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The Dirty Dozen: Crystal Ball Run’s Week 11 Staff Picks

Here are the Crystal Ball Run Week 11 staff picks!

No. 2 Oklahoma State at Texas Tech: Saturday, 12:00 p.m. ABC/ESPN3

Tom Perry’s Take: Oklahoma State has to avoid getting caught up in the high ranking and the love the Cowboys are getting from their fans. They control their own destiny and it starts on the road at Texas Tech. Oklahoma State’s defense is still a huge question mark, but as long as Brandon Weeden, Justin Blackmon and Co. keep piling on the points all should be fine in Lubbock.

Oklahoma State 48, Texas Tech 28

Everyone Else’s Take:

Aaron Torres: Oklahoma State 41, Texas Tech 21
Allen Kenney: Oklahoma State 41, Texas Tech 35 
Kevin McGuire: Oklahoma State 54, Texas Tech 43
Michael Felder: Oklahoma State 51 Texas Tech 44
Regie Eller: Oklahoma State 49, Texas Tech 31

No. 19 Nebraska at No. 12 Penn State: Saturday, 12:00 p.m. ESPN

 

Allen Kenney’s Take: No one can predict how all the chaos in State College will impact the psyche of the Nittany Lions when they finally do take the field Saturday. Are the players distracted? Are they fired up and trying to win one for the old man?

Looking at this game, it’s easy pretty easy to overlook the possibility that the Cornhuskers will be playing with a little extra motivation, too, after losing in Lincoln last weekend to Northwestern.

On the field, these two teams will likely play an indescribably ugly game. Nebraska has a little extra explosiveness in its option-based offensive attack, so look for a couple touchdowns on big plays to be the difference.

Nebraska 21, Penn State 14

Everyone Else’s Take:

Aaron Torres: Penn State 9, Nebraska 6
Kevin McGuire: Penn State 17, Nebraska 16
Michael Felder: Nebraska 26 Penn State 17
Regie Eller: Nebraska 24, Penn State 9
Tom Perry: Penn State 20, Nebraska 9

Florida at No. 13 South Carolina: Saturday, 12:00 p.m. CBS

Aaron Torres’ Take: So two years ago, this game was an instant-classic, and instant heartache for South Carolina fans, as Stephen Garcia fumbled late in the game, costing the Gamecocks an upset over the No. 1 ranked Florida Gators. Last year, the Gamecocks got revenge in the Swamp, winning a de-facto divisional playoff, and earning their first trip to the SEC Championship Game.

As for this year? Well, the only “driver’s seat” Florida is in, is one which is headed straight off the side of a bridge, and even the Gamecocks have no control of their own destiny in this division. They lost that when they fell to Arkansas last weekend.

South Carolina needs to win to keep their slim chances at an SEC East title alive, and then pray for an Auburn upset. Knowing Georgia, stranger things have happened.

South Carolina 17, Florida 7

Everyone Else’s Take:

Allen Kenney: South Carolina 17, Florida 13
Kevin McGuire: Florida 24, South Carolina 20
Michael Felder: South Carolina 19 Florida 17
Regie Eller: South Carolina 17, Florida 10
Tom Perry: South Carolina 24, Florida 17

No. 16 Texas at Missouri: Saturday, 12:00 p.m. FX

Kevin McGuire’s Take: A year ago one of the biggest weaknesses for Texas was their running game. That is not the case this season, as the Longhorns are averaging 246.4 yards per game on the ground (11th nationally). Those numbers clearly took advantage of some weak defenses the past couple of weeks. Fortunately for them, they face off against another weak defense this week with Missouri having allowed big yards in recent weeks. Texas will be without Malcolm Brown with a toe injury so look for more of freshman Joe Bergeron, who had a big game against Texas Tech.

Missouri has been having a back-and-forth season with no consistency so it can be tough to tell exactly how any of their games will play out on a week-to-week basis. Despite playing at home, the defense does little to give any confidence heading in to this match-up, so the Longhorns look to have a little bit of an edge on the road. Since losing back-to-back weeks against Oklahoma and Oklahoma State, Texas has won two games by a combined score of 95-20. This one should be closer.

Texas 33, Missouri 27

Everyone Else’s Take:

Aaron Torres: Missouri 24, Texas 23
Allen Kenney: Missouri 24, Texas 23
Michael Felder: Missouri 34 Texas 26
Regie Eller: Missouri 27, Texas 21
Tom Perry: Texas 28, Missouri 18

West Virginia at No. 23 Cincinnati: Saturday, 12:00 p.m. ABC/ESPN3

Regie Eller’s Take: Year two under Butch Jones has been a successful one for Cincinnati.  The Bearcats have a comfortable first place led in the Big East (3-0), and I doubt they have forgotten their 37-10 loss at the hands of the West Virginia Mountaineers a year ago.

At 7-1 and winners of 6 straight, Cincinnati has been susceptible to the pass, giving up nearly 300 yards a game for the season.  The Bearcats lone loss this season ( to the Tennessee Volunteers), saw opposing quarterback Tyler Bray throw it all day on Cincy for 405 yards.  At this point in their respective careers, Tyler Bray is no Geno Smith.

West Virginia has had their troubles with teams who are able to eat clock and keep their offense off the field. I think West Virginia is good enough defensively to pull this game out – in a shoot-out.

West Virginia 34, Cincinnati 31

Everyone Else’s Take:

Aaron Torres: Cincinnati 34, West Virginia 24
Allen Kenney: Cincinnati 42, West Virginia 34
Kevin McGuire: West Virginia 34, Cincinnati 33
Michael Felder: Cincinnati 33, West Virginia 27
Tom Perry: Cincinnati 38, West Virginia 24

TCU at No. 5 Boise State: Saturday, 3:30 p.m. Versus

Aaron Torres’ Take: To quote America’s least favorite Canadian heartthrob Justin Bieber, “Oh, Boise, Boise, Boise! Boise, Boise, Boise!!”

Ok, that was really bad. I apologize.

Either way, Boise is the better team, and Kellen Moore is far and away the best player on the field. TCU will do enough to keep this one close for a little though.

Boise State 34, TCU 21

Everyone Else’s Take:

Allen Kenney: Boise State 28, TCU 21
Kevin McGuire: Boise State 27, TCU 20
Michael Felder: TCU 34, Boise State 31
Regie Eller: Boise State 27, TCU 21
Tom Perry: Boise State 45, TCU 21

Texas A&M at No. 14 Kansas State: Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ABC/ESPN2

Allen Kenney’s Take: One of the nation’s most overachieving teams takes on one of its most disappointing.

Truth be told, A&M is a better team than its record would indicate. The Aggies have lost to four solid teams in Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Missouri and Arkansas. In three of those games, they blew significant leads. A&M may have confidence issues, but this is still a pretty good football team.

The Wildcats don’t have the passing game to exploit the Aggies’ sub-par secondary, and they will probably have to rely on getting at least two more turnovers than A&M to win. It could happen, but it seems like A&M has greater margin for error.

Texas A&M 31, Kansas State 24

Everyone Else’s Take:

Aaron Torres: Kansas State 35, Texas A&M 31
Kevin McGuire: Kansas State 23, Texas A&M 20
Michael Felder: Texas A&M 28, Kansas State 27
Regie Eller: Texas A&M 42, Kansas State 28
Tom Perry: Texas A&M 27, Kansas State 21

Miami at Florida State: Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ABC/ESPN2

Michael Felder’s Take: The Canes travel up to Tallahassee and have last years 45-17 beating on their mind as Florida State went into Sun Life and just abused Miami. New coach in Coral Gables, but the same up and down Miami performance. Losses to Maryland, Kansas State, Virginia Tech and UVA with wins over Ohio State, North Carolina, Georgia Tech and Duke. Miami’s got talent but consistency is a tremendous issue in Coral Gables.

Florida State has appeared to right their ship as players get healthy, the running game has started to come life and EJ Manuel is playing like the consistent talent we expected at the start of the year. Look for this Noles defense to terrorize the Canes and keep pushing Florida State towards the possible 9 win regular season.

Florida State 37, Miami 31

Everyone Else’s Take:

Aaron Torres: Florida State 24, Miami 17
Allen Kenney: Florida State 35, Miami 20
Kevin McGuire: Florida State 28, Miami 20
Regie Eller: Florida State 35, Miami 20
Tom Perry: Florida State 48, Miami 14

No. 20 Auburn at No. 15 Georgia: Saturday, 3:30 p.m. CBS

Kevin McGuire’s Take: Since dropping the first two games of the season to Boise State and South Carolina, the Georgia Bulldogs have been on a bit of a roll by winning every game since to build a 7-2 record. Along the way they have passed the Gamecocks and control their own destiny in the SEC East race with just two games to be played in conference. Freshman running back Isaiah Crowell will return after a one-game suspension for a failed drug test. Crowell sat out last week’s win against New Mexico State and should give the Bulldogs offense a little extra push the final two weeks.

Auburn has struggled passing the football in the post-Cam Newton era, ranked 107th in the nation and have the 90th ranked total offense. Look for Georgia to have a few extra playmakers come through in the clutch than Auburn will have this weekend.

Georgia 38, Auburn 30

Everyone Else’s Take:

Aaron Torres: Georgia 31, Auburn 27
Allen Kenney: Georgia 27, Auburn 17
Michael Felder: Georgia 34, Auburn 20
Regie Eller: Georgia 35, Auburn 17
Tom Perry: Georgia 21, Auburn 17

Tennessee at No. 8 Arkansas: Saturday, 6:00 p.m. ESPN2

Regie Eller’s Take: The Tennessee Volunteers have nothing to lose, but a lot to play for.  A lot to play for? Yes.  The injury riddled Volunteers would love nothing more than to head into Arkansas and ruin the remaining hope the Hogs have at going to an SEC Championship game.

The game-plan for Tennessee should be to lessen the number of possessions for the Hogs.  To do this they will have to find a running game – a game they do not have.  Arkansas has 16 touchdown drives, this season of less than two minutes, and 11 touchdowns of more than 50 yards per.

As much as I look and try to find a way for Tennessee to keep this interesting, I just cannot.

Arkansas 42, Tennessee 17

Everyone Else’s Take:

Aaron Torres: Arkansas 35, Tennessee 13
Allen Kenney: Arkansas 34, Tennessee 17
Kevin McGuire: Arkansas 37, Tennessee 22
Michael Felder: Arkansas 40, Tennessee 20
Tom Perry: Arkansas 30, Tennessee 10

No. 3 Alabama at Mississippi State: Saturday, 7:45 p.m. ESPN

Tom Perry’s Take: It would be easy to see how Alabama could have a let down after the tough loss to LSU last week. But all Nick Saban has to do is show his team how easy it could be that the Tide might get a rematch in the BCS Championship. So Alabama should be focused and ready to play against a Mississippi State team that has woefully underachieved this year.

Alabama 30, Mississippi State 10

Everyone Else’s Take:

Aaron Torres: Alabama 37, Mississippi State 6
Allen Kenney: Alabama 30, Mississippi St. 13
Kevin McGuire: Alabama 43, Mississippi State 17
Michael Felder: Alabama 51, Mississippi State 13
Regie Eller: Alabama 52, Mississippi State 3

No. 7 Oregon at No. 4 Stanford: Saturday, 8:00 p.m. ABC

Michael Felder’s Take: This is the match up that we’ve been waiting for out of the Pac-12 all season. We’ve already seen Stanford go to the brink against Southern Cal a few weeks ago and now they’ve got another high powered offense to contend with. Oregon has LaMichael James back in mid-season form and we can expect the dynamic running back to have a big impact on Saturday.

Stanford’s defense will be tested as the big play ability of Oregon keeps teams on their toes. Oregon’s defense doesn’t escape scrutiny as we get to see what this smallish unit can do against Stanford’s power running attack and dangerous pass catching tight ends. In the end I’ve got more faith in Oregon and Chip Kelly than I do David Shaw so we’ll roll the dice with the Ducks.

Oregon 48 Stanford 40

Everyone Else’s Take:

Aaron Torres: Oregon 38, Stanford 28
Allen Kenney: Oregon 45, Stanford 42
Kevin McGuire: Oregon 35, Stanford 32
Regie Eller: Oregon 31, Stanford 28
Tom Perry: Stanford 32, Oregon 30

About Aaron Torres

Aaron Torres works for Fox Sports, and was previously a best-selling author of the book 'The Unlikeliest Champion.' He currently uses Aaron Torres Sports to occasionally weigh-in on the biggest stories from around sports. He has previously done work for such outlets as Sports Illustrated, SB Nation and Slam Magazine.

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