College Football Picks: Predicting Final Scores for Every Game in Week 11

Michigan State seeks its third straight win with Ohio State coming to town

The Week 11 edition of picking every game on the college football schedule is highlighted by Clemson’s trip to Boston College that will likely decide the ACC Atlantic Division title; the annual Auburn-Georgia battle; and Ohio State’s visit to Michigan State. Here is every game on the Week 11 slate:


Thursday, Nov. 8


Wake Forest at NC State

Wake Forest’s difficult 2018 season took another unfortunate turn over the weekend when the school announced that true freshman quarterback Sam Hartman would miss the final three games of the regular season with a leg injury. Jamie Newman, a sophomore, is the likely starter going forward. Prediction: NC State 44, Wake Forest 21


Friday, Nov. 9


Louisville at Syracuse

Louisville has given up a total of 40 touchdowns in its six ACC games. No team in the nation, in any conference, has allowed more TDs in league play. Prediction: Syracuse 49, Louisville 20


Fresno State at Boise State

Here’s an indication that the balance of power has shifted in the Mountain West. Fresno State is a 3-point favorite at Boise State on Friday night. Prediction: Fresno State 24, Boise State 20


Saturday, Nov. 10


Akron at Eastern Michigan

Eastern Michigan is 3–3 in the MAC with games against Akron at home and Kent State on the road. Win those two — and the Eagles will be favored in both — and EMU will have a winning record in league play for the first time since 1995. Prediction: Eastern Michigan 33, Akron 14


BYU at Massachusetts

It slipped under the radar — for good reason — but UMass rolled up 777 total yards in a 62­–59 win over Liberty on Saturday. It was the second time the Minutemen have topped 60 points this season. BYU should offer a bit more resistance. Prediction: BYU 23, UMass 20


Illinois at Nebraska

Illinois has accumulated a total of 1,139 yards and 88 points the last two weeks — a 30-point loss at Maryland and a 24-point win over Minnesota. The previous two weeks, the Illini had totals of 550 yards and 27 points — in losses to Purdue and Wisconsin. Prediction: Nebraska 44, Illinois 27


Kansas at Kansas State

Things are not going well for either program in 2018. Both Kansas and Kansas State are 1–5 in the Big 12 after each suffered a loss on Saturday. Kansas announced on Sunday that the David Beatty era will end after the 2018 season. It wouldn’t be a surprise if this was also Bill Snyder’s final season at K-State. Prediction: Kansas State 27, Kansas 17


Lafayette at Army

Army has already secured the Commander-in-Chief’s Trophy for the second straight year. The next goal for Todd Monken’s club: A second straight 10-win season. The Black Knights are 7–2 with three regular-season games remaining. Prediction: Army 41, Lafayette 10


Maryland at Indiana

It was a tumultuous week for the Maryland football team, and the Terps capped it off with an underwhelming performance in a 24–3 loss to Michigan State. Can they regroup and play well at Indiana? Prediction: Indiana 24, Maryland 14


Ole Miss at Texas A&M

Both teams lost double-digit leads in the fourth quarter en route to SEC losses on Saturday — Ole Miss at home to South Carolina and Texas A&M at Auburn. Prediction: Texas A&M 37, Ole Miss 24


Navy at UCF

This was supposed to be one of UCF’s biggest tests of the season. Not anymore. Navy is 2–7 after losing 42–0 at Cincinnati on Saturday and has now lost 10 straight road games. Prediction: UCF 41, Navy 10


Ohio State at Michigan State

Michigan State has had its issues this year — especially on offense — but the Spartans are somehow 4–2 in the Big Ten and poised to record a winning record in league play for the fifth time in the past six seasons. Prediction: Michigan State 24, Ohio State 21


South Carolina at Florida

It was a humbling weekend for the Gators, who are in the midst of the first two-game losing streak of the Dan Mullen era after Missouri’s surprisingly easy 38–17 win in Gainesville. South Carolina has won three of its last four, each by four points or fewer, to ensure at least a .500 finish in league play. Prediction: Florida 24, South Carolina 21


SMU at Connecticut

SMU played its way into the AAC West race with an impressive 45–31 win over Houston. UConn is arguably the worst team in the country. Prediction: SMU 34, UConn 10


TCU at West Virginia

TCU snapped its three-game slide with an underwhelming 14–13 win at home over Kansas State. West Virginia is riding high after its thrilling 42–41 victory at Texas. The Mountaineers should take care of business. Prediction: West Virginia 33, TCU 21


Tulsa at Memphis

Tulsa picked up its first win over an FBS opponent this season, rolling past hapless UConn 49–19. The Golden Hurricane might not win another one this season, with road trips to Memphis and Navy and a home date with surging SMU. Prediction: Memphis 38, Tulsa 28


Vanderbilt at Missouri

Missouri broke through with its first SEC win of the season, a surprisingly easy 38–17 victory at Florida. The Tigers have outscored the Gators 83–34 the past two seasons. Vanderbilt has not played since beating Arkansas 45–31 in Fayetteville on Oct. 27. Prediction: Missouri 30, Vanderbilt 21


Wisconsin at Penn State

Penn State lost at Michigan 42–7 on Saturday afternoon, its first loss by more than four points since its last trip to Ann Arbor (a 49–10 defeat). Wisconsin is 6–3 but has only one win against a team with a winning record, Iowa. Prediction: Penn State 24, Wisconsin 17


North Carolina at Duke

These two rivals play their annual game just four days after the start of the college basketball season. Prediction: Duke 27, North Carolina 20


Troy at Georgia Southern

Georgia Southern saw its five-game winning streak snapped with a surprising 44–25 loss at ULM, but the Eagles still control their own destiny in the Sun Belt East race. That won’t, however, be the case after this weekend. Prediction: Troy 33, Georgia Southern 30


UCLA at Arizona State

Arizona State has climbed into contention in the wild Pac-12 South on the strength of consecutive wins over USC and Utah. Herm! Prediction: Arizona State 33, UCLA 24


Charlotte at Marshall

Charlotte held Tennessee to one offensive touchdown and fewer than 200 yards of offense. The 49ers’ defense is legitimate. Prediction: Marshall 20, Charlotte 10


Bowling Green at Central Michigan

There are two teams in the MAC without a win in league play. Those two teams will meet this week in Mount Pleasant, Mich. Prediction: Central Michigan 28, Bowling Green 24


Liberty at Virginia

Liberty scored 59 points last weekend … and lost to UMass. Virginia needs to get back on track after its damaging loss at home to Pittsburgh on Friday night. Prediction: Virginia 38, Liberty 20


Middle Tennessee at UTEP

UTEP won at Rice 34–26, becoming the final team to break into the win column in 2018. Can the Miners make it two in a row? Not likely. Prediction: Middle Tennessee 34, UTEP 23


Baylor at Iowa State

Matt Rhule has done a nice job in Year 2 at Baylor. The Bears rebounded from a horrific 58–14 loss at West Virginia by beating Oklahoma State in Waco on Saturday to improve to 3–3 in the Big 12. Not bad for a team that went 1–8 in the league in 2017. Prediction: Iowa State 34, Baylor 17


Michigan at Rutgers

Michigan will making its third trip to Rutgers. The first didn’t go very well. Rutgers won 26–24 in 2014. The second did. Michigan won 78–0 in 2016. This one will look more like the ’16 game. Prediction: Michigan 41, Rutgers 0


Mississippi State at Alabama

The SEC’s best defense (Mississippi State has allowed nine TDs in nine games!) faces the nation’s top offense. In this case, good hitting will beat good pitching. Prediction: Alabama 34, Mississippi State 10


New Mexico at Air Force

These two teams are tied for last place in the Mountain West Mountain Division. New Mexico will have that dubious distinction all to itself after this weekend. Prediction: Air Force 34, New Mexico 13


North Texas at Old Dominion

The first-ever 10-win season is in reach for North Texas, which is 7–2 overall with four games (three regular season, one bowl) remaining. Prediction: North Texas 34, Old Dominion 20


Northwestern at Iowa

Northwestern is in complete control in the Big Ten West. Even if the Wildcats lose on Saturday in Iowa City — a strong possibility — they will still head to the league title game with wins over Minnesota and Illinois. Prediction: Iowa 24, Northwestern 17


Oklahoma State at Oklahoma

It’s the least-hyped Bedlam game in years. That’s what happens when one of the teams is 5–4 overall and 2–4 in the Big 12. Prediction: Oklahoma 44, Oklahoma State 24


Purdue at Minnesota

Minnesota gave up four scoring plays of at least 67 yards in a 55–31 loss at Illinois. In a related note, defensive coordinator Robb Smith was fired on Sunday. Prediction: Purdue 33, Minnesota 21


Kentucky at Tennessee

Kentucky is searching for its first win in Knoxville since 1984. The boys in Vegas believe this is the year — the Cats are favored by 3.5 points. Prediction: Kentucky 20, Tennessee 10


Virginia Tech at Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh controls its destiny in the ACC Coastal after Friday night’s win at Virginia — but it won’t be easy. The Panthers host Virginia Tech this week before closing out the season at Wake Forest and at Miami. Prediction: Pittsburgh 24, Virginia Tech 20


Washington State at Colorado

Things aren’t going great in Boulder. The Buffaloes have followed up a season-opening five-game winning streak with a four-game slide and still need one more win to become bowl-eligible. Washington State needs to keep winning — and look good doing so — to remain on the fringes of the Playoff discussion. Prediction: Washington State 31, Colorado 27


Appalachian State at Texas State

Texas State has won two straight games for the first time since 2014, when Dennis Franchione was roaming the sidelines for the Bobcats. The streak will not reach three games. Prediction: Appalachian State 30, Texas State 20


East Carolina at Tulane

Tulane was one of the big winners on Saturday. Not only did the Green Wave win at South Florida (and did so in fine fashion, 41–15), but Houston’s loss to SMU keeps Tulane alive in the race for the AAC West title. Prediction: Tulane 34, East Carolina 27


San Jose State at Utah State

Utah State continues to win — and win big. The Aggies’ 56–17 victory at Hawaii was their sixth win of at least 25 points. It should happen again this week. Prediction: Utah State 51, San Jose State 17


Arkansas State at Coastal Carolina

Arkansas State has scored at least 38 points in each of its last three games after scoring no more than 29 in its first five against FBS opponents. Coastal Carolina has the distinction of playing some of the quickest games in the country. The Chants have played four games at three hours or under and two others at 3:10 or under. Prediction: Arkansas State 33, Coastal Carolina 23


Georgia State at Louisiana

Georgia State is second in the Sun Belt in scoring in league games (33.2 ppg) yet is only 1–4 in conference play. That is hard to do. Prediction: Louisiana 44, Georgia State 41


ULM at South Alabama

ULM has won three straight and is alone in first place in the Sun Belt West. Matt Viator, who went 78–33 in 10 years at McNeese State, is doing a great job in Monroe. Prediction: ULM 38, South Alabama 23


Western Kentucky at FAU

After a sluggish two-game stretch in which it scored a total of 20 points, the FAU offense broke out in a big way in an impressive 49–14 win over FIU, which came into the game without a loss in league play. Western Kentucky continues to struggle. The Hilltoppers are 1–8 overall, and there are rumors that Mike Sanford could be gone after just two years in Bowling Green. Prediction: Florida Atlantic 41, Western Kentucky 17


Oregon at Utah

It was not a good weekend for Utah. Not only did the Utes lose by 18 points at Arizona State, but they also lost starting quarterback Tyler Huntley to an injury that will keep him out through at least the end of the regular season. Prediction: Oregon 27, Utah 20


Auburn at Georgia

Georgia has righted the ship after the loss at LSU with impressive wins over Florida and Kentucky. With a spot in Atlanta for the SEC Championship Game locked up, the Bulldogs now need to take care of business in the final three regular-season games to remain in the hunt for a Playoff spot. Prediction: Georgia 30, Auburn 21



FIU suffered a damaging loss at home to rival Florida Atlantic last weekend. The Panthers still control their own destiny in C-USA East, but it was a bit troubling that FAU rushed for 439 yards and scored 49 points. Prediction: FIU 28, UTSA 17


Miami (Fla.) at Georgia Tech

Miami’s offense has been a mess of late and is the primary reason the Hurricanes have lost three straight games. They have averaged 13 points during the three-game slide and don’t appear to be on the verge of solving the primary issue — quarterback play. Georgia Tech has won two straight (both on the road) on the strength of a devastating rushing attack that produced 465 yards in the win at Virginia Tech and 461 in the win at North Carolina. Prediction: Georgia Tech 27, Miami 17


Rice at Louisiana Tech

After UTEP’s win at Rice last weekend, the Owls now hold the nation’s longest losing streak — nine games. It will be stretched to 10 very soon. Prediction: Louisiana Tech 37, Rice 7


South Florida at Cincinnati

South Florida has now dropped two straight after starting the season with a 7–0 mark. There’s no shame in losing at Houston — as the Bulls did two weeks ago — but getting dominated at home by Tulane is a big concern. This team might not win another game this season. Prediction: Cincinnati 35, South Florida 21


Temple at Houston

Temple rolled up 670 yards of offense last week — and lost by 12 points. That’s what happens when the other team (UCF) has 630 yards and is a bit more efficient with its possessions. This could be another shootout. Prediction: Houston 41, Temple 37


Florida State at Notre Dame

Florida State, 4–5 overall, needs to win two of its final three games to get to 6–6 and avoid missing a bowl game for the first time since 1981. With Notre Dame, Boston College and Florida still on the slate, it’s not looking good for the Noles. Prediction: Notre Dame 31, Florida State 14


LSU at Arkansas

Ed Orgeron’s task this week: Get LSU emotionally ready for this trip to Fayetteville after last week’s disheartening loss to Alabama. Don’t be surprised if the Tigers are a bit sluggish. Be very surprised if they don’t win. Prediction: LSU 31, Arkansas 20


Texas at Texas Tech

Texas’ hopes of playing in the Big 12 title game took a hit late Saturday afternoon when West Virginia converted a two-point conversion to beat the Horns. Still, Texas is having a nice season in Year 2 of the Tom Herman era. It won’t, however, be so nice if they don’t close strong, starting with this trip to Lubbock. Prediction: Texas 33, Texas Tech 27


Southern Miss at UAB

UAB can secure a spot in the Conference USA title game with a win over Southern Miss. And there is nothing to suggest that the Blazers — who have won seven straight — won’t get the job done. Prediction: UAB 33, Southern Miss 24


Clemson at Boston College

ESPN’s College GameDay will be in town for the game that likely will decide the ACC Atlantic Division title. The big question: Can Boston College make mighty Clemson sweat? The short answer: No. Prediction: Clemson 41, Boston College 20


Oregon State at Stanford

Stanford, with losses in four of its last five games, is in the midst of its worst stretch since the tail end of the 2008 season, Jim Harbaugh’s second year on the Farm. The schedule is relatively soft down the stretch — trips to Cal and UCLA follow this visit from Oregon State — but there are no gimmes for the 2018 Cardinal. Prediction: Stanford 41, Oregon State 27


California at USC

USC’s offense broke out with a season-high 509 yards against Oregon State in the first game with Clay Helton as the play caller. Let’s see how Helton does this week against a Cal defense that allows more than 200 yards per game fewer than Oregon State. Prediction: USC 20, California 10


Colorado State at Nevada

With a strong finish, Nevada could win eight games in the regular season in Year 2 of the Jay Norvell era. The Wolf Pack are a two-touchdown favorite over Colorado State this week and will be heavily favored to beat San Jose State and UNLV as well. Prediction: Nevada 41, Colorado State 24


UNLV at San Diego State

UNLV is limping to the end of the 2018 season — and possibly the end of the Tony Sanchez era. The Rebels have lost six straight games and have allowed 41 points or more in five straight. Prediction: San Diego State 33, UNLV 14

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