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Marshall at FAU, Marshall by 6.5
David: FAU keeps putting on the kind of gallant loser performances loved by the British and underdog betters. Marshall seems to have worked out who it is — yeah, I know, “We are Marshall.” Beyond that, Smartypants — in the post-Rakeem Cato era.
Marshall 27, FAU 17
GoliathThundering Herd seem to have turned its season around thanks to an opportunistic defense that has nine takeaways the last two games. Marshall has 27 players from the state of Florida. This game is a must win to set up season-ending showdown versus Western Kentucky.
Marshall 35, FAU 27
FIU at Middle Tennessee State, Middle by 9
David: Steady the confidence: FIU shouldn’t get cocky after using UTEP like Bounty. Middle needs to remember Western Kentucky scores on everybody (although 58 points does seem excessive). I see big plays on both sides. Middle’s played the tougher schedule and is at home. Still, the line looks portly.
Middle Tennessee State 30, FIU 24
Goliath: Don’t base your betting decision only on last week’s results. Remember that when you go to bet this game. The Blue Raiders lost last week, 58-28, to Western Kentucky and FIU beat UTEP 52-12.
Middle Tennessee State 31, FIU 17
Alabama at Texas A&M, Alabama by 4
David: Bama wasn’t crazy about this matchup when it was the best team in the nation. If not for Arkansas coach Bret Bielema judo-flipping momentum against him with a really dumb fake punt call last week, The Tide might be just another good two-loss team. So, take them here.
Alabama 47, Texas A&M 30
Goliath:The way to beat Bama was drawn up by Ole Miss QB Chad Kelly a couple of weeks ago. Aggie QB Kyle Allen has the makeup and weapons around him to be that guy also.
Texas A&M 31, Alabama 30
Florida at LSU, LSU by 9.5
David: It’s not a football season until the first Gator gets cuffed. Then, throw in starting quarterback Will Grier busted by the Pee Police for taking PEDs. Now, amidst all this tsuris, they’ve got to go to Baton Rouge and tackle Leonard Fournette. That’ll hurt.
LSU 34, Florida 13
Goliath: Tough spot here for Gators as they travel for a second week in a row while Tigers have been home three of the last four weeks. If the Gators fall behind, I doubt QB Treon Harris is the guy that can rally the troops.
LSU 28, Florida 13
Virginia Tech at Miami, Miami by 6
David: Va. Tech doesn’t do those Beamer Ball-Va Tech things as often as they once did. That makes the Hokies less fun. Miami has long been less fun. I don’t expect a Florida State loss letdown because I’m not sure the Hurricanes expected to beat Florida State.
Miami 31, Virginia Tech 20
Goliath: This is a must win game for the Canes. Hokies will be focused after being embarrassed last year at home 30-6. The pressure may be too much for Miami coming off the heartbreaking FSU loss.
Virginia Tech 28, Miami 27
Michigan State at Michigan, Michigan by 8.5
David: This all looks too pat. Michigan State, the muscular power Michigan used to be, looks flat the last few weeks. Michigan’s points allowed the last three games resembles Blutarsky’s GPA. It all looks too pat. The rivalry game’s at Michigan. They will feed the Spartans’ fingertips to the Wolverines.
Michigan 27, Michigan State 10
Goliath: Except for the opening game against Utah, the Wolverines have caught every opponent at the right time. This is a rivalry game, and if the talent is about the same, it usually comes down to the wire.
Michigan 27, Michigan State 23