio State Among Best Bets In Rivalry Week

Well, you did it. You survived another Thanksgiving with your family. You made it past the awkward political debates and nosy in-laws and you’ve arrived here at your reward.

Rivalry week.

With the leftovers still in the fridge and the holiday shopping on the horizon, let’s try and make Week 13 of the college football season a lucrative one. So make another turkey sandwich, find a place to hold up for the next two days and prepare to feast your eyes on some winners.

All lines courtesy of OddsShark.

No. 6 Oklahoma (-3) at No. 13 West Virginia (OVER 85)
We’re going to keep this simple. Oklahoma has dominated this matchup ever since West Virginia joined the Big 12 in 2012. The Sooners are 6-0 against the Mountaineers in that time frame, including a 59-31 win last year and a 56-28 thumping two seasons ago. Oklahoma’s sieve of a defense likely won’t blow out out West Virginia on Friday, but it’s still safe to lay the points. And speaking of points, this game figures to have a lot of them with both teams averaging over 40 points a game. The OVER has risen from 81 to 85 but we still feel good about taking it as the OVER has hit in six of Oklahoma’s last seven games. Like we said, the defense stinks.
Pick: Oklahoma -3
Bonus Pick: Oklahoma 51, West Virginia 42

No. 16 Washington (+2.5) at No. 8 Washington State
Washington State is the Pac-12’s last hope for a College Football Playoff bid, and this year feels like the perfect time for Mike Leach to finally take down Chris Petersen, right? Not so fast. While the Huskies haven’t lived up to their lofty preseason hype, they still are a dangerous team. Petersen has owned the Cougars since arriving in Seattle in 2014 with Washington going 4-0 against Wazzu in Petersen’s tenure while covering the spread each time. Wazzu’s high-flying Air Raid attack hasn’t been able to do much damage against UW over the last four years and we expect the 30th ranked pass defense in the county to be up to the task once again.
Pick: Washington +2.5

No. 4 Michigan at No. 10 Ohio State (Under 56)
Is Ohio State’s defense appalling? Yes at times, but only when it faces teams that want to spread it out and confuse it with motion and misdirection (see: Purdue, Nebraska). Michigan, on the other hand, just wants to line up and cram it down its opponent’s throat which is something the Buckeyes should have an easier time stopping. Plus, would it be surprising to see Jim Harbaugh clam up and just try to bludgeon Ohio State to death instead of getting exotic with the playcalling? Not at all. On the flip side, Ohio State has struggled to run the ball for most of the season, and Don Brown’s defense is one of the best in the country which leads us to think the Buckeyes could struggle to find the end zone.
Pick: Michigan 23, Ohio State 17

South Carolina at No. 2 Clemson (Under 58.5)
Clemson UNDERS have hit almost all season and the UNDER has hit in 11 of South Carolina’s last 14 games. We expect the Tigers to do a majority of their scoring in the first half before resting their starters as the Gamecock’s punchless offense struggles to get much going. Lock it in.
Pick: Clemson 42, South Carolina 6

No. 3 Notre Dame (-11) at USC
There really isn’t much to this last one. We would probably take Notre Dame minus-anything against this lackluster and dejected Trojans team. The Fighting Irish proved once again they are one of the nation’s elite teams with a 36-3 pounding of No. 12 Syracuse in Week 12, while USC lost to 3-8 UCLA and now must try to discover any sort of motivation to pick up win No. 6 and head to the Redbox Bowl. A win for Notre Dame punches its ticket to the College Football Playoff and we expect them to do it in convincing fashion.
Pick: Notre Dame -11

Thumbnail photo via Brian Spurlock/USA TODAY Sports Images

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