The final thoughts, a few predictions, and some investment advice to make your life a heck of a lot better than it currently is for Championship Week.
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Championship Week Final Thoughts & Investment Advice
To feed into the cliche, the College Football Playoff starts now.
There were playoff-level games during Rivalry Week, but this is it. The ACC, Big Ten, Big 12, and SEC championship games are going to be like the College Football Playoff Quarterfinals – but Alabama still might have a say if TCU beats Oklahoma.
Even so, this is it. This is the weekend you’ve been waiting all year for. This is the best Saturday of the college football season – yeah, better than New Year’s Day in a lot of ways.
And here’s what’s going to happen.
For all the games, this is all just for spits, giggles, and entertainment purposes only. However, just in case you dabble …
Just how tough is USC? It’s got the flash, and it blew out Stanford early in the year, but the Cardinal seem to have the right formula under David Shaw for Pac-12 Championships. Get tough, get nasty, wait for Sam Darnold to implode and screw up.
But USC is just better. There’s too much balance, too much talent, and too many things Stanford doesn’t have. Bryce Love will go off, but it won’t be enough. If you like USC, you like the four with no problem.
Here’s what frightens me, though. Don’t screw with karma, don’t screw with a trend, and never, ever, ever, screw with a streak. The Pac-12 South has yet to win a Pac-12 Championship game. | USC vs. Stanford Preview
Really? It’s Championship Week and you’re making me do the win-not-cover-under-7-points thing on a Sun Belt game? This is Idaho’s last game before being banished into the abyss, and with this defense that keeps everything low, it might get within that 5.5 to Georgia State … and lose. | Idaho vs. GSU Preview
Even with a share of the Sun Belt title on the line, and even with the game at home, Appalachian State giving up 15 is way, way, way too heavy. Remember, Louisiana is fighting for bowl eligibility. They’re flaky, but if you believe in patterns, the Ragin’ Cajuns have gone W-L-W-L-W-L … | ASU vs. ULL Preview
This stinks. Early in the week, Georgia Southern-Coastal Carolina was a PICK, or shaded towards the Coastal Carolina-home team side. Now, you have to give up road points from a team that started 0-9. It appears to have settled at 2.5 – whatever. the Eagles are rolling now that the coaching situation is settled. | GSU vs. CCU Preview
The intensity will crank up big-time for Troy vs. Arkansas State if Appalachian State loses earlier in the day. If that happens, this is a true outright Sun Belt championship game. Both teams are eerily similar, so go with the home team with the better offense. The Troy D keeps this way, way under the 60 mark, but Arkansas State is technically a home dog. Cool. | ASU vs. Troy Preview
There’s something psychological about a -10 turning into a -9.5. It’s silly, but it’s the look of the number that’s intimidating. New Mexico State wins in a must-have to get bowl eligible – and to prolong its life in the Sun Belt – but South Alabama keeps it close in head coach Joey Jones’ final game. | USA vs. NMSU Preview
Scared … to … death of all the repeat games this Championship Week. Florida Atlantic destroyed North Texas the last time around, but that was so long ago that it shouldn’t matter.
UNT is without star RB Jeffrey Wilson, it’s a home game for the Kiffins, and the Owl offense should be able to do whatever it pleases. the 11.5 is nice and light, the 73.5 is a wee low, enjoy the show. | FAU vs. UNT Preview
It just seems like the USF game was the peak. UCF might be one of two remaining unbeatens, but it looked vulnerable last week. You would, too, if you gave up over 500 passing yards to Quinton Flowers.
The UCF loss was the only blemish of the season for the Tigers. No one’s talking about them, everyone loves Scott Frost, everyone loves UCF … and Memphis will be off to the New Year’s Six. | MU vs. UCF Preview
The MAC Championship game sometimes goes weird. Not this time. Akron is too flaky offensively, too mediocre defensively, and Toledo is pushing for its first conference title since 2004. If the Rockets are focused and on their game, this might be over in ten minutes. | Toledo vs. Akron Preview
Welcome to my third massive blind spot. The first one was USC early on – I turned out fine in time. The second was – Penn State, with the Iowa game one of the only ATS wins until things started to clear up.
I still think Auburn is just okay, and it’s about to have a hard, hard time away from Jordan-Hare.
The repeat factor matters. The new Georgia Dome matters. The crowd matters. The wounded pride Bulldog lines matter.
I’m more than willing to sit here and eat if if/when Kerryon Johnson runs a heroic 36 times for 177 and two scores, but I’m not buying it. He’ll be held down, and it’ll come down to Jarrett Stidham rocking. He’ll be good, the Georgia D will be great.
The two is nothing. Some are swearing that it’s so low for Auburn it’s a gift, but again, I can’t see Auburn. | AU vs. Georgia Preview
No, no, no, no, no, no, no. Don’t get cute with your Mountain West title game. Boise State is giving away way too many points to a team that already proved it could handle itself on the road – really, Fresno State held San Diego State to three points?
The 50 is a joke. Go low, think D, think Boise State in a tough win. | Boise State vs. Fresno State Preview
It’s this simple. If Kelly Bryant doesn’t royally screw up, Clemson wins the ACC title with easy. The Hurricanes are without way too many top skill players, and the Tigers have too much going well on their great defensive front. The Miami O won’t go anywhere. | Clemson vs. UM Preview
It’s been my go-to belief all week on radio hit after radio hit: If J.T. Barrett and Ohio State go off early, forget it. The Buckeyes have the ability to end this in ten minutes – Wisconsin isn’t built to make the big comeback.
But if the Badgers are able to drag the Buckeyes down into their world, they’re going to pull this off. The Wisconsin defense is the absolute 100% real deal. | UW vs. OSU Preview
You’re not going to watch it, mainly because you won’t be able to find it, but UMass-FIU will be one of the more entertaining games of the day. With weeks off to get ready, and getting to travel to Miami, this is the Minutemen’s bowl game. The passing game will be too much for the Golden Panthers. | UMass vs. FIU Preview
Make a case for either side, and I’ll buy it. You think Oklahoma is too good, and it’s about to pull off a second win over TCU thanks to Baker Mayfield and the killer O? Okay.
You think TCU’s defense will rise up now that it gets a second look at the delivery, and it’s got the ability to pull off something big to throw a wrench into the College Football Playoff discussion? Okay.
No matter what, the seven points are a lot, especially if you think Gary Patterson’s bunch might just be able to win this outright. | TCU vs. OU Preview
And Finally …
Sure, Florida State. If you want to play more football, it would be rude of use not to watch it. ULM, though. as just enough of an offense to make this a bit more of a fight than Seminole fans might like. However, Jimbo Fisher’s loyalty won’t be in question – and neither will his offense. The Warhawks D stinks – it’ll be a fun day for FSU. | ULM vs. FSU Preview