Stock up on Doritos and Budweiser. College football will be one heck of a ride this week, starting Thursday and finishing up late Saturday night.
Oregon and its fastbreak offense that never rests gets it rolling Thursday night at Tempe in a Pac-12 North-South crossover game - and that’s just an appetizer. Several key games will have an impact on rankings, BCS standings, league titles and the Heisman voting.
Here’s an early look at several important games, with help from Peter Korner, founder of the Las Vegas oddsmaking firm The Sports Club.
Oregon Ducks (-12) at Arizona State Sun Devils
Oregon (6-0 SU, 2-4 ATS) has beefed up its numbers with a soft non-league schedule and three soft Pac-12 pop tarts, but the fun starts in Tempe against the Sun Devils (5-1 SU, 5-1 ATS). Both teams were off this weekend.
“All of my (five-member) staff were pretty much in the same spot on this game,” Korner told Covers. “One had it at -11.5, and one had it at 13, so we settled at 12. I can imagine that we’ll see some money on Arizona State as a double-digit home underdog.”
South Carolina Gamecocks (+3) at Florida Gators
The old ball coach may have outsmarted himself with that onside kick late against LSU, possibly ceding 30 to 35 yards in field position even though the Gamecocks (7-0 SU, 6-1 ATS) had two timeouts in their pocket.
“We see this as basically two even teams,” says Korner, “with Florida getting the 3-point home edge. That’s a tough place to play.”
All eyes will be on Florida QB Jeff Driskell, who ran for 177 yards on Saturday against Vanderbilt (Tim Tebow’s best was 166).
Kansas State Wildcats (+4) at West Virginia Mountaineers
The bloom is off the rose after WVU stepped in it at Lubbock Saturday, but the Mountaineers can scramble the Big 12 race big-time with a win at home against unbeaten (and 4-1-1 ATS) Kansas State.
“This should be a fun game to watch,” says Korner.
And why not? K-State has been over 50 points three times, and WVU is scouring dormitory cafeterias for defensive players.
“We had some variance of opinion on this one, with opinion from WVU -1.5 to 6, and we settled at 4,” says Korner.
The O/U will be out Tuesday and don’t be surprised if it’s more than 70 points.
Rutgers Scarlet Knights (-4) at Temple Owls
Not much love anywhere for the Big East, but the conference now has three teams in the Top 25, and that was before Rutgers, Louisville and Cincinnati all won on Saturday. Rutgers is 4-2 ATS (6-0 SU) and is getting props after wins over Syracuse and Arkansas.
“We were all in the same ballpark on this game,” says Korner. “Low number.”