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Choice of college football, schedule: predictions against the spread, odds for big top 25 matches in week 12

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For the second week in a row, the 2020 college football season has been absolutely plagued by postponements and cancellations caused by COVID-19. With a significant number of games previously scheduled for Saturday and now not being played, the slate has narrowed down somewhat. Nonetheless, there are two huge matches between undefeated, ranked BIg Ten teams that will carry the day and one of the biggest college football rivalries that takes us through the evenings.

No. 3 Ohio State will look to keep its place atop the Big Ten when it hosts a No. 9 Indiana team that is surprised to start the season and has a defense that could cause some trouble for the Buckeyes. No. 19 Northwestern also houses a No. 10 Wisconsin team that has been the strongest member of its division lately, but is only fit for two games this season following a COVID-19 outbreak within the program. Bedlam should also be thrilling with No. 18 Oklahoma hosting No. 14 Oklahoma State as the Cowboys hope their surprisingly solid defense can extinguish a rejuvenated Sooners attack.

But we are not here to talk about wins and losses. We care if these teams cover their spreads. Make sure to stay with CBS Sports all day for college football coverage, from the afternoon opening to the final whistle of the day. Let’s take a look at our expert picks for week 11.

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Last Chances:

Buckeyes -20.5

What strikes me about Indiana’s incredible start is that much of what helped this team move forward in 2020 is not sustainable. Over four games, 37.8% of the points Indiana has scored in violation came from sales. That’s the second highest percentage in the country, behind Purdue only. The national average is about 16.8%. The mean distance of Indiana’s landing runs, thanks to the forced conversions, was 53.2 meters. The only team in the country with a shorter average is Washington, and Washington has played one game. The Hoosiers forced 12 turnovers in their first four games and took advantage of all. That probably won’t happen against an Ohio state team that has taken care of the ball much better. Indiana’s attack has shown no talent for putting together 75-yard touchdown drives, as it will likely have to do against the state of Ohio on Saturday. That makes it very difficult for me to trust the Hoosiers to stay with an Ohio State team that beat them 51-10 on the road last season.Choice: Ohio State (-20.5) Tom Fornelli

Last Chances:

Badgers -7.5

I don’t have a good feeling for either side of this line. On the one hand, I hate going up against Northwestern as an underdog because it performs its best under Pat Fitzgerald in these situations. Wisconsin, on the other hand, looked unstoppable. While Northwestern’s defense will be the toughest the badgers have seen this year, I am concerned about Northwestern’s waning attack. I don’t know how many points this unit will score against one of the highest defenses in the country. So while I think playing the under is the smartest thing to do when looking for a side of the spread, I’d go ahead of Northwestern with Wisconsin. But again, I don’t like it. If you can find it under a touchdown, it will be a lot more attractive.Choice: Wisconsin (-7)Tom Fornelli

Kentucky at No. 1 Alabama (4pm, SEC network)

Last Chances:

Crimson Tide -32

Dial-a-score games involving Alabama are always sketchy, because you never know when Coach Nick Saban will take his foot off the accelerator. Knowing it’s important to look at the bigger picture. The Crimson Tide will host Auburn next week at the Iron Bowl, the most important game of the season each year – especially if it’s not the last game of the regular season and the division’s title race is still underway. Therefore, expect Saban to take things down and bring in the second teamers ASAP. Terry Wilson and the Wildcats running game will shorten the game and get a cover … even though it will never question the game.Choice: Kentucky (+30) – Barrett Sallee

Oklahoma State has shown it can win in a variety of ways, but it mostly relies on its defense this season. Will that hold up against a red-hot Sooners offense? Oklahoma is now the Big 12 leader in points per game with six. The Cowboys have players at every level and the match between them and guys like Jeremiah Hall or receiver Marvin Mims should be great. That defense has been more than enough to keep Oklahoma State in every game. I think that will hold up, at least to cover the spread. Dial: Oklahoma State +7 – Ben Kercheval

# 20 USC in Utah (10:30 p.m., ESPN)

Last Chances:

Trojans -2.5

It will be interesting to see where this line ends up on game day. It has moved somewhat in favor of USC. The Trojans are frustrating to watch, even if you are not emotionally invested. Still, they have two games to their name and Utah has none. And while the Utes talk like they’ll do fine roster, you just don’t know what a team has until it’s been on the field. The spread makes you pause for a moment, but USC is literally the only proven of the two.Select: USC -2.5– Ben Kercheval



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