Week 12 College Football Picks and Odds
by Trevor Whenham - 11/19/2010
Last week’s picks did not go according to plan - to say the least. Iowa State had an awful day at Colorado as the Buffs enjoyed the boost of a new coach. Utah was clearly shell-shocked and demoralized by their merciless beating by TCU the week before, and had no will left to put up a fight against a Notre Dame team they should have been able to easily outclass. Frustrating week.
We have a slump going. Hopefully these Week 12 college football picks and odds will reverse the recent trends. They should:
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Michigan State (-20) at Purdue (Saturday, Nov. 20, 12 pm ET)
Three touchdowns is a lot to win by, but Michigan State is certainly capable here.
I watched all of Purdue’s game at home last week against Michigan, and it didn’t leave me with a single good thing to say about them. The Wolverines had nothing working on offense, Denard Robinson was lousy, they turned it over five times, and their defense is a long way from competent, yet they still managed to win by 11 points.
Michigan State is better in every aspect than Michigan right now, and they will be able to show that here. Purdue’s only success - and it was modest - was at running the ball. Michigan State’s run defense is dramatically better than Michigan’s, though.
No matter how you look at it the Spartans have a significant edge. On top of that Michigan State has major motivation to put together a big performance - if they win both of their games and Ohio State loses to Iowa or Michigan then the Spartans are Rose Bowl bound.
The Spartans believe in what they are doing, and they are going to be fired up to overwhelm in this one.
Wisconsin (-4) at Michigan (Saturday, Nov. 20, 12 pm ET)
I am a totally obsessed Michigan fan. I bleed Maize and Blue. When I say that Wisconsin is a gift at this price, then, you should pay attention.
Michigan has a nice 7-3 record, and against weak teams they are tough to beat. Wisconsin is a long way from a weak team.
The Badgers are tied for the lead in the Big Ten, and can still make the Rose Bowl with some help. Michigan’s obvious strength is their offense. That offense was weak last week, though, so we can’t necessarily trust them here. Beyond that, they are up against a very solid defense here.
Defensively, Michigan is a disaster. They are struggling with injuries, but even at full strength they are a long way from effective.
Wisconsin has a bruising running game that will easily wear down the Wolverines. They also have an established quarterback that will be able to find the holes in the secondary - and there are a lot to find.
The Badgers are going to be able to use the run game to control the tempo of the play and keep the ball out of the hands of Denard Robinson and Tate Forcier.
I’ll be cheering hard for Michigan, but betting on them at this price would be a horrible idea. Wisconsin is the pick.
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