#9 Georgia @ #11 LSU
“The Man in Black invades Death Valley to match wits with the Mad Hatter.” This is: A) A lyric from Bob Dylan’s “Desolation Row,” B) An acid trip gone very wrong or C) The latest showdown between iconic SEC coaches. The correct answer is C, but if you’re the ghost of Hunter S. Thompson we’ll accept B as well. Georgia and LSU have both suffered a blowout loss this year (to Alabama and Florida, respectively), but could still play their way into the title game. LSU is favored at home, but I graduated from the Stephen Colbert School of Picking Games. And my gut tells me to take the Dawgs.
Georgia 28, LSU 17
#2 Alabama @ Tennessee
Phil Fulmer isn’t on the hot seat so much as he is sitting on the opening of a supervolcano. At 1-3 in the conference, an SEC East title is thoroughly out of the question; the Vols will be lucky to play Ishpeming in the Wright Place Bowl. As if things weren’t bad enough, their star halfback Arian Foster recently refused to answer any reporters’ questions unless they were asked in a pterodactyl language. You can’t make this stuff up. Fulmer’s squad looks to be teetering on the edge of the Cliffs of Insanity, and Alabama will be more than happy to push them off.
Alabama 31, Tennessee 13
#7 Oklahoma State @ #1 Texas
Texas enters the third game of their brutal four-game gauntlet against Mike Gundy’s Cowboys. The Longhorns have earned their No. 1 ranking in the last two weeks with big wins over Oklahoma and Missouri. At some point you’ve got to think the tank is going to run dry, but if anything, Texas looks to be getting better as the year goes along. Oklahoma State shut down Missouri’s offense pretty well, but, like Vince Vaughn in “Wedding Crashers,” look for Colt McCoy to call a few well-timed hot routes to get his receivers open and into the end zone. Texas wins a shootout.
Texas 41, Oklahoma State 28
Michigan State @ Michigan
This matchup is about the saddest thing short of a clown crying in an alley. Michigan is literally fielding its worst team in 40 years and Michigan State is still Michigan State. Consider: The Wolverines gained 21 yards on their final nine drives against Penn State last weekend. Meanwhile, the Spartans lost to Ohio State by 38 last Saturday, compelling Terrelle Pryor to compare them to a high school team. Regardless, Michigan-Michigan State is always a game worth watching. Betting on either of these teams is nothing short of madness, but if Michigan State can’t beat their archrival this year, they might just want to go ahead and cancel the football program altogether.
Michigan State 21, Michigan 13
#3 Penn State @ #10 Ohio State
Ohio State looks to be the only serious hurdle between Penn State and an undefeated season and the appearance in the National Championship game that would likely come with it. If Ohio State gets the win, they should end the regular season with just one loss, and last year that was good enough to get them into the title game. That alone should be enough to convince anyone not currently playing on Ohio State to cheer for Penn State; the Buckeyes have used the last couple years to prove they shouldn’t be allowed in the same time zone as a BCS Title game. If this game were in Happy Valley, I might have a little more faith in the good guys, but the Shoe gives the Buckeyes the edge.
Ohio State 27, Penn State 21
Record so Far: A Phoenixy 17-15