College football betting picks, Week 12: Stanford can hang with Oregon

Ezra Shaw

Can Stanford stick with Oregon? Will the Thursday night game between Carolina and Virginia be high scoring? A decent Week 11 for our picks man (5-4, $60) brings the season record to 72-67 ($-160). Head to OddsShark for complete gambling info on every game.

UNC at UVA Over 61.5: Carolina doesn't play defense. Virginia's offense is improving. UNC's offense is very good, and Virginia's defense has struggled against teams that spread them out.

Stanford +21 at Oregon: Stanford plays very good defense, and its 3-4 alignment is something that has given Oregon's elite offense some trouble before (see Cal) because of the different blocking angles needed to get the linebackers sealed off. Meanwhile, Stanford's offense has steadily risen from awful to OK in the last month, thanks to improved QB play. It'll try to slow the game down against a banged up Oregon defense.


Advanced numbers pick every Week 12 game

Ohio State at Wisconsin -2.5: A lower-ranked team being favored over a 10-0 Ohio State squad? Give the points and hope that Meyer and Co. didn't cook up something crazy over the bye week.

Northwestern at Michigan State -6.5: There's one really good unit in this game -- Michigan State's defense -- and three that range from OK to below average. Will Northwestern come to play after last week's devastating come-from-ahead loss at Michigan? And yes, wagering for Michigan State to win any game by more than a touchdown is quite scary. The Spartans will need to create short fields for their offense.

Rutgers at Cincinnati -6.5 and Under 48.5: Rutgers is not a bad team, but they are an overrated lot. Cincy, after losing to Toledo and Louisville, offers some value. Meanwhile, both offenses are significantly behind the respective defenses, so I am playing the under.

USF +7 at Miami: Miami is coming off a very tough loss to Virginia. USF is coming off a bye week. Miami is missing several key receivers. USF is missing its quarterback. I find value here because Miami receives too much credit for home field advantage and because the loss of B.J. Daniels is overrated. USF plays many games like it couldn't give a damn, but against in-state teams (see Florida State), they really do give a lot of effort.

Texas Tech at Oklahoma State -10: Texas Tech has been on a big down slide lately, and I do not trust this group to go on the road. My trust in Oklahoma State's QB situation is considerably greater.

Iowa State at Kansas +6.5: Iowa State just isn't the same after losing several key defenders. And its offense is still nothing to write home about. Meanwhile, Kansas also features a bad offense and a defense that is not awful! But the Jayhawks are catching almost a touchdown at home.

Ole Miss at LSU -18: Ole Miss is a young football team dealing with an emotional, last-minute loss to Vanderbilt. Now it must go on the road to Death Valley against an LSU team that has been steadily improving since the loss to Florida. Ole Miss' offense has failed to crack the five-yards-per-play mark in three SEC road games (at Bama, at Arkansas, at Georgia), and at LSU doesn't figure to be much different.

Indiana at Penn State Over 55.5: Indiana wants to play fast, and it will. Indiana wants to stop the run, and it won't. Penn State should be able to score a lot on the Hoosiers, who may be a bit deflated after being put back in their place last week at home by Wisconsin. I expect points from Indiana not based on efficiency, but rather on pace.

UCF at Tulsa -2: Tulsa dealt with a lot of tough injuries early in the year, but is now hitting its stride. UCF will be playing its second-consecutive road game out West (last week at UTEP). I'm not sure how much the Golden Knights will have in the tank.

Oklahoma -10.5 at West Virginia: Bob and Mike Stoops know how to stop the air-raid. It's the spread-option that they sometimes gives that family difficulty. West Virginia's defense is simply terrible, and shouldn't give Landry Jones too much trouble, even in Morgantown.

ECU at Tulane +10: Tulane is a resurgent bunch and I do not trust East Carolina to lay double digits here.

Utah State -3 at Louisiana Tech: LA Tech is a nice story, but it's a story based on schedule. Utah State actually plays defense, and has an offense that is not too bad. Look for the Aggies to slow the game down via the run game and contest Louisiana Tech's throws.

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