The only teams in the nation’s Top 25 that are safe from utter defeat in any given week are the ones that are inactive due to a bye. That statement rang true in Week 12, as multiple contenders fell to lesser opponents and others were given huge scares.
With the 2014 college football season continuing its unpredictable nature for this long, there’s no reason to expect anything to be different in Week 13. Several ranked teams are set to clash once again, and others could be set up for trap games, so get ready for another wild ride.
What do Vegas oddsmakers think of the upcoming week of action? Here’s a look at the updated Associated Press rankings, followed by odds and predictions for every Top 25 game on the Week 13 slate.
|Boston College at No. 1 Florida State||FSU -20.5||Boston College|
|Western Carolina at No. 2 Alabama||off||Alabama|
|Colorado at No. 3 Oregon||off||Oregon|
|Vanderbilt at No. 4 Mississippi State||MSU -30.5||Vanderbilt|
|Oklahoma State at No. 6 Baylor||BAY -25||Baylor|
|Indiana at No. 7 Ohio State||OSU -30||Indiana|
|No. 8 Ole Miss at Arkansas||MISS -2||Ole Miss|
|Charleston Southern at No. 9 Georgia||off||Georgia|
|Rutgers at No. 10 Michigan State||MSU -22||Michigan State|
|No. 24 USC at No. 11 UCLA||UCLA -3||USC|
|No. 12 Kansas State at West Virginia||Even||West Virginia|
|Washington State at No. 13 Arizona State||ASU -17||Arizona State|
|No. 14 Wisconsin at Iowa||WISC -8.5||Wisconsin|
|No. 15 Arizona at No. 20 Utah||Utah -3.5||Utah|
|Samford at No. 16 Auburn||off||Auburn|
|No. 18 Marshall at UAB||UM -20||Marshall|
|No. 19 Missouri at Tennessee||TENN -3||Missouri|
|Minnesota at No. 21 Nebraska||NEB -10||Minnesota|
|New Mexico at No. 22 Colorado State||CSU -21||Colorado State|
|Kansas at No. 23 Oklahoma||off||Kansas|
|North Carolina at No. 25 Duke||Duke -6||North Carolina|
Sean O’Donnell’s picks
Point spreads are courtesy of Odds Shark and current as of November 16 at 6 p.m. ET.
Week 13 Upset Alert: (15) Arizona at (20) Utah
Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images
While the Utes are favored in Vegas’ eyes due to home-field advantage, No. 15 Arizona is on upset alert.
Utah slid down the nation’s rankings after a two-game skid, falling to Arizona State in overtime and succumbing to Oregon’s potent offense one week later. The team pulled itself together in Week 12, though, riding its stout defense to an overtime victory over Stanford.
There wasn’t much to speak of offensively for the Utes, but many would say the team needs to get the speedy Christian McCaffrey involved more frequently.
David Lombardi of ESPN.com tweeted his take on the running back:
Notice all of Christian McCaffrey’s 13.8 yard per carry success has come on creative running that uses perimeter. I.e. how he should be used
— David Lombardi (@LombardiESPN) November 16, 2014
However, the team’s defense was simply phenomenal.
Pressure by Nate Orchard and Co. ensured a miserable day for Stanford quarterback Kevin Hogan, who finished the game with a 29.1 quarterback rating. Bill Riley of ESPN 700 tweeted an interesting statistic regarding Utah’s pass defense against Stanford:
— Bill Riley (@espn700bill) November 16, 2014
Arizona is a pass-heavy team, and inconsistent Anu Solomon will have his hands full.
Solomon is coming off a lackluster outing against Washington, completing 17 of his 39 passing attempts for 242 yards, zero touchdowns and two interceptions. He led the Wildcats to a victory, but that came on a last-second field goal.
Percy Allen of the Seattle Times tweeted about Solomon’s struggles under pressure:
Pressure and big hit by Washington DT Andrew Hudson on Anu Solomon led to bad pass and Sidney Jones’ INT.
— Percy Allen (@percyallen) November 15, 2014
Utah displayed its ability to sustain long drives, killing the clock and keeping its stout defense fresh against the Cardinal in Week 12. Continuing that trend against Arizona shouldn’t be much of an issue considering the Wildcats’ struggles against the run Saturday, as Washington racked up 245 yards on the ground.
So, what should be expected from this contest? The Utes will control the pace of the game, and that’s their biggest advantage. Keeping Solomon off the field for extended periods of time will prevent him from getting into a rhythm, causing him to struggle against Utah’s defense. This one will remain close throughout, and Utah’s defense will come up huge late in the game to secure a win.
Prediction: Utah 23, Arizona 20
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