Week 7 College Football Tips

South Carolina's trip to LSU could have serious implications in the SEC.

While it may be sharing the spotlight with baseball’s postseason this weekend, college football has a slate of games that offer bettors intrigue and excitement alike. Here’s a look at the rankings-busters that will be taking over you Saturday afternoon and evening.

 

#3 South Carolina @ #9 LSU

South Carolina (6-0, 4-0 SEC) had a massive win last week over Georgia – a win that sent the Bulldogs spiraling down the AP rankings. The Gamecocks will look to build on the victory with a visit to LSU (5-1, 1-1 SEC).

The Tigers have been out of form recently, a fact punctuated by last week’s loss to Florida. If LSU is to have any hope of remaining in the hunt for a spot in the National Championship game, a win is a must on Saturday (8 PM ET).

Odds: The Tigers are favorites (-3) at home, although the spread has shrunk since opening. The over/under is 42½.

Take: South Carolina – The Gamecocks have looked solid in winning four conference games, while the Tigers are out of sorts. Death Valley is no easy place to play, but LSU’s offense is not exactly scary. This will be a close one regardless, but South Carolina will edge it.

 

#17 Stanford @ #7 Notre Dame

Off to its best record since 2002, Notre Dame (5-0) has surprised a lot of people this year. Unranked heading into the season, the Fighting Irish has done nothing but climb the AP rankings.

Stanford (4-1, 2-1 Pac-12) meanwhile has had an eclectic season, struggling against ‘inferior foes’ for the most part yet somehow beating USC.

A win for Notre Dame will really cement the school’s lofty ambitions this season, while Stanford can ill afford a performance like that in Washington – the Cardinal’s only other road game this year.

Odds: Notre Dame enters the game as one touchdown favorites. The over/under is 49.

Take: Notre Dame – Nobody is willing to admit it yet but this Notre Dame side is a true contender. With one of the best defenses in football, the Irish has pretty much shut down every team it’s played so far. Add to this a Stanford side that has had its ups and downs, and looked weak on the road in Washington, and you have the recipe for a Notre Dame victory. Take the under; this defense is built for restricting points.

 

#15 Texas @ #13 Oklahoma

The Red River Rivalry showdown of 2012 may not have the stakes of previous encounters, but it’s an important matchup nonetheless. A loss could effectively eliminate each team from BCS contention.

Texas (4-1, 1-1 Big 12) has had a forgettable few years and is looking for 2012 to be a lot better. Last week’s high-scoring loss to West Virginia put a dent in the tail, but one dent isn’t insurmountable. Two might be.

Oklahoma (3-1, 1-1 Big 12) has yet to really prove they deserve to be in the discussion for championships, having beaten three ‘ordinary’ opponents and lost to Kansas State. A win at the Cotton Bowl on Saturday could prove to be the catalyst to bigger and better things.

Odds: Oklahoma is favored (-3) to win a close one. The over/under is 63.

Take: Texas – It’s going to be close, that’s for sure, and it’s highly unlikely the total will go over. But the Longhorns have that little more to prove, and behind David Ash they have the potential to do it.

 

#22 Texas A&M @ #23 Louisiana Tech

When Hurricane Isaac wiped this fixture off of Week 1’s schedule, few people battered an eyelid. Sure it was A&M’s first game since joining the SEC but it was against lowly WAC competition.

Six weeks down the line, this looks like a doozy. Texas A&M (4-1, 2-1 SEC) has had a fairly strong start to the season, while Louisiana Tech (5-0, 0-0 WAC) has been tearing up the field, scoring 50-plus in four of five games. That one sub-50 game saw the Bulldogs score 44.

With a 12-game winning streak, Louisiana Tech now has the longest current unbeaten streak in the BCS.

Odds: The Aggies will be favorites (-7½) heading into this one, with the over/under at 73.

Take: Louisiana Tech – The Bulldogs have relished in the role of (pardon the pun) underdogs this year, humiliating Illinois in Champaign and edging out Virginia on the east coast also. This team has win written all over it, and it wouldn’t be a shock to see them emulate (and better) the success Houston has last season. This should be a shootout as well.

 

AP Top 25 (Week 7 Fixtures)

#18 Louisville @ Pittsburgh

#6 Kansas State @ Iowa State

#15 Texas @ #13 Oklahoma

Syracuse @ #20 Rutgers

#1 Alabama @ Missouri

#5 West Virginia @ Texas Tech

#17 Stanford @ #7 Notre Dame

#10 Oregon State @ Brigham Young

Fresno State @ #24 Boise State

Illinois @ #25 Michigan

Boston College @ #12 Florida State

#4 Florida @ Vanderbilt

#11 USC @ Washington

Fordham @ #21 Cincinnati

#3 South Carolina @ #9 LSU

#8 Ohio State @ Indiana

Tennessee @ #19 Mississippi State

#22 Texas A&M @ #23 Louisiana Tech

#2 Oregon (Bye)

#14 Georgia (Bye)

#16 Clemson (Bye)

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