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November 10, 2012

Pregame Pep Talk, Part I: Saturday selections

Going a little bit Bill Simmons style today, with the quick-hit picks. More material to come this afternoon on WarEagleExtra.com before Georgia takes on Auburn tonight at Jordan-Hare Stadium.

Saturday’s Main Events (all rankings BCS, all times CT)

No. 11 Oregon State at No. 14 Stanford Cardinal, 2 p.m. FOX

Because both teams are breaking in new quarterbacks, and the Beavers won’t ask as much out of Cody Vaz as the Cardinal needs out of Kevin Hogan. This game will be close by the Law of Gus.

Brenner picks: Beavers 26, Cardinal 23

No. 2 Kansas State Wildcats vs. TCU Horned Frogs, 6 p.m. FOX

Because Collin Klein’s not at 100 percent, and it’s time for a little more salvation at the top of the BCS rankings. FOX will rue the day it sent Gus Johnson to Palo Alto.

Brenner picks: Horned Frogs 24, Wildcats 20

No. 21 Mississippi State Bulldogs at No. 7 LSU Tigers, 6 p.m. ESPN

Because the Bulldogs have been exposed, and the Tigers are playing at home at night, and sometimes these things are just too predictable.

Brenner picks: Tigers 34, Bulldogs 20

No. 5 Georgia Bulldogs at Auburn Tigers, 6 p.m. ESPN2

Because of everything Seth Emerson and yours truly said.

Brenner picks: Bulldogs 41, Tigers 17

GAME OF THE WEEK

No. 15 Texas A&M Aggies at No. 1 Alabama Crimson Tide, 2:30 p.m. CBS

Because I really, really, really think the world of Johnny Manziel, but he hasn’t triumphed against a defense quite like this. There’s a growth period in sports, and Manziel’s gonna grow up this afternoon and let the nation fall in love with him, but fall just a little bit short. I’ll say this, for you people who peruse the point spread: 14 points is ludicrous. Texas A&M’s for real.

Brenner picks: Crimson Tide 27, Aggies 24

The Rundown

@No. 8 South Carolina 34, Arkansas 17. Because it’s been a valiant effort for Arkansas to somewhat salvage its season, but today’s not the Hogs’ day.

Wisconsin 27, @Indiana 10. Because order must be restored. Soooooo … if Wisconsin blows this today in Bloomington, because Ohio State and Penn State are ineligible, the Big Ten is staring down the barrel of naming one of its two championship game representatives …

Indiana.

And now, a one-act play. Striker is Bret Bielema, Lorraine is Curt Phillips, and the late, great Leslie Nielsen is Jim Delany.

No. 9 Louisville 24, @Syracuse 14. Because Charlie Strong wouldn’t be as sexy a coaching prospect if the Cardinals lost their first game today.

@Michigan 17, No. 24 Northwestern 16. Because the Big Ten just needs another head-scratching result, and because it wouldn’t make any sense with Denard Robinson out, and because the Wolverines have to have this one to keep conference title game hopes alive, and because Northwestern is Northwestern.

@Tennessee 35, Missouri 33. Because it’s just not Mizzou’s year in the SEC. Vols have got to pull out one of these close SEC games sooner or later, right?

@No. 12 Oklahoma 42, Baylor 24. Because it’s inconceivable for the Sooners to lose three games in Norman in less than two months.

Penn State 24, @No. 16 Nebraska 9. Because, again, the Big Ten is cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs this year. It would defy conventional logic. Then again, Bill O’Brien’s familiar with Eff You seasons … see, 2007 New England Patriots.

@Oklahoma State 41, West Virginia 27. Because this is West Virginia’s season in a nutshell.

Navy 36, @Troy 28. Because the Midshipmen are 6-3! And on this 5-game winning streak, they’ve beaten a potential Big Ten Championship Game participant! Happy Veteran’s Day tomorrow, everybody. Watch Navy win this without throwing double-digit passes.

@Ole Miss 31, Vanderbilt 30. Because it’s too close to call. Great stories, both of these teams. Ole Miss needs this more than Vandy based on the remaining schedule.

No. 4 Notre Dame 30, @Boston College 10. Because the Golden Eagles don’t have the stuff to pull this off. Even if UND’s been living on the edge lately.

No. 3 Oregon 56, @California 28. Because points, points, pointspointspoints, points, points, pointspointspointspoints … EVERYBODY!!!!

Last week: 12-4

Track record: 100-39

-AB

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