It’s a spectacular weekend of college football in Week 13, which also is known as Rivalry Weekend. It’s also the final full week of the regular season with plenty on the line. Here’s a look at three huge games, along with our NCAAF picks and College Football odds for Week 13.
No. 22 South Florida at No. 13 Central Florida (-11.5)
When: Friday, 3:30 PM ET (ABC)
It’s the biggest game ever in the rivalry known as the “War on I-4” as the two schools are located about 60 miles apart on that interstate – South Florida is in Tampa and Central Florida in Orlando. The American Athletic Conference East Division title is on the line and a date with Memphis in next week’s conference title game. Also, the winner keeps its hopes alive of being the Group of 5’s representative in a New Year’s Six Bowl.
UCF is one of four unbeatens left behind rising superstar coach Scott Frost. There was a report over the weekend that Frost was close to agreeing to a deal to coach at his alma mater Nebraska, although Frost said those rumors were false. Most expect him to take either that job or open ones at Florida or Tennessee. Even those around the program did not expect the Knights to be this good this fast. Frost took over a team than went 0-12 in 2015, George O’Leary’s final season as coach. UCF is beating its opposition by an average 28 points per game.
These Knights are 10-0, setting a new program record for consecutive wins. UCF continues to lead the nation in scoring offense, averaging 48.2 points per game. The Knights currently hold the longest streak of games scoring 30 or more points, having done so in each of the 10 games of 2017. With 16 interceptions on the season, UCF ranks sixth in the nation. In total turnovers forced the Knights are fifth with 25 and they lead all teams in FBS with a 1.60 turnover margin.
USF easily beat UCF last year, but should you choose them again for this week’s NCAAF picks?
No. 14 Washington State at No. 15 Washington (-9.5)
When: Saturday, 8 PM ET (Fox)
It’s the first time in the history of the Apple Cup that both Washington State and Washington are ranked in the Top 15 of the AP poll. Three other times came close: 2001 (WSU No. 9, UW No. 16), 1997 (WSU No. 11, UW No. 17) and 1981 (WSU No. 14, UW No. 17).
The Cougars will win the Pac-12 North with a victory and face USC in the Pac-12 title game. If UW wins the Apple Cup, Stanford wins the North and will play USC. That’s because Stanford beat Washington earlier this season. The Huskies (9-2 overall, 6-2 in Pac-12) scored 10 points in the final minute Saturday to come from behind at home and beat Utah 33-30. The Cougars (9-2, 6-2) had their bye week.
Washington is the defending Pac-12 champion and clobbered Wazzu 45-17 last year. The Huskies rolled from the outset, using a 28-point first quarter behind three touchdown passes from quarterback Jake Browning to keep the Apple Cup in Seattle for a fourth straight year. Browning tossed all three touchdown passes in the first 15 minutes, hitting Dante Pettis on plays of 18 and 61 yards and John Ross (now in NFL) on a 6-yarder. Washington tied a school record with the 28-point first quarter and the four straight over the Cougars is the longest streak since the Huskies won six straight between 1998-2003.
No. 1 Alabama at No. 6 Auburn (+4.5)
When: Saturday, 3:30 PM ET (CBS)
The Iron Bowl has an argument as the best rivalry in college football and this year’s is as big as ever. The winner faces Georgia in the SEC title game. Auburn has a pretty good shot of becoming the first two-loss team to ever make the College Football Playoff with an upset here and then beating Georgia a second time next week. Alabama perhaps still could make the playoff even with a loss here.
It’s the first time since 2013 that the SEC West Division is on the line in this game. Auburn won that year on the incredible Kick Six TD with no time remaining. The Tigers went on to win an SEC title and lose on a touchdown by Florida State with 13 seconds left in the national championship game. Alabama has won the past three since, covering in two of those. It’s just the eighth time in series history both teams enter ranked in the top 10 of the Associated Press poll, with Auburn holding a 4-3 edge in the previous such games.
Alabama has been ranked No. 1 or No. 2 entering the last six Iron Bowls and eight of nine. Auburn has only been ranked in the Top 10 going into the regular season finale once since 2010, and that was in 2013. Both Alabama and Auburn beat cupcake opponents last Saturday in glorified scrimmages. The Tide bring in a scoring streak of 49 consecutive quarters, the longest stretch in FBS since 2005.
Expert Predictions & NCAAF Picks for Week 13
UCF will beat USF, but the Bulls will cover. Washington takes care of Washington State by 10. And Alabama wins by a touchdown at Auburn. These NCAAF picks should bring you some extra bucks for the weekend, so don’t hesitate checking them out at MyBookie!