Week 4 Preview

It’s week four already! As usual the season is flying by, and within the next week or two we will be well underway with conference play. Already this week, we have some big conference matchups (including the week’s only game between ranked opponents). So let’s get right to it with week two of our joint preview/predictions!

Last week saw both Scott and Gavin go 5-3 in picks, with Gavin correctly picking his upset.

Games of Note

Texas Tech @ #23 Iowa State

Gavin- Matt Campbell has yet to lose to the Red Raiders in his tenure in Ames. However, this Texas Tech team looks to be built different, with some very impressive results so far. Then again, their schedule hasn’t exactly been taxing. My gut says the Cyclones take care of business, but it’ll be close. Iowa State 28, Texas Tech 24

Scott- The Red Raiders offense is red hot to start the year, averaging over 58 points a game so far in 3 games. However, they have not seen anything close to the defense ISU plays. I agree with Gavin, and I feel this should be a close one, but I think the home field advantage could be the difference. Iowa State 34, Texas Tech 30

Northwestern @ #6 Penn State

Gavin- Yes Northwestern is 3-0. But some cracks started to show last week against Central Michigan, in a game that should not have been so close. Meanwhile Penn State have cruised to a 3-0 start and a spot at #6 in the country. Sorry Scott, but in the first meeting between these schools since 2017, the Cats from the West just don’t have enough. Penn State 31, Northwestern 14

Scott- The hype around this game has grown quite a bit since the start of the season since the Cats have taken care of business so far, already matching their 2019 win total. But Penn State is a juggernaut and a bona fide playoff contender. NU will have the Nittany Lions’ attention and Happy Valley will be rocking for this noon kickoff. Northwestern won their last trip in Happy Valley, but this one will be much different. Penn State 44, Northwestern 10

#7 Florida @ Tennessee

Gavin- This matchup has been dominated in recent times by the Gators. They have won 14 of the last 15 against the Vols, and I don’t expect anything to change here. Tennessee’s second game this season against a top 10 squad goes much the same as the first. Florida 31, Tennessee 14

Scott- Gavin hit this one right on the head. Tennessee does seem to be trending a bit better, and this is one Vol fans want really bad against one of their rivals, but too much firepower from the Gators. Florida will continue to pace the SEC East with another divisional win. Florida 30, Tennessee 17

#16 Cincinnati @ Nebraska

Gavin- ESPN has Nebraska as 64% favorites here. I will never understand the hype that routinely surrounds the Cornhusker program. After three straight losing seasons with high expectations, you would think that someone might catch on. The Huskers have been unconvincing again so far this season, and even in Lincoln, I think the better team prevails. Cincinnati 35, Nebraska 21

Scott- Am I sucker for Nebraska hype? Usually no. They should not earn the benefit of the doubt anymore. But here I am. The Huskers have looked solid, but not great thus far. This seems like a great spot for Nebraska. They are facing off against a team they feel they should beat, but also a very very tough team in that. A win over a ranked Cincy team could possibly jumpstart the rebuild, but it won’t come easy. I think this is a one score game either way. Nebraska 29, Cincinnati 26

Duke @ Pittsburgh

Gavin- Okay, can we talk about Duke’s defense? I hyped up Texas Tech last week for two straight shutouts to start the season, well how about three? Yes that’s right, Duke has still not allowed a point yet this season. They have been remarkably consistent against inferior competition, winning 34-0, 35-0, and 33-0. All that being said, Pittsburgh have looked pretty good themselves. I want to take Duke for the storylines, but Pitt at home is too much for me to overlook. Pittsburgh 21, Duke 17

Scott- Duke’s D has been absurd thus far, and Pitt has looked pretty good itself. Could this be the game that ultimately decides the ACC Coastal when it’s all said and done? Odds are it will not, with this contest being so early in a division that’s usually nutty. However, it looks like it very well might be with how good these teams have looked in comparison to the rest of the division. This is a tossup for sure. Pitt has won 5 in a row in this series. For that reason only, I’m taking Duke. This is the year the streak ends. Duke 27, Pittsburgh, 21

TCU @ SMU

Gavin- Last year, SMU came into Fort Worth and snuck out with a victory over the Horned Frogs. Back in Dallas this year, The potential is there for another great game between these two teams. This is one of the more difficult games to predict for me, but I’ll give the edge to TCU. TCU 28, SMU 17

Scott- Last year, when SMU “upset” the Frogs, it was a shocker. But by the end of the year, that result was not very surprising in the slightest. TCU has the better roster, and a far superb defense. They also are much more focused for this game after last year. The Horned Frogs reclaim the Iron Skillet. TCU 42, SMU 30

#8 Wisconsin @ #13 Michigan

Gavin- Game of the week. Top 15 showdown in the B10. What more could you want? In the last four meetings between these schools, the home team has come out on top. But this year, ESPN really likes Wisconsin, having them as 72.7% favorites. While I don’t agree with that number, I do like the Badgers to win on road here. Wisconsin 24, Michigan 17

Scott- A classic Big Ten matchup here between two of the more consistent programs the last five or so years. Gameday comes to Ann Arbor for another game under the lights in a huge tilt early in conference play. The home team has won the last four in this series, including a Badger stomping of the Wolverines in Madison last season. This one will buck the recent trend, albeit in a fairly competitive game. Wisconsin 24, Michigan 14

#21 Utah @ Cal

Gavin- Utah comes into this one following last week’s scare against a sneaky Wyoming squad. Cal will see this as a perfect upset opportunity, but I think the Utes come out with a point to prove. In a Pac-12 showdown, give me the away team in a close one. Utah 35, Cal 28

Scott- If you love college football, do not forget to stay up for #Pac12AfterDark in this one. This is sneakily one of the best matchups of the week in the conference opener for both teams. The all time series is tied at six a piece here. The defenses and head coaches of both squads are severely underrated nationally. I think this game delivers for those who stay up to watch it. Cal squeaks one out at home, giving the Utes their first loss of the season. California 36, Utah 32

Upset Picks

Gavin – South Florida @ Florida Atlantic

Well since Air Force are favorites this week, I guess I’ll have to look elsewhere for my upset pick. Since their stunning first week upset of the Longhorns, South Florida have come up with two comfortable wins. Meanwhile, FAU has struggled thus far this season. Thus, even as big underdogs on the road, I like the Bulls to pull this one out and make a claim as contenders in the American Conference. South Florida 31, Florida Atlantic 21

Scott – Stanford @ UCLA

Okay, many might argue that UCLA is the favorite here. The Cardinal have looked shaky to start the year, even though they have been competitive. But ESPN’s FPI projects Stanford as a 57.9% favorite on the road here. UCLA is coming off of a tough loss to the underrated Aztecs, but I think Chip Kelly’s boys bounce back here back in the Rose Bowl. Stanford falls to 0-3 in the Pac-12. UCLA 39, Stanford 28

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