9 Picks: LSU, SU look to stay in race, Saints two in a row - FOX Carolina 21

9 Picks: LSU, Southern look to stay in race, Saints looking for two in a row

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A bounce back week for "9 Picks". We finished the weekend 8-1 and have our confidence back as we face some interesting matchups this week. The Jags host UAPB, the Tigers travel to College Station for an early start and the Saints look to make it two in a row as they travel to Tampa Bay to face the rival Bucs.

Here we go:

New Orleans Saints (1-4) at Tampa Bay Bucs (2-3)

The Saints are riding high after their victory over the San Diego Chargers. The Bucs have lost three close games against the Giants, Cowboys and Redskins. The Saints defense gave up only seven points in the second half of the Chargers game and made the plays at the end to preserve the victory. The Bucs are 31st against the pass, the Saints will keep it that way:

New Orleans Saints: 35    Tampa Bay Bucs: 24


Arkansas-Pine Bluff (4-2, 3-1) at Southern (3-3, 2-2)

Southern has found itself back in the SWAC West race. Guess who is one game ahead of Southern? You got it, UAPB. Arkansas-Pine Bluff is led on offense by running back Dennis Jenkins (338 yards) and quarterback Benjamin Anderson (6 TDs). Last week the Golden Lions gave up 420 yards of offense against Jackson State but found a way to win. Mumford Stadium will be the difference in this one:

Southern: 24    UAPB: 20


#6 LSU (6-1, 2-1) at #18 Texas A&M (5-1, 2-1)

Texas A&M has played two ranked teams, losing to Florida and hanging on against Louisiana Tech. The Aggies are led by freshman quarterback Johnny Manziel. Against LA Tech he accounted for 576 yards of offense. He ran for 181 yards and three touchdowns and completed 24 of 40 passes for 395 yards and three touchdowns. The Tigers struggles continued in the Red Zone against South Carolina and need to be corrected quickly. LSU's defense, lead by Sam Montgomery and Barkevious Mingo will keep Manziel in check and the offense will wear A&M's defensive line down in the second half. LSU wins on the road and starts thinking Alabama:

LSU: 34    Texas A&M: 20



#7 South Carolina (6-1, 4-1) at #2 Florida (6-0, 5-0)

South Carolina travels to Gainesville trying to put behind them a crushing loss to LSU. Florida is riding high, maybe a bit too high in the rankings, beating a scrappy Vandy team 31-17.The two offenses will be led by a quarterback and running back duo. South Carolina will be led by Connor Shaw and Marcus Lattimore, while the Gators will rely on Jeff Driskel and Mike Gillislee. The South Carolina defense will rise to the occasion and the Old Ball Coach will sneak out of Gainesville with a victory:

South Carolina: 24    Florida: 20


#1 Alabama (6-0, 3-0) at Tennessee (3-3, 0-3)

Derek Dooley said this week, "We're not very good right now." Not exactly what you want to hear if you're a Tennessee fan about to face Alabama. The Vols have been competitive this year but have not been able to finish a game strong. Tyler Bray leads an offense averaging 38 points a game, but will be hard pressed to match that against the number one defense in the country. The Vols hang tough, that is in the first half, before Bama rolls on:

Alabama: 32     Tennessee: 17


#11 Georgia (5-1, 3-1) at Kentucky (1-6, 0-4)

Georgia has had two weeks to think about the blowout loss to South Carolina. The Bulldogs are still in the race for the SEC East and a shot at a BCS Championship. Kentucky, wow, they are bad. A great game for the Bulldogs to get back on track:

Georgia: 45    Kentucky: 21


Auburn (1-5, 0-4) at Vanderbilt (2-4, 1-3)

There would have been a time that picking Vanderbilt to win this game would be the "dumb pick of the week." Just two years ago Cam Newton led the Tigers to a National Championship. This year Auburn is looking for its first SEC win. With Texas A&M, Georgia and Alabama looming, this is Auburn's best and probably only chance to win an SEC game. Won't happen:

Vanderbilt: 17    Auburn: 10


Middle Tennessee (4-2, 2-1) at #12 Mississippi State (6-0, 3-0)

The number 12 ranked Bulldogs, can that be right, number 12? Miss. State steps out of the SEC to play Middle Tennessee in its last tune-up before the brutal stretch that includes Alabama, Texas A&M and LSU. The Bulldogs should enjoy this game, it might be their last win of the regular season:

Miss. State: 37      Middle Tennessee: 20


#3 Oregon (6-0, 3-0) at Arizona State (5-1, 3-0)

The defenses will take the night off again in the PAC-12. The Ducks have a goal of making it to the National Championship game. With Stanford, USC and Oregon State coming up Oregon needs the win and will get it:

Oregon: 52     Arizona State: 30


BYU (4-3) AT #5 Notre Dame (6-0)

Notre Dame should win this game without any problems, unless they forget about BYU and start thinking about the Oklahoma matchup next week. It's hard not to look forward to that -wait I need to concentrate on this game. Irish win, but not pretty:

Notre Dame: 20      BYU: 10

LAST WEEK: 8-1 ... SEASON TOTAL: 30-13

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