Our simulation has officially gone full-on bananas. I’ll explain.
Games of Note and Predictions
Pittsburgh 24 – #21 Virginia Tech 23 (OT)
Scott- Virginia Tech 27, Pittsburgh 18
Gavin- Virginia Tech 21, Pittsburgh 17
Despite both of us doubting it, Pitt is still undefeated. After escaping a hostile environment in Blacksburg, the Panthers are 6-0. Not only does Pitt keep pace with the division-leading Tar Heels, but they set up an undefeated showdown with Clemson next Saturday night. After the Hokies nipped the Irish in OT last week, overtime tripped them up this go around. A brutal missed extra point was the cause.
#24 TCU 37 – #2 Oklahoma 27
Scott- Oklahoma 41, TCU 17
Gavin- Oklahoma 35, TCU 21
Things are starting to get wild in the Big XII folks. TCU snaps a seven-game losing streak against the big dog in conference as they leave Norman with a crucial 10-point victory. TCU has bounced back from the Texas loss a couple weeks ago and have had a very impressive 2021 campaign thus far. Oklahoma might have been dealing with the Red River hangover. OU isn’t eliminated from the playoff just yet with a crazy season around the country. However, they’ll need to run the table the rest of the way. Kansas is up next, and that should get them back on track.
#7 Cincinnati 35 – UCF 11
Scott- Cincinnati 35, UCF 28
Gavin- Cincinnati 31, UCF 17
Bearcats keep on rolling. UCF couldn’t put up much of a fight against Luke Fickell’s squad. We’ll see if anyone else on the Cats’ schedule can do so the rest of the way. UCF still has a chance at a quality Year 1 under Gus Malzahn. There’s a decent chance these two could meet again in the AAC Championship Game, but I’d bet that means the Knights have to return to Nippert in a potential rematch. Cincy’s playoff push marches on.
#25 LSU 44 – #5 Florida 41 (OT)
Scott- LSU 30, Florida 29
Gavin– Florida 28, LSU 24
Two games, two OT wins for LSU, this one serving as a massive upset, shocking the college football world yet again against the rival Gators. This marks three straight for the Tigers over UF, and vaults them back into the SEC race. Florida’s defense suddenly looked vulnerable. But if they want to bounce back, they’ll have a tough test: the rival Georgia Bulldogs in Jacksonville in what should be the de facto SEC East Championship. A win there could revive the Gators’ playoff hopes. LSU is seven points away from being undefeated, and it appears Coach O has things figured out again in Baton Rouge. To what degree? Back-to-back road trips to Oxford and Tuscaloosa will tell.
#8 North Carolina 31- Miami (FL) 24
Scott- North Carolina 40, Miami 34
Gavin– North Carolina 45, Miami 28
Sam Howell, Mack Brown and North Carolina keep on winning. The Canes played them tough, but Manny Diaz has not lived up to expectations in 2021. UNC is so close to clinching the Coastal already, but will need to dispatch Pitt first. Before that, they’ll have an extremely tough challenge in South Bend. This should determine how legit of a playoff contender they are. Regardless, Mack Brown has this program in the best shape it’s been in quite a while. I’m starting to worry if Miami will make a bowl. That might spell the end of Diaz’s tenure in Coral Gables.
#12 Texas 32 – #16 Oklahoma State 11
Scott- Texas 33, Oklahoma State 26
Gavin– Texas 35, Oklahoma State 17
After the chaos we saw in Norman earlier in the day, Texas got themselves right back in the conference race in this one. UT shut down Spencer Sanders all day, and Gundy’s offense could never get anything going. Bijan Robinson had yet another huge day on the ground, and Texas gets to bowl eligibility early on in Sark’s tenure. OK State is still alive in the Big XII chase as well, but they have lots more tough contests ahead, including next week in Ames against an undefeated Iowa State. Needless to say, Texas proved itself today, and they should remain in the fight to the end.
#9 Arizona State 25 – #14 Utah 24
Scott- Utah 24, Arizona State 21
Gavin– Utah 28, Arizona State 27
Another nugget to this crazy 2021 simulated campaign is that Arizona State is a legitimate playoff contender. Despite visiting a hostile environment in Salt Lake City, they escaped with a one-point W. Herm Edwards may be dealing with a NCAA investigation, but the Devils are 7-0 for now, and head into the bye week flying high. They have the inside track towards Vegas now, but ASU is setting their goals even higher now. ASU’s gain is Utah’s loss, and although it’s their first loss, they’ll need help the rest of the way. This is still a quality team, and it’s amazing the difference one point makes for a given narrative.
#22 Washington 45 – UCLA 33
Scott- Washington 28, UCLA 14
Gavin- UCLA 38, Washington 28
This Huskie offense is starting to click under OC John Donovan. They’ve hung 37 or more for the last four games and now they’ve successfully defended Seattle against a strong UCLA squad. Washington is setting up a massive rivalry with the Ducks in a few weeks if they can take care of business until then against Arizona and Stanford. The Bruins have now lost 3 of 4, and they’re just about finished in the division race. With tough challenges ahead, UCLA should shift focus towards getting to a bowl game under Chip Kelly.
Baylor 10 – BYU 7
Scott- BYU 24, Baylor 18
If Baylor keeps playing this way, they’ll be a ranked squad in no time. This Salty Bears defense has been holding down opponents for almost the entirety of the season, and Jaren Hall could do nothing all night. BYU has been a streaky team all season, so they’ll try to nip this skid in the bud very early on. They’ll travel to Washington State next week, while Baylor heads to a bye.
Ball State 54 – Eastern Michigan 31
Gavin- Ball State 27, Eastern Michigan 21
In real-life and in our sim, the MAC West is nutty. Ball State ran over Eastern Michigan at the factory Saturday afternoon, and reminded us how great the Cardinals looked last year in capturing the division. BSU is in a five-way tie for first with a 2-1 conference record. EMU is in last in the division, but is just one game out! Let’s go.
Our Pick Results
Scott: 5-4 (44-19 on season)
Gavin: 4-5 (42-21)
Other Games of Note
Appalachian State 43 – Louisiana 25
In a matchup of two fairly disappointing teams thus far, App State notches a massive road win, as the Cajuns drop to .500, as Billy Napier’s coaching stock continues to fall.
North Texas 31 – Marshall 19
The nation’s most surprising team keeps on winning. The Mean Green pull another upset against Marshall, and UNT gets to 3-0 in Conference USA play.
Indiana 25 – Michigan State 19
Indiana has faced a brutal schedule thus far, but this win was needed for Tom Allen’s bowl hopes. MSU falls to 4-3 overall, snapping their 3-game win streak.
Yale 27, UConn 25
Turn your eyes Huskie fans. Despite being an underdog(!!), UConn couldn’t hang on against Ivy League power Yale.
#4 Texas A&M 45 – Missouri 0
A&M followed up their massive upset with another dominant performance, this time on the road in Columbia. The Aggies are on top of the division now, and control their own destiny.
Tennessee 41 – Ole Miss 24
Tennessee looked awfully lifeless so far under Josh Heupel, but Saturday was a change of pace in Knoxville. The Vols surprisingly kept Lane Kiffin’s explosive offense in check, while exploding for 41 points of their own.
#6 Iowa State 48 – Kansas State 32
ISU keeps on winning, and have flown largely under the radar due to some teams on their schedule not living up to preseason expectations. They’ll get a ranked matchup with OSU next. K-State has dropped three straight.
Toledo 36 – Central Michigan 30
CMU misses its chance to distance itself from the rest of the division. Instead, we have a five-way tie for first place in the MAC West. It’s dog-eat-dog in the midwest.
South Carolina 32 – Vanderbilt 18
While it hasn’t been pretty at times, the Gamecocks are shockingly 5-2, and just one victory away from a bowl in Shane Beamer’s first season at the helm. They have a brutal schedule remaining, but they only need one.
#18 Georgia 48 – Kentucky 11
UGA gets back on track by rolling the Wildcats in Athens. This and the Gators’ loss sets up a massive showdown with Florida in Jacksonville in two weeks.
Nebraska 40 – Minnesota 32
The Huskers inch closer to Scott Frost’s first bowl game in Lincoln, as Nebraska gets to 5-3 heading into the bye week. The Gophers were close, but fall to .500 on the season.
NC State 46 – Boston College 31
NCSU wins a battle of two potential challengers in the ACC Atlantic. Although they’ve both lost to Clemson already, there are plenty of conference games left for both, and chances to build up their records. NC State is 5-1 now. Ranking incoming?
#11 Wisconsin 18 – Army 8
Okay, so Army’s strategy is to not get blown out with their ball control mindset. But this was an ugly performance from the Badgers. A win is a win, and I think Wisconsin is still a great team, but I expected better from this offense. They’ll head to Purdue next.
Boise State 38 – Air Force 24
Air Force falls from the ranks of the undefeated on the Smurf Turf. Not only that, but all of a sudden, Boise is now in the driver’s seat in the Mountain division, despite a 4-3 record overall.
After a jam-packed weekend of shocking results, I do not looking forward to trying to rank these teams. With all this chaos, it might take a while! Tune in next week!