2012 College Football Week 5 Predictions: Michigan State, Ole Miss, Tennessee, Indiana and More

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Last Week: 3-5
Season: 14-14-1

Texas Tech (-1) over Iowa State **

Michigan State (-2.5) over Ohio State **

Ole Miss (+31) over Alabama **

Tennessee (+14 -120) over Georgia **

Iowa/Minnesota (under 46.5) **  (bought out of Iowa -7 & just playing total)

Indiana (+11) over Northwestern **

Texas Tech (-1) over Iowa State **

We don’t know much about TT based on their only competetion being FCS and AQ teams. But they are a team I had tabbed preseason to show a good sized improvement this season based on returning starters, and the fact that they not only lost a ton of players to injuries last season, they were season ending injuries that required operations. So many players are back this year including the very important experienced depth.

Keep in mind that TT was going along fine last season at 5-2 before the injury bug hit this team hard on defense at just around the time of the OU game. And they quickly went downhill from there and lost their last 5 games and failed to make a bowl for the first time in something like two decades. But this season should be much different as long as they don’t get hit by the injury bug again. Seth Doedge is the most underrated QB in the Big 12. And he’ll have a group of veteran WR’s to throw to. And RB’s Stephens and Williams make an excellent one-two punch. Both went over 100 yards rushing on New Mexico last week. So this team isn’t all about passing like TT was in the Leach era.

They can hurt you in many ways. They didn’t have this last season after RB Stepehens went down with a knee injury. But so far to my eyes, it looks like a much different Tech team this year. A team still flying under the radar in my opinion. I think they’ll take care of business against an ISU team that so far isn’t up to standards with their offense this year. And they’ll need it to keep up with TT in this game.

Michigan State (-2.5) over Ohio State **

I think public perception is keeping this line down. Despite their loss to Notre Dame, i still think MSU is the class of the Big 10. So far all we have seen from OSU is a couple closer than expected games against AQ teams, and a near loss to a middle of the road Cal team. MSU has played the tougher primetime games against the better teams. In fact I think the ND team who beat MSU would easily win the Big 10 this year. MSU found themselves in a letdown/sandwich spot last week against Eastern Michigan. I expect a much sharper game out of Sparty this week. They should easily be able to cover this short of a line.

Ole Miss (+31) over Alabama **

Although I think Bama may be the best team we have out there right now, I’m not quite 100% sold on them until they start getting into the meat of their SEC schedule. Their defense hasn’t really been in a fair test yet. They had all summer to gameplan for a sort of one-dimensional Michigan offense. And their other 3 opponents have consisted of 2 Sunbelt teams and a hot mess Arkansas team who has a senile/crazy old coach and was playing without their star QB. Although we all know that unless a miracle happens Ole Miss won’t win on Saturday, I do respect the sound coaching on this team. And if there is anybody who can gameplan for an opponet on offense, it’s Hugh Freeze. Ole Miss gained 400 yards and 5 ypc on a pretty good Texas defense. 

I think they can at least have some minor success against a young Bama defense. Enough to where I believe they have a decent chance to stay within the number. This will be Bama’s 5th straight game. I think they’ll just be looking to put Ole Miss away as quickly as possible so they can get to their bye week. My gamble here is I believe Ole Miss can score 14+ points in this game, and keep it within the number in a 42-17 type of game. I think Bama has gotten to the point that LSU has gotten to this year with the Vegas oddsmakers. Their lines are getting  a little bit more outrageous with every win. For instance this is the biggest point spread over another SEC team in Saban’s 5 years at Bama. And Ole Miss isn’t even the worst team in the SEC. Give me the Rebels.

Tennessee (+14) over Georgia **

Georgia played pretty close to a perfect game last week against Vandy. I don’t know if this is a sign of things to come, or more of an abberation and win over probably the second weakest team in the SEC. No matter how you look at it, this has to be a lookahead spot for Georgia. Or at least they’ve got to be taking a peak at what is ahead next week when they go to South Carolina in a revenge game, and what could be for all of the marbles in their division.. But first things first. We know the Vols aren’t as strong as the first 3 teams in this divison, but they are still a more talented and dangerous team than Vandy was. And if you don’t bring your A game against them you can run into some big problems.. I think the Vols sleepwalking win over Akron last week was just a lookahead game. Tennessee knows that if they go down 0-2, their divisional win chances are gone.

That’s why I look for them to put up a pretty good fight. So far Georgia has shown they are the weakest of the run defenses between the Big 3 in that division (130 ypg). If the Vols can have just a little more success against Georgia than they had against Florida in trying to run the ball, it might just open the game up for Bray to trade completions with Murray. I also still feel like we’re getting a little line value with Tennessee. Just two weeks ago they were -3 point faves over Florida. And now they are +14 dogs to Georgia. Is Georgia 17 points better than Florida? Maybe, but I seriously doubt it. With a Vols team that averages 500 ypg on offense, I give them a punchers chance here to stay within the number.

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