Six Pack: Ohio State Vs. Michigan State, Oregon vs. Utah among the best bets on college football in Week 12

Do you realize how close we are at the end of the regular season? I have spent the last few weeks watching leaves turn from green to red, orange and brown before covering my entire lawn. I have felt the air temperature slowly cool down and then suddenly dive into the 30s. I have seen the sun go down at a much earlier time. Hell, I’ve even seen snowflakes, but at no point did it dawn on me that this lapse of time also took place during the college football season.

We’re almost done! It feels like the season started a few weeks ago, but we only have two weeks left before the conference championship weekend. It’s crazy how fast it’s all gone, especially compared to the battle that was the 2020 season.

So we do not have much time left because I can not stress this enough: the regular season is when you make money on football in college. Bowl season is when you lose it because no one knows anything in bowl season. Do not get me wrong, it’s still fun to bet on all the bowl games. You can even win money, but it will be because of luck. So let’s use our skills while there is still time. All odds are via Caesars Sportsbook.

Game of the week

Featured game | Ohio State Buckeyes vs. Michigan State Spartans

Michigan State No. 7 and Ohio State No. 4: One of the more interesting parts of this week is the look-ahead factor. Not only is next week the last week of the base game, but it’s rivalry week. I do not know if you’ve heard of it, but Ohio State has a pretty big rivalry with Michigan, which is important to them. Maybe that’s why the Buckeyes have failed to cover a spread in their last seven games prior to the rivalry in Michigan (last year’s game was canceled).

When you look at that trend and combine it with the fact that this spread seems pretty disrespectful to the Spartans, it’s hard not to lean on Sparty. I know we took Purdue and were burned by the Buckeyes last week, but side-by-side results aside – it works both ways, Spartan fans – Michigan State is a better team than Purdue. Plus, after watching Ohio State play with its food all too often, I’m not ready to buy the idea that it’s suddenly turned the switch because it beat a Purdue team that came after a huge win. I mean, Purdue still scored 31 points in that game.

While Michigan State defense is relinquishing a lot of yards, it is tightening up in the red zone, which happens to be an area where the Ohio State offense has been fighting most of the season. The Buckeyes win, but not nearly as easily as the spread suggests. Ohio State 38, Michigan State 24 | Michigan State +19

Featured game | Utah Utes Vs. Oregon Ducks

No. 3 Oregon and No. 23 in Utah: Every season in the College Football Playoff era, there has been a playoff challenger no one believes in. He who the world assumes will lose another battle and knock himself out of the battle. The first year of the playoffs was Florida State, which remained undefeated until Oregon killed it in the semifinals. This year it is the turn of the Ducks to be doubted, and that doubt has become so widespread that we can now find value in them.

I really like this Utah team, but I’m not sure it should be favored by three points. Oregon is far from perfect and limited offensively. When it comes to playoff challengers, however, we tend to focus on their mistakes as potential title winners. It can skew how we see them compared to teams they are better than. I think Oregon is a better team than Utah. Not to the level where I expect the ducks to crush it. I will not be surprised at all if Utah wins, but I will also not be surprised if the Ducks win. So the points seem pretty enticing. Oregon 27, Utah 24 | Oregon +3

Lock of the week

Featured game | USC Trojans Vs. UCLA Bruins

UCLA at USC: I do not like much of what I’ve seen from USC lately, and how could I? The Trojans lost their best player (WR Drake London) to a season-ending injury and go into this match after losing three of their last four, with the only win being a close showdown against 1-9 Arizona. It has been something of a theme with these Trojan horses. Their four wins have come against San Jose State, Washington State, Colorado and Arizona. Together, these teams are 14-27. The Trojans have lost all four matches against teams with winning records. There’s a reason Clay Helton was fired!

Now I can say some of the same things about UCLA. When it comes to the better teams in the Pac-12, it has fallen short, even though the loss of 20 points in Utah was the only time it did not look competitive. The Bruins, however, have beaten the teams they are better than with relative ease. UCLA is a better football team than USC. Let’s not overthink it. UCLA 38, USC 31 | UCLA -3

Underdog of the week

Featured game | Oklahoma Sooners vs. Iowa State Cyclones

Iowa State at No. 13 Oklahoma: Iowa State is back in the role it was born to play: spoiler. You set high expectations for Iowa State before a season and talk about how it’s a big 12 title challenger and a possible playoff team, and that will disappoint you. But when you put it away after some losses in the early season and forget it? That’s when the cyclones pop up and bite you, and I think we’ll get to see that this week.

I was disappointed with Oklahoma last week. Not because it did not cover, but because I thought it would look much more prepared to play against a tough Baylor team. I keep waiting for this team to change contact, but I just do not think it will happen anymore. Oklahoma is what it is: a good team with lots of mistakes – the kind of mistakes that can prove costly against a well-trained team that has something to prove. It’s Iowa State. Plus, you know coach Matt Campbell is 20-11 ATS as an underdog in Iowa State (17-7 in Big 12 games) does not hurt my confidence level either. Oklahoma 30, Iowa State 28 | Iowa State +3.5

During the week

Featured game | Miami (FL) Hurricanes vs. Virginia Tech Hokies

Virginia Tech in Miami: You need to be looking for teams on the slope to wrap it up at this point of the season. I have a suspicion that Virginia Tech may be one of those teams. The Hokies beat Duke on Senior Day last weekend and then fired Justin Fuente a few days later. I do not know what it is for a message that sends through the locker room, but I do not imagine it is positive. Still, I’m not comfortable trusting Miami as this big favorite against any ACC team except the Duke. Instead, I will take under.

Offensively, Virginia Tech has been a mess all season. That’s a big reason Fuente was fired. While the Hokies are 43rd nationally in offensive success rate, they rank 92nd in points per game. possession and 81st in offensive EPA. They’re the kind of attacks that Miami’s defense could find some success against, and even though this game turns into a blowout where Tech does not show up, I still think we stay below the total. Miami 31, Virginia Tech 23 | Under 56

End of the week

Featured game | Clemson Tigers vs. Wake Forest Demon Deacons

No. 10 Wake Forest by Clemson: Have you seen Wake Forest recently? Clemson’s attack has been a mess since the opening kick of the 2021 season, but the Tigers could have spent the entire season just waiting to get a crack at this Wake defense. During their last six games, the Deacons have gone 5-1, but have allowed 2.73 points per game. That would place 116th nationally, and those numbers include a game against the Duke in which the Blue Devils scored just seven points. Remove that game and Wake has allowed 3.14 points per game. possession since the beginning of October. That would be in 127th place!

Wake has overcome these defensive fights by scoring a lot of points himself. While I do not expect the typical Wake performance against a Clemson defense that has been strong all season, I expect enough fireworks to get us over the total. Clemson 35, Wake Forest 31 | Over 56.5

SportsLine This week’s selection

No. 21 Arkansas at No. 2, Alabama: I ran out of space in The Six Pack, but I got another game on the SEC On CBS Game of the Week between Crimson Tide and the Razorbacks. If you want to find out what it is, go over to my SportsLine page.

Game of the week

0-2

14-8

Lock of the week

1-0

6-5

Overall

3-3

40-26

Which college football choices can you make with confidence in week 12, and which College Football Playoff challenger will go down hard? Visit SportsLine to see which teams are winning and cover the spread – all from a proven computer model that has generated nearly $ 3,500 in profits over the past five seasons – and find out.

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