Week 12 College Football Group of 5 Parlay: 3 Picks, Featuring Louisiana vs. Florida State, UAB vs. LSU

Week 12 College Football Group of 5 Parlay: 3 Picks, Featuring Louisiana vs. Florida State, UAB vs. LSU article feature image

Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Troy running back DK Billingsley.

Each week, to coincide with the release of the “Group of Five Deep Dive” under the Big Bets On Campus podcast banner, I’ll be sharing my Group of Five parlay of the week.

A last-second field goal from UNLV, when it was down 10 ([), got our parlay off on the wrong foot on Friday night. We did nail a putrid under between Troy and Army that failed to reach 20 points.

So, I’ll try to bottle up that success and sprinkle it over my plays here in Week 12 of the college football season.

This week, we get it started with a tussle in Tallahasse that promises more big plays from the resurgent Seminole offense. Then, we work our way out of the panhandle into Alabama for a Sun Belt West matchup teaming with title game implications. And finally, we head back onto I-10 to catch the nightcap in Baton Rouge under the lights at Tiger Stadium.

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Louisiana vs. Florida State

Saturday, Nov. 19
12 p.m. ET
Florida State -24

Louisiana is still trading on its previous value.

Under Billy Napier the Ragin’ Cajuns went 34-5 straight up in his last three seasons in Lafayette. The offense was a battering ram, bludgeoning teams with a physical rushing attack. And their quarterback play was as steady as could be with Levi Lewis at the controls.

This season, with Napier in Gainesville, and most of the starters responsible for that 34-5 run long gone, Louisiana has crashed back to earth. How steep has the descent been? Try 107th in Success Rate on offense.

You don’t need a spreadsheet to understand its struggles. If you watch a few drives it’s clear as day that it simply can’t throw the ball with any level of consistency.

In a game against a dynamic FSU offense, it'll need to throw to stay in it, which is a recipe for a blowout.

Defensively, Louisiana struggles to contain the big play through the air. Florida State, while not a pass-first attack, will take advantage of those big play deficiencies on the Louisiana side.

In between its deep shots, FSU will run the ball and run it well. The Seminoles rank 13th in Rushing Success Rate and 19th in explosiveness on the ground.

And they top it all off with Jordan Travis, who has blossomed at quarterback. In his last four games, he has an 11:1 touchdown-interception ratio and has added two rushing touchdowns as well. The dual-threat is up to ninth nationally in QBR.

This game has the makings of a drubbing.

Pick: Florida State -24

Louisiana-Monroe vs. Troy

Saturday, Nov. 19
3:30 p.m. ET
Troy -14

From a prolific offense pouring it on to a G5 defense staking its claim as the program’s best to ever do it.

With two more wins Troy will have locked up the Sun Belt West, and it continues to do it by suffocating the opposition. The Trojans are allowing just 11 points per game across their last five games. And they’ve risen to eighth nationally in limiting teams’ explosive plays.

The natural concern here is that Troy hasn’t run away from anyone in recent weeks, but you have to consider the depth that ULM’s defense has sunk to in 2022. The Warhawks defense is so bad they could turn this conference game into a showcase for Troy’s offense. ULM is 100th in Success Rate, 110th in Havoc and 123rd in takeaways on defense.

If there were any concerns about Troy looking past ULM, you just have to look up last year’s game in Monroe. The Warhawks knocked off the Trojans with ease, which sets this game up as payback for the nation’s eight-best scoring defense.

Troy needs to close the season strong with South Alabama just a half-game behind it in the Sun Belt West standings. It'll get it done with defense and score just enough to cover this two-touchdown spread.

Pick: Troy -14


Saturday, Nov. 19
9 p.m. ET
LSU -14.5

LSU needs to put a 60-minute, no holds barred, beatdown on film for the College Football Playoff committee to see.

The Bayou Bengals got their “letdown game” out of their system last week in frigid conditions. And while their offense looked frozen at times, the LSU defense played out of its mind. Harold Perkins had four sacks on his own as his team avoided an upset by harassing Arkansas’ quarterbacks for 60 minutes.

The Blazers enter with a strong pass defense and questions about their ability to stop the run. LSU sits 11th in Success Rate on the ground with a dual threat at QB to add even more issues to the mix for opposing defenses.

If LSU hops out to a big lead, that could neutralize UAB’s lone offensive weapon, DeWayne McBride. The bruising junior ranks second nationally in yards, touchdowns and yards per carry among backs with at least 150 carries at a jaw-dropping 6.9 yards per attempt.

But if UAB is playing catch-up, it won’t be able to utilize his services for four quarters.

Since 2018, when Brian Kelly and Notre Dame made its first of two CFP trips in a three-year span, Kelly’s record against the spread as a favorite is 27-18-1. He knows he has to pour it on for the Tigers to have any chance of leapfrogging the teams ahead of them in the rankings.

Expect a blowout in Death Valley.

Pick: LSU -14.5

College Football Week 12 Group of Five Parlay (+580)

Florida State -24

Troy -14

LSU -14.5

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