College football week 3 picks

Movie quote of the day:

“It’s where I keep all of my things. I get a lot of compliments on this. Plus it’s not a purse, it’s called a satchel. Indiana Jones wears one.”

– Alan Garner, “The Hangover” (2009)

Here are the intriguing matchups for week three:

Week two record: 9-3 (75 percent)
2016 record: 17-7 (70.8 percent)
All-time record: 127-71 (64.1 percent)

Saturday:

Louisville QB Lamar Jackson.
Louisville QB Lamar Jackson.

No. 2 Florida State (2-0) at No. 10 Louisville (2-0)
Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium
Louisville, Ky.
Line: FSU -1

Louisville’s Lamar Jackson has arguably been the most exciting player to watch so far this season. He’s accumulated 697 passing yards, 318 rushing yards, and has 13 total touchdowns. However, Jackson and the Cardinals haven’t played anyone. College GameDay is in Louisville for the first time ever, so, it’s going to be a crazy atmosphere and I think Louisville will come out ready to play. However, I think Florida State’s talent will be too much for Louisville and the Seminoles will take over in the second half.

Prediction: Florida State 34, Louisville 28

Michigan S Jabrill Peppers.
Michigan S Jabrill Peppers.

Colorado (2-0) at No. 4 Michigan (2-0)
Michigan Stadium
Ann Arbor, Mich.
Line: MICH -18.5

I’ll be honest, Colorado might be the most improved team in the country. While the Buffaloes haven’t played anyone, they’ve outscored their opponents 100-14. Michigan has been just as impressive, outscoring its opponents 114-17. If this game were in Boulder I might put the Wolverines on upset alert. However, I don’t see Colorado going into the Big House and outplaying Michigan. I think the Wolverines win comfortably.

Prediction: Michigan 35, Colorado 17

Oregon head coach Mark Helfrich.
Oregon head coach Mark Helfrich.

No. 22 Oregon (2-0) at Nebraska (2-0)
Memorial Stadium
Lincoln, Neb.
Line: NEB -3

Once again, Oregon has one of the top offenses in the country, but its defense is putrid. The Ducks currently rank No. 82 in total defense. This will be a tough road game for them. Nebraska has the better defense on paper, and I expect them to slow down Oregon’s offense. I think Tommy Armstrong will be able to put enough points on the scoreboard for the Cornhuskers to win.

Prediction: Nebraska 38, Oregon 33

Alabama QB Jalen Hurts.
Alabama QB Jalen Hurts.

No. 1 Alabama (2-0) at No. 19 Ole Miss (1-1)
Vaught-Hemingway Stadium
Oxford, Miss.
Line: BAMA -10.5

Ole Miss is the only team to beat Nick Saban and Alabama in the last two seasons. Saban hasn’t lost to the same team for three-straight years since he was the head coach at Michigan State. The Rebels have the advantage at quarterback with Chad Kelly and the crowd will be on their side. It’ll be a hostile environment for Alabama, but I don’t see Ole Miss getting the best of the Crimson Tide for a third-consecutive season.

Prediction: Alabama 31, Ole Miss 20

Pitt QB Nathan Peterman.
Pitt QB Nathan Peterman.

Pitt (2-0) at Oklahoma State (1-1)
Boone Pickens Stadium
Stillwater, Okla.
Line: OKST -4.5

How will Oklahoma State come out this week after suffering a heart-breaking loss to Central Michigan at home last week? Pitt is a better team than I thought. The Panthers have a good defense and an offense capable of chewing a lot of clock. However, I think the Cowboys are going to come out with a chip on their shoulder after getting embarrassed last week. I think the crowd in Boone Pickens Stadium will be too much for Pitt and the Cowboys get it done.

Line: Oklahoma State 35, Pitt 28

Western Michigan head coach P. J. Fleck.
Western Michigan head coach P. J. Fleck.

Western Michigan (2-0) at Illinois (1-1)
Memorial Stadium
Champaign, Ill.
Line: WMU -3

I’ve said it before that Western Michigan is a potential sleeper to get into a New Year’s Six bowl. The Broncos have a fast-pace offense that can put points on the scoreboard. Illinois probably has more talent than Western Michigan, but I don’t think the Fighting Illini have the horses on offense to keep up with Western Michigan. #MACtion all the way.

Prediction: Western Michigan 28, Illinois 24

LSU CB Tre'Davious White.
LSU CB Tre’Davious White.

Mississippi State (1-1) at No. 20 LSU (1-1)
Tiger Stadium
Baton Rouge, La.
Line: LSU -14

After the first two games, it looks like Mississippi State might struggle to make a bowl game. LSU has too much talent to lose this game. Leonard Fournette will be back for the Tigers after taking a week off due to an injury. I don’t think the Bulldogs don’t have the playmakers to go into Baton Rouge and come out with a win.

Prediction: LSU 27, Mississippi State 10

Auburn QB Sean White.
Auburn QB Sean White.

No. 17 Texas A&M (2-0) at Auburn (1-1)
Jordan-Hare Stadium
Auburn, Ala.
Line: AUB -3.5

This is a must-win game for both head coaches, so, I think both teams will be prepared. Auburn has a suspect offensive line that has given up five sacks so far this season. That unit has a tall task trying to keep Texas A&M’s Myles Garrett away from the quarterback. I really want to take the Tigers, but I’m not sure they can hang with the Aggies offensively.

Prediction: Texas A&M 26, Auburn 23

Notre Dame QB Deshone Kizer.
Notre Dame QB Deshone Kizer.

No. 12 Michigan State (1-0) at No. 18 Notre Dame (1-1)
Notre Dame Stadium
South Bend, Ind.
Line: ND -7

It’s hard to get a read on Michigan State. The Spartans lost a lot from last year’s squad. They got a comfortable win in week one, but had a bye week last week. Notre Dame has at least been challenged. I expect Deshone Kizer and Notre Dame’s offense to score enough points to win.

Prediction: Notre Dame 28, Michigan State 23

USC WR Juju Smith-Schuster.
USC WR Juju Smith-Schuster.

USC (1-1) at No. 7 Stanford (1-0)
Stanford Stadium
Stanford, Calif.
Line: STAN -8.5

I thought USC would be much better this season, but this team doesn’t look good and lacks an identity. I’m not sure the Trojans have what it takes to go on the road and beat Stanford. The Cardinal have too many weapons and I think Christian McCaffrey will be the difference maker. I think Stanford wins easily.

Prediction: Stanford 34, USC 19

UCLA head coach Jim Mora.
UCLA head coach Jim Mora.

UCLA (1-1) at BYU (1-1)
LaVell Edwards Stadium
Provo, Utah
Line: UCLA -3

BYU has a really good defense, which will help slow down Josh Rosen and UCLA’s offense. However, BYU is ranked No. 86 in total offense, and has only scored 37 points in two games. The Cougars are going to have to force some turnovers to give its offense chances to score, but I don’t see it happening. I think UCLA gets it done on the road in a low-scoring game.

Prediction: UCLA 21, BYU 15

Game of the week:

Oklahoma QB Baker Mayfield.
Oklahoma QB Baker Mayfield.

No. 3 Ohio State (2-0) at No. 14 Oklahoma (1-1)
Memorial Stadium
Norman, Okla.
Line: OSU -1

Ohio State has passed the eye test so far this season. The Buckeyes have outscored their opponents 125-13. However, Ohio State hasn’t played a team to the caliber of Oklahoma. The Sooners have their backs against the wall, and if they have College Football Playoff aspirations this is a must-win game. Oklahoma needs to win this game more than Ohio State. I like the Sooners in a close one.

Prediction: Oklahoma 31, Ohio State 28

Thanks for reading

Shane Price
Follow me on Twitter – @priceisright53

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