Day Time Free College Football Picks (10/23/10)

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Matchup: Notre Dame Fighting Irish @ Navy Midshipmen
Date: Saturday, October 23rd, 12:00 ET
Location: New Meadowlands Stadium, East Rutherford, NJ
Game Line: Notre Dame -6.5
Over/Under 49.5

The Middies are still struggling, though they're finding ways to scratch wins together of late. The Irish, on the other hand, have been dominating games lately, going 1-0-2 ATS and 3-0 SU in their L/3. QB Dayne Crist hasn't missed a beat without TE Kyle Rudolph in the lineup, and the offense blew up last week for 44 points in spite of the fact that WR Theo Riddick was largely missing in action. WR Michael Floyd is going to be the most dangerous weapon on the field for the Middies to try to defend. This is a game that is historically owned by the Fighting Irish, though Navy has taken the L/2 meetings in South Bend. You have to go back five decades to find the last victory that didn't occur in front of the watchful eyes of Touchdown Jesus, though. This will be a legitimate neutral site game, which probably favors the Fighting Irish just a tad. Go with the Golden Domers to take care of this one on the "road," as it appears as though HC Brian Kelly finally has enough going to get a real winning streak in the works.

Free College Football Picks: Notre Dame -6.5
Prediction: Notre Dame 27 – Navy 19

Matchup: Syracuse Orange @ West Virginia Mountaineers
Date: Saturday, October 23rd, 12:00 ET
Location: Mountaineer Field, Morgantown, WV
Game Line: West Virginia -13.5
Over/Under 43.5

Don't let the 4-2 mark beside the name "Syracuse" fool you. Instead, remember that this program is still just that… "Syracuse." The Orange probably aren't going bowling this year, though in the pathetic Big East, you never really know what's going to happen from Saturday to Saturday. However, one thing that we do know is that West Virginia is the only team in this conference that would stand a chance of even remotely competing in the other divisions in college football. WVU is clearly head and shoulders the better team here, and QB Geno Smith and one of the best defenses in the country is probably going to prove it. The 'Neers are 7-2 ATS in their L/9 against the Orange, and in spite of the fact that those two duds came in the L/2 meetings in Morgantown, we aren't afraid of just a two score NCAA football spread.

Free College Football Picks: West Virginia -13.5
Prediction: West Virginia 31 – Syracuse 10

Matchup: Purdue Boilermakers @ Ohio State Buckeyes
Date: Saturday, October 23rd, 12:00 ET
Location: Ohio Stadium, Columbus, OH
Game Line: Ohio State -24
Over/Under 47.5

The Buckeyes have quite a lot to be angry about in this game. They lost last week to the Wisconsin Badgers in a game in which they were totally dominated until about halftime when they decided to finally wake up and play some football. HC Jim Tressel can also point to the fact that this is one of the last Big Ten teams standing without a conference loss. Oh yes, this was also the same Purdue team that spoiled any hopes of OSU winning the National Championship last year… You think this one is going to be ugly? The Boilers have just had the Buckeyes' numbers in recent years, as they have pulled some upsets and done a lot of good work against the college football odds as well. However, this one just won't be the same. Without QB Robert Marve and RB Ralph Bolden in the fold, Purdue is just dead in the water. There's no semblance of an offense that can do any sort of damage against this potent 'D' that has to still be angry about the huge number that Wisky dropped on the board last weekend in Camp Randall. In the end, too much QB Terrelle Pryor, too much OSU defense, and not nearly enough Purdue offense. This should be a laugher.

Free College Football Picks: Ohio State -24
Prediction: Ohio State 41 – Purdue 6

Matchup: Michigan State Spartans @ Northwestern Wildcats
Date: Saturday, October 23rd, 12:00 ET
Location: Ryan Field, Evanston, IN
Game Line: Michigan State -6
Over/Under 53

Northwestern was upset by the Purdue Boilermakers last week at home in what clearly amounted to be the worst game of the season. The Cats were scratched in a big way, but they are clearly rabid right now. Remember that this was the same team that ended the perfect campaign of the Iowa Hawkeyes last season. Michigan State needs to watch out and watch out in a big time way. The rush defense for the Wildcats is going to be tested by RBs Edwin Baker and Le'Veon Bell. We're not so sure that QB Dan Persa really has what it takes to beat this team, but this is a passing attack that ranks No. 20 in the nation against one of the country's worst secondaries. At some point, Sparty is going to get picked off, and it might get picked off a few times. This could just be the beginning of the end.

Free College Football Picks: Northwestern +6
Prediction: Northwestern 26 – Michigan State 24

Matchup: Mississippi Rebels @ Arkansas Razorbacks
Date: Saturday, October 23rd, 12:20 ET
Location: Razorback Stadium, Fayetteville, AR
Game Line: Arkansas -9.5
Over/Under 58

Last week, we warned that this Ole Miss team was good enough to pull some big time upsets, even in the SEC West this year, and we at least got a close game against the Alabama Crimson Tide to show for it. QB Jeremiah Masoli has all the talent in the world, and if the defense for the Rebs can start to show up like it has in recent weeks, this could be a very interesting ball game. Who knows how much QB Ryan Mallett is going to be affected by that concussion he suffered last weekend? One thing we do know is that the running quarterback, QB Cameron Newton, absolutely destroyed this defense for the Hogs. Masoli is built in the exact same mold, and he just had to be loving watching that game tape this week. Arkansas can be had. This is a team that might just be poised to fall flat. If the Rebs want to go bowling this year, this is the type of game that they are going to have to win at some point. There's no better time that the present to pick of a wounded Arkansas team that has played in three straight very tight ball games against good teams and could really use a breather. They're not getting one.

Free College Football Picks: Ole Miss +9.5
Prediction: Mississippi 41 – Arkansas 31

Matchup: Wisconsin Badgers @ Iowa Hawkeyes
Date: Saturday, October 23rd, 3:30 ET
Location: Kinnick Stadium, Iowa City, IA
Game Line: Iowa -6
Over/Under 48

If you look up the definition of an awful scheduling spot, you're going to see Bucky the Badger's face plastered right there in the dictionary. Wisconsin is just in so much trouble in this game, it's not even funny. This team is clearly high on life after beating the Ohio State Buckeyes last week at home. Fantastic. Now, the test is certainly more difficult. The Hawkeyes might not only be just as good, if not better than the Buckeyes, but they are also going to be playing at home as well. Iowa has absolutely owned the Badgers in recent years, and we don't expect that to change any. HC Kirk Ferentz really used last year's win at Camp Randall as the boosting point for the fantastic season that ended with an Orange Bowl victory. This could be the start of a National Championship run if the Hawkeyes get some lucky bounces from other teams along the way. There's too much on the line for Iowa to get beaten at home. This game will look a lot like the game against the hapless Penn State Nittany Lions for Iowa.

Free College Football Picks: Iowa -6
Prediction: Iowa 30 – Wisconsin 10

Matchup: Kansas State Wildcats @ Baylor Bears
Date: Saturday, October 23rd, 3:30 ET
Location: Floyd Casey Stadium, Waco, TX
Game Line: Baylor -6.5
Over/Under 56.5

Would you even imagine that Baylor would be favored over Kansas State by basically a full touchdown in a game? All of a sudden the Bears, the program that became the whipping boy for so many other teams in the Big XII over the years, have figured out how to make the most out of their QB Robert Griffin. This offense is absolutely tearing through teams this season. K-State is a very one dimensional team, as it is RB Daniel Thomas or bust. If that doesn't work, its defense is going to be in a ton of trouble. You'd better believe that this game is the equivalent of the Super Bowl in Waco, as a win for the Bears would ensure a bowl game for the first time in eons. Remember, this team has won games this year 34-3, 34-6, and 55-7 at home and hasn't played any other games there… Yet, it is still 5-2 on the season. You'd better believe that the crowd will be out in full force. The Wildcats won't know what hit them in this one, as this could be on the more entertaining displays to watch on Saturday.

Free College Football Picks: Baylor -6.5
Prediction: Baylor 34 – Kansas State 17

Matchup: Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets @ Clemson Tigers
Date: Saturday, October 23rd, 3:30 ET
Location: Clemson Memorial Stadium, Clemson, SC
Game Line: Clemson -5.5
Over/Under 52

Death Valley is a horrifying place for opponents to go into, as it is one of the loudest venues in the nation. However, we still just aren't so sold on QB Kyle Parker and the men in orange. Georgia Tech hasn't really had much in the way of success defensively this season, but that doesn't mean that it can't muster up just a tad in this one. QB Josh Nesbitt's triple option attack absolutely blew up this Clemson defense last year twice, and if Nesbitt can get out in some open space, he can really hush the crowd in Death Valley once, and potentially for all. The Ramblin' Wreck have something to prove with the ACC Coastal Division title once again within reach. Winning out will take care of that. For Clemson, the only goal is a bowl game. The wrong team is favored in this one.

Free College Football Picks: Georgia Tech +5.5
Prediction: Georgia Tech 28 – Clemson 20

Matchup: LSU Tigers @ Auburn Tigers
Date: Saturday, October 23rd, 3:30 ET
Location: Jordan Hare Stadium, Auburn, AL
Game Line: Auburn -5.5
Over/Under 51.5

We've already discussed this game just a tad, and we are going dig just a bit deeper right now. The Bayou Bengals have all of the tools that it takes to stop this Auburn offense, so the only question in our mind on this side of the ball is whether the combined rushing force of RB Michael Dyer, RB Onterio McCalebb, and QB Cam Newton is going to be able to do enough to penetrate this defense. So far, no one has really been tremendously successful. If you take away one bad quarter, the LSU defense has looked phenomenal, even on the road against the Florida Gators. Last week, know that Auburn's secondary got exposed by a backup quarterback, and if that's the case, perhaps the combination of QB Jarret Lee and QB Jordon Jefferson actually has a chance of making some headway. We'll say this… If the LSU offense can get anywhere near the 30 point barrier, this game is as good as over. HC Les Miles and his team know what it takes to win big games like this one. HC Gene Chizik and his Tigers aren't anywhere near that level yet. One of these teams is a legitimate contender for the National Championship. The other one, we believe to be fool's gold.

Free College Football Picks: LSU +5.5
Prediction: LSU 27 – Auburn 21

Matchup: Nebraska Cornhuskers @ Oklahoma State Cowboys
Date: Saturday, October 23rd, 3:30 ET
Location: Boone Pickens Stadium, Stillwater, OK
Game Line: Nebraska -6
Over/Under 60

If the Pokes find a way to really start torching the Nebraska defense, this could be one heck of a rodeo in Stillwater. Nebraska has the offensive weapons to get through a defense that really hasn't had much success stopping anyone this year. You can bet that QB Taylor Martinez is going to want to make amends for failing last week against the Texas Longhorns. This is also a very, very dangerous game for the Huskers because a second loss in Big XII play parlayed with a win by the Missouri Tigers over the Oklahoma Sooners later that night takes the Big XII North race out of their hands. They'll need the 'Zou to come back to the pack to be able to head back to the Big XII Championship for another go around. The matchup to watch is the hookup of QB Brandon Weeden to WR Justin Blackmon against the Nebraska defense. Blackmon might be the best receiver in college football, and he certainly has the stats that back that claim up. If he gets going, watch out! This should be a great one, but we tend to think that there's too much defense for Big Red to get beaten here even though Stillwater is one hellacious place to go place college football.

Free College Football Picks: Oklahoma State +6
Prediction: Nebraska 34 – Oklahoma State 31

Lou Palumbo is the founder and part owner of the Sports Handicapping Community. He's been writing and posting free picks and sports handicapping strategies on the Cappersinfo forums and website for 15 years now. He enjoys handicapping just as much as he did from the very first day he built the original Cappersinfo website.

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