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College Five: Week 12

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Everything you need to see this weekend

Utah State v Michigan State Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

Here is your chance to make up some weekends with the family, as nearly every team is set to play an easy out of conference clash in preparation for hate week.

Remember in week two, when I said you should hang out with the kids, the family or the Bae because there would be only one more chance this season? This is that weekend. Earn some points back before bowl season people. That said, try to catch some of these five games.

5 - Arizona Wildcats vs. (8) Washington State Cougars - Washington State the 10.5 point favorite

Despite the mismatch of talent across most of the country, there are some fantastic quarterback battles. Here is one of them.

Khalil Tate has flown under the radar in large part because of the 5-5 mark from the Wildcats. Tate has tossed 1,954 yards and dashed for another 153 on the ground, posting 21 total touchdowns. Since missing the UCLA game, Tate has led the team on a two-game streak that has required eight scores and 539 yards.

Tate has honed his talents in the pocket, leaning less on his legs and more on his arm to win games for Arizona, and will need every bit of it to go toe to toe with Gardner Minshew. Minshew is leads the country in passing yards (3,852), ranks sixth in passing touchdowns (29) and fifth in completion percentage (69.6).

This game will start as a heavyweight fight, both offenses trading blows in the first half. But Minshew can outlast Tate, as he did with Oregon, Stanford and Utah. When all the cards are on the table, and one team needs a game-defining drive, my money is on Minshew.

Prediction: Washington State wins 45-37

4 - (23) Utah State Aggies vs. Colorado State Rams- Utah State the 28 point favorite

This game will not get nearly enough eyeballs, come Saturday. Aggies quarterback Jordan Love has passed for 2,676 yards this season, posting a 66 percent completion rate. He pairs well with Darwin Thompson, the running back who has collected 842 yards and 14 scores for Utah State. But this offense is more than just star power; the Aggies have a high level of balance (2,934 passing yards, 2,241 rushing yards), but find their production from everywhere.

The Aggies have six receivers with 20 or more receptions, and six runners with over 100 yards. They have assembled 24 scores through the air and 34 on the ground. Utah State is the obvious team here to pick as the victor, but the Rams are a frisky 3-7 squad that averages 38.5 points per game. Colorado State finds the end zone enough to make this game plenty compelling, electrifying an otherwise dull early slate of games.

Prediction: Utah State wins 51-30

3 - (9) West Virginia Mountaineers vs. Oklahoma State Cowboys - West Virginia the 5.5 point favorite

Every weekend, there is one quarterback duel that rises above them all; this week features Will Grier and Taylor Cornelius. Between the two, stand 6,084 passing yards and 54 passing touchdowns.

West Virginia must run the table to make the Big-12 championship, but OK State has been a sneaky great team. They have wins over No. 17 Boise State and No. 6 Texas, losing to Iowa State by six and No. 6 Oklahoma by one (all rankings current with the games). Will Grier has been sensational this season in some big spotlights, most notably a comeback win on the road against Texas.

But there has still been inconstancy in the Mountaineers offense, inconsistencies that have not been there for Cornelius and the Cowboys. This is the perfect time for a home upset, from a team that averages 42.3 points per home outing.

Prediction: Oklahoma State wins 43-41

Louisville v Syracuse Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images

2 - (12) Syracuse Orange vs. (3) Notre Dame Fighting Irish - Notre Dame the 10.5 point favorite

The Orange have pieced together an impressive resume in 2018: slapping FSU, narrowly losing to Pittsburgh and Clemson before running up 51 points on the then ranked No. 22 NC State and averaging 46.5 points over the past four.

But Ian Book’s return cannot be underrated either, averaging 301.8 yards per start this season. He has shown massive improvements, both as a deep passer and with his pocket awareness. The development has been especially crucial in the unleashing of running back Dexter Williams.

The Orange throw everything and the kitchen sink at the Irish this Saturday, still coming up short against this offensive buzzsaw.

Prediction: Notre Dame wins 35-28

1 - (16) Iowa State Cyclones vs. (15) Texas Longhorns - Texas the 2.5 point favorite

The significant side narrative for this game is the Texas spiral, should they drop three of the last four after climbing to sixth in the country. After their Maryland loss (the second in two years), the same questions around the Longhorns seemed to be coming back to haunt them.

They followed up a disappointing opener with six straight wins, before dropping decisive games to the Cowboys and Mountaineers. The Longhorns have taken a big step back over the past three weeks, while the Cyclones have been on the way up.

Quarterback Brock Purdy and wide receiver Hakeem Butler have been the most entertaining duo on the team, but the trenches have been winning them games. Iowa State has averaged 129 rushing yards this season, allowing only 109, while racking up 23 sacks. The front seven of the Cyclones has been a reliable group that keeps games in reach until Butler blows the top off the defense. The Cyclones can continue to knock the Longhorns off course with both.

Prediction: Iowa State wins 31-27