Week 12 Recap
If you correctly identified any winning underdogs last week, consider yourself lucky. There were only 8 upsets on the slate, just 16% of the available games, only six of which occurred on Saturday, and none of which were of any real significance. 50% of our entrants this week got 0 points. Yikes. There were a lot of close calls, with UNC losing in OT, Baylor blowing a 28-3 lead over OU, and Texas giving up a FG as time expired to lose in Ames. My dart throw of the week actually hit the bullseye, as Syracuse annihilated Duke as 10.5-point underdogs. That wasn’t enough to win the week though, as Alison connected on the biggest upset of the week: Rice defeating MTSU as 14.5-point underdogs.
It was a terrible week to be an underdog, except for all the underdogs chasing our season-long leader. Victory Cigars for Everyone was one of the many that put up a big zero on the scoreboard, allowing all of the contenders beneath it to gain a bit of ground. The good news for VCfE was that this wasn’t one of those weeks where everyone accumulated big scores, but the crown is weighing heavy as there are now contenders within striking distance. Seth’s Picks made the most movement up the leaderboard, with its 10.5 points pushing it 6 spots ahead, to 31st overall for the season. You can still make your own leap up the leaderboard and earn weekly prizes, so join now.
Week 13 Picks
This is the beloved pre-Thanksgiving SEC vs. FCS Showdown week, so some of the top teams are off the board, but what is left behind is an incredible slate of underdog opportunities. I down-selected to 19 games that I had serious interest in taking this week, so I’m expecting everyone else to have a big week while I make all the wrong choices. This makes the selections high pressure: choose wrong on the big week and the field may lap you. Here’s what I settled on:
1. Syracuse (+10) vs. Louisville – The Orange picked up a big win for me as heavy road underdogs last week, why not let it ride? The situation does not set up quite as nicely for Syracuse this week and Louisville is certainly much improved under new coach Scott Satterfield, so I don’t put this one up with much confidence. Syracuse is still alive for bowl eligibility if they win out, so maybe the motivation to get out of an upstate New York winter will be enough to propel ‘Cuse to another big upset.
2. San Diego State (+3) vs. Hawaii – I’m sorry, which team is favored here? Is this like a James Harden in Miami situation where the Aztecs will just be having so much fun on the islands that they forget how to play football? Now, SDSU hasn’t been its usual top-notch self: playing a trash schedule, sneaking out close wins, and dropping dumb games at home to Nevada and Utah State. Still, this just looks like free money…so oddsmakers know something I don’t or they just really love Cole McDonald and the Rainbow Warriors.
3. Kansas State (+2.5) vs. Texas Tech – I’m not sure what the opposite of having too much fun in Hawaii is, but spending a Saturday night in Lubbock has to be pretty close. You’re telling me the team that beat Oklahoma is an underdog against the team that just lost to TCU. The Frogs were 3.5-point favorites at Tech last week, but the Wildcats, who have outperformed TCU all season, are 2.5-point underdogs there? Maybe this is an overreaction to KSU’s bad home loss to WVU or maybe I am falling right into the odssmaker’s trap.
4. Coastal Carolina (+6) vs. UL Monroe – Perhaps not to the Toilet Bowl level of Akron-BGSU earlier this season, but these are two of the worst teams in FBS. There was a time when ULM was a respectable G5, putting fear in P5 opponents…just this season they lost to FSU in overtime, but have been pretty terrible since that point. Coastal, meanwhile won its P5 game (albeit over Kansas) and almost pulled a major upset last week over Arkansas State, but gave up a last minute TD to lose by 1 point. The spread is too high to pass up here for two teams both hoping to get two more wins to somehow earn bowl eligibility.
5. Houston (+3) vs. Tulsa – Tulsa is coming off a monumental win over former AAC heavyweight UCF and have a chance to knock off another one-time G5 leader. Tulsa has been talked about a lot as “better than their record” with near-wins against Memphis and SMU. Think they pull off another near-win this week, falling short to Holgorsen’s Cougars.
Fill out your selections in the form below or click HERE if your browser doesn’t show the form on this page. Remember to get your picks in before the start of games you select – Week 13 Schedule. Good luck!