Week 11 Saturday six pack: Six college football pounders
Each week, I will pick out a new variety six pack for Saturday morning to go along with my six favorite situational sides on the college football card. Short and simple.
If you listed to our podcast this week, you heard me talk about why I like this side. The Mustangs, who feature one of the best receiving units in the country, should feast today against a horrendous Navy secondary that ranks 120th in the country in pass yards per attempt (8.8). If you haven’t had a chance to watch the SMU wideouts this season, tune into CBS Sports Network for this one; Courtland Sutton might be the best receiver in the country. I expect a motivated SMU team in Annapolis today, and think they find a way through the air to avenge an embarrassing 75-31 home loss at the hands of Navy last season.
Two teams that appear to be headed in opposite directions. Army has won five straight to improve to 7-2 on the season, but let’s take a look at their seven wins: UTEP, Rice, Fordham, Buffalo, Eastern Michigan, Temple and Air Force. Color me not impressed, especially since they could have easily lost three of those home wins against Temple (OT), EMU (failed two-point conversion to win), and Buffalo (outscored the Bulls 14-0 in a comeback four-point win).
In contrast, Duke has lost five straight games after a 4-0 start, but three of their last four losses have come by one possession to ACC teams. I expect Duke, who ranks in the top 40 in a number of key rush defense statistics, to contain the Army triple option attack today. Duke should benefit from the extra prep during the bye week, especially since they play an option team next week as well. On the other side of the ball, Daniel Jones should find success through the air against an Army secondary that gives up 7.6 yards per pass attempt, which barely cracks the top 100. The focus should be there for the Blue Devils, who need to win two of their final three games to secure a bowl bid.
Coming off of a heartbreaking home loss on the final play of the game against Ole Miss, the Cats make a stop in Vanderbilt before a trip to Athens to play the No. 1 team in the nation next week. Classic sandwich spot for Kentucky, who I do not expect to be emotionally invested today with a bowl appearance already locked up. Conversely, Vanderbilt needs to win two of their final three games to guarantee a bowl appearance . I expect the ‘Dores to carry momentum from last week’s home win, which ended a five-game losing streak, into this revenge spot against Kentucky. Look for Vanderbilt to come away with their first SEC win of the season in a massive motivation mismatch, sending Stoops to 0-3 in Nashville.
Louisiana Tech +4
Lookahead spot for the Owls, who have a date with Florida International on deck. That matchup with FIU should determine the Conference USA East Division even if they lose today, which is why I don’t expect a fully focused Owls team in Ruston. Keep in mind that four of Louisiana Tech’s losses have come by a combined 10 points; I’m still trying to figure out how they lost to Southern Miss and South Carolina. Continuing on a common theme, Lousiana Tech also has bowl motivation sitting at 4-5 on the year. Check out The Action Network Collin Wilson’s CW9 article for more insight into this game, which you can find here.
New Mexico +17.5
It’s November, so you know the drill. Fade Kevin Sumlin time. His A&M teams have spiraled out of control in the past at the first sign of adversity. I don’t expect that to change this weekend, even with a new quarterback under center. If you are concerned about the talent disparity, you might find comfort in two prior Texas A&M home games against clearly inferior opponents – they trailed at the half against Louisiana Lafayette and only defeated Nicholls State by 10 points. Look for the New Mexico option attack to to gain at least 200 yards on the ground against the Aggies, who have allowed that number in four straight. I think this stays within two scores.
Georgia Tech +3
Georgia Tech is not a team you want to face if you are not mentally prepared. After that enormous loss at Miami, I don’t expect a fully focused effort from Virginia Tech today. The Hokies, who aren’t really playing for much at this point, have struggled in recent years with Georgia Tech; their lone win in the last three seasons came by two points. The Yellow Jackets, who have won two of three in the series, need to win two of their last three games to secure a bowl berth. Don’t be fooled by that Georgia Tech 4-4 record, as they could easily be 7-1; three of their four losses have come by a combined six points. Look for a motivated Georgia Tech team to make it eight consecutive home wins against a flat Virginia Tech squad.
Week 11 Six-Pack Recap:
- SMU +3
- Duke -3.5
- Vanderbilt -1.5
- Louisiana Tech +4.5
- New Mexico +17.5
- Georgia Tech +3
Week 1: 0-0 +0.00 units
Week 2: 0-0 +0.00 units
Week 3: 5-1 +4.07 units
Week 4: 4-2 +1.84 units
Week 5: 5-1 +3.87 units
Week 6: 1-4-1 -3.27 units
Week 7: 2-3-1 -1.22 units
Week 8: 3-3 -0.26 units
Week 9: 3-3 -0.19 units
Week 10: 3-3 -0.23 units
Total: 26-20-2 (56.5%) +4.61 units