Pick 6: Best bets for Week 13 of college football
Best bet: Tennessee (+4) at Missouri
The Tigers shouldn’t be more than a field goal favorite over anyone. Missouri has scored a total of 27 points over the last four games with no more than seven in any of the last three. Missouri has last four in a row and failed to cover the spread in five consecutive contests. The Volunteers might win this thing outright.
Long shot: Arizona State (+14) vs. Oregon
Arizona State freshman quarterback Jayden Daniels has been playing better as of late. He’s thrown nine touchdowns over the last four weeks, recording at least 267 passing yards in three of his previous four outings. Oregon’s defense, meanwhile, hasn’t played as well over the last four weeks outside of a 34-6 win over Arizona.
Favorite bet: USC (-13.5) vs. UCLA
USC is coming off back-to-back road wins over Cal and Arizona State to win four of its last five games. The Trojans are averaging 31.5 points and 445.7 yards per game this season. The defense continues to get more healthy as well. The Bruins won’t be able to slow down the Trojans’ offense this week, so anything less than two touchdowns is worth taking.
Over of the week: TCU at Oklahoma (65)
I was sweating the under after I recommended taking it in the Baylor-OU game. It might have hit, but I’m switching to the over in this week’s game featuring the Sooners. Oklahoma has put up at least 42 points in every home game this season. The Sooners’ defense has also allowed at least 31 points in three consecutive contests.
Under of the week: Texas at Baylor (58.5)
The under between these two teams has hit in six straight meetings. Last year’s game featured a combined 40 points. Baylor’s defense just held Oklahoma to 10 points in the first half during last week’s loss. I expect the Bears to bounce back with an even stronger showing on the defensive end.
NFL action: Cincinnati Bengals (+6.5) at Pittsburgh Steelers
The Bengals are not a good football team, but the Steelers are closer to their level than a playoff-caliber team. Mason Rudolph has struggled under center, and now he’s without JuJu Smith-Schuster. I think Pittsburgh will have a tough time scoring enough to win this game by a touchdown. Give me the points.
KU sports staff picks against the spread
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Kansas at Iowa State (-24.5)
Matt Tait: Kansas
Benton Smith: Kansas
Braden Shaw: Iowa State
Shane Jackson: Iowa State
Texas at Baylor (-5.5)
Matt Tait: Baylor
Benton Smith: Baylor
Braden Shaw: Baylor
Shane Jackson: Baylor
Penn State at Ohio State (-18)
Matt Tait: Penn State
Benton Smith: Penn State
Braden Shaw: Penn State
Shane Jackson: Penn State
Boise State (-7.5) at Utah State
Matt Tait: Utah State
Benton Smith: Utah State
Braden Shaw: Boise State
Shane Jackson: Boise State
Dallas Cowboys at New England Patriots (-6.5)
Matt Tait: Cowboys
Benton Smith: Patriots
Braden Shaw: Patriots
Shane Jackson: Cowboys
Green Bay Packers at San Francisco 49ers (-3)
Matt Tait: 49ers
Benton Smith: 49ers
Braden Shaw: Packers
Shane Jackson: 49ers
Shane Jackson: 39-32-1 (4-1-1 in Week 12)
Benton Smith: 38-33-1 (5-0-1 in Week 12)
Matt Tait: 35-36-1 (4-1-1 in Week 12)
Braden Shaw: 31-40-1 (5-0-1 in Week 12)