Week 11 confounded a lot of what we thought we knew about the 2016 season. In many ways, last Saturday’s turbulence sent shock waves throughout the CFB world. In other ways, clarity was provided, with the path to the Final Four looking less and less uncertain.
DK’s 2016 Week 12 CFB Game Picks
All game times in Eastern Daylight Time.
Last Week: 6-4 (.600)
2016 Season: 73-37 (.663)
“Upset” Special of the Week
Oklahoma State @ TCU (Saturday, November 19th, 12:00 p.m., FS1)
The Horned Frogs are favored in this game, which is a surprise. Yes, TCU is at home, but the Cowboys have been proving people wrong all season. They will do so again this weekend, and keep their Big XII title hopes alive.
Pick: Oklahoma State 48, TCU 41
“Be Careful Here” Game of the Week
Maryland @ Nebraska (Saturday, November 19th, 12:00 p.m., ESPNNews)
Nebraska returned to form last week, after that shellacking it endured at the hands of Ohio State the week prior. The Cornhuskers should win handily according to resume and roster, but Maryland hopes to find its way to a bowl game. Tommy Armstrong, Jr. will lead his team to a hard-earned win, and remain tied for the B1G West lead.
Pick: Nebraska 28, Maryland 24
Florida @ Louisiana State (Saturday, November 19h, 1:00 p.m., SECN)
The Gators bring an angry squad to Death Valley, in a makeup game for the rescheduled game that was supposed to happen at the Swamp earlier this season. Jim McElwain’s team can clinch the SEC East with a win, and will use its fury as motivation. Florida struggles to score, however, and LSU’s defense has been stout since Ed Orgeron took over. LSU will hold serve at home, and Tennessee will win the SEC East.
Pick: LSU 28, Florida 10
“Surprise Good Teams” Game of the Week
Washington State @ Colorado (Saturday, November 19th, 3:30 p.m., FOX)
Washington State is the last team unbeaten in Pac-12 play. In Week 11. Let that sink in for a moment. Colorado ranks as the most improved team in all of FBS, and it really isn’t close. The Buffaloes are the frontrunner to win the Pac-12 South, and have an outside chance at crashing the CFP party. This figures to be one of the best games in the nation in Week 11, and a national coming out party for the winner. Colorado will use its defense to get a win at home, and remain in the hunt for the Pac-12 title.
Pick: Colorado 31, Washington State 21
USC @ UCLA (Saturday, November 19th, 10:30 p.m., ESPN)
The Bruins have experienced a very difficult season, and host the resurgent Trojans at the Rose Bowl. UCLA has to win out to earn a bowl, and anything can happen in a rivalry game. USC is too good and playing too well to allow that to happen. Be sure to behold the pageantry of this matchup, because of the beauty of these classic home uniforms sported by both teams. The Trojans hold the tiebreaker over Colorado in the Pac-12 South because of their head-to-head win. USC will win, after rooting hard for Wazzu to knock off the Buffaloes in Boulder.
Pick: USC 42, UCLA 24
Oklahoma @ West Virginia (Saturday, November 19th, 8:00 p.m., ABC)
The Sooners’ offense is one of the best in the nation, and it will face a surprisingly strong West Virginia defense. It is a matchup between the irresistible force and the immovable object, and physics will say much about who will win the Big XII. Dana Holgorsen’s team has surprised all season long, and it is still in the hunt for the Big XII title. This one will be a shootout, and the winner will be in good shape in the conference. Oklahoma will win, which sets up a huge Bedlam matchup in Week 12.
Pick: Oklahoma 48, West Virginia 45
Stanford @ California (Saturday, November 19th, 5:30 p.m., P12N)
Christian McCaffrey and the Cardinal will bring a simple game plan to Strawberry Canyon: run, and run, and run some more. Cal needs to win this week and next to reach bowl eligibility, and would love nothing more than to extend its season at Stanford’s expense. The Golden Bears rank dead last in FBS scoring defense, and their rush defense is atrocious, which will allow Keller Chryst to hand off early and often. Stanford will ground and pound its way to its fourth straight win, despite the fact that anything can and will happen in this series.
Pick: Stanford 45, California 31
“Upset” Special of the Week #2
Kansas State @ Baylor (Saturday, November 19th, 12:00 p.m., ESPN2)
Bill Snyder will bring his charges to Waco, and will endeavor to make a tough season worse for Baylor. KState is just 5-4, however the Wildcats are always a tough out. Expect the same in this matchup, and they will give the Bears all they want and then some. Kansas State will get the mild upset win at McLane Stadium, and achieve bowl eligibility in the process.
Pick: Kansas State 31, Baylor 30
“What Might Have Been” Game of the Week
Miami @ North Carolina State (Saturday, November 19th, 12:30 p.m., ACCN)
Brad Kaaya plays this week for draft position, even as he plays to better position his team for season success. The Hurricanes have lost three games by a total of 11 points, and they could be a Top 10 team with a few key plays in those games. NC State has been tough at times, but it has been inconsistent. Miami will win on the road, and improve its position in the ACC bowl pecking order.
Pick: Miami 24, North Carolina State 20
“What Might Have Been” Game of the Week #2
Duke @ Pittsburgh (Saturday, November 19th, 3:00 p.m., ACCN)
The Panthers pulled off one of the best wins in all of CFB in Week 10 at Clemson. Like Miami, Pitt is only 11 points away from being 9-1 versus 6-4. Duke is down a bit this season, although the team has played well at times. Furthermore, the Blue Devils must win out to reach a bowl this year, and would love nothing more than to earn those extra practices for next season. Pitt brings the better team to this game, though, and will get the win.
Pick: Pittsburgh 31, Duke 20