Championship Week Picks

Kevin Liles-US PRESSWIRE

We pick all the title games

We've reached Championship Week, which means it's time to branch out from our usual Pac-12 picks. This week, we're picking every conference title game, along with a couple that aren't officially conference title games but work the same way.

Here are our picks:

THURSDAY

De facto Big East title game: Louisville at Rutgers (-3.5)

Jack: Louisville. I think they're a little stronger all the way around, and that even going on the road won't matter to the Cardinals.

Jacob: Louisville. These two teams lost to UConn and Pitt last week, yet one of them will go to a BCS bowl. I can't confidently pick a winner, so I'll take the points.

Scott: Rutgers. It sickens me that one of these teams will play in a BCS bowl.

FRIDAY

MAC Championship Game (neutral site): Northern Illinois (-6.5) vs. Kent State

Jack: Northern Illinois. There's a reason Dave Doeren is a hot coaching candidate.

Jacob: Northern Illinois. This game features the best dual-threat quarterback (Jordan Lynch) and running back (Dri Archer) you've never heard of. In a game with tons of offense, I'll take the better defense.

Scott: Northern Illinois. Either of these teams would be fun to watch in a BCS bowl.

Pac-12 Championship Game: UCLA at Stanford (-8)

Jack: Stanford. The Cardinal are strong at home, and they looked so much better on every side of the ball that I have to pick them again. Score: Stanford 30, UCLA 17.

Jacob: Stanford. Both teams have similar offenses, but Stanford's defense is much, much better. And oh yeah, didn't the Cardinal just win this game? Score: Stanford 34, UCLA 17.

Scott: Stanford. I don't see much reason to believe that the Bruins will put up more of a fight this time. I'm predicting the same margin of victory. Score: Stanford 31, UCLA 13.

SATURDAY

Conference USA Championship Game: Central Florida at Tulsa (-2.5)

Jack: Tulsa. They beat UCF the first time they played, so I'll take them again.

Jacob: Tulsa. These two teams played in Tulsa two weeks ago, and Tulsa won by two. They're playing in Tulsa again, and I don't think it will be as close.

Scott: Tulsa. If UCF coach George O'Leary hadn't lied on his resume, we probably wouldn't be dreading a BCS title game featuring Notre Dame.

De facto Sun Belt title game: Middle Tennessee State at Arkansas State (-10)

Jack: Arkansas State. The team has been on fire lately (the best team in the state of Arkansas!) and I think they roll.

Jacob: Arkansas State. Two of Arkansas State's three losses were on the road against possible BCS bowl teams. MTSU lost at home to McNeese State.

Scott: Arkansas State. Red Wolves are battle-tested after making trip to Autzen in Week 1.

SEC Championship Game ("neutral" site): Alabama (-7.5) vs. Georgia

Jack: Alabama. I think Alabama wins because Georgia struggled so much against Florida - and I can't get that game out of my mind even as much as I want to.

Jacob: Alabama. All the talk this week has been about Georgia having the NFL talent. But Alabama is still the better college team.

Scott: Alabama. Jarvis Football can't beat Tide alone.

ACC Championship Game (neutral site): Florida State (-14) vs. Georgia Tech

Jack: Florida State. Unless Georgia Tech plays Vad Lee the entire game.

Jacob: Florida State. Remember that Middle Tennessee State team that lost to McNeese State? That team beat Georgia Tech by 21 on the road. This should be a rout.

Scott: Florida State. LOL Georgia Tech.

Big Ten Championship Game (neutral site): Nebraska (-3) vs. Wisconsin

Jack: Nebraska. No way they lose to five-loss Wisconsin.

Jacob: Nebraska. I really tried to find a reason to pick Wisconsin, maybe because I'm picking too many favorites, or maybe because I want Stanford to play four straight games against Doak Walker finalists. But Nebraska is just better.

Scott: Nebraska. Huskers earn the right to be destroyed by the Cardinal.

Lock of the Week

Jack: Florida State. They're much better than GT all the way around... and GT was thoroughly embarrassed by Georgia last week.

Jacob: Stanford. The more I look at it, the more I think Stanford is just a better all-around team than UCLA, and the matchup hurts the Bruins. The Cardinal will make it two double-digit wins over UCLA in a week.

Scott: Florida State. I've jinxed Stanford enough already.

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