photo credit Vegasparlay.com
by Lisa Horne
Welp, last week was a stinky week. Pigskin Grind went a horrific 4-of-10 bringing the season's total to 66-of-120.
This week there are not a lot of college football games so we are leaning heavily on the NFL lines to fill out the gaps.
Three Power 5 conferences will name their champion on Saturday: the ACC, Big Ten and SEC. The Pac-12 holds its championship game on Friday and the Big 12 does not have enough member schools to hold a championship game.
As always, good luck. My picks are in bold.
No. 9 Kansas State +7.5 at No. 6 Baylor
This game could help Baylor jump TCU in the rankings, especially since the Bears are playing the ranked Wildcats while TCU is playing a nine-loss Iowa State on the same day. Baylor has won the last three contests against Kansas State but Snyder's team has more wins than last year's team. Could Kansas State upset Baylor? West Virginia did.
Louisiana Tech +12.5 at Marshall
There are two reasons why I like the Bulldogs here. First, Marshall gave up 67 points to Western Kentucky on Friday. Second, Louisiana Tech finished the season on a very high note beating Rice 76-31.
Marshall has the nation's top rushing offense but it is facing a top 15 rushing defense.
No. 16 Missouri +14.5 v Alabama at Atlanta, Georgia (SEC Championship)
I love the Crimson Tide at home but on the road they look a little more vulnerable. The Tigers are not a sexy team by any means but their passing defense is pretty solid. This looks like a low-scoring game which means that 14.5 spread looks like too many points.
No. 2 Oregon v No. 7 v Arizona at Santa Clara, California (Pac-12 Championship)
It is hard enough to beat the same team twice in one season. Asking the Wildcats to upset the Ducks a second time is a tall order. Moreover, since Arizona upset Oregon on October 2, the Ducks' offensive line is healthier. Center Hroniss Grasu may also be able to play. As of now, he is listed as "day to day."
Arizona may hang with Oregon for awhile but the Ducks should pull away in the third quarter.
No. 11 Georgia Tech +3.5 v Florida State at Charlotte, North Carolina (ACC Championship)
Many fans feel the Seminoles are not as good as their 12-0 record indicates. This game should answer a lot of questions for fans on both sides of the fence. The Yellow Jackets' triple option is a sight to behold—their drives take time off the clock which should keep Heisman winner Jameis Winston and his offense off the field.
No. 5 Ohio State +4.5 v No. 13 Wisconsin at Indianapolis, Indiana (Big Ten Championship)
With quarterbacks Braxton Miller and JT Barrett out with injuries, the Buckeyes are an underdog behind quarterback Cardale Jones. Big mistake. Jones doesn't have a lot of meaningful snaps under his belt but he is fairly accurate and has the wheels to get himself out of trouble. Upset alert here.
Fresno State +19.5 at No. 22 Boise State (Mountain West Championship)
These two teams have already met once before—the Broncos won by 10 points. Since then, Fresno State won three of its last four games. Boise State should still win this game but the Bulldogs have a little momentum going and that may boost their confidence.
Houston Texans -5.5 at Jacksonville Jaguars
At this point, the Jaguars are probably not very motivated to win any games. Why not let off the gas and try to get a high pick in the 2015 NFL Draft? J.J. Watt should have another great day causing chaos in the Jaguars' backfield.
Pittsburgh Steelers +3.5 at Cincinnati Bengals
In a rivalry game with a low point spread, I like the underdog. I think the Steelers are a bit underrated and the Bengals a bit overrated so yeah, let's go with the dog here.
Arizona Cardinals -1.5 v Kansas City Chiefs
The Cardinals are 6-0 at home and the Chiefs are 3-3 on the road. Arizona's defense passes the eyeball test more than the Chiefs', who lost to the Raiders two weeks ago.
Obligatory disclaimer: Pigskin Grind is not a tout service. All spreads listed are for entertainment purposes only—due to fluctuations, these lines may or may not reflect real time Las Vegas odds.