College Football Week 13 Expert Picks, Part 2: Oklahoma State at Baylor, Missouri at Tennessee, USC at UCLA

November 22, 2014

By Brad Carroll

 

The Week 13 college football slate of games isn't exactly what we've become used to this season. There are just three games featuring ranked teams playing each other, with the combined rank of the best one being 28, with No. 19 at No. 9. But there are a few with College Football Playoff implications to get everyone excited for another week where the rankings could shift.

 

No. 3 Florida State hosts Boston College, No. 7 Baylor is home to Oklahoma State and No. 8 Ole Miss travels to Arkansas in what will be a trio of elimination games if the favorites can't pull out victories. In addition to those games, No. 25 Minnesota is at No. 23 Nebraska, No. 15 Arizona is at No. 17 Utah and No. 19 USC is at No. 9 UCLA.

 

In all, we preview and our college football experts pick against the spread the 10 biggest games of Saturday's action. The night games are below and the early games are featured by clicking hereFollow us on Twitter for all of our latest updates and links. You can also wager real money on these games and more by clicking here.

 

[Read our previews and picks on the afternoon games here]

 

Oklahoma State at No. 7 Baylor, 7:30 p.m., FOX

The Spread: Oklahoma State +30; Baylor -30

 

Brad's Breakdown: This is an incredibly gigantic spread, even if it is the high-powered Baylor offense giving such a high amount of points, and especially since it's against an Oklahoma State squad that ruined the Bears national title hopes a season ago. But the Cowboys have lost four straight games after starting the season 5-1 and are obviously a team on the brink of total haplessness. Oklahoma State lost to TCU, West Virginia, Kansas State and Texas after putting together a five-game win streak after an opening night loss to Florida State by just six points. Baylor is a serious Playoff contender but will have to win its final three games, against Oklahoma State, Texas Tech and Kansas State to have a chance to move up. Even if it does that, the Bears will likely need Ohio State and Mississippi State to lose at some point. They would also need to jump TCU in the rankings, even though Baylor has a win over the Horned Frogs. That could happen if Baylor is impressive in its last three games. They get a chance to do that against a reeling Oklahoma State team first, and get some revenge for last year's loss along the way. Baylor wins, but it's extremely difficult to pass up 30 points against a conference opponent with a solid history.

Brad's Score: Baylor 56, Oklahoma State 28

Craig's Score: Baylor 63, Oklahoma State 31

Glenn's Score: Baylor 56, Oklahoma State 35

Matt's Score: Baylor 50, Oklahoma State 28

 

No. 20 Missouri at Tennessee, 7:30 p.m., ESPN

The Spread: Missouri +4; Tennessee -4

 

Brad's Breakdown: Missouri controls its own destiny of playing in the SEC championship game, needing victories over Tennessee and Arkansas to get there. The Tigers are 8-2 and have worked their way back into the top 20 after winning four straight games. That came after a stretch of two losses in three games in the middle of the year, including a bad loss to Indiana and an embarrassing 34-0 defeat against Georgia. Missouri has since beaten Florida, Vanderbilt, Kentucky and Texas A&M, with the last three all close games. The latter was an impressive 34-27 win over the then-No. 24 Aggies last week. Tennessee is 5-5 and can play spoiler for the second straight season, as it downed South Carolina last year to knock it out of the SEC title game. The Vols have won two straight, against South Carolina and Kentucky. Before that, Tennessee lost four of five, with its only win coming against Chattanooga. The losses were all against tough opponents, however: Oklahoma, Georgia, Florida, Ole Miss and Alabama. The Vols have lost all four games against ranked opponents this season. Missouri has everything to play for and should pull off the road upset.

Brad's Score: Missouri 23, Tennessee 20 (upset pick)

Craig's Score: Missouri 27, Tennessee 20 (upset pick)

Glenn's Score: Missouri 38, Tennessee 20 (upset pick)

Matt's Score: Missouri 17, Tennessee 13 (upset pick)

 

No. 19 USC at No. 9 UCLA, 8 p.m., ABC

The Spread: USC +3; UCLA -3

 

Brad's Breakdown: UCLA has won the last two games in this rivalry, since Jim Mora and quarterback Brett Hundley took over the Bruins program. Before that, Southern Cal had won 12 of the last 13 games between the two schools. Both teams have a shot to play in the Pac-12 title game, thanks in part to Arizona State's loss to Oregon State last week. USC currently leads the division, with UCLA in a three-way tie for second, with Arizona and Arizona State. There is more on the line in this game than simply beating your rival. The Bruins are 8-2 and have worked their way back into the top 10 by winning four straight. Before that, UCLA had dropped two straight, to Utah and Oregon to fall out of Playoff contention. It's not likely, but the Bruins could still play for a national championship if they win out, including a victory over Oregon in the conference title game, and possibly have Mississippi State, Ole Miss, Ohio State, TCU and Baylor all lose. USC is 7-3 and has two huge games left, against UCLA and then Notre Dame. The Trojans have won four of their last five, including a win over then-No. 10 Arizona and a slip up against then-No. 19 Utah, both on the road. UCLA should be too powerful to get upset at home, especially with the conference title game a reward if it can beat the Trojans and then Stanford to close out the regular season.

Brad's Score: UCLA 27, USC 21

Craig's Score: UCLA 35, USC 24

Glenn's Score: USC 35, UCLA 20 (upset pick)

Matt's Score: UCLA 35, USC 28

 

THE BREAKDOWN

Brad Last Week: 5-6 (spread), 7-4 (straight-up), 1-2 (upset picks)

Brad Season: 70-73-1 (spread), 108-36 (straight-up), 8-8 (upsets)

Craig Last Week: 3-8 (spread), 4-7 (straight-up), 0-3 (upset picks)

Craig Season: 66-77-1 (spread), 101-43 (straight-up), 6-11 (upsets)

Glenn Last Week: 4-7 (spread), 5-6 (straight-up), 1-4 (upset picks)

Glenn Season: 80-63-1 (spread), 104-40 (straight-up), 8-12 (upsets)

Matt Last Week: 3-8 (spread), 6-5 (straight-up), 0-2 (upset picks)

Matt Season: 68-75-1 (spread), 105-39 (straight-up), 5-8 (upsets)

 

[Read our previews and picks on the afternoon games here]

 

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