Credit: © Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Credit: © Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Marc My Words: Week 5 Picks

A Blog by Marc Ryan

Offsides with Marc Ryan
September 27, 2019 - 10:52 am

1.     Virginia @ Notre Dame

The Line: -12.5

Men don’t like to admit when they’re wrong, so this is tough, but here goes. Notre Dame showed me something last week. I thought they’d get throttled 34-10. The Fighting Irish held up on both lines of scrimmage. A week ago, I may have had the golden domers losing this week as well, but the more data you have, the lower the margin of error. And the error isn’t going to be on my end.

I’m not so sure Virginia passes the same truth serum test. They scuffled around against a highly mediocre Florida State team, and probably should have lost that game. They trailed late against Old Dominion. ‘Nuff Said.

The Prediction: Notre Dame 31, 13.


2.     Kentucky @ South Carolina

The Line: SC -3

I need to make this abundantly clear. I want South Carolina to win this game. I really do. On the show, the Gamecocks are more interesting than Clemson. They just are. The Columbia story is Jerry Springer, and the Clemson story is 40 point blowouts against the All Cupcakes Conference.

I’m just not sure Will Muschamp is being heard. I’m not sure his message is resonating. And I’m not sure Ray Tanner should continue tying himself to the head coach every chance he gets.

Mark Stoops says South Carolina “Is the best 1-3 team in the country.” What a diss. The difference here is one coach’s message is being heard, and the fact that the Wildcats are without their star quarterback, Terry Wilson, won’t matter.

The prediction: UK, 28-26


3.     Clemson @ UNC

The Line: Clemson -26.

Sam Howell and Mack Brown started the season in a blaze of glory. Wins over South Carolina and Miami opened eyes around the nation. Then, reality set in. The Gamecocks are 2-0 against America, 0-2 vs. North Carolina.

Clemson is an NFL team playing college football. No, seriously. They are. They’d be only a 19 point underdog to Miami. As in, the Dolphins. They’re four touchdowns better than every All Cupcakes Conference team. On the road.

They’re amazing, and Clemson fans should enjoy this with every fiber of their being. Wouldn’t it be nice to see them challenged just once, though?

The Prediction: Clemson, 38-10


4.     USC @ Washington

The Line: Washington -10.5

I have no explanation as to how Washington lost at home to Cal in Week 2. The game was delayed by weather for several hours, it ended at 2am pacific time, and the Bears won, 20-19. The only explanation: it was one of those weird, Pac-12 after dark games, where anything goes.

Gun to my head, the Huskies are the best team in the Pac-12.

And USC keeps beating ranked teams with second and third string quarterbacks.

Spinning a roulette wheel would give you a more accurate barometer of this one.

The Prediction: Washington, 38-17


5.     Mississippi State @ Auburn

The Line: Auburn -10.5

Death, taxes, and letdowns after big games. This is a trap tilt for the Tigers, winners of two big-time matchups, and rightful owners of the best resume in college football with wins over Oregon on a neutral field and on the road against the 12th man.

You see great teams fall to good teams in matchups like this each year, and Auburn has a trip to Gainesville next weekend.

Mississippi State flexed its muscles last week against a beaten up Wildcats team starting its backup quarterback. The Bulldogs showed they’re clearly ahead of the mediocre middle of the SEC.

Still, the Tigers are going to survive here, right? Right?

The Prediction: Auburn 20-17

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