Josh Kendall

There are few marquee matchups in abbreviated week

Miami head coach Mark Richt celebrates after their 35-21 win over Georgia Tech in an NCAA college football game at Bobby Dodd Stadium on Saturday, Oct. 1, 2016.
Miami head coach Mark Richt celebrates after their 35-21 win over Georgia Tech in an NCAA college football game at Bobby Dodd Stadium on Saturday, Oct. 1, 2016. AP

This weekend’s schedule is one game lighter than planned after LSU and Florida canceled their game. Or did they postpone it? Or, does anybody at either of those schools or the SEC know what’s going with this game in the future? There aren’t a lot of marquee matchups this weekend, but hopefully there are some wins for me at least on this list.

Maryland (minus-2.5) at Penn State

For folks of a certain age, the idea of Maryland as a Big Ten contender and Penn State as a Big Ten cellar dweller is impossible to comprehend, but we may be on the verge of that very reality. The Terps are 4-0 under former Will Muschamp defensive coordinator D.J. Durkin and are getting Under Armour money pouring in. The Nittany Lions are 3-2 and treading water.

Straight: Maryland

ATS: Maryland

Notre Dame at N.C. State (minus-2.5)

Yep, Notre Dame is an underdog against N.C. State. What has happened to the 2016 season? Neither of these teams can play much defense so it could be an entertaining game, but this is still Notre Dame, right?

Straight: Notre Dame

ATS: Notre Dame

Florida State at Miami (minus-3)

Mark Richt is back on the Hurricanes side of this rivalry. After playing at Miami, he spent many years as a Seminole assistant. Now that he’s back with the Hurricanes, he’s looking to snap a six-game Miami losing streak against a struggling Florida State team.

Straight: Miami

ATS: Florida State

Tennessee at Texas A&M (minus-7)

The Volunteers magic is going to meet its stiffest tests in the next two weeks against the Aggies and Alabama. We will know soon if this is a very good team with a short attention span or an underachieving team that’s just getting lucky.

Straight: Texas A&M

ATS: Tennessee

Auburn at Mississippi State (minus-3)

This is a matchup between the SEC’s best rushing team (Auburn) and its fourth-best rushing defense (MSU). The winner will be 2-1 in the conference and stay in the SEC West conversation.

Straight: Auburn

ATS: Auburn

Washington (minus-9) at Oregon

Did you see what the Huskies did to Stanford last week in a 44-6 win? The Cardinal doesn’t get pushed around like that very often. Washington is for real, and the Ducks are reeling.

Straight: Washington

ATS: Washington

Indiana at Ohio St. (minus-27.5)

The Hoosiers aren’t terrible. I mean, they’re not great or maybe even good, but they’re not terrible enough to fail to cover this enormous spread.

Straight: Ohio State

ATS: Indiana

Colorado at Southern Cal (minus-5.5)

The Buffaloes lead the Pac-12 South and would put themselves in great position for a division title (believe it or not) with a win over the Trojans. If Southern Cal loses, expect the Trojans administration to start leaking rumors about Clay Helton’s job security as a way of batting their eyes at Houston coach Tom Herman.

Straight: Southern Cal

ATS: Colorado

Alabama (minus-14) at Arkansas

This is a very Bret Bielema type of game. The Hogs won’t be able to beat the Tide, but their coach will get them fired up enough to cover this spread.

Straight: Alabama

ATS: Arkansas

Last week: 11-1 straight, 6-6 against the spread

Season: 39-13 straight, 22-29-1 against the spread

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