Last week was one of the most exciting weeks thus far in the college football season. Some of the biggest rivals in the sport went head-to-head, and they didn’t disappoint. The Longhorns held off a Sooner comeback with a game-winning field goal, the Seminoles squandered a 14-point halftime lead to lose by 1 to the Hurricanes, and the Gators squeaked out a victory against the Tigers, needing a final drive interception to seal the win. This week has three ranked opponent matchups. However, the most intriguing matchup may not be any of the three. The University of Central Florida Golden Knights currently hold the nation’s longest win streak with 18 consecutive victories. The Knights will travel to Memphis to face their toughest test of the season. The matchup between the Knights and Tigers has the potential to be one of the most exciting offensive matchups of the season. Let’s take a look at the top picks for Week 7.
#10 UCF at Memphis – 3:30pm ET
Line: UCF -4.5
If you had to pick one game of this college football season to reach 100 combined points, this is the one. Look for touchdowns to come early and often as UCF looks to keep it’s 18-game winning streak going on the road in Memphis. The Tigers came close to defeating the Knights last season in the AAC title game, losing 62-55 in double overtime. The Tigers have an explosive offense again this season, scoring over 50 points in all four games they’ve played at home so far this season. The Tigers have an incredibly balanced offensive attack, rushing and passing for more than 250 yards per game, each. Running back Darrell Henderson has four games with over 170 rushing yards and 12tds on the season. Quarterback Brady White has thrown 15 touchdowns and only one interception. If the Tigers want to end the nation’s longest win streak, they’ll need these two to have their best games of the season. UCF is loaded with talent and speed. The Knights quarterback McKenzie Milton is among the best playmakers in the country. The Junior is a flat out game breaker, and you know he’s going to come to play. Neither team kicks many field goals. UCF and Memphis have kicked just four field goals apiece all season long. Expect a shootout in Memphis this weekend, and also expect the Knights to face their most difficult test of the season.
Prediction: UCF 49-42 Memphis
#7 Washington at #17 Oregon – 3:30pm ET
Line: Washington -3
If recent history determined results, the Huskies would come into Eugene and beat the brakes off of the Ducks. In 2016, the last time the Huskies traveled Autzen stadium, they were 10-point favorites and beat Oregon 70-21 behind a school record set by Jake Browning for passing touchdowns in a game. Fast forward two years and that brings us to this Saturday. Jake Browning still in school, traveling to Eugene to try and hand the Ducks another spanking. Except this go around, he’s going up against a Ducks squad that is being led by superstar quarterback Justin Herbert. Herbert is 6th in the nation in yards per attempt, 8th in passer rating, and 10th in touchdowns. He’s the real deal. The Oregon defense is the weak link on this roster. The Ducks have small corners who struggle against bigger wide receivers. If Washington can take advantage of their mismatches, then it will be a long day for the defense. The Huskies defense, however, is by far and away the best in the Pac-12. They play physical up front and have playmakers all over the secondary. Herbert is still looking for his signature victory as the Ducks signal-caller. The home crowd will provide a major spark and energize the entire team. If Herbert can bring his A-game, the Ducks will be in this game late and have a chance to pull off the upset.
Prediction: Washington 27-24 Oregon
#2 Georgia at #13 LSU – 3:30pm ET
Line: Georgia -7.5
The Tigers have been far better than most expected so far this season. After starting the season ranked #25, extremely low for the usual top-10 program, expectations were low for the Tigers. However, that didn’t last long. The Ohio State transfer, Joe Burrow eventually won the starting gig, and it paid major dividends. Burrow led the Tigers over a top-10 ranked Miami Hurricanes team to start the season and then went on the road to beat a top-10 Auburn team. The Tigers are fresh off of their first loss of the season last week on the road against the Gators. This is the Georgia Bulldogs first real test of the year. Jake Fromm and the Dawgs couldn’t have a more difficult environment to endure then Death Valley on their first real test of the season. Since head coach Kirby Smart has taken over the Georgia program, the Bulldogs have been among the nation’s elite. Under head coach Ed Orgeron, LSU is 6-2 against the spread at home. Giving 7 points to an elite program on the road in their home environment is never going to be an easy cover. If LSU can speed Fromm up and feed off their electric crowd, the Tigers will have a great shot to not only cover the spread but win the game. The Bulldogs will suffer their first loss of the season this weekend. You heard it here first.
Prediction: Georgia 24-27 LSU
#15 Wisconsin at #12 Michigan – 7:30pm ET
Line: Michigan -8.5
Just a short while ago the Badgers were ranked #4 in the country and had one of the preseason Heisman trophy favorite front runners on their team in running back Jonathan Taylor. A home loss to an unranked BYU Cougars team saw the Badgers national stock take a massive dip. The Badgers are 1-4 against the spread so far this season, making it hard to bet on them. But, anytime you possess an elite running back like Taylor and an ultra-talented offensive line anything is possible. There’s no better way to neutralize a frantic home crowd as the visiting team than controlling the clock and grinding out first downs. If the Badgers can run the ball successfully against this stout Michigan defense, then they will give themselves a chance. However, it won’t matter if they can’t defend. Last season, the Badgers defense was their strongest unit, ranked 3rd nationally in yards allowed. This season has been different as the Badgers rank 100th nationally as a unit. For a team that prides itself on tough defense, and pounding the ball, and relying on low scoring victories, their defense is far below par this season. If they can’t find ways to make plays and put Michigan quarterback Shea Patterson in 3rd and longs throughout the day, then they could get blown out. Both teams possess good offenses, but only one has a great defense, and that’s the Wolverines. Combine a great defense with the largest crowd in all of college football, and that’s a massive advantage for Blue. The Wolverines will blow the Badgers out at home Saturday night.
Prediction: Wisconsin 17-34 Michigan