"Roughing the Passer - A PK Frazier Novel"

My new book, "Offsetting Penalties - A PK Frazier Novel" is the follow-up to "Illegal Procedure" and "Roughing the Passer" and is now available in print and in e-formats at amazon.com, smashwords.com and iBooks. Follow me on twitter @kevinkrest.

Saturday, September 17, 2016

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: WEEK THREE SATURDAY PICKS

Last Week: 27 - 5  84.3%
Overall:      59 - 5  92.2%

Week three brings another round of terrific interconference match-ups as well as a smattering of compelling conference games. There are so many close picks that I don't expect to continue my over 80% trend. But we'll see where I stand late Saturday night.

South Carolina State (0 - 2) 10 @ (5) Clemson (2 - 0) 37: Clemson has looked a bit sluggish on offense so far this season, but that shouldn't matter much against FCS South Carolina State.

(2) Florida State (2 - 0) 34 @ (10) Louisville (2 - 0) 28: This is clearly one of the most anticipated games of the week, if not the season, with the emergence of Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson. Florida State has a surprise QB of their own, with freshman Deondre Francois playing impressively despite his youth. The difference in this one will probably be Florida State's defense.

Ohio (1 - 1) 27 @ (15) Tennessee (2 - 0) 34: I'll grudgingly give the Vols some respect after drubbing my Hokies last week, but several turnovers and sloppy play by Virginia Tech contributed to the eventual blowout. But Tennessee better not rest on their laurels, because despite a three overtime loss to Texas State in their opener, Ohio went into Lawrence and knocked off Kansas last week.

North Dakota State (2 - 0) 21 @ (13) Iowa (2 - 0) 30: While not as high profile as a few of the other games this weekend, this game is pretty intriguing. North Dakota State has won five straight FCS titles and can certainly challenge a large number of FBS schools. I think Iowa has too much size for them, but an upset wouldn't shock me.

Georgia State (0 - 2) 6 @ (9) Wisconsin (2 - 0) 42: The Badgers should have no problems in running their record to 3 - 0 before their brutal Big Ten schedule kicks in.

(25) Miami (2 - 0) 27 @ Appalachian State (1 - 1) 24 : Appalachian State looked like the better team in week one against Tennessee but didn't close the deal. The atmosphere will be electric in Boone, North Carolina. The Hurricanes have been steady but they'll be challenged on the road. Could App St. pull the upset?

(1) Alabama (2 - 0) 27 @ (19) Ole Miss (1 - 1) 19: Two consecutive losses to the Rebels can't be sitting well with 'Bama coach Nick Saban. Ole Miss just isn't as good as they've been the last couple of seasons, so I'll stick with the Tide, even on the road in Oxford.

Colorado (2 - 0) 16 @ (4) Michigan (2 - 0) 31: Wins over Colorado State and Idaho State probably didn't prepare the Buffs for what they'll be facing in the Big House. Colorado has shown signs of improvement, but it won't be enough on Saturday.

(22) Oregon (2 - 0) 28 @ Nebraska (2 - 0) 30: Nebraska was pretty close to a great season last year, but lost a handful of close games. Oregon is going largely unnoticed and head into Lincoln with a chance to make a pretty strong statement. 'Huskers coach Mike Riley, formerly of Oregon State, is all too familiar with the Ducks, so maybe he has something up his sleeve for his old rivals.

(17) Texas A&M (2 - 0) 27 @ Auburn (1 - 1) 23: Texas A&M has started the season pretty strongly, but they've done that before. Their win over UCLA was impressive and Auburn hasn't really looked all that great yet. I know the Aggies aren't particularly great on the road, but I like them to keep it rolling at Auburn.

Mississippi State (1 - 1) 20 @ (20) LSU (1 - 1) 24: I still think LSU has a good team, despite all of the panic in Baton Rouge following the loss to Wisconsin. With better quarterback play and an active Leonard Fournette, they can still challenge for the SEC West title.

North Texas (1 - 1) 10 @ (23) Florida (2 - 0) 41: I may have underestimated the Gators. They really took Kentucky apart last week and appear to have found some offense. North Texas won't be able to bring enough to the Swamp to challenge them.

(12) Michigan State (1 - 0) 20 @ (18) Notre Dame (1 - 1) 27: Michigan State hasn't played since beating FCS Furman in week one. I'm not sure how that will affect the Spartans, but regardless of the schedule I think Notre Dame has a little too much for Michigan State, especially in South Bend.

Texas State (1 - 0) 20 @ (24) Arkansas (2 - 0) 30: Texas State pulled out an overtime victory over Ohio in their first game after a tough three win season last year. Arkansas did the same against TCU last week and will need to avoid a letdown at home.

(16) Georgia (2 - 0) 27 @ Missouri (1 - 1) 17: This oculd be a little bit of a trap game for Georgia before a big game against Tennessee next week. If the Bulldogs play like they did last week, they probably won't get out of Columbia with a win.

(3) Ohio State (2 - 0) 30 @ (14) Oklahoma (1 - 1) 27: This game is a virtual coin flip for me, but I wasn't sold on Oklahoma before the season and I think Ohio State, despite wins over non-power five opponents, has been more impressive. I'll take the Buckeyes to knock off the Sooners in Norman.

Portland State (1 - 1) 13 @ (8) Washington (2 - 0) 34:The Huskies should enter Pac-12 play undefeated.

USC (1 - 1) 20 @ (7) Stanford (2 - 0) 28: Stanford hasn't played in fifteen days since beating Kansas State. I believe USC is still trying to find their way, so I'll take the Cardinal at home.

(11) Texas (2 - 0) 37 @ California (1 - 1) 31: This is a big test for a Texas team that is looking to build on the first two weeks and head into the Big 12 schedule with plenty of momentum. Their defense will be under pressure today against an explosive offense.

Vanderbilt (1 - 1) 17 @ Georgia Tech (2 - 0) 28: After a disappointing 2015, Georgia Tech should be able to take care of the Commodores in Atlanta. Vanderbilt just doesn't see the Yellow Jackets' style of offense very often.

Boston College (1 - 1) 16 @ Virginia Tech (1 - 1) 24: Even against the Eagles, the Hokies can't afford to continue turning the ball over if they want to open their ACC schedule with a win. We still haven't seen how good Virginia Tech is under new coach Justin Fuente because of the turnovers.

Pittsburgh (1 - 1) 30 @ Oklahoma State (1 - 1) 34: After getting robbed of a victory last week, Oklahoma State will come out with a little extra energy. They face a tough opponent in Pittsburgh that is coming off an emotional win over in-state rival Penn State. The Cowboys are a slight favorite, but they'll need to find a way to slow down the Panthers' running game if they have a chance to win.

Duke (1 - 1) 20 @ Northwestern (0 - 2) 17: In the SAT bowl, Northwestern is looking for their first victory after two bad losses to teams they should have beaten. Duke is down a bit from the last few seasons as well, falling to Wake Forest last week. I'm taking the Blue Devils to prevail.

Iowa State (0 - 2) 17 @ TCU (1 - 1) 41: The Horned Frogs couldn't have picked a better conference opponent to help them bounce back from a disappointing loss. Arkansas shocked TCU in overtime last week, but the Cyclones won't be able to stay in this one.

Temple (1 - 1) 20 @ Penn State (1 - 1) 31: Penn State almost pulled off a big comeback at Pitt, but fell a bit short. Temple surprised the Nittany Lions and the nation by posting a 27 - 10 upset in last season's opener. I believe Penn State will be ready this time.

UCLA (1 - 1) 28 @ BYU (1 - 1) 24: BYU lost their big rivalry game to Utah last week in a tough, close contest. By the end of the season, UCLA's opening loss to Texas might look far better than it did afer week one. I like the Bruins to get it together on the road.


Utah (2 - 0) 30 @ San Jose State (1 - 1) 21: San Jose State got run over at Tulsa in week one and then gave up 35 to FCS Portland State last week. The Utes should be able to get past the Spartans, but it might be a little closer than you think.

East Carolina (2 - 0) 31 @ South Carolina (1 - 1) 27: The Pirates took out an ACC team last week and now look to move onto the SEC. I haven't been impressed with the Gamecocks so I'm going to pick ECU in a big road upset. I almost never get an ECU pick right, so South Carolina fans should be happy with this one.

Western Michigan (2 - 0) 34 @ Illinois (1 - 1) 30: MAC member Western Michigan surprised Big Ten Northwestern in week one and look to do the same thing to the Fighting Illini. Illinois gave up 48 points to North Carolina last week and the Broncos can put points on the board. I'll take the upset.

La. Tech (1 - 1) 38 @ Texas Tech (1 - 1) 44: I'm tempted to take Louisiana Tech, a team that gave Arkansas everything they could handle in a one-point week one loss. But Texas Tech can put up a lot of points and I don't know that La. Tech can stay with them in a shootout.

Don't forget to check out my new book, "Offsetting Penalties - A PK Frazier Novel" at  Amazon.com and listen to me Friday's at 8:40 am EDT/ 7:40 am CDT on Lou in the Morning, streaming live on www.WPFLradio.com, 105.1 FM. I can also be reached via email at kevin@pkfrazier.com.