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Against the spread: Week 5 CFB predictions

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Justin Fuente
USA TODAY Sports Images

This season, Rivals.com's weekly college football predictions involve anyone on the national staff brave – or foolish – enough to risk embarrassment by making their picks against the spread. Here are the Week Five picks versus Wednesday's Vegas line, according to MGM Mirage.

MORE: Rivals Rankings Podcast | Trocchi's Betting Man

PREVIOUS PICKS: Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4

LOCKS OF THE WEEK

ROB CASSIDY: Baylor (+17) against Kansas State. "Despite what the first few weeks of results would suggest, Baylor has some lingering talent and Matt Rhule is a good football coach. K-State will probably win this game, but 17 points is simply too many for a team that isn’t head-and-shoulders more talented than its opponent. K-State’s offense isn’t made to blow anybody out."

MIKE FARRELL: Oklahoma State (–9.5) over Texas Tech. "The Cowboys will be ticked off after the loss against TCU and will want to put up 50 against Texas Tech. Even if the defense falls apart again and gives up 35, they should cover."

ADAM FRIEDMAN: Cal (+13.5) against Oregon. "The Pac-12 is a little outside my realm of expertise but the Golden Bears have been impressing so far this season. Both teams are 3-1 and took their first losses last week. Cal has kept some high-powered offenses at bay and Oregon has allowed 35 points to their only two Power Five opponents so far this season. I'm taking the Golden Bears to at least cover."

ADAM GORNEY: Kansas State (-17) over Baylor. "Kansas State looked average in its loss to Vanderbilt two weeks ago. Baylor challenged Oklahoma last week in a close loss. Plus, the Bears have about 60 percent of the public bets on them. So why has the line climbed from Kansas State -14 to -17? Because somebody knows something and big money has to be flooding in on Bill Snyder's club. Fade Baylor, load up on Kansas State. It's that easy."

JOSH HELMHOLDT: Northern Illinois (-12) over San Diego State. "The Aztecs are ranked higher in this week's AP poll than they have been in 40 years, but they welcome a Northern Illinois team that got last weekend off to let the confidence of its upset over Nebraska settle in. SDSU is coming off a stretch of tough games, including dealing with Air Force's Triple Option offense last week. I expect it takes them awhile to get going in this one, while NIU is primed to start strong."

DEREK SAMSON: Duke (+6) against Miami. "I'm on the Duke bandwagon here and David Cutcliffe is probably the world's most underrated coach."

BILL TROCCHI: Navy (-7) over Tulsa. "Tulsa's run defense has been porous this year, and now it faces the No. 2 rushing offense in the nation. Tulsa won't be able to score enough to keep it close."

WOODY WOMMACK: Iowa (+3) against Michigan State. "With the way the Hawkeyes played last week against Penn State I'm shocked to see them come into this game as underdogs, even though it's at Michigan State. I like Iowa to bounce back and make this one close; maybe even win outright."

FIVE SPOTLIGHT GAMES

Midweek lines according to MGM Mirage (all games Eastern time):

- USC (-4) at Washington State, 10:30 p.m. Friday

- Northwestern (+14.5) at Wisconsin, Noon Saturday

- Georgia (-7.5) at Tennessee, 3:30 p.m. Saturday

- Clemson (-7) at Virginia Tech, 8 p.m. Saturday

- Ole Miss (+28) at Alabama, 9 p.m. Saturday



Staff Picks vs. The Spread
Name USC at Wash St. N'western at Wisc. Georgia at Tennessee Clemson at Va Tech Ole Miss at Alabama

Rob Cassidy

USC

NW

Georgia

Clemson

Ole Miss

Mike Farrell

USC

NW

Tennessee

Va Tech

Alabama

Adam Friedman

USC

NW

Georgia

Va Tech

Alabama

Adam Gorney

USC

Wisconsin

Tennessee

Clemson

Alabama

Josh Helmholdt

Wazzu

NW

Georgia

Va Tech

Alabama

Derek Samson

USC

Wisconsin

Georgia

Clemson

Alabama

Bill Trocchi

Wazzu

Wisconsin

Georgia

Clemson

Alabama

Woody Wommack

USC

Wisconsin

Georgia

Va Tech

Ole Miss

Season Standings
Name Overall Last Week "Lock" Picks

Rob Cassidy

14-6

3-2

2-2

Josh Helmholdt

13-7

3-2

1-3

Derek Samson

11-9

3-2

3-1

Adam Friedman

11-9

3-2

2-2

Mike Farrell

9-11

3-2

3-1

Adam Gorney

9-11

3-2

3-1

Woody Wommack

8-12

3-2

3-1

Bill Trocchi

8-12

1-4

1-3

OVERALL

83-77

22-18

18-14

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