Dirty Dozen: Crystal Ball Run staff picks for Week 10

This may be considered a down week on the college football schedule, but nothing will stop our staff from putting together our weekly picks for 12 games of interest. Here is a quick look at how we have done this season with our picks…

1. Allen (79-29, 72.2%)
2. Jonathan (73-35, 67.6%)
3. (t) Kevin M. (70-38, 64.8%)
3. (t) Andy (70-38, 64.8%)
3. (t) Tom (70-38, 64.8%)
3. (t) David (70-38, 64.8%)
4. Kevin C. (68-28, 70.8%)
5. Aaron (66-30, 68.8%)
6. Josh (50-22, 69.4%)

On to this week's picks (all times eastern, BCS rankings used)…

North Texas vs. Rice: Thursday, 7:30 PM, FOX Sports 1

Kevin M’s Take: Rice has been getting it done on the ground this season, averaging 234.3 rushing yards per game, led by Charles Ross and his 697 yards an six touchdowns and supplemented by dual-threat quarterback Taylor McHargue and his 328 rushing yards and five touchdowns.

North Texas leads Conference USA in scoring defense and Rice is third so you might think we are getting set for bit of a defensive battle. If you think that, think again because both teams are averaging over 30 points per game on offense. Both teams probably get in to the 30’s Thursday night.

Aaron: Rice 41, North Texas 31
Allen: North Texas 30, Rice 24
Andy: Rice 34, North Texas 21
Dave: North Texas 31, Rice 30
Jonathan:  Rice 35, North Texas 30
Josh: North Texas 30, Rice 24
Kevin C: Rice 31, North Texas 21
Kevin M: Rice 36, North Texas 31
Tom: Rice 42, North Texas 30

Washington State vs. Arizona State: Thursday, 10:30 PM, ESPN

Dave’s Take: Arizona State at Washington State: Look for a heavy dose of Marion Grice from the Sun Devils as they attempt to win their second straight game over a team from the state of Washington. Washington State has improved from where the program was just three seasons ago, but even at home Arizona State's talent should be too much to handle.

Aaron: Arizona State 49, Washington State 24
Allen: Arizona State 42, Washington State 31
Andy: Arizona State 28, Washington State 17
Dave: Arizona State 41, Washington State 21
Jonathan:  Arizona State 23, Washington 20
Josh: Arizona State 38, Washington State 28
Kevin C: Arizona State 42, Washington State 28
Kevin M: Arizona State 41, Washington State 30
Tom: Arizona State 48, Washington State 28

Oregon State vs. USC: Friday, 9:00 PM, ESPN2  

Josh’s Take: The Trojans have found new life under Ed Orgeron, but with Marqise Lee’s health up in the air it’s hard to say what their chances are against the Beavers. Oregon State will have to rebound from a gut-wrenching loss to Stanford. The Beavers traditionally have given USC trouble. The Trojans have not played as well this season away from home. I like Sean Mannion and the Beavers’ offense to score just enough to win.

Aaron: Oregon State 24, USC 14
Allen: Oregon State 21, USC 20
Andy:Oregon State 31, USC 17
Dave: Oregon State 27, USC 17
Jonathan:  USC 20, Oregon State 18
Josh: Oregon State 21, USC 14
Kevin C: Oregon State 31, USC 24
Kevin M: Oregon State 31, USC 23
Tom: Oregon State 17, USC 14

Iowa vs. No. 24 Wisconsin: Saturday, 12:00 PM, ABC/ESPN2

Andy's Take: Conventional wisdom says watch the run game between these two physical teams, but for me the key is part that and part passing game. The winner of this one will be the team that gives up the fewest explosive plays (20 yards or more).  That’s why I give the edge to Wisconsin. The Badgers lead the nation in runs of 50, 60 and 70 or more yards on the season; and Iowa has been prone to giving up the big play this season. While both defenses stack up well nationally, I expect the hosts’ D to be stretched with long runs and a vertical passing game. 

Aaron: Wisconsin 34, Iowa 21
Allen: Wisconsin 23, Iowa 17
Andy: Wisconsin 37, Iowa 20
Dave: Wisconsin 24, Iowa 21
Jonathan:  Wisconsin 38, Iowa 21
Josh: Wisconsin 28, Iowa 21
Kevin C: Wisconsin 31, Iowa 17
Kevin M: Wisconsin 31, Iowa 26
Tom: Wisconsin 17, Iowa 9

No. 14 South Carolina vs. Mississippi State: Saturday, 12:21 PM, ESPN GamePlan/ESPN3

Kevin C’s Take: The Gamecocks rose from the dead last week as Connor Shaw willed them to a victory over the previously undefeated Missouri Tigers. The way the Gamecocks have played this year (very up and down), I half expect them to lose this game. But, they are playing Mississippi State who hasn't exactly set the world on fire. In fact, their best win is against a MAC team (Bowling Green). Look for South Carolina to struggle early, because that's what they do, but they will pull away if Connor Shaw has to rip his arm off and throw it across the goal line (with the ball still attached of course) to win the game.

Aaron: South Carolina 27, Mississippi State 13
Allen: South Carolina 27, Mississippi State 21
Andy: South Carolina 28, Mississippi State 17
Dave: South Carolina 31, Mississippi State 27
Jonathan:  South Carolina 28, Mississippi State 22
Josh: South Carolina 24, Mississippi State 14
Kevin C: South Carolina 28, Mississippi State 16
Kevin M: South Carolina 33, Mississippi State 17
Tom: Mississippi State 24, South Carolina 21

No. 25 Notre Dame vs. Navy: Saturday, 3:30 PM, NBC

Tom’s Take: Notre Dame is fresh off a whipping of Air Force and the Irish are riding a three-game winning streak. Brian Kelly's program has some weaknesses, but Notre Dame still has a chance to close the regular season on a seven-game winning streak and get to 10-2. It's hard to see any way that Navy, who did pull of a nice upset of Pittsburgh last week, can slow down the Irish. Working against Notre Dame is the potential loss of two defensive stalwarts Louis Nix and Ishaq Williams.

Aaron: Notre Dame 21, Navy 17
Allen: Notre Dame 31, Navy 12
Andy: Navy 24, Notre Dame 17
Dave: Notre Dame 24, Navy 15
Jonathan:  Notre Dame 30, Navy 15
Josh: Notre Dame 31, Navy 13
Kevin C: Notre Dame 28, Navy 21
Kevin M: Notre Dame 24, Navy 14
Tom: Notre Dame 42, Navy 14

Florida vs. Georgia: Saturday, 3:30 PM, CBS

Allen’s Take: With both Georgia and Florida sustaining heavy personnel losses this season, the World's Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party doesn't quite have the marquee feel that we're accustomed to. Both of these teams still have flickering hopes of winning the SEC East, though, so there's still a little something on the line.

We've got strength on strength here when the Bulldogs offense and Gators defense are on the field together. I expect this game will come down to which squad's Achilles' heel isn't as bad as the other. I'll take Georgia's underachieving D over Florida's directionless O.

Aaron: Georgia 21, Florida 7
Allen: Georgia 27, Florida 24
Andy: Florida 31, Georgia 20
Dave: Georgia 27, Florida 14
Jonathan:  Georgia 24, Florida 21
Josh: Georgia 14, Florida 10
Kevin C: Georgia 24, Florida 15
Kevin M: Georgia 24, Florida 17
Tom: Georgia 31, Florida 14

No. 22 Michigan State vs. No. 21 Michigan: Saturday, 3:30 PM, ABC

Andy's Take: This game will be all about defense, not the nation’s best defense in East Lansing, but about the visitors. If they can create some sort of pressure up front and keep Connor Cook and the rest of the Spartans offense off-balance then things could go the way of the Maize ’N Blue. Unfortunately, I don’t see Devin Gardner having a repeat of his performance against Indiana and that may be what is needed (or at least half of that performance) for the Wolverines to win. Give me an improving MSU offense vs. the Michigan D in this one.

Aaron: Michigan 21, Michigan State 16
Allen: Michigan State 21, Michigan 13
Andy: Michigan State 27, Michigan 13
Dave: Michigan State 21, Michigan 20
Jonathan:  Michigan State 21, Michigan 19
Josh: Michigan State 27, Michigan 10
Kevin C: Michigan State 17, Michigan 10
Kevin M: Michigan 23, Michigan State 17
Tom: Michigan 29, Michigan State 10

Nebraska vs. Northwestern: Saturday, 3:30 PM, Big Ten Network

Kevin M's Take: Before the season Northwestern appeared to be the trendy pick by some in the Big Ten’s Legends Division. Now here we are in the beginning of November and the Purple cats are still looking for their first win in Big Ten play and it is going to be a fight just to become bowl eligible. This week’s search leads them to Lincoln, Nebraska to take on a Huskers team that will once again be without Taylor Martinez and is coming off a 34-23 setback at Minnesota. It feels like a bad spot for Northwestern.

The formula is fairly common knowledge by now. Nebraska is going to pound the football on the ground and mix in some timely passes down field. Until Northwestern proves they can score, which they have done little of since Ohio State, Nebraska has the edge.

Aaron: Northwestern 38, Nebraska 31
Allen: Nebraska 32, Northwestern 28
Andy: Nebraska 34, Northwestern 23
Dave: Nebraska 31, Northwestern 20
Jonathan:  Northwestern 28, Nebraska 20
Josh: Nebraska 31, Northwestern 28
Kevin C: Nebraska 30, Northwestern 21
Kevin M: Nebraska 30, Northwestern 23
Tom: Nebraska 34, Northwestern 31

No. 15 Texas Tech vs. No. 18 Oklahoma State: Saturday, 7:00 PM, FOX

Jonathan’s Take: Kliff Kingsbury's swag wasn't enough to prevent Texas Tech from losing their first game of the season last week to Oklahoma. The Red Raiders have already overachieved this season, after being picked to finish seventh in the Big XII by the media before the season. They are a year or two away from totally installing Kingsbury's system (if he isn't poached away by someone else), but will want to avenge their loss against a very good Oklahoma State team.

Aaron: Texas Tech 38, Oklahoma State 34
Allen: Texas Tech 35, Oklahoma State 28
Andy: Oklahoma State 30, Texas Tech 27
Dave: Texas Tech 38, Oklahoma State 23
Jonathan:  Texas Tech 37, Oklahoma State 35
Josh: Texas Tech 31, Oklahoma State 28
Kevin C: Texas Tech 35, Oklahoma State 31
Kevin M: Oklahoma State 38, Texas Tech 37
Tom: Texas Tech 44, Oklahoma State 41

No. 9 Missouri vs. Tennessee: Saturday, 7:00 PM, ESPN

Aaron’s Take: Missouri's SEC-schedule stretch from hell officially comes to an end Saturday, and should conclude with a win.

Sure things were tough last Saturday against South Carolina, but against the Vols, expect Gary Pinkel's crew to bounce back. They still have the inside track to the SEC East, a division title they can only guarantee with a win Saturday.

They will get it, and remain on the inside track to Atlanta. 

Aaron: Missouri 24, Tennessee 21
Allen: Missouri 35, Tennessee 17
Andy: Tennessee 34, Missouri 31
Dave: Missouri 31, Tennessee 17
Jonathan:  Missouri 20, Tennessee 18
Josh: Missouri 34, Tennessee 31
Kevin C: Missouri 27, Tennessee 17
Kevin M: Missouri 31, Tennessee 23
Tom: Missouri 38, Tennessee 24

No. 3 Florida State vs. No. 7 Miami: Saturday, 8:00 PM, ABC

Kevin C’s Take: I doubted FSU earlier this year. Mainly because whenever they seem to be propped up, they seem to disappoint. Don't get me wrong, they usually have really good teams but they always seem to fall just short of expectations. This FSU team feels like it could be different and this Miami team is living a charmed life. Hats off to Al Golden for getting this Hurricanes team to where they are this season but look for the Seminoles to roll as Jameis takes control of the Heisman race.

Aaron: Florida State 42, Miami 21
Allen: Florida State 38, Miami 14
Andy: Florida State 34, Miami 17
Dave: Florida State 34, Miami 12
Jonathan:  Florida State 50, Miami 30
Josh: Florida State 49, Miami 21
Kevin C: Florida State 38, Miami 14
Kevin M: Florida State 41, Miami 20
Tom: Florida State 35, Miami 21

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Kevin McGuire

About Kevin McGuire

Managing editor of Crystal Ball Run and contributor to College Football Talk on NBCSports.com. Member of the FWAA and National Football Foundation. College Football Hall of Fame voter. Also managing Bloguin's NittanyLionsDen.com and Macho-Row.com.

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