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Staff Picks - College Football Week 3!

Join in and let us know your predictions as well!

Kent State v Arizona State Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Unlike Week 1 (with Auburn-Oregon), and Week 2 (LSU-Texas, Clemson-Texas A&M), Week 3 doesn’t have any big marquee games. College Gameday is going to El Assico for crying out loud. That doesn’t mean we take a week off, though! Here are some of the other matchups on a rather bleak slate...


UCF (-7) vs Stanford (O/U 58.5)

Stanford travels across the county to take on UCF. Stanford doesn’t look the same without their starting quarterback, and it’ll show. The UCF chants will continue to grow louder. UCF 31, Stanford 7 - Josh Dub

Did not see Stanford getting walloped by USC coming at all... Now they take on the 2017 national champs & you have to think the Golden Knights are pissed the Cardinal aren’t ranked anymore. Stanford is down their starting QB & both starting tackles. I think this one is all UCF. UCF 38 Stanford 17 - AU Nerd

My 2017 national champs are going to beat the Cardinal fairly soundly. Knights 35, tree 20 - Son of Crow

I’d love to pick the nerds in this one, but UCF takes a P5 win and we have to hear about them for a while longer. UCF 34 Stanford 27 - Josh Black

Lifelong Stanford fan here. It would be quite satisfying to see the Cardinal go into Orlando and stop this nonsense from UCF. Stanford gets KJ Costello back at QB this week after missing the USC game. Still, the Knights always seem to find a way to win and I’m afraid they’ll do the same this week. UCF 38 Stanford 34 - Will McLaughlin

KJ Costello has been cleared, so I thought that would help keep things close, but Stanford is also missing both of their tackles. That could be a problem against an athletic DL While I’m not impressed by Stanford’s defense, I think they slow this one down enough to hit the under. SP+ likes UCF by as much as 16, and this line has already moved up to UCF -8.5. I don’t love following the money, but I’ll take the extra 1.5 points. Central Florida 31, Stanford 19 (UNDER, UCF Wins and covers) - James Jones

Admittedly, I haven’t watched a whole lot of the Cardinal and I only saw one series of the UCF-FAMU game to start the season. That said, I know defense has started to not be a thing Stanford believes in and that plays directly into the Knights hands. I do think Stanford still has enough to go with the under but they don’t have the offense to stay close. 28-17 UCF - Drew Mac

If that USC team with a freshman backup quarterback can boat race Stanford, UCF should be able to do the same. I’m not familiar enough with either roster this year, but UCF is a sizable favorite in most projections. With the Knights being at home, give me UCF 34-21. - Ryan Sterritt

This is a weird match-up. Stanford in Orlando? What is this world coming to? That’s a long trip for the Cardinal to travel to play a non P5 school. Maybe that affects them a little. 2017-18 National Champions 24-10 - AU Chief

For some reason it always like Stanford is wearing over-large shoulder pads to me and it makes me not like them. That and their triple tight end offense and the fact that their win over Oregon in 2012 was one of the key cogs that put Bama into the title game that year. I hope UCF beats them bad. Knights 38, Stanford 21 - Jack Condon

South Carolina vs Alabama (-25) (O/U 60)

This is the CBS game of the week? Yikes. This one will be over by the 5th Alabama offensive play. South Carolina’s back-up quarterback, Ryan Hilinski, won’t have any success against this defense. Alabama 49, South Carolina 10 - Josh Dub

Remember when folks thought South Carolina would be a threat in the east last year? Welp... New freshman QB Ryan Hillinski looked good against Charleston Southern but I suspect he looks terrible this week. Gary will have all afternoon to fawn over Tua. Alabama 56 South Carolina 10 - AU Nerd

Yucky. As much as I want to see a replay of st. Stephen Garcia’s magnum opus, I don’t think the gamecocks have the horses to get it done this time. Plus I’ve met Steve spurrier and will muschamp is no Steve spurrier. (I haven’t met Steve spurrier) Tide 39, Scar 14 - Son of Crow

‘Member when Stephen Garcia had an out of body experience in 2010 against Alabama? I ‘MEMBER! But this Bama sleepwalking tour through the first 2 months of the season is not getting derailed in Columbia. Though someone will be very mad about winning a road conference game because he secretly hates his current state of affairs. I JUST WANT YOU TO GO FIND SOMETHING IN YOUR LIFE THAT WILL MAKE YOU HAPPY, NICK! Bama 48 South Carolina 21 - Josh Black

Let me remind you that Auburn faces Georgia and Florida from the East this year. Alabama faces South Carolina and Tennessee from the East this year. Perhaps balancing the schedules would put more butts in the seats... oh wait, this games actually in Columbia, not Tuscaloosa. Never mind, Alabama rolls, ho hum. Alabama 52 South Carolina 10 - Will McLaughlin

The Gamecocks showed plenty of life on offense last week, even if it was Charleston Southern. I don’t usually like taking a road favorite with this big of a number, but I don’t think this is close. Alabama 41, South Carolina 14 (UNDER, Alabama wins and covers)

This is the toughest play on the board. Not the Bama covering part, but the O/U. I will go that this is a Saban Special. You know, the one where he wins but makes sure he keeps it close enough so you don’t think you should fire your coach because you kept it close with them. If you are thinking, “Drew, that’s dumb. No one thinks that way.” How much time do you have to go over the history of the state of South Carolina? 42-10 UAT - Drew Mac

No Head Ball Coach. No Stephen Garcia. No chance. Plus, former assistants never beat Saban, or ever come close really. Alabama 48-13. - Ryan Sterritt

The Fighting Coach Booms don’t stand a chance here. I feel bad for any Cock fan that has to sit outside in the raging heat and fetid humidity of this 2:30 CDST kickoff to watch this blood letting. Tide 55-6 - AU Chief

Nick Saban will keep it somewhat close by barely playing his starters into the third quarter, and when the third string gives up 10 points late, he’ll go thermonuclear and strangle a reporter or something. He also won’t run up the score on Muschamp too badly, for fear that he’ll get fired and Stephen Garcia may actually come run the offense or something. Bama 48, South Carolina 17 - Jack Condon

Iowa State vs Iowa (-1.5) (O/U 45.5)

Iowa’s quarterback, Nate Stanley, has been the star of the Hawkeyes so far. That’s pretty much the extent of my knowledge here. Iowa 21, Iowa State 14 - Josh Dub

This is actually a fascinating matchup. Iowa has come out strong to start 2019. Iowa State had a lot of preseason buzz then struggled to get by Northern Iowa. All the rankings that use fancy math like the Hawkeyes. Gotta trust math. Iowa 24 Iowa State 13 - AU Nerd

Ohhhhh the greatest tradition of all.....el assico. Iowa state might not be that good...even though they are ranked 26. Iowa? Who knows. This game is always weird and bad and I’m not gonna lie, I probably won’t be watching it. Cy wins 21-14 - Son of Crow

¡EL ASSICO! La batalla de los productores de maíz será una para las edades. Dos equipos que luchan por la supremacía para finalmente demostrar de una vez por todas quién es el mejor maíz. ¿El ganador? Iowa 23 Iowa State 14 - Josh Black

I’ll go out on a limb here since most folks are picking Iowa and take Iowa State. I know the opener against Northern Iowa was UGLY for the Cyclones but at home, they’ll be much more prepared for this one. Iowa State 20 Iowa 17 - Will McLaughlin

EL ASSICOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! We’re robbed of this one being our only ranked game of the weekend by one spot (ISU is “26th”). I think this one will be the best game of the day. Give me the home dog and the over in an Instant Classic. Iowa State 34, Iowa 31 (OVER, ISU wins and covers)

EL ASSICOOOOO!! One of my favorite games for absolutely no reason! If I had to be a B14 fan, I think I would be an Iowa fan, so of course the Hawkeyes win! No reason, but yeah. I think this will happen. 17-14 Iowa - Drew Mac

This game is always dumb and unpredictable, which is the best kind of college football there is. I’m going to be rooting for our farm bros in Ames, but Iowa usually steals this game. Iowa QB Nathan Stanley has been pretty solid through two games, and I’m not sure I trust the Cyclone defense to slow him down. Iowa 27-17. - Ryan Sterritt

I guess this is interesting since it’s the two Iowa teams. I guess. BigXII vs B1G. And not one of the rare fun teams from either conference. Hawkeyes 28-27 - AU Chief

Iowa’s gonna win this and end up being a random team in the top five late at like 11-1 somehow, even though everyone knows they’ll have no chance to get into the playoff. I guess the Hawkeyes win, 23-21 - Jack Condon

Michigan State (-13) vs Arizona State (O/U 44.5)

Herm Edwards! Arizona State 30, Michigan 28 - Josh Dub

This is Michigan State in its purest form. Elite defense, dreadful offense. Herm Edwards has the Sun Devils off to a fast start behind true freshman QB but Sparty’s defense is a different beast. Given Michigan State’s hatred of offense they are always a team that can be upset if their defense gives up some cheap ones but I don’t think that happens here. Sparty gets it done. Michigan State 27 Arizona State 13 - AU Nerd

Jack. Gross. Devils 33-20 - Son of Crow

At the end of this I’m sure we’re all going to say what we’ve been saying for years…we should’ve considered Arizona State. Michigan State 24 Arizona State 10 - Josh Black

Sparty looks to avenge last year’s loss in Tempe. Arizona State struggled to put away Sacramento State last Friday night. Gotta feeling Sparty rolls in this one. Michigan State 34 Arizona State 17 - Will McLaughlin

Ew, really? This is the opposite of El Assico. I hope this game is on the Pac12 network so that I don’t accidentally start watching it. That’s a hilariously low total, but I’m still hammering the under. MSU 17, ASU 6 (UNDER, MSU wins, ASU covers)

Sparty’s offense has looked better for the first time in a decade so there’s that. Herm Edwards still coaches ASU so that’s another thing. I think that’s all we need here. 28-14 Victory for M-S-U - Drew Mac

Michigan State has a really good defense, and they should be able to smother the Sun Devil offense most of the night. Sparty’s offense isn’t too great, though, so I suspect this will be another super low scoring punt fest that East Lansing is so well known for. Give me Herm to win an upset, though. 19-13 Sun Devils. - Ryan Sterritt

Look, I’m a noted Arizona State uniform enthusiast. That’s the only thing that will is getting me to respond to this SECOND MATCHUP OF THE WEEK CONTAINING A B1G TEAM, COME ON JACK. I’m also a noted Herm Edwards skeptic. I’m seeing some places saying to take the over, but I just don’t see that myself. Michigan State isn’t exactly exciting on offense. Sparty 21-13 - AU Chief

Here’s the other team that’ll end up randomly being ranked in the top five late even though they’re no good. Michigan State’s not gonna lose to Herm again, are they? Not this time. Sparty 27, Sun Devils 13 - Jack Condon

BONUS: The best game Saturday to me and it’s not on here is Florida/Kentucky. Kentucky lost its starting QB for the year but Troy transfer Sawyer Smith will take over and I think he’ll be a suitable replacement. Kentucky beat Florida for the first time in my life last year in Gainesville. I think this is a close one but the Gators get the close win. Florida 27 Kentucky 24 - Will McLaughlin