Penn State Football

NCAA Football Week 11 Top Favorite Picks

Written by on November 10, 2016

This week’s top four teams in the College Football Playoff rankings still all have unbeaten records — Alabama, Clemson, Michigan and Washington — but with each week comes the possibility that one of these squads will suffer a setback. The battles for berths in conference title games are raging, while other teams are simply trying to fight their way toward bowl eligibility. Which favorites can you rely on as you make your college football betting picks for this week’s games? Home teams, as always, show up in all caps.

NCAA Football Week 11 Top Favorite Picks


EAST CAROLINA (-7) over SMU (Saturday, 12:00pm ET)

Yes, SMU sits at 4-5 with a big win over Houston on their resume. However, Memphis exposed their weaknesses on both sides of the ball in a 51-7 win last week. Also, the Mustangs don’t play nearly as well on the road: despite winning their opener at North Texas, subsequent road games have resulted in losses of 27 (Baylor), 25 (Temple) and three (Tulsa). I expect SMU to put up more of a fight than they did against Memphis, but I don’t see them knocking off East Carolina, or even staying within a touchdown.

MICHIGAN STATE (-14) over Rutgers (Saturday, 12:00pm ET)

A lot of people thought that Rutgers would get out to an 0-6 conference record. However, very few of them thought that Michigan State would have the same result. Despite taking a 30-6 pasting from Wisconsin, though, the Spartans have not had the same routs overall that Rutgers has had, losing 58-0 against Ohio State and then 78-0 to Michigan in consecutive weeks. I see the Spartans using this as a week when they can take out a lot of frustrations in a big win.

Penn State (-7) over INDIANA (Saturday, 12:00pm ET)

Penn State opened Big Ten play with a 49-10 defeat at Michigan, but since then they have beaten all comers, including a late rally to beat Ohio State and a home rout of Iowa. Indiana comes in with a 3-3 conference record, but they barely escaped Maryland and Rutgers with wins — two teams that are in the cellar of the conference. Indiana hosts this game, but I still like Penn State to put together the sort of complete game that they’ve been featuring all season long — and cover this spread easily.

WISCONSIN (-26.5) over Illinois (Saturday, 3:30pm ET)

Wisconsin lost their two marquee matchups — with Michigan and Ohio State — by a touchdown each. They had not played any easy games since Week 3, when they struggled with Georgia State. Illinois comes in as the weakest opponent that the Badgers have faced since then, and given the high level at which the Badgers are playing, I like them to run all over an Illini team that, despite a win over Michigan State, still has major issues on both sides of the ball.