College football pick: Super Saturday with 6 marquee games | Sports

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This college football weekend needs a name.

Great Saturday! Parting Saturday! Shakedown Saturday!

With a six-game game, a season high teams ranked in the Top 25 AP, the season should have more clarity late Saturday night.

Each of the Power Five conferences has at least one ranked vs. ranked matchup, six top 10 teams are involved in the big games, and three of them pit an undefeated against an undefeated.

Instead of the five most intriguing games of this week, let’s just rank the big six by plot level:

No. 3 Alabama at No. 6 Tennessee

Early signs indicate Heisman Trophy winner Bryce Young (shoulder) is back in action for the Crimson Tide. Tennessee is trying to snap a 15-game losing streak in the third Saturday of October rivalry. It’s simply a huge opportunity for Tennessee to reshape the SEC and the national championship race. LINE: Alabama by 7 1/2. PICK: Alabama 34-23.

No. 7 Southern California at No. 20 Utah

The Trojans’ 6-0 start in Lincoln Riley’s first season was impressive, but it’s fair to say that USC’s ceiling is still a mystery. The Utes entered the season as presumptive Pac-12 favorites and already have two losses. Still, this will be USC’s toughest test yet. LINE: Utah by 3 1/2. PICK: Utah 34-28.

No. 10 Penn State at No. 5 Michigan

The Wolverines have handled their affairs as decisively as any team in the country (32-point margin of victory on average), but they have yet to face a ranked opponent. Then again, neither does Penn State. The winner assumes the title of Ohio State’s biggest threat in the Big Ten. LINE: Michigan by 6 1/2. CHOICE: Michigan 28-20.

Oklahoma State No. 8 at TCU No. 13

The winner takes sole possession of first place in the Big 12 and becomes the only undefeated team in the conference, which may not seem like a big deal in this start to the season, but it’s a really nice place to be in what seems be a tight race. LINE: TCU by 3 1/2. CHOICE: TCU 36-35.

No. 15 North Carolina State at No. 18 Syracuse

Clemson has already eliminated NC State and Wake Forest as ACC Atlantic contenders. The Oranges remain unbeaten and whether they are a serious challenger for the Tigers remains to be seen. The status of Wolfpack QB Devin Leary (throwing arm) is uncertain due to injury. LINE: Syracuse by 3 1/2. CHOICE: North Carolina State 20-16.

No. 16 Mississippi State at No. 22 Kentucky

The Bulldogs are one second-half slump against LSU away from undefeated, but they could be the second-best team in SEC West behind QB Will Rogers (22 TD assists). The Wildcats have lost two straight, including last week without an injured QB Will Levis (foot). LINE: Mississippi State by 7. CHOICE: Mississippi State 24-21.

The rest of the matches involving ranked teams with lines of FanDuel sports betting:

Vanderbilt at No. 1 Georgia (under 38 1/2)

Bully ball: ‘Dawgs has won its last three games without throwing a touchdown pass… GEORGIA 49-7.

No. 4 Clemson at Florida State (up 3 1/2)

The Tigers have won six straight against the ‘Noles, all but one by at least 10 points… FLORIDA STATE 31-29, UPSET SPECIAL.

Auburn at No. 9 Mississippi (minus 14 1/2)

The Tigers have gone four straight games without scoring more than 17 points, their longest such streak since five straight games in 1999 … OLE MISS 31-14, BEST BET.

No. 19 Kansas (plus 7 1/2) at Oklahoma

The Sooners defense has been a mess, but the offense could come back if QB Dillon Gabriel is healthy…OKLAHOMA 34-28.

Iowa State (plus 16 1/2) at No. 22 Texas

No talk of Texas returning can take place until it lands a three-game skid against the Cyclones… TEXAS 28-14.

Minnesota at No. 24 Illinois (plus 6 1/2)

Illini has allowed 10 or fewer runs in five of six games… MINNESOTA 20-16.

No. 25 James Madison at Georgia Southern (up 10 1/2)

Since beating Nebraska, Georgia Southern has gone 1-3… JAMES MADISON 35-28.

TWITTER REQUESTS

LSU (plus 2 1/2) Florida (@fobbsthechairmn) – The last time the Tigers and Gators played with the unranked two was in 2014 … LSU 21-20.

Nebraska (plus 14 1/2) at Purdue (@KobiRugby) – The Huskers are looking for their first three-game winning streak since 2016 … PURDUE 31-20.

Arkansas (minus 1 1/2) at BYU (@geoffjBYU) – Razorbacks, on a three-game losing streak, could recover QB KJ Jefferson … ARKANSAS 34-31.

North Carolina at Duke (plus 7 1/2) (@DanaBecker) — It’s not a Final Four, but the ACC Coastal’s first is on the line… NORTH CAROLINA 34-28.

Stanford at Notre Dame (down 16 1/2) (@BruceHaynesDC) – The Irish have won three straight games by an average of 24 points … NOTRE DAME 38-14.


REGISTRATION

Last week: Straight-up — 18-7; Against the spread — 12-12.

Season: 98-33; 68-73.


Follow Ralph D. Russo on https://twitter.com/ralphDrussoAP and listen to http://www.appodcasts.com


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