The Unrepentant Individual

...just hanging around until Dec 21, 2012


November 24, 2006


2006 NCAA Football Predictions — Week 13 part 2

Well, Boston College let me down yesterday, which is no way to start a weekend. Thankfully, I have two full days of college football to make up for it. Since I gave in and went shopping, I should have enough husbandly-duty-credit with the wife to watch quite a bit of these games too!

I’ll break this out into two posts… One for each day of games. This should be a particularly good week, too, as it’s Rivarly Week!

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Texas A&M (8-3, 4-2) @ #11 Texas (9-2, 6-1)
Vegas Says: Texas -13

We’ve got two good football teams here. aTm is coming off two straight 1-point losses to ranked teams. Texas is coming off a puzzling loss to mid-level program Kansas State. With a win today, Texas will clinch the Big 12 South, but if they lose, and Oklahoma wins (which is likely), Oklahoma will take the division and head to the championship game. aTm, with a win, simply clinches their 4th place spot in the conference, and for bowl selection purposes will be much better off at 5-3 than 4-4 in conference. Both teams have things riding on the line here.

I think aTM is going to come out to play today. Statwise, both teams have very good offenses, and both have mid-level defenses. Where the problem may occur is in the matchups. Texas has a very strong rush defense, while aTm’s attack hinges on establishing a rushing game. Texas is a little better able to throw the ball, but they don’t want to put the game on the line in Colt McCoy’s hands. He’s shown some great poise in recent weeks, but you simply don’t want to overload a freshman QB.

This game is going to come down to who wins the battle of the line. Texas should have the edge in that matchup on both sides of the ball. They should be better able to establish a running game, and should be able to shut down aTm’s running game and pressure the QB. So a Texas win is pretty well established. But can they cover 13 points? I’m going to say no. I think aTm is going to play their hearts out today, but in the end they won’t be able to overcome the defense. Either way, I think they’ll score 17-20 points, and I see Texas with about 27-30. Plus, 13 points is a good “edge” number, so if it comes down to 13 exactly, it’s at least a no-decision.

Prediction: Texas A&M beats the spread
Predicted Final Score: Texas 31, Texas A&M 20
Final Score: Texas A&M 12, Texas 7
Prediction: RIGHT

#9 LSU (9-2, 5-2) @ #5 Arkansas (10-1, 7-0)
Vegas Says: LSU -2

LSU’s going on the road to play a 1-loss Arkansas team (undefeated in the SEC), and they’re 2-point favorites. I guess that’s what happens when you have a top-10 rush defense, a top-10 scoring defense, and the #1 total yardage defense in the league. Not to mention that you’re on a 5-game winning streak and your team, which struggled offensively early in the season, has been lighting it up.

But they haven’t faced a rushing attack like Arkansas. Arkansas can throw several runners (including McFadden when he’s taking snaps as a QB) at you, and they’re racking up 230 rushing ypg. For LSU to win, they must force Arkansas to beat them through the air. Nobody has really been able to force Arkansas to do that all year, but I think LSU has the defense to at least force them to open the game plan a bit.

Arkansas, running the ball and controlling the clock, is going to keep the score down overall in this game. Their offense is going to try to grind the clock, limit the number of times LSU touches the ball, and keep their defense fresh. Even so, LSU is going to get some yards and points. I think the game is going to be decided in the 4th quarter, and LSU has been solid at the end of games, coming from behind to beat Tennessee. Arkansas has to be ahead by a big margin, in my opinion, to hold the game against the likes of Tennessee.

Prediction: LSU covers
Predicted Final Score: LSU 24, Arkansas 20
Final Score: LSU 31, Arkansas 26
Prediction: RIGHT

Oregon (7-4, 4-4) @ Oregon State (7-4, 5-3)
Vegas Says: Oregon State -3

Oregon State has been a strange team. They’ve been blown out by Boise St, Cal and UCLA. Yet they beat USC? This is a team that has certainly ridden their ups and downs all year. They’re not an exceptionally powerful team either offensively or defensively, but they’ve been doing enough to win 5 games against conference foes, including a great USC team and a decent Arizona squad. Where they appear to have trouble is against teams who can pressure the QB. Oregon State has given up nearly 30 sacks on the year, and when you get a QB to start hearing footsteps, you can throw an entire offense of kilter.

That doesn’t bode well for Oregon, though. Oregon hasn’t been able to create many sacks so far this year. If they’re going to beat you, it’s going to be with offensive fireworks. Oregon has a balanced, yardage-eating monster of an offense, gaining 5.2 ypc on the ground, and has been greater than 48% converting 3rd downs (an indication that they’ve been strong on 1st and 2nd down). This team can score points with the best of them. When they’re not turning the ball over, that is. Last week’s blowout loss to Arizona included 6 turnovers (4 INT, 2 fumbles lost).

If Oregon can keep from losing the turnover battle, or probably keep that margin down to 1, they should win this game. They simply have too much offensive firepower to not put up some serious points, and it’s not clear Oregon State has the weapons to match. I’m going to predict an Oregon win here, and hopefully they’ll manage to hang onto the ball this week.

Prediction: Oregon beats the spread
Predicted Final Score: Oregon 31, Oregon State 27
Final Score: Oregon State 30, Oregon 28
Prediction: RIGHT


The Unrepentant Individual linked with 2006 NCAA Football Predictions — Week 13 part 3
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